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Welcome to The United KinKdom!
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My blog is dedicated to celebrating Afro hair and the experiences of UK Naturals. Dont be a stranger, spread the word and lets keep Uniting the KinKdom one curl at a time. International visitors are ALWAYS welcome. Enjoy!
Much Love Crystal Afro x
(Natural since Jan 2011) (Contact Me: crystalafro@hotmail.co.uk) View my complete profile

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

J'adore Gidore

J'ADORE GIDORE
*WARNING: Quite A Long (but informative) Post!*
Since the beginning of the year I've been desperate to make it to at least one of the 3 natural hair events by Gidore. I wanted to go to all 3, but work commitments meant I could only attend the last and most recent event - but I'm in no way complaining because as I hope my video shows, it was absolutely brilliant.
I was especially keen to attend the Multi-Textures Workshop because I didn't make it to see natural hair specialist Felicia Leatherwood, when she came over from The States last year.
I've included some clips of what she had to say in the video for anyone who may've missed her again this year, so if she does come back, you know not to miss her a third time!

Felicia has styled various celebrities including Jill Scott (when she was natural), Will Smith and  Sanaa Lathan, and this woman knows her stuff! Check out her site: Loving Your Hair With Natural Care Workshop.com. I took so many notes, some of which you can read in the bullet points below.
www.gidore.com
The event was organised and hosted by Lukwesa Burak - founder of online shop Gidore.com which stocks various brands of hair products including those hard to get US-based brands like Shea Moisture and As I Am.

I didn't speak to Felicia personally but listening to her and seeing her interact with the ladies in the audience, both on and off stage was so great. She was genuine, friendly and approachable and I'm kicking myself that I didn't take the opportunity to put my hand up and ask her for some tips on what to do about low porosity hair.
I hope Felicia comes back again soon because I would definitely go see her for a second time.





I also really liked her emphasis and encouragement of natural hair mothers and children.
This is a subject I feel passionate about (as Im hoping my projects in the near future will reveal). One lovely suggestion she made, particularly for mothers of girls aged about 5yrs, was to print off a picture of their child with their natural hair looking beautiful and have it blown up to the size of the TV and place it over the screen, so when they get home they see a beautiful natural on the television. I loved this suggestion as it speaks directly to my favourite K. Mercer quote:

"What does the Black spectator identify with when [his or her] mirror image is absent, or present only as other?"
 I know I've probably rinsed* this quote since beginning this Blog, but it's the quote that motivates me!

Between my video and all the other blogs & vlogs out there I don't really want to repeat what's already been said too much, except to say that it was a brilliantly informative day, and great to see so many naturalistas - #Teamnatural UK is definitely growing. The goody bag was great too, and so was the food, and products available, both of which flew off the tables so fast I barely got pictures of them.
Source: naturalselectionblog.com
Below I've posted a few pictures with links to a few of my fellow naturalistas who attended so you can check out their reviews too. I also figured this could be helpful for any newly naturals trying to discover more UK-based ladies (plus they also took some fabulous photos).
I'm sure there'll be more pictures and reviews popping up throughout the week and remember to have a look at all the pictures from the day >>Here<< in the J'adore Gidore photo album on facebook.
But first.......

My Notebook Highlights:


 5 of Felicia's Favourite Brands!
  • Koils by Nature
  • Shea Moisture
  • Beautiful Textures
  • Blended Beauty
  • Jane Carter

WASHING:
  • Water is your best friend!
  • What your hair looks like wet is what your curl texture really is.
  • Washing your hair (or skin) with water that is too hot will dry it out - not good for the scalp. 
  • If you co-wash -for example- 4 times a week, you must use a shampoo at least once or you will have product build up on the hair.
CONDITIONING:
  • Apply conditioner to hair while hair is still wet from wash.
  • Try sectioning your hair into 4 and testing out different conditioners on each section to see what works well with your hair and what doesnt. 
  • It can be okay to leave conditioners that agree with your hair, in overnight to deep condition, however be careful as conditioners that dont agree with your hair can snap it. 
  • If a product sits on top of your hair, its likely the cuticle has closed up because your hair didnt accept/ like that product.
  • Always use a Leave-In Conditioner! Make sure you apply a Leave-In Conditioner to stabilise hair before applying your product.  
TRIMMING HAIR:
  • Trim hair approximately every 8-10 weeks
  • When trimming start with half an inch - from the tip of the thumb to the first ridge. 
  • Because hair often grows more in some areas than the other, ask your hairdresser -for example- to take more from the sides and less from the top, when trimming. 
  • It can be preferable to blow-dry hair out before trimming as this enables you see any damaged hair more clearly.
BLOW-DRYING:
    • Diffuser attachments are great for drying the scalp without disturbing the hair too much.
    • Press the Cool-down button but once you get halfway down the hair shaft. Damaged ends dry faster than the rest of the hair so ease up on the amount of heat you use when you get to the tip.
    • Beautiful Textures & Koils by Nature both have leave-in products that are good heat protectants
    • BE CAREFUL using Oils when blow-drying as oils can cook the hair. 
    THINNING HAIR & BREAKAGE:
    • Shea Moisture has a specific line of products to combat thinning hair. 
    • Organic Root Stimulator's Temple Balm is good, despite not being a completely natural product...
    • ...And of course Castor Oil.
    • When washing & drying your face, be careful not to push the residue from skin prodcucts like soaps, on to your hair line as this can be a cause of breakage.
    CHILDREN:
    • The best time to do a child's hair is when they're asleep! Lol
    • Blended Beauty & Nature's Blessing have good products for children.
    • Avoid using Essential Oils with children below 6yrs old.

    PRODUCTS:
    • Make a list of products that didn't work for you.
    • Its good to have 3 favourite products because the body changes so often (especially women eg. hormones) and can react differently at different times.
    • Its better to use Creams in Winter & Gels in Summer, but because of our UK climate, creams are probably most preferable.

    WEAVES:
    • It can be better to choose a curly weave that looks like your own hair, so that your hair that's left out can be twisted to blend with the weave. Unlike straight weaves which require you to straighten the hair you leave out.**
    • Many women wear weaves as a protective style, while others may wear them because their hair has been damaged or because they are recovering from a serious illness. Don't Judge! You dont know what their reasons may be for their hair choice.

    DIETS:
    • Eat vegetables for building up protein and biotin in your blood stream.
    • If your hair is dry, try including more water in your diet.
    • Too much sugar in your diet can effect your hair causing breakage or scalp problems
    • Stress is not good as it restricts Oxygen flow. 


    And my favourite tip:
    Twistouts: Unravel twists from the bottom to minimise damaging hair - doing it from the top is not recommended ..... (Oops! I should try this.)

    Whew! Thats a lota notes - and thats not even all of 'em!
    Other reviews and pictures to check out include:
    Wunmi of Woman in the Jungle on Youtube:
    See her review here

    Fiona of Love Your Tresses Blog:
    See her review here

    Cassidy of Natural Selection Blog was visiting the
    UK with Felicia: Check Out her review here

    Remember to check out the all the pics in the J'adore Gidore Photo Album >>Here<<



    P.S Wud Luv U 2 Subscribe x

    *(slang translation: rinsed = repeatedly used)   


    **(This practice of constantly using straighteners to blend my hair with my weaves was exactly what began breaking my hair to the point where it was barely long enough to cover the weave tracks. I had a constant cowlick until I went natural!)