Tags Posts tagged with "curly hair"

curly hair

I’m often asked lots of questions about my naturally curly hair:

“How do you go from curly to straight?

How do you keep your hair so sleek?

How do you prevent heat damage?

Amla Oil Spritz

And the truth is — there’s no one magic thing that I do to keep my hair healthy and amazing. It’s actually a collective effort of many things:

1)     Regularly using the right hair care products for my hair type

2)     Minimizing the amount of heat styling

3)     Caring for my hair in a way that encourages health and growth

So you see, there’s no ONE thing. But, since most of my readers are looking for advice on the first steps to happy, healthy hair, I’d say – start with good products with good ingredients. And while I love luxe as much as the next girl, I’ve come to realize that high quality hair care need not carry a luxe price tag.

Amla Oil

Everyone’s talking oils these days…and for good reason. Oils multi-task a myriad of skincare needs from head to toe. An Oil that I’m particularly into is Amla Oil, a natural hair conditioner that visibly (and immediately) revives and rejuvenates hair upon application. First discovered by Indian women thousands of years ago, Amla Oil is touted as the key to unstoppable length, enviable fullness and super glossy shine. Rich in vitamin C, proteins, minerals and anti-oxidants, the super fruit Amla Oil is hugely beneficial to not just hair, but scalp health as well.

Hair with Amla Oil

Think you have to travel to India to experience the wonders of Amla Oil? Think again! Optimum Amla Legend Rejuvenating Oil brings the power of Amla Oil to your boudoir…or wherever you do your hair (I admit to washing in the kitchen sink sometimes…eek!). Optimum Amla Legend Rejuvenating Oil is my daily go to for treating, protecting and styling. If I’m doing my hair, I’m using Optimum Amla Legend Rejuvenating Oil. Shampooing my hair? I add a few drops as a pre-poo. Blow-drying my hair? I add a few drops to damp hair as a nourishing drink of moisture. Flat ironing my hair? I apply a few drops as a heat-protectant. Styling my hair? I rub in a few drops for added shine. Prepping for bedtime? You guessed it!…I apply a couple of drops and reach for my super sexy (not sexy at all) satin bonnet.

Amla Oil

Optimum Amla Legend Rejuvenating Oil is formulated specifically to address the concerns of dry and damaged hair…. which makes it perfect for winter (when EVERYTHING is in need of more moisture). I’m no oil newbie. I’ve tried them all – For hair care, Optimum Amla Legend Rejuvenating Oil definitely outperforms other popular oil extracts like Olive Oil or Argan Oil. Its do-it-all abilities (pre-shampoo, deep conditioner, finishing treatment, scalp treatment, shine booster) make it the clear winner in my book.


Amla Oil Many Diff Styles

And as you can see from my pictures (I’ve been using Optimum Amla Legend Rejuvenating Oil daily all year) my hair is able to go from curly to straight and back to curly again, without missing a beat. So as for the Amla Oil hype, I say – believe it!

Want to see my shoulder length hair transform into an amazing Faux Bob? — THIS VIDEO TUTORIAL IS FOR YOU

Want to learn more about Optimum Amla Legend ? — www.optimumsalonhaircare.com

Also, follow @Optimum_Care on Instagram for a surprise giveaway happening soon (very soon) !!

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In “Get the Facts: Coconut Oil and Hair Care – Part 1,” I talked about the effects of coconut oil on hair, how to use extra virgin coconut oil to moisturize and seal hair and the effects of coconut oil on sensitive scalp.  Today, I’ll focus on buying products containing coconut oil.

How To Buy Products Containing Coconut Oil

It is always important to check product labels but if you wish to get the maximum moisturizing and strenghtening benefits from a coconut oil product, you must ensure that product claims at least makes sense.   For example, products made to moisturize must contain water or some water-like substance, so, if buying a moisturizer the first ingredient should be water or some water-like substance such as a hydrosol or aloe vera juice. To get the maximum benefit in hair care products, look for coconut oil listed high up on the ingredient label list. Coconut oil should most certainly be listed before any preservatives and fragrances.  The product will also be a more deeply moisturizing if coconut oil is listed before any silicones in the product.

Products Containing Coconut Oil


Curls Coconut Sublime Conditioner

Curls Coconut Sublime Conditioner is formulated for the driest, kinkiest and most unruly tresses. It does a great job on relaxed and natural hair. It contains some certified organic ingredients and is a must try for anyone with natural kinky, curly hair and/or dry hair. See this post for more on this product.    $16



Palmer's Coconut Oil Formula Conditioning Shampoo


Palmer’s Coconut Oil Formula Conditioning Shampoo and Conditioner

Palmer’s Coconut Oil Formula Conditioning Shampoo and Conditioner are formulated to deliver a one-two moisture punch and work on dry, color treated relaxed or natural hair.  Follow with a leave in conditioner and style hair as usual. $4.99 each

Alba Botanica Leave In Conditioner (Fragrance Free)

Alba Botanica Leave In Conditioner (Fragrance Free)

Alba Botanica Leave In Conditioner contains coconut oil, herbal and botanical extracts to treat dry or damaged hair.  Just a bit of this product goes a long way to detangle hair and tame frizz.  $8.95


What are some of your favorite hair care products

formulated with coconut oil?

Let’s Connect!

ChristeneCarr: TwitterInstagramTumblrPinterest Blog




Ever the thrill-seeker, when traveling abroad, I embark on a hunt for new discoveries….an obscure scent, an innovative beauty tool, a skin-perfecting cream. You know, something extraordinary that I can’t find in New York City. And I have to tell you — In this digital age of unlimited information and far reaching access, it has become quite challenging to discover new, game-changing beauty.

During my recent trip to Paris I visited the LEONOR GREYL Institute. If you’re not familiar with LEONOR GREYL, it is a family owned range of hair care products made from 100% natural ingredients. The brand’s passion for healthy, nourished hair stems from of its founders, husband and wife team Leonor and Jean-Marie Greyl. They had a simple idea: Healthy, natural products = healthy, beautiful hair. Caroline Greyl, daughter of Leonor and Jean-Marie, proudly carries on the tradition of high-quality, environmentally-safe hair treatments using only the best natural ingredients.

As most of you now know, I’m a mommy-to-be, so I find myself more carefully reading labels these days. Quite naturally, I am drawn to products with as few chemicals as possible.

While in Paris I experienced a LEONOR GREYL hair treatment that was so incredible, and the results were so dramatic, that it has forever changed how I care for my hair. Obviously, if you live in Paris, you should check your calender and schedule an appointment ASAP. But if you’re in the states, like me, read on as I explain how to achieve LEONOR GREYL salon quality results at home.

To replicate my salon treatment you will need a few things:

Huile de Palme
LEONOR GREYL Huile de Palme


LEONOR GREYL Creme aux fleurs
LEONOR GREYL Creme Aux Fleurs


LEONOR GREYL Masque Quintessense
LEONOR GREYL Masque Quintessense


Huetiful Hair & Facial Steamer
Huetiful Hair & Facial Steamer


And for the most amazing hair of your life…no, seriously — most amazing hair ever…follow these steps:

STEP 1: Beautiful hair begins at the scalp. Apply LEONOR GREYL Huile de Palme to scalp and ends of hair. This beauty-enhancing oil begins the process of detangling, softening and protecting hair from root to ends. I cannot stress how crucial this step is. In order for hair to properly receive the application of treatment products, it must be well-prepped. LEONOR GREYL Huile de Palme’s restorative oil blend can be left on hair for up to 10 minutes, or overnight for more intense penetration. Once applied, massage throughout and brush through to ends if needed.

Leonor Greyl Institute Paris

STEP 2: Further layer the treatment and apply LEONOR GREYL Creme Aux Fleurs to the scalp. This washing cream is a MUST!…particularly for very dry, color-treated and/ or frizzy hair. You do not need to wet the hair just yet. Simply apply LEONOR GREYL Creme Aux Fleurs to scalp (after you’ve applied LEONOR GREYL Huile de Palme). Leave on for about ten minutes and gradually emulsify by adding water little by little.


DO NOT RINSE…just yet

STEP 3: Lastly, apply LEONOR GREYL Masque Quintessense to ends and massage away.

Leonor Greyl Institute Paris
Leonor Greyl Institute Paris

STEP 4: To seal the deal and truly reap the benefits of the abundance of good-for-you ingredients, sit under Huetiful Hair & Facial Steamer for roughly 30 minutes. Obviously, this is not the steamer used at LEONOR GREYL Institute, but for those of us not in Paris, Huetiful Hair & Facial Steamer is the perfect at-home alternative. After 30 minutes under Huetiful Hair & Facial Steamer, rinse hair thoroughly…emphasis on “thoroughly’. Spend more time rinsing than usual. Afterwards, style hair as desired.


Feeling like amillion bucks after my LEONOR GREYL hair treatment!!
Feeling like a million bucks after my LEONOR GREYL hair treatment!!

Immediately following my salon hair treatment, I noticed that my hair felt stronger, fuller, and more lush. My scalp felt clean, yet not stripped.

Here I am at lunch with Caroline Greyl...showing off my amazing results!
Here I am at lunch with Caroline Greyl…showing off my amazing results!

I was able to go over a week before my next wash. My hair never felt, heavy, weighed down, or greasy. And when I returned home & replicated the treatment process outlined above, I achieved the same results. SOLD!

I love the idea of an intense treatment prior to washing…and I especially love that I can achieve healthy, full, glamorous hair without having to over-wash….which can lead to dryness and breakage. Ever since returning from Paris, I have continued to treat/wash my hair in this fashion — and let me tell you: I can’t imagine going back to the old way of washing.

If your hair type is similar to mine (dry, coarse, prone to frizz), the above treatment recipe should work for you. If your hair type is not similar to mine, visit the LEONOR GREYL website and customize a treatment plan for your specific needs.

In the US, LEONOR GREYL products are available at LeonorGreyl-usa.com, Nordstrom, AmazonFolica, and these online retailers. To locate a salon near you that offers LEONOR GREYL treatments, click here.

Click here to read more about my Beauty Tour of Paris

For a look into my world and my time in Paris, peruse my Instagram feed and search using #TTBinParis

Follow my Paris videos on Vine (@ThisThatBeauty)

Chat soon!


New Hair Product Alert!! And this one is strictly for girls like me who are naturally curly but prefer straight styling (most of the time…I made exceptions in the summer). Motions is preparing to introduce  STRAIGHT FINISH – A Revolutionary Heat Styling System for Natural Hair Textures.


According to Motions’ research: One in four African American women with natural hair would like to straight style their hair, but only if their curl pattern would not be compromised.

You can’t see me, but I’m at my computer, nodding in agreement. While my hair generally has pretty good “snap back” to curly after I straighten it, I have lots of friends who haven’t been as lucky. This really is a chief complaint amongst black girls with naturally curly hair who decide to temporarily straighten. Motions® new 3-step system claims you’re able to go from curly to straight and then “snap back” to your natural curls without any curl loss. What they’re calling their “Bounce Back Formula”, is a prep and protection system that seals your hair so that it will return to its natural curly texture after one wash.


*Flat Iron pictured may be different from the one the winner receives.* 

Well color me intrigued!

And I bet you’re intrigued too….so of course I want to offer you an opportunity to win the Motions STRAIGHT FINISH system as well as  Proliss iso professional Tourmaline Ionic Straightener to help you achieve your desired style.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Now I haven’t tried Motions STRAIGHT FINISH just yet, but I plan to soon….In a couple of week’s I’ll be attending a launch event and Rihanna concert to learn more about the line. …so full review coming soon!

Good luck!

Want to share this giveaway?

Copy this link: http://bit.ly/ZtguCz

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Kim Coles, actress and comedienne, hosted Mizani’s “The Spoken Word” trend report recently in New York City. The Spoken Word showcased four “out of the box creations that will inspire naturalistas to embrace their natural tresses.” Inspiration for the styles; Natural Symmetry, Creative Resistance, Poetic Rhythm and Ambiguous Curl, “was drawn from the individualism of the natural hair movement,” said Veronique Morrison, Director of Education for MIZANI.

Poetic Rhythm


Ambiguous Curl


Natural Symmetry
Creative Resistance


Kim Coles, a naturalista and  lover of MIZANI products, says she likes that brand because they are more than just about putting  products on the hair but more about educating women about their hair and helping them to find the right products and techniques to take care of their hair.

Kim Coles

Veronique went on to say “our looks convey the lifestyle, confidence and unique self-promotion of those that embrace their naturally curly hair.” While guest at the event enjoyed a performance from spoken word artist, Abyss, stylist quickly reworked  the hair of the four models using products from MIZANI’s True Textures Collection.


MIZANI’s True Textures Collection consists of 5 products. For hair care – a sulfate free shampoo, intense moisturizing mask and cleansing conditioner to cleanse and soften the hair. Jojoba Oil and Vitamin E provide intense hydration and Apricot Oil and Fruit Sugars seal the cuticle and infuse shine.To style each texture there are two new styling products: a defining cream gel for loose curls and waves and a curl-extending cream for tightly coiled tresses.

Visit ThisThatBeauty’s Facebook page to see more images from MIZANI’s The Spoken Word

Let’s Connect!

ChristeneCarr: TwitterInstagramTumblrPinterest Blog






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A wash-and-go for my natural hair is virtually impossible – unless I want to walk out of the house in what my girlfriend calls my Afro Helmet. That was until I started using Curls Unleashed Curl Boosting Jelly.

My Hair Prior to using Curls Unleashed Curl Boosting Jelly

Moments after rinsing conditioner from my hair
 Curls Unleashed Curl Boosting Jelly
After cleansing  when hair starts to dry out. Afro Helmet in 5, 4, 3…
BEFORE Curls Unleashed Curl Boosting Jelly
..2, 1 – Afro Helmet Activate!

Curls Unleashed Curl Boosting Jelly defines and holds curls without being crunchy and eliminates or decreases frizz. The first time I used this product I almost threw it in the trash because it did nothing for my hair. It also did nothing the second, third or forth time. The problem was not the product but my application technique.

TTB Reviews: Curls Unleashed Curl Boosting Jelly
Towel dried hair, working in Curl Boosting Jelly in small sections from roots to ends.

After cleansing, conditioning and detangling my hair, I add a leave -in-conditioner and start working the Curl Boosting Jelly into my hair in small sections from roots to ends.  I generally run my fingers through each small section until my hair feels smooth and I can tell that each tiny section has been coated with product — usually a few seconds on each part. I do this over my whole head until my entire head is complete.

IMPORTANT: I don’t touch the curls again until my hair is at least 80% dry.

My Hair After Using Curls Unleashed Curl Boosting Jelly

AFTER Curls Unleashed Curl Boosting Jelly
About an hour after working Curls Unleashed Curl Boosting Jelly into my hair
AFTER Curls Unleashed Curl Boosting Jelly 2
Curls! Curls! Curls! Afro Helmet waiting in the wings…

Bottom line: Curls Unleashed Curl Boosting Jelly can take me from my Afro Helmet to  super defined curls that can last up to a week. After about 4 days the jelly starts coming together and forming tiny little balls or flakes.  However, if I spritz with water, add a tiny bit of jelly and use the same process I used above, the product again gets dispersed through the hair giving a great refresher to the curls.

AFTER Curls Unleashed Curl Boosting Jelly 3
Curls Unleashed Curl Boosting Jelly – Refreshed with water

Downside: The Curl Boosting Jelly breaks down nail polish.  While I like the ability to wash and go with confidence, I also want to rock my manicures for more than 15 minutes and keep my nails strong and healthy. Besides, if there is a solvent in this product breaking down nail polish, what is it doing to my hair and scalp? Ugh!

There are some days when I don’t have the time to do anything but wash my hair and go, but because of the downside to using this product I am reserving it for only those occasions.  With my hair at the length seen above I get about 5 uses from the 16 ounce jar. The 16 ounce Curl Boosting Jelly retails for $15 and you can find it here.

Have you used Curls Unleashed Curl Boosting Jelly?

What were your results?

Let’s Connect!

ChristeneCarr: TwitterInstagramTumblrPinterest Blog

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Ever since I did the big chop (cut off all my relaxed hair) it’s like I have hair care product tunnel vision. I’m only looking out for products to cleanse, condition, treat and style my kinky, dry curls. Whenever a brand pitches me a product my first question is “do you see my hair?” Sometimes they keep talking but sometimes they look at it and immediately get my point. nuAAT recently contacted me regarding their line of products for possible review consideration.  After reviewing their website I opted to try the Karité Special Collection because it is formulated  for “dry, damaged and broken” hair.

Before I talk results let me first say that nuNAAT has a comprehensive line of products for all hair types, including a relaxer. All products contain  some natural ingredients, such as shea butter, acai, aloe vera and more.  Click here for a complete list of natural ingredients used in their range of products. Though the products contain these ingredients they are not the main actives in the product formulation. In the case of the  Karité  Special collection, the ingredient in the forefront is shea butter. However, in the case of the hair mask, shea butter is listed after Parfum (fragrance), and while the fragrance is rather strong in these products,  it is rare to find a product with fragrance of more that two percent of the formulation, so I am assuming there is less than 2% of shea butter in the product. I think this applies to all the products in the line.


Now let’s talk efficacy. Each of the products in the line performed well.  Since I have to contend with  dry, kinky, curly hair and a dry scalp, I have all but eliminated regular full foam, sulfate shampoos, but I did give NuNAAT Karité Nourishing Shampoo a try. While wasn’t left with my hair feeling like I used a low poo cleansing conditioner my hair didn’t feel stripped.  I  mixed a bit of the shampoo and  Reconstructive Conditioner and used as a co-wash –my hair seemed to like that combination and at this point, what my hair likes, my hair gets.

My two favorite products from the line are Leave-in Detangler and the Hair Mask.  I use the hair mask with a plastic cap for anywhere from 5-15 minutes.  I found that I don’t get a better result if I keep it on longer.  If I put the mask on my hair and then detangle, my curls remain somewhat elongated after rinsing, which is a big deal. The Leave-in Detangler is safe for cock-tailing with the styling products I am currently using.  I have not had occasion to use the Anti-Frizz Thermo Active because I am committed to going heat free for the rest of the year.

Overall, I liked how the  Karité Special products performed.  For someone transitioning from relaxed hair to natural hair, Karité  Special Collection is a good range of products to try because it has products that will work on both natural texture and relaxed ends. The Anti-Frizz Thermo Active is formulated to be used with heat, so, on those days when you want that blowout –you’re covered.

nuNAAT products range in price from  $4.99 to $24.99 and are available at Walgreens, Drugstore.com and Sally Beauty.

I was recently invited to a Curlbox and Ouidad  event to launch Ouidad’s new Co-wash and a multi use hair treatment called Mongongo Oil. Never before had I been in the presence of such beautiful curls –everywhere I looked there was one beauty after another. I loved it!

Attendee at the event…Beautiful!
Another 6 footer in the house? Strike a pose!

To see all the event photos, please visit our Facebook Page.  If you see someone you know…tag them.

Ouidad is the self proclaimed “Curl Expert” and after using the Curls Co-wash, I can understand why. The co-wash foamed a bit more than I expected it to but my hair wasn’t left feeling stripped.  I am at the point now where, no matter what, my cleansing phase is  a single wash.  I wet my hair, pour product on my hands, rub my hands together and insert my finger through my hair and unto my scalp.  I massage the cleanser into my scalp and the roots of my hair — cleanser doesn’t touch my hair ends until I  have massaged and loosened all the impurities on my scalp and I am ready to rinse them away. I find that this method helps to prevent tangling and my hair doesn’t shrink as much. This is the method I used with Ouidad Curls Co-Wash. (How do you wash your curls?)

The co-wash is formulated with a “concentrated blend of conditioners & oils plus a dose of a gentle, naturally-derived coconut cleanser.” Since getting the press sample I have recommended it a to number of people as one of my favorite co-washes.

Mongongo Oil “is known as “hair food” in Zambia for its high vitamin E content and superb regenerating and antioxidant properties. With American Palm Seed Oil and Broccoli Seed Oil, the formula restructures hair as it deeply repairs damage to restore a healthy appearance to even the dullest locks:”  I used the oil and didn’t notice much of a difference in my hair. As my hair is right now I tend not to use many oils unless it is for a pre cleanse conditioner, otherwise known as a hot oil treatment, I’m finding that with less harsh cleansing products, deep conditioning, a leave in conditioner and a styling product (or three,) an oil is not really necessary and  can actually make my hair drier.  I think the Mongongo oil will work great for looser, softer curls – where the oils is applied to soaking wet hair, finger combed and diffused or left to air dry.  For someone that has dry, frizzy hair  like  mine  and that may requires two to there products to achieve a decent wash and go, Mongongo oil might not be necessary. Mongongo oil is light weight, so, it might be good  to add sheen to hair without weighing it down.

Ouidad 16 Ounce Co-wash retails for $30 and is available here. Monongo oil is available in two sizes, two ounces and 4 ounces, retail starts at $36 and is available here.

If you have tried or intend to try either Ouidad Curls Co-wash or Ouidad Mongongo oil, I would love to here your thoughts.


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Ahh...inside the tents!

Fashion Week is upon. No. Seriously. It’s like this week. First it’s FNO (see our FNO rundown here) and then…BOOM, full on #NYFW. But before nonstop shows, breakneck speed note-taking on my iPad, impossible deadlines, and everything in between, I make time to properly prep and get my booty, I mean, beauty in shape for the rigorous week ahead.

Read on as I share my Fashion Week Beauty prep for skin & hair. . .


Facial: About a week or so before Fashion Week, I always make time for a really thorough facial. The week promises to be incredibly stressful so getting my oily, acne-prone skin into shape in advance is a wise move. I visited Mikki at Mario Badescu and let me tell you — Mikki gave me the business! She worked me over and it was awesome. I walked in looking a super congested, hormonally broken out wreck . . . and my skin now looks great. I love that Mikki was extremely thorough and committed to getting me all cleaned up. And let me tell you, she’s strong for a petite gal! Immediately post-facial my skin looked like I was wearing foundation — and clearly I was not. Yep, I’ll be seeing Mikki again in six weeks….a girl can get used to this!

Proper Skin Maintenance: While the aforementioned facial laid a solid foundation, proper skin care is key. I’m currently managing my adult acne prone skin with…

1) TRIA Skin Perfecting Blue Light. I use this blue light treatment device (the same technology used by dermatologists) to zap the bacteria deep within the skin…the acne causing bacteria that leads to painful breakouts [and naturally, at the most inopportune moments – like Fashion Week]. I treat with TRIA once per day for five minutes. And yes it really works. . . this is my second device, after losing the first one. I highly recommend this as preventative tool for acne-prone skin!

2) Mario Badescu Drying Mask. Like most Mario Badescu products, Drying Mask is one of those skin care saviors that I am never without in my beauty closet. I rely on it to help dry existing pimples and clarify problematic areas before pimples have the opportunity to emerge. While it’s safe to use all over, I generally apply to cheeks and chin (a little area I like to call the “muzzle”)…my most congested areas. And for nights when I do not use the Drying Mask, I balance things out by incorporating  Mario Badescu Healing Soothing Mask. It’s a yin & yang sort of thing.

3) The Body ShopTea Tree Pore Minimiser. You know how we always want what we don’t have?. . . curly girls want stick straight hair & straight girls want coily curls. Well-endowed bellas want a less ample bosom & chesty girls want to frolic in sundresses sans brassiere. . . the list goes on & on. I have notoriously oily skin (though, I’m often told it’s “glowy”) and all I ever want is perfectly matte skin. Luckily, The Body Shop understands my struggle. Incorporating the acne-fighting, natural antiseptic power of tea tree oil, The Body Shop Tea Tree Pore Minimiser immediately softens the appearance of enlarged pores by absorbing and mattifying excess sebum. Unlike most primers that simply prime the skin for makeup application, The Body Shop Tea Tree Pore Minimiser also helps to treat and improve congested skin.


Set Things Straight: For Fashion Week, I am all about straight hair. Given the zillion other things that I have to worry about, I really cannot be bothered with my temperamental, unpredictable, naturally curly hair — So I turn to Sultra The Diva Pressing Iron and Pressing Creme. I first came to know (and quickly love) Sultra back in 2009 when I was a contributor for The Makeup Girl. . . so when I heard that the brand had launched a pressing iron, especially designed to suit the needs of hair like mine. . .  well I wept a unicorn. With so many flat irons and stylers on the market, it’s tough to find one that is suitable for coily hair…one that gets hair straight and smooth, but also does not damage or compromise hair’s natural curl pattern. The Diva’s ThermaGuide™ Plate System, which allows hair to slide across plates without tugging or pulling, and advanced ceramic heater can beautifully style the kinkiest of coils. The grooved side of the plate sort of acts like a comb and helps to smooth the entire length of hair as the plates straighten. Pure genius! For relaxed hair, there is a “relaxed” heat setting and for natural hair, there is a “natural” heat setting. Personally, I like to use the “relaxed” setting for my natural hair. “Relaxed” is a lower temperature and I like to limit my hair’s heat exposure. The Pressing Créme is great because it aids the straightening process and gives my hair shine without feeling heavy.

For a little added sass (and you know how much I love to get sassy), I’ll add a few strips of pastel colored extensions for Fashion Week. I love non-committal ombre.  And lucky you — they’re currently on sale at Sephora for only $9.

(Ahem, it's a curling iron. . . remove your mind from the gutter!)

For a bit more texture (think: soft wayward waves) I like adding The Bombshell Cone Rod Curling Iron to the mix. While we’ve all seen clip-less curling irons, I can guarantee you’ve never seen a clip-less like this. The point of difference is the nubby tapered-barrel. . . it provides mega hold & creates loose, slightly tighter waves at the root and flowy, sexy, messy ringlets at the bottom. Between The Diva and The Bombshell, my hair is NYFW ready!

Stay tuned for my NYFW makeup musts — I’ll rundown the products that help me fake a good night’s sleep, the lipstick that makes my teeth look whither, the highlighter that gives my skin a candlelit glow, and more. Stay tuned! Xx

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I’m all about innovation in product packaging and mark. delivers a winner with double do shape and gloss kit. The kit is the perfect on-the-go style enhancer for any hair type. The compact is double sided with one side containing a solid gloss formulated with Muru Muru Butter, while the other side holds shape & hold wax, formulated with Babasu Oil and Camu Camu. The glossing side instantly adds shine and smooths fly-aways while protecting the hair, the wax side adds texture and definition. The compact has proven perfect for me as I make my foray into the wonderful world of natural hair.

I use the wax on the ends as I twist my hair.  It gives good hold and definition without being crunchy and the sheen is great!

after a wash and twist using mark. double do shaping wax on the ends

Below are other products in this new line of products from mark. (Benefits are directly from the manufacturer)

locks in place – buildable hold spray

  • Ultra-fine aerosol mist creates flexible, buildable hold that dries instantly & lasts all day
  • Leaves hair looking and feeling shiny
  • Provides long-lasting hold, even in high humidity
  • Adds body & volume to hair
  • Humidity resistant
  • Dries instantly and doesn’t leave hair with build-up or residue
  • Non-sticky
  • Suitable on various hair types

curl commander

  • Creates lasting definition and volume-controlled curls without frizz, flyaways or flaky residue
  • Long lasting, medium to strong hold defies humidity all day
  • Moisturizes curls and waves and leaves them bouncy, soft, and silky
  • Tames flyways and leaves hair smooth and shiny
  • Does not leave hair feeling stiff or sticky
  • Protects hair against thermal styling


give it to me straight – super smoothing lotion

  • Straightens, tames frizzies, keeps blow outs looking fresher longer
  • Delivers allover weightless smoothing and glossy shine while helping to straighten hair
  • Lightweight formula doesn’t build or weigh hair down, leaving hair manageable and helps you achieve your style
  • Locks out humidity—provides maximum frizz control and prevents flyaways to leave hair with a smooth, straight finish
  • Leaves hair looking and feeling shiny and conditioned
  • Use on wet hair prior to styling or dry hair for touch-ups
  • Suitable for all hair types

curl to curl – reactivate and define mist (coming soon)

  • weightless conditioners and styling polymers silkens, reactivates and defines curls, de-frizzes and brings back the bounce
  • enriched with conditioning oils and super nutrients like baobab oil and sea buckthorn
  • locks-out humidity and keeps curls curly and resilient.
For more information on this line of products, please visit the mark. website.


This post was written by @ChristeneCarr


If you have been paying attention to the beauty buzz, you no doubt have realized that there is a big transitioning movement afoot. More and more women of color are opting to ditch the creamy crack, (relaxers) and are instead choosing to wear their hair natural. According to Carol’s Daughter’s research, the relaxer market has dropped from approximately $100 million to $35 million — that statistic speaks volumes, yes?

In recognizing this trend, Carol’s Daughter has developed a transitioning kit that is “the first haircare treatment kit to uniquely address the most concerning problems women face when transitioning from relaxed to natural hair: product build up, scarred scalp and breakage at the demarcation point.” The kit contains three products, each formulated to address the three major concerns of women who are transitioning from relaxed to natural hair.

Product buildup is addressed with a Purifying Extra-Gentle Cleanser. This low sulfate or low poo formula cleanses the hair but doesn’t strip the hair of its natural moisture. Moisture loss is a major concern for women with naturally curly and frizzy hair.

Repeatedly applying chemical relaxers to hair (and sometimes scalp) scars the scalp and hair follicles, causing hair to grow weaker and more brittle. The Renewal Scalp Spray is formulated to gently exfoliate the scalp and promote faster cellular turnover to produce more healthy new growth.

For many women who are transitioning, myself included, the most frustrating part of the process is dealing with the dual textures of the hair. That is, the point where the natural hair meets the relaxed hair. This point, referred to as the demarcation point, is generally weaker and more prone to breakage. The Restoring Anti Breakage Treatment is designed to intensely strengthen both textures of the hair so the hair won’t snap during detangling and styling.

I am currently in the second attempt to go natural. My first attempt was brought to an abrupt end simply because I was frustrated and I was spending way too much time doing my hair. Carol’s Daughter understands this and the many other frustrations that women face as they transition, and recently launched www.trasitioningmovement.com to provide help and support to women who want to transition from relaxed to natural hair.

If you are thinking of ditching the relaxer and going au naturale, Carol’s Daughter Transitioning Kit is definitely worth considering and when you need a bit of support, inspiration or just to let out you frustration, head over to www.transitioningmovement.com. Prior to penning this post I made the big chop, so, I am no longer battling the dual textures. Had this product been around six months ago, it may have saved me some frustration. The Transitioning kit will be available June 2012 and will be available at Carol’s Daughter stores and online, Sephora, Macy’s Dillards, Ricky’s, HSN and Regis Salons nationwide. The Kit will retail for $40.

At TTB, we get how difficult it can be to transition, so, we’re giving you an opportunity to win a Carol’s Daughter Transitioning 1-2-3 Kit to make your journey a bit easier. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This post is written by @ChristeneCarr


Lately I’ve been embracing & boldly rocking my natural curls. . . my hair hasn’t seen a styling iron for weeks. So to review Sarah Potempa BEACHWAVER Rotating Curling Iron, I enlisted the longest locks I know, my dear friend and daytime office-mate, Cannon. Read on as Cannon shares her quest for surfer girl hair . . . (ps – I’ll be giving BEACHWAVER a whirl in about a week or so…and will share pics)

Ever dreamed of those softer-than-soft, casually tossed curls worn by surfer girls seen on the beach? As hot summer days quickly approach us, perfecting the I-just-just-came-from-the-beach-thanks-very-much coif is one to occupy our cool rainy afternoons. So today I put Sarah Potempa BEACHWAVER Rotating Curling Iron to the test to see if it really delivers that which it boasts: beach waves.

First let me begin by explaining that I have unnaturally long, crazy-straight hair; and, like so many straight-hair girls, I want nothing more than crazy big, twisting curly locks.

After applying a sticky substance from Oribe called Rough Luxury Molding Wax (don’t even ask me how I applied it because TTB/ Felicia would shake her head with ashamed disapproval), I put began a close inspection of the BEACHWAVER. In all reality, it’s like your common curling iron except that it does the thinking & twisting for you – all you have to do is push a button, wait a few moments and release the clamp.

The true secret to natural looking curls is switching up the ringlet direction at random; So, when using the BEACHWAVER, you have the luxury of clicking Left or Right, settling your ends into the clamp and waiting while the BEACHWAVER coils your locks around the barrel.  The only thing to remember is placing your tips in the proper direction of barrel’s movement.  It’s that easy.

Curling is a bit faster and coils have a tendency to be a smidge tighter – ensuring longer-lasting curls.  Like most curling irons, I recommend curling entire head before regrouping and switching up the direction of some pieces (as well as mixing up the thickness of the pieces that you curl); and, to ensure that they keep all day, I recommend sprinting your hair with a light holding spray.  If you want a truly natural look, top off smaller pieces near the crown with a smaller-barreled iron moving in the left direction – this will give volume and a natural curl look.  Oribe’s molding wax will work to give piecey tangles one typically gets when enjoying a windy beach day.So that’s it!  The BEACHWAVER is a great starter iron for the girl who still can’t quite master a typical curling iron… or a grand quickie tool for the experienced curler (it took me approx the length of two songs on Grimes’ latest album to complete my entire head).  So give it a try and let us know what you think!

 Key Features:
360 Degree Swivel Cord
9 foot Heavy-Duty Cord
LED Digital Temperature Screen
Heats up to 310-450 F in 30 seconds
Cool Safety Stopper
Rubberized Cool Safety Stand
Fast Recovery Time
Ergonomic Handle
6.5″ Ceramic Rod
Automatically Rotates with “GO” button
1 Year Manufacturer’s Warranty
30 Min Automatic Shut-Off

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Want to be the face of Pantene’s 2012 print advertising campaign? Well don’t miss the upcoming casting call on July 1 and 2 at Essence Music Festival in New Orleans. Sign-up begins at 10:00 A.M.





For complete information, visit Pantene


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