Month: July 2012
They say it’s not who you are on the outside, but who you are on the inside that counts. I agree with this statement but I would have to add that how you represent yourself on the outside is a reflection of yourself on the inside. The first time you meet a person you can size them up before saying hello. You look to see how they carry themselves; do they stand up straight or slouch? Do they take pride in their appearance? Are they wearing garments that flatter their figure? Is their hygiene in check? The list goes on… I find it amazing that we can learn so much about a person by how they carry themselves.
My demeanor alludes confidence; it’s not a conceded confidence. It’s the type of confidence that tells the world how comfortable I am in my own skin. This type of confidence comes from self-love and exploration. When I meet someone for the first time I examine their body language and clothes. So If I was to examine myself I would think that this girl is confident because of how she carries herself. She stands up straight when she walks which shows she has high self-esteem. The outfit she chose is interesting because she isn’t showing too much skin and yet she has chosen items that flatter her figure. Which tells me that one, she takes pride in her appearance and two that she knows who she is because she is able to select clothing items, put them together and convey the message of confidence with ease and believe me that is not easy.
My eye glasses needed to coincide with the message I am telling the world. I wear glasses 90% of the time so I needed these glasses to show the world that I have a quiet confidence about myself. I was anxious about buying a new pair of glasses because of my hair cut. I love that my hair cut reveals my facial features, birth mark and moles. I didn’t want these glasses to compete with my hair cut and face. I needed frames that would flatter my face, look nice and not draw attention away from my hair cut.
I believe I did a great job with the glasses I chose. I found this Prada frame that flattered my face, looked nice and didn’t draw attention away from my hair. If you’re like me and you did the big chop and/or have to wear glasses 90% of the time. Figure out how you want your glasses to represent yourself. Do you want your glasses to fade into the background, like myself, or maybe you want to be bold and let your glasses be front and center. Have fun eye-glass shopping or shopping in general and remember to have fun because all you’re doing is showing the world a reflection of you on the inside.
- Nine Tips For Wearing Makeup With Eyeglasses (bellasugar.com)
I am always looking for ways to make my dollar stretch especially when it comes to my hair. I recently subscribed for daily emails from a New York based company called The Fly Cut. The Fly Cut is the first and only daily deal website that sells discounted vouchers from hair salons that specialize in African-American and ethnic hair. Unfortunately, the Fly Cut offers deals from salons in New York City, including Brooklyn, Queens and Harlem but they have immediate plans to expand to other large cities. So sign up and stay tuned! You can sign up directly at http://www.theflycut.com or go to there facebook or twitter page. Hope this helps!
- New Coupon Site for Ethnic Women, The Fly Cut to Launch in April (blackbeautyexpress.com)
For years, I struggled with gaining weight until I reached my 20’s. When I was a senior in High School I weighted 111lbs. Once I entered my 20’s my metabolism started to slow down and I gained weight. Ever since I have struggled with gaining weight and made myself feel bad about it. I spent the majority of my 20’s comparing myself to how I looked at 18. I struggled with the fact that my body was changing; I couldn’t eat whatever I wanted anymore. I felt lost and confused, I didn’t know what types of foods to eat to be healthy, how to diet, or what type of exercise routes I should do to lose the weight and keep it off.
After a lot of research, trial and error, and acceptance of myself I am committed to a weight loss journey. In the past I succeeded in losing weight but I couldn’t manage to keep it off. The great thing about failing is that there is always a lesson to be learned. So, I cleaned up my eating habits; I can no longer eat or have the desire to eat fast food. I found an exercise regimen that works for me, which is lifting weights and a little cardio. I have accepted that I will not lose the weight over night. My goal is to lose four percent of my body weight each month until I reach my goal, which is to have a healthy body mass index (BMI).
There are two reasons I need to lose this weight that is physical appearance and for health reasons. African-American women have the highest rates of overweight and obesity compared to any other groups in the United States. About four in five African-American women are overweight or obese.
Being overweight or obese increases your risk of:
- Heart disease
- Type 2 diabetes
- High blood pressure
- Breathing problems
- Gallbladder disease
- Sleep apnea
- Some cancers
I am one of the four in five African-American women who are overweight. I know what you’re thinking: The BMI does not take into account how our bodies are built. Believe me I have no intention of losing my curves but after researching and seeing what being overweight increases my risk of. I have no choice but to lose this weight.
Do you know the number one reason why African-American women do not exercise? It’s because we don’t want to mess up our hair. When I was relaxed that answer made sense to me, I had to figure out the blackout dates for exercising were. I couldn’t exercise a week before a relaxer because I couldn’t sweat out my scalp. I didn’t want to exercise right after a relaxer because I just got my hair done. Oh and the biggest problem was what was I going to do with my hair after the gym! I couldn’t wash my hair afterwards; I would have been in the bathroom all night trying to figure out how to make my hair presentable for work the next day.
Now that I am natural my main concern is exercising. It is so liberating not to have to worry about my hair. After my workouts I wash my hair with a cleansing conditioner to get the sweat out and then I apply a leave in conditioner. I’m not writing all this to make anyone feel bad for their weight loss journey or lack thereof. I’m writing this to encourage someone to do something about their weight and if the only thing folding them back from starting an exercise regimen is their hair there are things they can do. Braid, weave or wig it up until you get to the salon! And remember that healthy hair starts with what you put in your body not on your scalp or ends.
Yesterday marked the one month anniversary of my “big chop”. You can read more about that in “Hair Today Gone Tomorrow”. After I did the big chop I was afraid that I was going to regret my decision. The decision I made to stop relaxing my hair, to transition to natural hair, to big chop so close to my birthday and to go to the barber shop and cut off the majority of my hair.
What I can say is that I don’t regret a thing! I was tired of the scalp burns from the relaxer and the dissatisfaction from hair stylists. I transitioned and fell in love with my hair texture and when I big chop I was happy that one, I listened to my mother and went to the barber shop and two, that I stop trying the control the situation (Hello, My Name is Melinda and I’m a former control freak) and allowed the barber to not only cut off my relaxed hair but most of my natural hair as well.
I’ve learned this past month what products and techniques make my hair happy. I can tell that my hair is happy when my hair naturally curls up. The leave in conditioner my hair seems to be in love with, right now, is Darcy’s Botanicals Pumpkin Seed Moisturizing Conditioner. I use this product as a direct leave in after I deep conditioner, as a daily leave in and when I do my version of The Curly Girl Method (CGM). My version of the CGM is when I co-wash my hair and I apply a conditioner and do not wash it out. Darcy’s Botanicals Pumpkin Seed Moisturizing Conditioner is the only leave in product I really need for my hair at this stage. My hair is naturally curly so I have learned that I can tell if my hair likes a product or not if my hair curls up; I have tried different products in my hair and if my hair doesn’t like a product my hair will looked like wool. Not to say that there is anything wrong with a hair texture that doesn’t have a curl pattern. But Every time I apply this product to my hair, my hair can’t help but curl up it makes my hair happy.
Given that it has been a month since my big chop I was contemplating if I wanted to show any progress pictures, I decided that it wasn’t the right choice for me. I would rather do progress pictures every three months. My reasoning being that I don’t think you want to see a picture of myself with a ½ inch more of hair every month. I would rather show you progress pictures of myself with hair that is 1 ½ inch longer, especially when you consider hair shrinkage. People have told me that their starting to notice that my hair is growing and filling out and I can tell when I wash my hair because I can feel that it’s a little longer. But after I wash my hair and it dries I’m not able to tell because of the shrinkage; so I’ll show you in September when my hair has grown another inch.