I Did a Thing (chopping my crowning glory)

But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her: for her hair is given her for a covering.
1 Corinthians 11:15

We all have our security blankets. We have that one thing in our lives that makes us feel better about ourselves, if only for a moment. For some people is food, a person, a special place, an activity that settles them or gets them going in a feel good way. For me it has been hair for as long as I could remember.

If you’ve seen the many photos of me that are on instagram you know that like a lot of women I love hair. My hair, that hair, new hair, braided hair, wig hair… doesn’t matter! I love switching things up. But the one thing I love most is long hair. Not because it’s oh so beautiful. Not because of the versatility it can provide. But because of the shield it provides me. It allows me to hide all of the imperfections that are in my face.

I have pmdd. I have it in the worse way. All of my symptoms are to the extreme. If you follow me on instagram you may have seen me post about it. One of the biggest symptoms I have is weight gain that fluctuates. I will get extra puffy in the face, and lately it has caused my self esteem to take a hit. A big hit. A I don’t even want to go outside of the house hit. So when I did go outside, I hid behind hair. My hair some days, wigs when I just couldn’t deal with my own. There was always hair to cover my puffed out cheeks, the massive double chins.


I’m not a big fan of low self esteem. It’s not something I’ve experienced a lot of in life, but when I have it was scary. To not think highly positive thoughts about yourself is cripling for me for reasons I won’t go into right now. So, I knew I needed to do something drastic to snap myself back. I decided I was going to cut off my hair. Not like the beautiful warriors in Black Panther drastic, but definitely in a “it’ll take me 5 minutes or less to create a style” drastic. I didn’t want the ability to do ponytails or buns anymore. I didn’t want to hide. I wanted to force me to embrace all of me. And I wanted a bad arse hair cut. One that I could look at and say dang, that’s really nice!!!! I wanted it to work for me whether it was blown straight or naturally curly.

So I headed to instagram and put up a post asking for hairstylist suggestions. There was one stylist that stood out to me. Every photo I saw on her instagram showed flawless hair styles. I instantly knew she was the one. I quickly made my appointment to get in to see her. When I arrived I was honestly bothered by how unspa-like it was lol.There ‘s no decor. It’s literally just a room with two stylist and a tv. I was highly disappointed, but I kept my eye on the prize. When I sat in the stylist chair I let her know exactly what I was looking for, which wasn’t much. I told her I wanted a hair cut to fit my face and I didn’t want to have to “do” my hair. A style that translated whether my hair was straight or curly. But mostly I told her that I NEEDED this cut, and that I trusted her to do it.

And giiirrrllll! She did that! When I saw myself, honey, I felt like a new woman! And I felt so.darn.freeeeeee! I felt so free and so beautiful. She colored it, she cut it, she slayed it baby! No more security blanket. This is me. Fluffiness and all. This is my face. I’m embracing it. One day it won’t be as fluffy as it is now. One day things will be better in that area. But for right now I’m embracing and loving me.

If you are looking for an amazing stylist in the DC area, I highly recommend Kenni. Now, honesty is key, so I’m letting you know if you are looking for a spa-like experience, it won’t happen here (and to be fair, she literally just moved to this salon). However, if you want to look and feel amazing when you finish getting your hair done, contact her asap. You can schedule your appointment through her styleseat page. Trust me, you won’t regret it!


Pinterest Tested Thursdays: Individual Tree Braids

So this week I sat down for the length of one movie and five episodes of One Tree Hill to complete a hairstyle. I posted it on instagram and facebook today and immediately started  receiving messages asking how I created the style. I am NOT a hair guru in the least, but I am good at recreating things that I see. I was scrolling along on pinterest one day when I saw this look. It’s called individual tree braids. I had heard of tree braids, but not individual tree braids. So I visited my second favorite site, youtube! And I found a video on just how to recreate the look.

This is actually my favorite youtube channel for hair. She is incredibly detailed in explaining her techniques, which is why her videos are usually 30+ minutes long.

Individual Tree BraidsThis was yet another successful Pinterest project, and I’m quite happy for that since it took approximately 6.5 hours for me to do. If you braid quicker I’m sure you could get it done in four hours.

Make sure you check out her other videos and don’t forget to visit me on pinterest! Happy pinning!


Review: Freetress Danity L-Part Wig

I love diva hair. There’s no denying that. From my short sassy wig, to long, luxurious hair, I love it all! I also love to change my hair up often, like, very often. Like…every 3 days often. Since Saturday I have worn 3 wigs and my natural hair. See, I’m a bit obsessed with changing my hair looks.

So last week I was perusing YouTube looking for my next look when I stumbled upon the Freetress Danity L Part Wig.I think what grabbed me is that it was completely opposite of what I currently have going on:

Johanna's Mama(2)Short and sassy. I was starting to miss that hair swing and flip though.

Side note: I don’t know if I mentioned this, but my hair is going through an extremely dry period right now, which is different for me. That’s another post for another day, but that’s why I’m wigging it so much lately.

Anyway, This wig looked so glamorous on the YouTuber that I just had to buy it. Here is what it looks like on the website:

WMDAN_DANITY_OP99J_600-140411021040Here it is fresh out the pack. I didn’t do anything to it except cut the lace. No finger coming, no highlighting the parting space, just plopped it on my head. I got it in a 1b:

20150727_132910Check out my video below to hear me gush about this hair and tell me what you think!


Mommy Wig Janet Collection Review

For a couple of years now I have been threatening my husband that I was going to shave all of my hair off. I was getting sick of hair. I didn’t want to wash it, condition it, untangle it, nothing. Now when it’s below 60 degrees outside I do tend to wear a wig majority of the time. My hair gets extremely dry and tangled when it’s cold out, so it’s best to just hide it away. And actually, I just love wigs. Being able to go from curly to straight, long to short so quickly is fun! I can change my hair based on my mood. You gotta love that!

Most have seen me either with my natural hair, a long wig, or a bob cut wig. But I wanted my hair gone. Like this:

Shave it clean off! My husband side eyed me quickly when I told him and said ok lol. And while I was very serious, I knew I couldn’t do that to him, or me. I love long hair too. I really did want tp try a short cut though, so I headed over to blackhairspray.com and bought myself a short do. Short without the commitment. What do you think?

Johanna's Mama(2)
I must tell you I am in love! My husband loves it too! Why didn’t I go short years ago? This is the Mommy Wig, part of the Janet Collection. Yes, seriously, it’s called the Mommy wig lol. It’s so light and easy! It’s human hair so you can wash it and curl it too, if you want. I have been using a spray bottle filled with water and conditioner on it. It helps the curls pop and stay fresh. I wash it every other week. Now, the wig doesn’t show up to you like this. It comes like this:

Which is cute if you’re into the whole finger waves style. I am not. So as soon as I put it on I started messing with it, rubbing it with my fingers until I got it out of this pattern and a little more natural looking.

This wig has me feeling like I’m doing some things and I can imagine that it will be a staple in my collection for years to come. I have experienced very minimal shedding, and it is still going strong a month later. No complaints here! You can buy the Mommy wig on the Black Hair Spray site for $20.19.


Curl Centric Curly Kids Coloring Book Review

Curly KidsWhen I found out I was pregnant with a girl, I knew that there were 3 important things I would need to get her to love in order to make it in this world – Her hair, the skin she’s in, and a deep love for Jesus. I also knew that out of all of those things, her hair would probably be the topic that would give me the biggest challenge. I mean, how do you get your daughter to love the very thing that many people, including her own people, put down?

Johanna's MamaEveryday many choose to straighten their hair, not just to enjoy a temporary hairstyle, but because they truly believe that curls and kinks are negative things and they want no parts of them. The media has constantly pushed onto us that straight, flowing hair is what is acceptable and beautiful. Those are the very messages that I have to fight against when it comes to Johanna. I constantly try to show her cartoons (I’m looking at you Doc McStuffin!) and books that showcase curly haired girls. If we are out and about, I make it a point to point out little girls that have gorgeous hair that mirrors hers. The beauty in all of this is that she was born during a time when natural hair was beginning to really be embraced. Today you see sistas everywhere rocking their twa’s and curly fro’s. Natural hair has become cool. However, inside I know, that it is probably a fad that will fade into the background, and when it does, I will still need for my daughter to love her hair. That is why I was ecstatic when I was contacted to review the Curly Kids Coloring book and share it with you!

The Curly Kids Coloring book was created by Curl Centric and contains over 30 images of curly haired beauties! You know I’m in love. A coloring book featuring girls that look just like my Johanna is definitely a dream come true. Even she grabbed her hair and was amazed that the girls in the book had hair just like her own!
Johanna's Mama(1)I had the opportunity to do a quick Q&A session with the author, Akirashanti Byrd to understand the idea behind the coloring book from her perspective.

Q: Why did you choose to create this coloring book?

A: My youngest daughter is the inspiration behind the coloring book. When the idea of the coloring book first came up, I wanted to surround my daughter with images that were relevant and relatable to her. I wanted her to have something to help her see natural hair in a positive way. Because she is so crafty and creative, a coloring book was fitting for her.

Q: Did you grow up natural, and if you did, was it difficult for you?

A: I had a Jherri Curl and used Snap Back Curl Activator and all, very similar to a curly perm, in the 6th grade! It was all the rage- LOL!

Q: Did you love your hair as a child?

A: I think it depends on the time-frame. As child being able to run around in the rain and remembering my mom putting water and grease on hair, yes, I loved it. But in later years when I “couldn’t” get it wet because, it was cute but it wasn’t fun anymore.

Q: What are you hoping that your audience gets from this book?

A: The one thing I want the kids to take away is there is nothing wrong with their hair. They should look in the mirror and feel confident at what they see looking back at at them.

CurlyKidsColoringBookFullCoverAre you as geeked about this coloring book as I am? Click here to buy Curly Kids Coloring Book and visit Curl Centric for more curl positive articles. If you do pick it up, let me know what you think. I want to know your little one’s reaction!



Curly hair with Foil and a Flat Iron? Hmmm…

It’s a lazy snow day here in the DC area and I am taking full advantage of it. I have not moved off of the couch in about an hour. Speed is on Encore, and my phone is in my hand, while the husband and kid are playing in the snow. Life is good!

While browsing facebook I saw this video in one of my natural hair groups and became very intrigued. Using foil and a flat iron to get pretty curls? Very interesting!

So many people were saying it can’t possibly be done on Black hair, but I didn’t believe them. Being that I was doing absolutely nothing else, I had to try it!

20150221_134310And here are the results:


Cute, right? So easy and fun. I love that heat is not being applied directly to my hair. It’s the same effect as pin curling, but without the wait. Now, just an fyi, my hair was quasi-straightened from earlier this week when I had to trim my hair. I have no idea if it will work on my hair in it’s kinky state. If you try it that way, please let me know your results!

Ok, back to movie time and lounging on the couch. Stay toasty!


How to Get My New Protective Style


Last week after doing my hair for 4 hours I had a mini photoshoot with Johanna. She’s always up for some camera time and I secretly love that about her. Anyway, after posting one of the photos on facebook, quite a few people commented on how much they loved my hair. A few asked me where I got it done. I was quite proud to say that I learned it from a youtube person. Now it’s not perfect, and it doesn’t look half as great as theirs, but I still love it. Now I know that you’ve noticed by now how terrible my eyebrows are. Stop staring and judging. A new lady at the nail shop totally jacked them up, and now I’m screwed trying to grow them out so someone can make sense of them. I have no idea how to perfectly manicure eyebrows, so I have just been walking around looking quite sad. Stop judging. I see you judging with your judgey eyes Mister/Misses Mcjudgeyson. Hmph. It could happen to any of us.

Anywho, here is the tutorial that I used. If you decide to to do this style, or some variation of it, let me know so I can check it out!



Beauty Buys for Black Friday and Cyber Monday

Hello my lovelies! It’s that time of year. The time when people’s attitudes get sweeter, if only for a little while, and our pockets get thinner so that we can put a smile on a loved ones face. The time to celebrate family and friends, get nice and plump and wake up the next morning to do it all over again! After Black Friday shopping of course!

I’ve never been a big Black Friday shopper. I prefer to do all of my shopping online. However, this year you will probably find me in Macy’s or JC Penny getting a couple of items for the home while they are deeply discounted. But on friday morning I will also be stalking stores online. Cosmetic stores as a matter of fact. Below you will find a list of my favorite beauty brands and the discounts they will have. You’re welcome.

AVALON ORGANICS: 20% off with code AVALONTHANKS, 11/29-12/2.
BLISS: 20% off all full-size bliss, Elemis, Remede products, 11/29 through 12/2.
BUTTER LONDON: 20% off site wide (excluding product marked at “last-call”) and 50% off “last-call” items with code CYBER13, 11/29 through 12/2.
CARGO: 50% off Let’s Meet in Paris Mini Lip Gloss Kits, 11/29 at ULTA stores and online.
DESERT ESSENCE: 25% off all orders with code CYBER, 11/29 through 12/2.
DR. BRANDT SKINCARE: 40% off entire purchase, 11/29.
GIORGIO ARMANI: 20% off $75+ purchases, now through 12/5.
H20 PLUS: $25 off $100 purchase, 11/29 only.
KATE SOMERVILLE: Friends & Family Sale — 30% off with code HOLIDAY2013, 11/25 through 12/2.
MACY’S: Special sets from brands like Estee Lauder, Clinique, Smashbox, Origins, bareMinerals, 11/29.
MAKE UP FOR EVER: Purchase two full-sized Aqua Shadows (either 20E and 28E / 2E and 30E) for $10 at Sephora, 11/29 through 12/1 (while supplies last).
MISS JESSIE’S: 40% off + free shipping, now through 12/3.
MIYU BEAUTY: 25% off with code BFCMMIYU5, 11/29 through 12/2.
OPI: The special four-piece polish set Cheers to the Holidays will only be $8 on Black Friday at Ulta stores.
OUIDAD: 20% off site wide with code FFCURL20, 11/27 through 12/4. Spend $60+ and get 25% off with code FFCURL25, 11/27 through 12/4.
Pearl: Pearl Ionic Teeth Whitening System is 40 percent off on Black Friday.
PETER THOMAS ROTH: 20% off sitewite, 11/29 only.
SEPHORA: $10 deals beginning 11/29. See the list below.
SHU UEMURA: 20% + free shipping on $50+ purchases with code WISH2013, 11/29 through 12/2.
SMASHBOX: 25% off everything with $50+ purchase with code HOLIDAY25, ends 12/2.
URBAN DECAY: Get a 6-piece bundle of Revolution Lipstick for only $50 (a $132 value). Set includes the following shades: Jilted, F-Bomb, Catfight, Naked, Native and Protest. Get travel sizes of All Nighter Makeup Setting Spray, Supercurl Mascara and Eyeshadow Primer Potion, as well as the Black Market 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil Set, for $35 (a $72 value.
VAPOUR BEAUTY: 30% off with code BLACKFRIDAY13, 11/27 through 12/2.
VICHY: Get $15 off $60 purchase with code FRIDAY15, get $25 off $90 purchase with code FRIDAY25, get $35 off $125+ purchase with code FRIDAY35, 11/25 through 11/30.
WELEDA: 25% off all products with code FRIDAY, 12/2 only.
YSL: 20% off $75+ orders, now through 12/2.

Cyber Monday Sales:
AMALA BEAUTY: 20% off $150+ purchases with code MONDAY2013, 12/2 through 12/3.
COLORSCIENCE: Buy $75 and get $10 off with code THANKS10, buy $100 and get $15 off with code THANKS15, and buy $150 get $20 off with code THANKS20, 12/2 only.
DR. BRANDT SKINCARE: 40% off eye creams, 12/1 at noon EST through 12/2 midnight EST.
FIRST AID BEAUTY: 30% off purchases + free shipping on all orders, 12/2 only.
GOOD HOME CO.: 30% off with code CYBER13, 12/2.
JACK BLACK: Exclusive holiday gift sets – up to 72% off + free shipping, 12/2 only.
LAURA GELLER: 20% off sitewide + free shipping, 12/2.
LISA HOFFMAN: 50% off with code LHCYBER, 12/2 only. $100+ purchase receives 4 vial pulse-point perfume set.
MYCHELLE: 50% off with code CYBER13, 12/2 only.
PAULA’S CHOICE: 15% off, 12/2 only.
SJAL: 10% off $100+ orders, 20% off $200+ orders, 25% off $300+ orders, 12/2 through 12/3.
STRIVECTIN: 25% off $200+ purchases with code CMJINGLE25, 12/2.
URBAN DECAY: Get the Smoked Palette and an Eyeshadow Primer Potion Travel Duo for $40 (a $58 value). Get the 2011 Urban Decay Book of Shadows Vol. IV with a deluxe Revolution Lipstick sample for $25.
VICHY: 25% with code CYBER13, 12/1 through 12/3.
WELEDA: 25% off all products with code MONDAY, 12/2 only.

Sephora $10 Deals:
Alterna Caviar Moisture Trio (miniature sizes)
BareMinerals Enchanting Eyes (Eyeshadow Duo and Miniature-sized Prime Time)
Bite Lush Lip Trio (miniature sizes)
Bliss Soapy Suds Body Wash + Bubble Bath (16 oz., available in four scents)
Boscia Pore Perfection Set (miniature sizes)
Buxom Curtain Call Set (Mascara + Full-On Lipstick)
Buxom Havana Full-On Lipstick
Clean Rollerball Set (miniature sizes)
Formula X Asap Real Nail Lacquer Duo Pack
Josie Maran Argan Hand Healers Set (miniature sizes)
Kate Somerville Dermal Quench Liquid Lift Treatment (miniature size)
Lavanila The Healthy Deodorant in Vanilla Grapefruit (miniature size)
Living Proof The Full Collection (miniature sizes)
LORAC Fan Favorite (Eyeshadow and Eyeliner)
Nails Inc. Crystaltastic Nails
Ole Henriksen Clean Sweep Duo (miniature sizes)
Philosophy Purity Made Simple (12 fl. oz.)
Sephora Collection Sparklers Brush Set
Stila Artful Eye Collector’s Palette (available in three varieties)
Stila Collage of Color Lip & Cheek Palette
Tarte Little Miracles Best Selling Essentials (miniature sizes)
The Art of Shaving The 4 Elements of the Perfect Shave Set (miniature sizes)
Tocca Florence Travel Fragrance Duo
Too Faced Better Than Sex Amazing Eyes Set (miniature sizes)
Vita Liberata Rich Face + Mini Mitt Duo (miniature sizes)
Wei Pore Purifying & Brightening Collection (miniature sizes)

Happy shopping!


New Protective Style for Fall

Lately I have been tired of doing my hair. As you all know, I’m natural, which means I often have to wear my hair in a protective style. The problem is, a lot of the protective styles I do don’t stay put all week long. I always have to redo some portion of it and it drives me batty! But then, a little birdie posted this youtube video about how to do Havana twists and ma’am? Ma’am! I am in love! Super duper easy and I’ve gotten a ton of compliments. What do you think?



The New H&M

H&M has been doing some exciting things! Like, finally becoming available for online shopping AND opening a new store in Friendship Heights DC. I’m totally geeked about both!I went to the grand opening in Friendship Heights and had a blast. They played music outside as we stood in line and the workers all came out to dance and mingle with the crowd (catch the video here). They gave away cute little H&M tote bags as well as cards that got us $10 off of our purchase. I wasn’t supposed to buy anything though. I was just going to browse…

Ok, so that didn’t quite workout as planned. BUT, I did put away 80% of the stuff I grabbed off of the racks and it was all about Johanna! I just got her a few things. One outfit that I couldn’t pass up and a couple of dresses.

Oh, and I bought a scarf for myself as well! You can checkout H&M here online. You can also visit the new store in Upper NW DC/Chevy Chase MD by taking the metro to Friendship Heights.