Monthly Archives: March 2010

Do Blacks Need to Relax Their Natural Hair to Get Promoted?

This is a Question and Answer article that I found to be very informative. It was actually written by a white man in response to a black woman’s comment/question. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Peace ๐Ÿ™‚

Healthy Scalp, Healthy Locs

Nyesha Samuel, Publisher for & Master Loctician

Do Blacks Need to Relax Their Natural Hair to Get Promoted?

By Luke Visconti

I am a Black woman from continental Africa who chooses to have natural Black hair, not relaxed or chemically altered in any way. I wear my natural hair not as some political statement but because it is the hair that God gave me and intended me to have, just as it was intended for some Caucasians to have blue eyes or blond hair.

I have heard about women and men of African descent being overlooked for promotions or outright being fired because they choose to wear their natural hair, braids, twists, mini Afros, locs and so forth. I understand that you do not represent all white people nor do you speak for the whole white race, but I wanted to know if whites in general feel disdain for natural Black hair in corporate America, or is it just an overblown issue?

Also, I have heard that the more “African” you look–dark-skinned, coarse hair (think Wesley Snipes, Whoopi Goldberg)–the more ignored and overlooked you will be in the workplace … and the more light-skinned or “whiter” you appear (think Halle Berry or Beyoncรฉ) you appear, the easier it is to get promotions. Is this really all true? Are there “preferred” Blacks in corporate America? Isn’t diversity supposed to be inclusive of everyone–natural hair, blue eyes, fine hair, etc.?

Also, why does wearing natural hair, braids, locs, twists or any “Black” hair style that accommodates and is more healthy for our hair structure have to always be perceived as something negative, or worse, “political”? Why does the coarse hair on my head need to relaxed or chemically altered to be “presentable” in the workplace? Please be honest.


There’s no doubt in my mind that Black people have been overlooked for promotions because of natural hair or darker skin color. Psychological tests show that people most trust people who look like them. Since white men run most corporations in this country, straightened hair and/or lighter skin is going to be an advantage (disturbing, but let’s keep it real).

However, allowing a bias like this to go unchecked is detrimental to business, as hair texture has no connection to talent or ability. An inability to manage past immaterial things like this makes a company less competitive.

This is where diversity management returns on investment. Companies that manage past bias and hire, mentor and promote equitably have better talent. They are also better prepared for the future as our country becomes more diverse. Our DiversityInc Top 50 data proves that representation is tied to recruitment and retention.

This isn’t a theory; it’s a reality for companies that earn a spot on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversityยฎ. DiversityInc Top 50 companies have up to twice as much representation of Black, Latino and Asian people in management than the overall management work force in the United States.

Equity equals quality. That means a corporate culture that is so out of touch with reality as to not have good diversity management in 2009 is not a good place for anyone to work–not just Black people.

If you think your company “isn’t ready for natural hair,” then you should check out our career center right now. However, please consider this carefully: Sen. Obama won a decisive majority of white people’s votes, so if you think your company really isn’t “ready for that,” it may be that your perception is out of date.

I think America is ready for the Black women (and men, but this is mostly a woman’s issue) in our lives to be more natural with their hair–and I’m looking forward to it.

Trying to Be White: Natural Versus Relaxed Black Hair

This article hit home for me ! I have had this conversation so many times I can’t count. It’s like this sista was reading my mind when she wrote it LOL Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Peace ๐Ÿ™‚

Healthy Scalp, Healthy Locs

Nyesha Samuel,ย  Publisher of & Master Loctician

Trying to Be White: Natural Versus Relaxed Black Hair
The standard of beauty has rarely included black women. Some see this as a good thing since we do not have to try to achieve the look of major white models, actresses, or singers that are paraded on television and in magazines. Many of us have been told by our mothers and grandmothers that we are not built like white women so there is no use in trying to look like them. Most of us take this to heart.

But there is one area where many black women want to change about themselves. Their hair. The black hair care industry is one of the biggest and most profitable in the country. Black women go through great lengths and huge sums of money to take care of their hair with topical products, relaxers, weaves, wigs, and the regular use of hair dressers.

There are many reasons that black women decide not to wear their hair in its natural state. Some of them include many myths. These myths seem to be used in an effort to make black women feel that they are not straightening their hair in an attempt to look like white people. Some of these myths include:

Relaxed hair is easier to manage

If you ask most black women why they have relaxers it is because it is easier to maintain. I cut off my own relaxer when I was 20 years old. At that time I only knew how to take care of relaxed hair. After cutting off my relaxer, I learned that it was much easier to take care of my natural hair. I didn’t have to buy a relaxer every 6-8 weeks or go to the salon and have someone put one in for me, which means I saved lots of money. I didn’t have to curl my hair with curling irons every day or wrap it at night, which means I saved time. I didn’t have to fear rain or humid weather. I didn’t even have to comb my hair as much in it’s natural state versus my relaxer so I have never understood this reason. It is different to care for natural hair, but not more difficult.

Natural hair does not retain length

Lots of women want long pretty hair. Black hair has been stigmatized as not being capable of growing to great lengths without the use of relaxers. This reason is unreasonable simply because relaxers are so full of chemicals that they make black hair much more susceptible to breakage and damage. Broken and damaged hair cannot grow long and be healthy without a lot of maintenance. I have known and seen plenty of women with long relaxed hair that was extremely broken, damaged, and thin. What is the point of having long damaged hair that looks horrible just so you can say your hair is down your back? I recently cut off about 5 inches from my natural hair. Before that it would hang to the middle of my back. Even with the amount I cut, it still hangs down to the top of my back when it is twisted. Though hair growth is dependent on diet, genetics, and proper hair maintenance, there is no reason why black hair cannot grow long in its natural state.

Instead of using these myths as reasons why black women keep putting chemical relaxers in their hair we should admit the truth. Relaxing black hair is a way to try to look like white people. This hair dilemma is one of the last negative images that black people have maintained about themselves. There are so many negative views of nappy hair. Nappy is bad. It is ugly. It is undesirable. Silky, straight hair is more beautiful. Because we are not born with silky, straight hair, our hair must not be beautiful. This is more of an historical perspective, but because chemical relaxers are so entrenched in black culture, this historical attitude remains.

I admit that I never thought about being like white people when I was a child, teenager, and young woman with a relaxer. This is because I was raised with hot combs and chemical straighteners. These items were just part of being black. But why? Why can’t we love the hair we’re born with, its textures, its thickness. Why must we continue to call a part of our biology ugly? Just like we know that our bodies are not built like a white woman’s body, we should accept the fact that our hair is not like a white woman’s hair. We should stop making up excuses to keep applying harsh chemicals to our and our daughter’s scalps in an effort to attain mythological manageability, length, and other unfound reasons for relaxing our hair.

By ET Cameron

Tension induced Alopecia – African American Hair Care

Wearing Braids, 2 Strand Twist & Locs are a beautiful thing, but you must make sure that the stylist doing your hair knows not to make them so tight that they cause the scalp to pull.ย  If your stylist puts your style in too tightly it will eventually cause what is known as Tension Alopecia. It’s a condition where the hair gets pulled from the scalp so tightly that it causes stress on the folicle causing trauma that keeps the hair from growing back properly.ย  This condition can be permanent if not caught early on.ย  You must let your stylist know if you’re in pain while they are doing your hair so that they can ease up on the tension. I’ve seen some cases of tension alopecia from braids that were so bad that it caused scaring as bad as keloids in the scalp ๐Ÿ™

Getting your weave sewn in too tightly can also cause tension alopecia damage to the scalp. If you must get a weave put in, make sure that the stylist doesn’t do tooย  much pulling for your base braids that your weave is sewn onto. But of course being that I am Healthy Locs I prefer that you avoid the weave all together ๐Ÿ˜‰

Also avoid putting pony tails into your hair that are pulled too tight. Bottom line is getting your hair done and wearing a fresh style should be a pleasurable experience not a painful one. Leave a comment and let me know if any of you have experienced tension alopecia and what you did to solve your issue. Peace ๐Ÿ™‚

Healthy Scalp, Healthy Locs

Nyesha Samuel – Publisher, & Master Loctician

African American Hair Texture: Taking Care of Our Gift

This is a really good article I found on basic hair care tips for African American Hair Care. Leave a Comment and let me know what you think. Peace ๐Ÿ™‚

Healthy Scalp, Healthy Locs

Nyesha Samuel, Publisher for & Master Loctician

African American hair comes in an almost infinite variety of textures, from curly to woolly, from kinky to wavy, from natural and thick to straight and sleek. But whatever its texture, Black African American hair is a gift that reflects both our beauty and our ancestry. Unfortunately, though, it’s often next to impossible to feel good about our hair. Why? Because it feels like we’re constantly at war with it.

The Basics

At some point in her life (or many times throughout her life!) virtually every woman wrestles with the question of natural versus relaxed. There are advantages and disadvantages to each, but whatever the choice, it’s crucial to take care of your locks.

Good hair care starts from the inside out. That means eating a balanced diet to give your body all the nutrients it needs in order to grow the healthiest hair possible. It also means drinking plenty of water, to give your hair (and skin) much-needed moisture.

The Comb/Brush

The next critical element of hair care – regardless of your hair’s texture – is using the proper comb/brush. The truth is, the vast majority of combs and brushes are made for non-African American hair. The ideal tool for our hair is a combination comb/brush that is designed so that the teeth easily slide under our coiled hair texture. It’s like a detangler that works by rolling out the hair instead of pulling it out. In the process, it naturally conditions and relaxes hair, making it soft and easy to style or braid. This kind of comb/brush also keeps our hair healthy and helps prevent breakage.

Next Steps

In addition to having the proper comb/brush, there are several other things you can do to help prevent breakage. First, use heat sparingly. Second, don’t wash your hair too often – every seven to ten days is ideal. When you do wash it, use a conditioner. In between, rinse your hair once or twice a week (and especially after a workout), and use a moisturizer every 3-4 days. And, don’t neglect your monthly deep conditioning treatment.

Embrace Your Texture

The hairstyles you choose will change over the course of your lifetime, but the best hair care advice is to embrace your natural texture and work with it. Hair that is naturally curly will act very differently than hair that is naturally woolly. Similarly, super-kinky hair will respond in a different way to treatments than naturally wavy hair.

When you work with the texture you have, you can still have a variety of style choices available to you. But the key is that you won’t be constantly fighting nature; instead, you’ll be working with the African American texture you were born with and maximizing its beauty. In the process, you’ll have less breakage and healthier hair. The result? You’ll feel more beautiful and project that self-confidence to the world. What could be better?


Marsha Ambrosius hair journey

This is a wonderful article that Marsha Ambrosius wrote about her hair journey.ย  I enjoyed it so much that I had to share it with you all. I love that despite all the death and rebirth, trials and tribulations that her hair has been through, at the end of it all she made the wise and healthy choice of going natural again. Yay Marsha ! Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Peace ๐Ÿ™‚

Healthy Scalp, Healthy Locs

Nyesha Samuel – Publisher of & Master Loctician

I Am Not My Hair

by Marhsa Ambrosius

If I knew then what I know now ๐Ÿ™‚ I was chillin’, letting it air dry… With the vicious side part… I think I have roughly the same outfit on right now as I do in this pic lol what I don’t have is innocent hair! That untouched, pure, loved hair! And I’m ok with that! I don’t regret one single thing I did or didn’t do to my hair, except maybe that bleach! No good can come from bleaching!!! But I learned ๐Ÿ™‚

Yes, the ever so touchy subject “Is that all yours???” aka HAIR!!! My response… “Most of it!” LOL I have done my hair every which way possible, relaxed, natural, every color possible, colors you’re not supposed to have, I DID IT ALL!!! 1st relaxer when I was 11. Chopped it all off to go natural when I was 22. 10 years later, hmmmmmmmm what didn’t I do to my hair??? What I didn’t do is grow my natural hair all the way out till it was out of control long. Yes I had a very large afro but it was also bright orange. I’d used so many chemicals to color it, it still didn’t feel like I owned it. Let’s have a look ๐Ÿ™‚

WOW!!! I loved my afro but it was so chemically treated, I may as well have had a relaxer which I ended up getting right before I went on vacation in ’07. Thought that would be easier but NO!!! I was right back to where I didn’t wanna be! Had to maintain it!!! My natural hair is somewhat manageable lol I can’t leave it to air dry OH NO!!! I’d have issues tryna brush that out without doing some kinda damage. What I do have is A LOT of hair. It’s crazy thick and when it is long its frikkin HUGE!!!

My hairstylist of the past 2-3 years knows that of me. Ava-Gaye who works at The Beauty Studio W400 Chelten Ave in Philly KNOWS I LOATHE the dryer, I’ll be asleep under that thing even if I’m not tired. I DO NOT wrap my hair even when I’m supposed to. I tried. That thing is off in the morning, not even in the bed. Like, do I get irritated in the middle of the night and throw it off??? There was a commercial back in the day when a “Hair Monster” came into someones room and started messing up their hair while they were sleeping. Could be the “Hair Monster” *shrugs*

Well, after endless sew-ins, glue-ins, curls, presses, afros, twists, braids, colors colors colors (in Ice-T voice) I’m ready to let my hair down ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m off the relaxer aka creamy crack, my hair is growing at a rapid speed, with the fine touches of ‘that hair’ added to my hair, I now just have BIG HAIR!!! Thanks to a blow-dryer and some kind Brazilian’s ๐Ÿ™‚ leave-in conditioners, a brush and twisting it up at night ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m good ๐Ÿ™‚

I look forward to where this hair takes me ๐Ÿ™‚

The infamous Ron Artest hair cut of 3-7-2010 LOL

Ok so the big talk today was about Ron Artest’s new hair cut that he wore for the Lakers vs Magic basketball game. In case you haven’t seen it yet I have a picture of it below. To me, his hair looks a hot mess and probably jinxed the game because the Lakers lost LOL I’m all for being creative and expressing yourself, but I said it before and I’ll say it again, Black folks should not be bleaching their hair blond ! And don’t get me started on the purple accents.ย  Leave a comment and let me know what you think of the hair do. Peace ๐Ÿ™‚

Healthy Scalp, Healthy Locs

Nyesha Samuel – Publisher for & Master Loctician

Healthy Locs Working out with personal trainer Delta Brogden Part 3

In part 3, Juliette Samuel (esthetician) interviews personal trainer Delta Brogden of Change Is Now Fitness as he does a workout session with Nyesha Samuel (aka Healthy Locs). Nyesha has been working out with Delta for 6 months at the time this was filmed. This is the perfect video to get you motivated on a new healthy change in your life. Enjoy !,,,

Bronner Brothers Hair Show February 2010

So this year I only went to the Bronner Brothers Hair Show for a few hours, instead of the full 3 days like in years past.ย  I went specifically to get my hair done by Sister Nandi of Wrap-A-Loc.ย  I had a photo shoot coming up and felt like having someone else pamper my locs for me for a change since I had just spent the week pampering all of my clients locs (love ya’ll !)

Of course the sights and sounds were off the chain LOL But I decided to just share a few photos of my time at the Wrap-A-Loc booth this go around. Enjoy ! And to find out more about how to get the Wrap-A-Loc tool for your hair or to find a stylist near you (I’m a certified Wrap-A-Loc stylist by the way ๐Ÿ™‚ ) visit

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