Making Black Cocoa Butter shampoo

O.M.G…I had a BALL at the Natural Beauty Lab event this past weekend. I met so many wonderful ladies. In fact, I’ll be linking with them again this weekend for the Tom Joyner Family Reunion Expo. The Peace and Beauty Project will have a booth and I’ll be helping out where needed.

I fell in love with the mission of Peace and Beauty Project when I saw the founder, Karen, present at one of my Urban League Young Professionals meetings. Karen’s passion for helping young girls and natural beauty fell in line with so many of the things that I am trying to do. I feel so blessed to have crossed paths with her.

Anywhoovers…the event was a HUGE hit. I tried to live tweet but was too busy havin’ fun making my own goodies. The first thing we blended was a Black Cocoa Butter shampoo.

Girl, yes…it smells and feels as good as it looks. We started off with unscented castile soap.

We then funneled a bit of black cocoa butter. Karen mentioned that finding black cocoa butter has been very hard for her. If y’all know of a retailer, please let me know.

We dumped in some aloe vera…

And at this point, we were able to scent it however we liked. Cocoa Absolute was a huge hit among most of the ladies.

….I ventured more to the mint essential oil, instead.  I just LOVE how mint feels on my scalp.

And ba =m! A homemade organic black cocoa butter shampoo…

I haven’t washed my hair yet (ironically I washed it the day before, womp!) but the next time that I do, I will be using this. Can’t. wait. In the meantime, I’ve been using it as a hand soap and has been leaving my hands incredibly smooth…a rarity when you use castile soap solo.

We made other products but I don’t think I took enough pictures of everything. I volunteered to be photographer but somewhere between laughing it up with everyone, live tweeting and mixing, I forgot.

Also in the house was Ortancis from The Orlando’s Natural Hair meetup group and Fara from Pure Essence Body Care. I’ve raved about Pure Essence before when I discovered them at Whole Foods’ farmers market. And Fara’s locs…O.M.G. I’ll be featuring her soon.

If you are in or around the greater Orlando area, please let me know as the Peace and Beauty Project will be having more events. And did I tell you about Orlando’s 1st Beauty and Natural Hair show? That’s a post for another day but I am beyond excited.

In the meantime, y’all go and whip you up a shampoo.

P.S.
I’ll be reblogging this over at Clumps of Mascara. I have to share this good information with the Clumps fam too!

My nappy hair has ruined my social life…

This video popped up in my RSS feeder via Black Girl with Long Hair. I seriously thought it was a joke.

You mean to tell me this sister’s childhood was ruined because of her hair? What a bunch of bull. And I won’t even get started on this “Natural organic hair system”. How vague is that? You would think the brand would give a little more information about the products. I smell a rat.

What do y’all think?

Loc Spotlight: Konima from Expanding Beauty

Gather ‘roun kids as a fellow loc rocker, Konima, tells us her loc story…

I’ve had my locs for about 31/2 years now. This set of locs were started by a dear friend who also happens to be a fantastic loctician (shout out to Papelle!) and started by comb coils. I knew I wanted small locs but not too small so that I could still maintain them myself. She gave me a beautiful set that I love and nurture to this day!

 My first year of locing I would twist my locs once a month, using a mixture of aloe vera gel with some oils thrown in. Since I’m pretty active I rinse my locs a lot and shampoo once a week. About a year and a half into my loc journey it was suggested to me that I switch to latching my locs because the wear and tear of the constant twisting would thin out my locs and cause breakage! I researched the hell out of interlocking, bought myself a Nappyloc tool and despite the learning curve(my euphemism for frustration and time factor increase) I now happily maintain my locs with latching, depending how fast my hair grows I do a re-ti every 2 months.

 I’m quite pleased that my locs are strong and I have avoided the thinning and breakage that would have occurred, the other nice plus is because I don’t need to use a twisting gel I have less buildup and latching doesn’t unravel through my constant rinsing and weekly shampoos. I spritz my hair daily with a mixture I mix up, condition with a herbal rinse after I shampoo and once a month I clarify by using Bentonite clay which doubles as a great conditioner! I also dye my hair every 4 months with henna. That’s pretty much it for my maintenance, I keep things quite simple, because I’m lazy and focus on making sure my locs stay hydrated and healthy.

I love my locs for oh so many reasons but the top ones are that it’s a beautiful way for me to have healthy hair, going to a sylist is now an option and not a necessity, it fits in with my active lifestyle, gives me a lot of styling options and they look great without any styling at all!

Visit and follow Konima’s blog.

Jill Scott, you are out of the natural club!

By now I’m sure most of y’all have heard about Jill Scott “supposedly” rocking a relaxed do at an event that she went to. I say “supposedly” because how in the world are we supposed to know what’s going up in her head? Who’s to say she didn’t straighten it? Or blow it out?

Honestly, the whole online uproar really bothers me. A lot of times us naturals claim to represent freedom and self-expression but we are quick to judge someone who decided to relax their natural hair, or go with THIS loc’ing method instead of THAT one. We feel “sad” if a former loc rocker has decided to comb out or cut off their locs. I wonder why as naturals, we feel so attached to the roots of other naturals’.

I say “we” because I remember wanting to shed a tear when my locspiration and friend Shawnta combed out her locs. I felt the same way when Fauryn78 on YouTube did the exact same thing. But why? I didn’t know what was going on the personal lives of these ladies. As with anything in life, sometimes you just want change. And if it happens to be your crown, who are we to judge? Or more importantly, care?

I wish that us naturals would stop it with the superiority complex. Y’all know what I’m talking about! As much as I take pride in natural hair, oftentimes, we can be downright clique-ish. I’ve heard of ladies only wanting natural heads in their bridal parties to hearing comments from friends who dog out sistas wearing relaxed hair. It’s ridiculously over the top and deepens that division that Black women can have.

I’m over it. I will ALWAYS rock natural hair but I could care less who doesn’t. We are not a cult of diehard members. We are not a separate and exclusive group of Black femininity. We are simply a group of women who wear our hair naturally. And that’s it. Let’s take pride in it but let’s not judge those who do not do the same. While at times, I like to think that natural hair can be a lifestyle, it’s times like this when I think it is just…hair.

So Jill Scott, I don’t really care how you wear your hair. I just know that you are one of the most talented artists ever. And your hair did not make or break it for you.

To my afro wearing ladies, you are beautiful.
To my loc’d divas, you are beautiful.
To my straight hair naturals, you are beautiful.
To my curly heads, you are beautiful.
To my naturally straight haired chicks, you are beautiful.
To my relaxed mamas, you are beautiful.
To my weave/wig wearin’ sistas, you are beautiful.
To my transitioners, you are beautiful.
To my “I don’t know what’s going on with my hair” chicas, you are beautiful.

Readers Say What?: Loc Emergency!! To chop or not chop?

I saw those words in my Loc Rocker inbox this morning and I was like, “Uh oh..a fellow loc rocker needs our help!” I put on the cape and got to readin’…

Dear Brittany,
I am contemplating cutting my locs and went to get them cut yesterday but the salon was closed!!! Going ultra short tapered, dye of course… but having cold feet. My locs are getting long..(mid back) and heavy. ITs been 4 years and I need some renewal in my life…I was all for it yesterday actually very anxious to cut them off and begin a new journey…but today….arrgh….. Your thoughts?


Sincerely,
Short Hair Do Care

Any advice, fam? I think she should chop. A new cut and color may be just what she needs to to get that spark she feels like she’s missing. And of course, if she hates it, guess what? It’s hair…it’ll just grow back. What do y’all think?

Doing baby girl’s hair…

I saw this over at Afroniquely You and I was just amazed. YouTube-r, Sista Chick has a series of videos that shows how she washes, detangles and styles her daughter’s hair. Little Chick has a head full of beautiful natural hair that at first glance can look a little cumbersome, but Sista Chick made the routine look like a breeze.

She was gentle and it looked as if she really enjoyed doing her daughter’s hair. And I didn’t hear baby girl cry or wince not one time.

My Mom is the greatest person in the world, but I wish she would have taken the time to learn and do my hair instead of throw a perm up in it. And even before I had a perm, I don’t ever remember “hair day” ever being a pleasant experience. It was terrifying. Kudos to Sista Chick! Watching her series of videos really opened my mind up because while I’d love to loc my daughter’s hair, I really want HER to be able to make that decision. It’s great to know that in the meantime, I’ve got some tips of how to keep her scalp and hair healthy and beautiful without leaving her in tears and leaving me frustrated.

Why I’m talking about “my daughter” as if she exists is beyond me. Don’t even give that “eye” y’all, because I’m going to be one of those first time almost 40 Mothers. Hmmm mmmm….

How was your experiences getting your hair done as I young brown girl?

Locs at 20 months

I’m in a very happy place with my locs. Very happy. Which is good because on my 16th month update, I was straight up loathing them thangs. I make no apologies for it though. My goal with Loc Rocker is to share the good AND not so good about my journey. I keeps it real. Or maybe I’m just a slightly nutty chick who is up and down about everything. HAAA!!

Anywhoovers, I love them. There isn’t one thing I don’t love about my locs at this point. I recently retwisted them for the first time in a long time and I was like “Whoa!” They’ve gotten long! I had a good 2-3 inches of fro hair so it shocked me to see how long they hung when I retwisted.

This looks kinda funny, uh?

Like…why are there a good 8-10 locs that are longer than the others? And that color is growing doooown. I would really love to go back to that light brown.

It’s been almost a year since I did it. I’m waiting on  my locs to marry a little more. And I’ll be going to my loctician for that. No more at home dye jobs. Even though I’m pretty darn good at it. 🙂

Locs on the left…

Locs on the right…

Locs in a ponytail…

Finally! A healthy real deal ponytail. I try not to wear it as tight as it is in this picture. Too much pressure around my head leads to headaches and I suffer from migraines. I do ponytails when I run and all of the locs can fit. In a rubberband, that is. So un-ladylike, I know. I remember always seeing my guy friends wear their locs in ponytails secured with rubberbands and I would be like, “That is so tacky.” But honestly…the rubberband is the best ponytail holder. Super secure and it doesn’t pop on me. I’ve popped ALL 24 ponytail holders that I purchased a few months ago. Tragic.

And here’s the thing about my locs, they aren’t uniform–I mean, each loc looks different.

Most show where I used to latch, others show where I started combining and some have budded all wonky because I would go so long without re-twisting. Even the soldier loc has imperfections in it and that’s one loc got the same method of maintenance; frequent re-twisting. I say this to say…I love it. I love that all of my locs are unperfect.

I’ve been washing every week…sometimes every other week. Dandruff hasn’t been an issue and I think it has a lot to do with this insane humidity. I gently massage the scalp each night, but not with oil. I find that my scalp feels better when I’m not loading it up with oil. Sometimes we get in the habit of oiling, oiling oiling, when it reality…the scalp don’t even need it. I oil as needed (maybe once or twice a week) with olive oil or Lockology’s Mint Medley Oil. I shampoo with Lockology’s Mint Medley Shampoo, castile soap and most recently I tried Peter Lamas’ Wheatgrass Purifying Shampoo. O.M.G. This may be one of the best shampoos I have ever tried. I received a sample of it on behalf of Clumps of Mascara so the review will be over there. And as far as conditioners, I’m finding that I don’t need them. My locs seem to be soft after each shampoo. I use a bit of baking soda every other time I shampoo—just to combat product build-up.

Every other day I’ve been spritzing a bit of water with peppermint essential oil all over the locs. Aside from it really revitalziing me, it keeps the locs feelin’ soft and smellin’ good.

Hopefully by the next update, I’ll have some more styles. But for right now…I’m chillin’.

I really really love my locs. Oh, and if you see some of these photos on Clumps of Mascara, don’t say nothin’. Sometimes I be recycling photos between 4 of my blogs. 🙂