Baby’s 1st Haircut: An Open Letter

My name is B.

I’m the one to the left. The 20-month old boy. I’m taking over my cousin’s hair blog for the day. After all, I have a hair story too. A few days ago, I took a trip to see Santa for the first time. Sitting on his lap wasn’t the easiest thing. I didn’t even know that man like that. Anyway, big cuzzo B and I were both rockin’ curls. Her locs were rockin’ and my fro was….I don’t know. I was cute though. Then comes the idea of me getting my first hair cut. A BIG CHOP? I wasn’t feelin’ that idea at all.

It’s written all over my face, right?


But, the hair cut turned out to be okay! Man, I look good!


Am I not huggable or what?

Oh yeahhh…..check out big cuzzo B and I gettin’ our model looks on.


What the…did she HAVE to go there? She’s the weird one in the family. And I’m the cute one. I’ll talk to you guys later. There’s a bowl of water with rubber duckies in it calling my name.

Bye bye,
Baby B

Build-up has me down…

Happy Holidays, y’all!!

I was really thinking about not blogging on both Clumps and LocRocker until the new year but nope…I can’t NOT blog for that long. And I’ve got way too much going on to “schedule” posts so no blog vacay for me. And I don’t mind one bit because blogging is a therapy/passion.

Holla!

Anywhoovers, before I went home for Christmas I washed the locs. Washing is becoming tricky these days. And here’s why.


You see those white areas at the root of my locs? That’s build-up! Oil, I suppose. This was after I washed my hair twice with Dr. Bronner’s magic soap. I’ve been using this stuff for ages and it is GREAT at lifting build-up. But….apparently it can’t tackle my year old locs. So I washed a third time….


And a forth time…


Do you see that? That white loc? I literally had to mash it out of my hair with a towel. It was insanely frustrating. Not to mention gross. And my locs were left drier/crunchier than normal. I can only imagine what would have happened if I used a conditioner.

And since I have color-treated hair, I REALLY need to be using a conditioner.

The only time I don’t have build-up issues when washing is when I rinse with apple cider vinegar. But that can only happen once a month or so.

*sigh*

Let’s hope I can rectify this problem sooner rather than later. Any loc’d folx deal with build-up issues? HELP!

…oh, and I have decided to not latch for at least a month. This will give my roots a break (I can be latch-happy sometimes) and I can start fresh with lots of new growth. OR–I may even go to my loctician for some much needed hair pampering. The latter is soundin’ so good right now!

I don’t get this “black hair” thing…

…before I start. Thank y’all SOOOO much for the latching help via the comments left on this post. I’m still working on it but you ladies have no idea how much you’ve helped me and other latchin’ loc’ers. Thank you all!!

Ohmigoodness, so the comments in that video REALLY made me happy. In the beginning of that vid, I did a quick little summary about what “natural hair” is. I’m going to go in further detail about that one of these days because I seriously believe that education is power.

Most of my life I’ve had non-Black friends ask me soooo many questions about my hair. In fact, I bet most Black women have experienced it.

Whether you’re a Black girl with ponytails, curls, braids, weave, wigs, locs, twists, an afro or a wrap, you’ve heard….

“How does your hair do that?”

“Did it grow overnight?”

“Why don’t you wash it everyday?”

….and maybe once or twice you’ve had to discourage someone for reaching up and trying to touch your hair.

[Disclaimer] We don’t play that. I am all smiles and sprinkles but I sooo don’t like when people touch my hair without asking. LOL, fo real though….

So yeah, it took a long time for me to realize that my friends weren’t asking these questions because they were trying to be funny or make me feel odd, but because they really DIDN’T know. And it’s okay not to know. That’s what I was hoping the film would Good Hair would have done but um, noo… Maybe I should do my own documentary about Black hair—its history, criticism, changes and different styles. How cool with that be? And it would not only be an ode to Black hair but it would also educate those who have an general interest in wanting to know more about it.

Hmm….

Anyway, so yeah….some of the comments in this video really made me smile because I got a lot of comments from non-Brown girls who said they learned something from my defining what Black hair was. That has inspired me to want to reach out to more so stay tuned for that in 2010. I think it’s amazing that some of my White friends say, “I wish my hair was like yours and could do cool things like that.” If only they knew how much I wanted hair like theirs. Long and straight and flow-able and easy and pain-free.

Thank God for acceptance. I say we all just start loving what we have while admiring and appreciating others’.

Rock on!

Why I need a Latching 101 Lesson

If you’ve been tuning in to Loc Rocker since I first started latching my locs, you know that I LOOOOVE this method. I went from palm rolling to latching simply because it:

a) allows me to work-out without fear that my locs will drop or unravel.
b) minimizes the amount of product that I WOULD be using if I were re-twisting. This is a big deal b/c I already have build-up issues.
c) is quick and can be done any time and I don’t have to wash my hair to latch.

Latching just fits my lifestyle but I’d be lying if I said I knew what I was doing. From a quick glance my newly latched locs look okay.


But a closer look shows that they look a little funky…


Errr…I mean, what IS that? I’ll admit that I do think my locs look better when re-twisting. But I’m not going back that route so I’ve got to learn how to make some good latched locs because I’ll be doing this for many years to come.

My biggest issue with latching is this:


Some of my locs get the Y-shaped thing going on. I HATE this. And while I’ve done my research and watched videos on how to correctly latch, I am still crazy confused. I’ve seen fellow loc’ers talk about entering the latch tool in different rotations by using a clock.

For example…

“Enter at 12 o clock and end at 6 o clock”

WTF?! This sounds good in theory but I soooo don’t get it. LOL! It’s so difficult to understand. Here’s the latching tool that I use.


Yeah, it ain’t nothin’ but a paper clip. Some folx use a Nappylocs tool but are you kidding me? That thing is like $16.

Locstyle: The Crown

Soooo, for my 1 year Loc-aversary, I wanted to do something fun to the locs. I didn’t want to curl them because I’m saving that style for Christmas. I looked in the mirror for a good 5 minutes and came up with the idea of doing some kind of “crown” on the top of my head. I gathered locs from one side of my head, gathered them in the middle and swept them over to the other side.

So here’s one side…


And the top of the other side..


I love those colors!

And then the back..

I think it came out really nice. I only used two bobby pins to hold everything together. It even held up during the crazy sweat fest called a “work-out”. Still doing my research to find some other elaborate styles I can do with my locs.

Until then…

Peace and loc’ve!

Q&A’s: Session 1


I’ve been getting a lot of emails with questions and now that the locs are a year old, I think it’s the perfect time to post these answers. I hope they help!

Q: How long will it take for me to loc my hair?
A: Throw this question out of your mind. Seriously, if you have ever thought this, mentally remove it and put it to rest. There is no way you will know. Hair texture, lifestyle and how your locs were installed have a lot to do with how long it will take you to loc. My “soldier loc” was loc’d completely in 3 months. But a year later and I have still have some locs that haven’t even budded or sealed at the tips. If I told you it would take you 9 months to loc would you change your mind about loc’ing? I hope not. It’s called a journey for a reason. Be patient and enjoy your hair through this process.

Q: Why didn’t you get Sisterlocks?
A: I get this question a lot! I seriously thought about Sisterlocks for quite some time. But the main reason why I didn’t get them is because I couldn’t afford them. It’s as simple as that. I understand how they save you money in the long run and they really are worth the price but my cheap behind wouldn’t allow it. That and I didn’t want to HAVE to go to a Sisterlocks’ specialist each time I wanted to get them re-tightened. I opted for cultivated locs because I wanted to do them myself quickly and easily. And, I am now at the point where I like the look of larger locs. Sisterlocks are just too tiny for me. I’d be too concerned about them thinning.

Q: What was one of your biggest hair problems while loc’ing?
A: If you would have asked me this during my first 6 months I would have said, “FUZZIES!!”. It took a long time to accept the fact that they were going to stay. Working out with comb coils was tough too. It made a fresh re-twist look “seasoned” every time. And then there’s dandruff, but that may always be an issue for me. *sigh* I guess. Seems like after the 6 months, the locs really came into their own and the fuzzies and work-out woes were no more.

Q: Why did you stop going to the loctician?
A: When I first got my locs installed, I wanted them done by a professional. I wanted her to teach me about products, techniques, styles, etc. So in a sense, I wanted to be educated about my new locs. She was great at that! But at the same time I wanted to care for my own hair….even if my loctician was the best thing ever. I will still visit her from time to time for pampering but I love being able to do my own hair. That and I save A LOT of money by not going. Yep, I’m cheap. So what! LOL

Q: How did you deal with the fuzzies?
A: I did just that. I dealt with them. I didn’t hide them under scarves. I didn’t slick them back with any gels or pomades either. I just walked around with fuzz. Did I like it then? Nope…I can’t say I felt pretty the entire time. But I stopped my complaining and dealt with it. I mean, read this post. I virtually hated my locs at one point and that was only day 8! Do your complaining and then shut up. The fuzzies ain’t goin’ nowhere fast. 🙂

Q: Was there ever a time when you wanted to take the locs out?
A: NO!!! I REALLY wanted to loc so there was no quitting for me. It’s a personal decision…if you are 2 months in and want to take them out, who cares? It’s your hair. I have more fun with my locs than I ever did with a huge fro so locs really are for me! In fact, the only other style that I would rock again other than locs is a TWA (teeny weeny afro). I was natural for almost 4 years before I loc’d. I had my fun with that. Locs was the next choice for me.

Q: Why do you call them “locs” and not “dreadlocks” or “locks”?
A: You say tomato, I say banana. LOL…it really is a preference. I never call them “dreads” or “dreadlocks” because I don’t like that term. There is nothing dreadful about my locs. I’m not going to refer to anything on my head with the word “dread” in it. But some people don’t see it that way and that’s fine. I don’t get offended when people call them “dreads”, I just use “locs”. I dropped the “K” from locs because I “think” that’s the more common spelling. Etymology rocks my socks and I love semantic changes. Such a nerd, I am.

Q: How long will you grow your locs?
A: I’m a free spirit that flows with the wind. I don’t see myself cutting off my locs (combing them out soooo isn’t an option!) for quite some time. I don’t have any length goals. I’m just flowin’.

I’ll do more in another session. Don’t forget you can email me about whatever at Brittany@ClumpsOfMascara.com.

The locs are a year old!!!

One of the things that I have always loved about being newly natural is that you really do celebrate your hair. Not many women do this. But for those of us that have BCed or started locs or just ditched the perm and loving our natural textures…it’s a big deal!!

…and don’t be like me and try to explain it to folx because most won’t understand.

But in case you missed it…

THE LOCS ARE A YEAR OLD!!!!!

Oh yeah! I’m so excited. I am in the process of doing a video and editing some photos for comparison shots but in the meantime, enjoy some loco shots of the locs on their birthday.


I have a lot more coming. Thanks to La Loced, I did a bentonite clay mask (SO AMAZING!) and I even did a cute little style. Thanks to all of y’all that have been following my journey. I appreciate the comments, the helpful tips, the links, the emails, the encouragement, etc. Since I’ve reached a year I’m going to shut down the blog in the next month or so.

Love y’all!


BTW….I am sooooo kidding! Hahahaaa! LocRocker will be around to help other ladies with their journeys and I will continue to update y’all on my locs and provide any helpful links/tips along the way.

Gotta go finish spoiling the locs. After all, its their day!

Henna shopping

Last night I went to Whole Foods. Side note: I forgot how bloody expensive that place is. Back when I was a raw foodie and veg, I was shopping there at least 3x a week. Never again. Fresh markets only!Okay..sooo this brand of henna was takin’ over the place. I did a quick search on my Blackberry just to find out that most of its reviews were…not good. That’s too bad…they have a ton of colors and “seem” to be all natural. Oh well….the search continues.
Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

Product Review: Oyin Handmade Uber Poo Bar

Yayyyy, look at me, look at me! I’m doing a product review. Sometimes I feel like I’m not doing my best with good ole’ LocRocker and that makes me sad. Clumps requires sooo much and oftentimes LocRocker gets the bottom of the barrel. My apologies! I will do a better job at making this job a great resource for fellow loc’ers, naturals and those interested in hearing me talk about how fine with men with locs are.

Black man + Dreadlocks=doomed?


I can’t remember who sent this to me but there’s this brotha on YouTube who talks about his locs. He has a number of videos and he talks about styles, maintenance and the political issues surrounding a Black man wearing locs.

And he’s only 17. Loves it!

In one video he is answering questions and he goes,

QUESTION: How can I get my hair to be un-frizzy?

His response: “People, it’s a natural process. You gotta go through it.
It will be frizzy. Aight?”

LOL….he ain’t lyin’!! I wish someone would have kicked it to me that real when I first started loc’ing.

It’s a hard knock life being a Black man. But add that to being a Black man who sports locs. It can’t be easy because of the judgments people are always making on my men. That MOST Black men are in jail. Or gang bangin’. Or not being supportive husbands and wives. Whatev.

Show the young brotha some love. Rock on, zayloc23!

And before I go….


I loooooove Cousin Jeff. This man is professional, afro-conscious AND sportin’ locs? And those lips….I mean…locs.

*faints*

…what do y’all think about Black men with locs and how the world views them?

(image source) (image source)