Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year!

Thought I'd share with you all what I plan to achieve in 2010.



Feel free to share some of your plans for 2010.

Be safe and enjoy. Wishing you all a fruitful year.

To all who supported AGrlCanMac this year, THANK YOU. It's here to inspire and instill a willingness to learn how to care for and style this coily-curly mass we possess and most importantly instill PRIDE in our hair. Never let anyone make you think our hair isn't BEAUTIFUL!

Natural hair isn't a trend, it's a beautiful lifestyle and we're takin ova!



To taking the Natural Movement to the next level in 2010! Let's DO this maaaannnn!!!!

ATCM: Bohemian Soul

So, I've been slacking on the Accessories That Can Mac feature this month. This month has been bananas with it being the Holidays and all and when you come home to visit the fam for the whole month of December, they don't want to hear that you've got "work" to do. Lol. But it's back to it's regularly scheduled, once a week programming. :D Next week, it will go back to every Tuesday how it's always been.

So this week/today, I bring to you these beautious goods......



I've always loved flower hair accessories and how they instantly up the pretty of any look. Lately, I've been getting into hand knit and/or crochet accessories. I love how versatile they are so I had to feature Bohemian Soul on here because she creates both.

I found out about Deitra, the creator's, lovely brand when she joined Natural Sunshine and I checked out her album highlighting some of her awesome work. The pieces are amazing and so are her prices! I promptly copped one of her knit bows and luv it to bits! Check out the site to see her knit goods b/c she makes awesome knit accessories. I must also add that her customer service is superb!


I just love these! I'm so gonna rock some of these in the summer. Just look so modern hippy right?




When asked about her brand's philosophy and what kind of woman rocks her pieces, she shared with me this:

Bohemian Soul is an eclectic mix of vibrantly colored ,funky clothing and accessories. For the fashionista who embraces ,uniqueness, individuality and all things fabulous!




Deitra has graciously given AGrlCanMac readers of this post a 10% discount on their orders! At time of purchase just make sure you enter the coupon code: Bsoul to recieve the discount. What are you waiting for? Go over to the site now!



www.bohemiansoul.com. Deitra said there are more goodies to come so check back frequently and I smell a refeature in the near future!

Monday, December 28, 2009

AGCM Received the Honest Scrap Award


AGrlCanMac got nominated by Natural Chica for this award. Thanks for the nomination!

So as the rules go, I must share 10 honest things about me so here goes:

1) I have two sisters and am the middle child and the oldest child Figured out the riddle of how this could be? Lol.

2) I like to interpret dreams

3) I am fast falling in luv with photography and plan to take some classes to up my skill level

4) I very rarely have bad hair days and when I do, tams to the rescue!

5) I am working on own accessories line, Sofysticated Phunk, and you have seen some of my prototypes on here sprinkled through out my recent posts

6) Kissing frogs is getting old, where's the prince already!

7) Spring is my favorite time of the year

8) You already know that I love to sew and I am currently learning how to crochet

9) I am working to one day be able to make a living off of doing make up all day

10) I would have never, in my wildest dreams, imagined that AGrlCanMac would get this big, open many doors for me, and meet so many incredible people when I first created it summer 2008 out of sheer boredom :D

So now I must pass this award along to some blogs I feel worthy.

* Leave in the Kinks
* Coup de Cour
* Naturally Fabulous even though she also was a nominee from Natural Chica
* Naturally Flyy

Product Review: Croco Clips



Remember the post I did on the FHI T-Rex Clips? Shortly after I put the post up, I headed to the local Sally Beauty Supply in search of them and encountered this less expensive version. There's 4 in a pack, 2 large and 2 small ones, and I got them for $4.99 with my Sally Beauty Card.

I really like them. They grip and secure the hair very well. Perfecto. Just be careful taking them out. The only con I experienced, with one of them, is if I wasn't careful taking it out of my hair some of my coils would get caught in the one metal part under the top part of the clip. This only happened with one of them in the pack (and hopefully none in your pack will do this) so just be gentle, like you should already be with your tresses. :D

Give them a try. You might not look at the usual plastic hair clips for sectioning hair the same way. ;D

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Product Review: Sonia Kashuk Blending Sponge



Remember the post that I did on the Beauty Blender and how to use one? Well, I was in Target the other day when I encountered this cheaper dupe. It's $10 and pretty much identical in size to the Beauty Blender. I was with my sister finishing up Christmas shopping when I first saw it and since I was supposed to be shopping for other people, I didn't purchase it then. My thoughtful sister surprised me with it as one of my gifts on Christmas Day. :D

Yesterday, I tried it out with my MAC MSF (mineralized skin finish) face powder in Dark and received fabulous results. It's a keeper! My face really did have a more air brushed look and less like I had powder on. I luv it. I can't wait to try it with my Priia mineral foundation.

I'd recommend it to anyone for a more flawless and natural look. The sponge can be used with wet or dry foundation and mineral foundation as well.


Results from Using Blending Sponge



How I Used It:



Since I used a (pressed) powder,

1) I soaked it in water and squeezed the excess water out

2) Rubbed the bottom part of it into the powder (Use the tip of the sponge to apply your foundation on the smaller areas of your face like under your eyes and around your mouth and nose.) Note: You are going to have to pick up additional powder on it more than once

3) Applied to my face in light, dabbing motions; like you're stippling it on; till desired look was achieved Note: You don't want to wipe it across or you will experience streaking and that's not a good look.

With this sponge, it's easy for you to control how much coverage you want and build up to it accordingly.

Have any of you used this blending sponge? What are your thoughts on it? Let me know if you'd like a tutorial on how to use one.

Happy Holidays!



I hope everyone is enjoying the Holiday season and your time spent with your family and close friends. I hope you are catching the great sales as well if you have any money left. Lol.

I am still in the midwest cherishing my time with my family here. There's been lots of laughing, dancing, hanging out, and most importantly; love. It's been great but ya girl is itching to get back to NYC. I have so much I plan to do in 2010 and am pumped! Let's get it!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Flat Twists

I finally learned how to flat twist. Yay! I learned from where else, YouTube, of course! I'm so excited to incorporate them into different hairstyles of mine. They don't last as long as cornrows though, they only last a week at most. But oh well, I mainly wash my hair once a week anyway so this works just fine for me. I'm just tickled to add another hairstyling technique to my arsenal.



I did the left side. The rest of my hair is a twist out from some twists I had in for a couple days.

The earrings of course are from my line, Sofysticated Phunk. I have a Tumblr site up: http://SofysticatedPhunk.tumblr.com with one pair for sale so far so if you're interested, check it out. I will definitely be adding more styles very soon so stay tuned, add it as a favorite and stop back frequently. I'm contemplating leaving Etsy and just creating my own website for them. Until then, I now have this Tumblr account in interim.


Stay naturally fly. :D

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Ways to Combat Shrinkage


Let's talk shrinkage. Now, these are solely my opinions, please keep this in mind and I welcome you to add a comment with any solutions that you may have discovered to address this.

For some it is an annoyance b/c you can't see a lot of your true length. For others, like myself, it can be detrimental to your hair's health and retard maintenance of your length ie. fairy knots and breakage. To offset it, I like to rock hairstyles that stretch out my natural kurl pattern. Not only do I get to then showcase more of my actual length but my hair doesn't dry out nearly as much, and I suffer virtually no tangling, fairy knots, and little breakage. :D


Hairstyles to Combat It:

1) Braid outs: My favorite!

2) Twist outs

3) Rollersets: You can use magnetic rollers, flexi rods, or perm rods (aka cold wave rods0. I plan to try a set with perm rods real soon.

4) Blow dry or hot air brush your hair: if your ok with occasional heat usage, from there you can style however you see fit

5) Banding: I don't care for this one b/c I'm lazy. Lol.

A Note to My TWA's.....


At this point in your hair game, it's going to be virtually hard for you all to avoid shrinkage. At this stage in your hair's length, these are just the breaks. If your hair is long enough to braid or twist it will help some but you just gotta wait till it gets a lil longer for more length and less shrinkage. For the time being, focus on keeping your hair well moisturized and you can use products like gels to help define your kurls.

I went through it and it was a little annoying, frustrating at first but I kept having fun with my hair and what it could do at the moment and when I looked up one day, my hair was longer and I could do more with it. Be patient, the length will come! I got through it and you will too.

Stay naturally fly. :D

Photo credits: HJi

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Stop! Feature Time!

So I've been keeping very busy this month like I had forecasted. This month I've been featured on 2 lovely, kurlicious blogs that I read and enjoy all the time.

Check me out and show these spots some luv if you don't know about them already!

My Natural Chica feature that went up today

My Leave in the Kinks feature that went up earlier this month


As always, I appreciate all your luv n support and am glad that many of you enjoy what AGrlCanMac is doing on here. Let's continue to keep the ball movin and do even more in 2010! :D

Gilded Eyes





This is such a pretty eyeshadow duo to give your basic eye look a little pizazz. It can be worn in any setting from casual to conservative/professional to formal. So spice up your "basic" look and try L'Oreal HIP Metallic Shadow Duo in Gilded. It contains a very pretty gold and a bronze color sure to give any sista of color a nice glow that isn't over powering so you can rock it on the daily.

Worn this look all day and want to take it into the night for an after work mixer or party? Here's how: Add a lil black eye shadow to the outer v and blend into the outer lash line to create a subtle smokey look. This duo looks good with almost any lip color so keep your lips more "natural" during they day and darken them for the night with a red, plum, or rich brown lip.

Can be found at any of your local drugstores, Wal-Marts, Targets, etc for around $10 more or less. Price can vary based on where you live.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Natural Hue Naturally You Hair Summit 2010



My girl, Pamela, the creator and owner of Naturally Divine Co.; is one of the organizers of this event. You may remember, her Glam Chains kicked off my Accessories That Can Mac feature. If you are in the Miami area come out. If you are looking for a reason to go on a vacation, here's the perfect excuse! Click on the photo for more details. (The event is also on Facebook. Become a fan if you like for updates.)

It's sure to be a fabulous event. I may even try to get down there myself. Can you believe that I've never been to Miami in my 26 years of living?! Lord knows I could use a vacay. We'll see. Have a kurlicious weekend Kurlies. Less than a week till Christmas! :D

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Make Up Tips from Japonesque




Makeup enthusiasts, Japonesque recently launched a new program on their site called Makeup of the Month where they will highlight a new make up artist each month.

Per the PR blast....

"Each month Japonesque will feature a new makeup artist and offer new tips and tricks on applying makeup! Each makeup artist filled out a questionnaire on their inspirations, must-have items and their personal philosophy on makeup and beauty!"

I luv learning new tips and getting into the heads of great make up artists in the industry. If this is your thing too then you will enjoy this feature.

This month's make up artist, Emily Katz, is up at http://www.japonesque.com/Bstudio.cfm.

Off topic: I think I may look into investing in a pair of their tweezers though. I hear that they are great quality. The cheapo ones never work for me. =( Lol.

T-Rex Hair Clips



I first learned about these from one of Glamazini's vids and her review of them peaked my interest.

I plan to get some of these and do a "proper" review on them. They're better than the traditional, plastic hair clips in that the top part of the clip is bendable. So it curves around the hair and better holds the section/s of hair in place in it. You thick hair kurlies will really love these b/c of their flexibility, they're not prone to breaking! They also are said not to snag the hair and can hold the thinnest of hair into place. Sounds good, right?


At Sally Beauty Supply you can choose from 2 brands:

FHI Heat T-Rex Clips (2 pack) for $7.50 with your Beauty Club Card or you can get

Color Trak Croc Clips (4 pack) for $6.99 with your Beauty Club Card.

I'll tell you right now, I'll be getting the latter.

I think they are worth the investment and of better quality than the usual, cheapie ones that you find at the local BSS. There is also more thought put into the concept of these so I wouldn't mind spending the bucks.

Any of you have them? Share your thoughts.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Product Review: Nubian Heritage Olive Butter and Green Tea Soap



I've been using this soap for about a month now and there's no turning back! I bought it at a local BSS before I learned they had a shop on Jamaica Ave (Jamaica Queens). (Now I get any of my Nubian Heritage products from the shop) This 100% natural and vegan soap is the bomb dot com. It's uber moisturizing and leaves my skin feeling so hydrated- not dried out like many soaps can, soft and smooth. It has great ingredients in it that are so conditioning for the skin including olive oil, avocado butter and shea butter. Green tea, another ingredient, is said to have wonderful anti-aging and antioxidant properties for the skin.

It's suggested to those with normal to dry skin. But I have oily skin and it works fab. I find that it actually cuts down on some of my oiliness. Sa-weet. Man, I am in bliss. My skin glows and has never felt so good. Who knew washing one's face could be so climactic?

I plan to try the other soaps they have available once I've used this one up.

Check out this soap and the other ones they have available at www.NubianHeritage.com.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

ATCM: Sweet and Spicy Accessories



Sweet and Spicy is owned by one of my alma mater (THE Ohio State University) alum, Danielle. Go Bucks! When I saw a link to her chic shop on Facebook, I knew I had to reach out to her for a feature.

She masterfully creates one of a kind jewelry pieces sure to make any woman sparkle and shine. Thanks for letting me share your goodies with the AGCM community!



When I asked her about the brand's philosophy and what kind of woman rocks her goods she had this to say:

"Sweet & Spicy Accessories is for the woman who can’t put her style in a box…she likes to mix girly with a bit of toughness…maybe with a hint of natural flavor…but most of all, always chic! The Sweet & Spicy Accessories girl has a multi-faceted personality…She may define herself as sweet…bold…sassy…or spicy…which is where the name Sweet & Spicy Accessories comes from! She loves accessories that are bold in color and big enough for her personality…and knows that fabulous accessories always complete a hot outfit!"



Luv it! If you can dig that philosophy, embody that philosophy or know someone that does, then check out her Etsy shop at www.SweetAndSpicy.etsy.com for more items.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Miss Kris New's Words of Encouragement

Check out this 2 part uplifting vid from Miss Kris New:





How can you not feel motivated after watching this? I luv everything that she had to say. Rocking your natural hair takes a lot of confidence so take pride in yourself and your hair and STRUT. She also states, which I liked, that there is a hairstyle for everyone. Did you read that? Hear when she said that? THERE IS A (NATURAL) HAIRSTYLE FOR EVERYONE. There are numerous natural hair resources out here now. Utilize them!

If you haven't subscribed to her channel, what are you waitin for!

Braid Out Routine Reloaded



So Udee asked me if since I started doing braid outs back in August if anything in my routine had changed.

Yes, I do do some things differently than when I started out:

* I (moisturize) and re-braid my hair every night. Yea, it can be a pain to do that but I actually find it therapeutic to do (every night about 20 mins) before hitting the sheets. It's automatic like wrapping your hair before you went to bed when you were relaxed.

* I said it up there in parentheses already but I also moisturize my hair daily: every night before re-braiding. Section by section, I mist on some of my moisturizing mist and seal with a hair lotion/milk, cream or butter. Now that it's cold, I like to seal with cream-butter consistency.

* I braid my hair in 4-5 braids on each side (of my head) and twist the ends.

I want to try braiding my hair into 2 french braids when it gets a lil longer (esp the front) to see what kind of braid outs I would get then. Probably bigger, looser waves.

This style has significantly cut down on, if not dern near eliminated, my hair tangling. It's def a mainstay hairstyle for me. If you haven't tried a braid out, I hope that you will try one soon. For all you shrinkage haters (which there will be a post on later on this week), this is a great way to combat that and show more of your hair's true length.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Twisted Style


With winter weather in full effect, I know many of you have or are planning to turn to protective styles like twists, kinky twists, and braids to keep your tresses moisturized and as breakage free as possible.




One of my hair idols, EbonyPrincessH, is super creative with styling her twists and braids (no extensions) and she graciously shared some pics of her various and rather elegant, if I say so, stylings! Thank you Ebony! So enjoy the eye candy for some ideas on how to rock your protective styles for work, church, a night out on the town or wherever else!



Maybe we can get her to come back and do a tutorial for one of the styles? What say you?



Check out her fotki for more pics and ideas. Her journey is very inspiring and one of my favorites. =)

Be inspired. =)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

My Staple Products Line Up


So, ya girl can proudly say I'm 1 year (Dec. 8th!) deep in this natural hair game and I feel like I've pretty much finalized my staple products. It's fun to try something new (still want to try Argan oil) once every blue moon but these are the tried n trues; the mainstays and they always deliver:

* Cleanse: Castile Soap-mix of castile soap, evoo, and water

* ACV rinse

* Conditioner: Various homemade conditioning concoctions or simply water and oil (usually Coconut oil and/or EVOO)

* Moisturize/Leave In: my Moisturizing Mist (water, aloe vera juice/gel, jojoba oil), KBB Hair Milk, Shea Moisture Leave In

* Henna for Glosses/Treatments: Nupur henna

* my Oil Cocktail: EVOO, Coconut oil, Castor oil, and Jojoba oil

* Sealing ends and Twisting with: my Shea Frosting

I'm sure you noticed, that I like to keep it simple and that I make most of my stuff. I luv mixing things up and that I can make products with my specific hair needs in mind. It's also more cost effective for me, especially in the state of this economy, that I don't have to spend much and still have hair that is very healthy and looks fab.

Besides, you all know how I do, I need that extra money that I'm not spending on hair care and styling products to buy accessories with!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

My Favorite Conditioner


My mainstay and favorite conditioner of all time is good ol (extra virgin) coconut oil. It nourishes my hair, gives it shine, smoothes the strands, and results in incredible softness. What more could you ask for in a conditioner?

I know you are thinking, you can condition with just coconut oil? Yes, in fact any oil of your choice can be a conditioner. Check out The Natural Haven's post on deep conditioning. It changed my hair's life and kept more money in my pocket.


How I Use It:

1) Mist a section of hair first with my moisturizing mist
2) Apply coconut oil to section
3) Braid section
4) Repeat on the rest of head. I usually end up with 6-8 sections when I'm done.
5) Put on a plastic conditioning cap and leave on for 15-30 mins
6) Rinse, continue with washing routine, and style as desired (usually a braid out these days for me)

Simple and delivers.

What's your favorite conditioner?

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

It's My 1ST Kurliversary!!!!

Today marks one year since I did my BC and became fully natural. =)



Oh what a journey it has been! I learned soooo much this first year and can't believe how wonderfully my hair has grown and how much it has showed off for me. I'm tellin you ladies, all you need is one year. After that, there's no limit to where you can go. So ye, I'm an advocate for the BC. What's 1 year? You blink and that goes by so just do it!



My success couldn't have been without all the great natural hair blogs, Fotki albums, YouTube channels, and hair forums/boards so thank you all! Many of you directly and indirectly helped me in immense ways that I can never possibly express all my gratitude for. I continue to learn from you all and you have aided in enhancing my life. =)


4 mos post BC: April '09 Mini Twists



I thank all you natural ladies before me that showed me that our hair is BEAUTIFUL and that we should be ever so proud to rock this hair that grows out of our head. Thank you for inspiring me and others too. And now I hope to inspire others with my journey.


8 mos post BC: August '09 Curly Fro



I look forward to seeing where Year 2 will take me and as always, welcome you all to join me. To infinity and beyond! Lol. I couldn't help myself. You all know I'm silly!


12 mos post BC: December '09 Braid Out



For more pics of my journey this first year, check out my fotki.

Kurly Inspiration

Ms. Keeli



I saw this TheScissorBoy vid and thought I'd share.

Lovin the cut on her fro. It's hot. The whole video, I couldn't take my eyes off of her hair or her accessories.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Stocking Stuffers

These are a few of my favorite things........




If you don't know about this fabulous book, you must be living under a rock! Check out my review I did on this book back in October if you don't know about it. Support your fellow natural sista, Chris-Tia, and cop this book for a loved one or friend who's thinking about going natural, is transitioning, or is natural already this Holiday season. It really is the Natural Hair 101 Handbook and makes a great stocking stuffer item or you can always vent to someone that you "sure could use" a copy for this Christmas, Hannukah, Kwanzaa, etc.... ;)

Get an autographed copy with a personalized inscription that reads "Dear 'insert name', always stay natural. You are beautiful the way you are." from http://thankgodimnatural.wordpress.com/store . Free shipping (this excludes international shipping) from now until Xmas!

Tis the season to have fabulous natural hair! Spread the joy!

Reader Question


Q) Uduak hit me up and asked:

"May I ask that you do a blog on trimming techniques? It's been 7 months and I've never done a trim...I think it's about time for one, but I'm scared (even tho I've trimmed other pple's hair before)! Since you've been natural, have you trimmed? How'd you do it?Thanks, girl!

Your blog is forever an inspiration (true talk!)"



A) First off, thank you! My main aim is to inspire so I'm glad that it is working! I did a whole post back in February dedicated to trims, methods, and tips. So check it out. I will be natural one year on the 8th (!) and I have trimmed my hair twice this year. My preferred method of trimming my hair is while it's in twists.

Hope this was helpful! Stay naturally fly.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Product Review: Exfoliating Sponges

Studio 35 Beauty Red Cleansing Sponges: Gently cleans and exfoliates





On one of my many frequent trips to the local Walgreens, I stumbled across these in the cosmetics section. I bought a (2 sponges come in it) pack for $1.99.

What They Say:



"Use with your favorite cleanser to eliminate dulling dirt, oil and dead skin cells. Gentle enough for all skin types. Great for facial mask removal and treatments."


My Thoughts:



In my best English accent, "I quite fancy them". It really is a gentle exfoliation without your skin feeling "raw". Anyone that knows me, knows I'm obsessed with having skin and a face that's soft and glows. Sometimes I feel like my buff puff can be a lil too abrasive. So these sponges are perfect for that. Those with sensitive skin especially, this would be a great product to try so that you may reap the benefits of daily exfoliation without suffering irritation.


How I Use Them:



1) Wet your face first and lightly massage in your favorite cleaser in circular motions.

2) Wet sponge and put some of your cleanser on it then massage on face in circular motions all over. It's not necessary to press hard when doing this; as this could lead to irritation. Trial and error will help you determine how hard it is necessary to press. In my experiences, not very hard at all.

3) Rinse face, pat dry or air dry and apply favorite moisturizer. Make sure you rinse all the soap out of the sponge thoroughly and let air dry.

These will be a mainstay in my skincare regimen till I can purchase a Clarasonic skincare system! Post on them coming up soon.

Stay naturally fly. =)

Saturday, December 5, 2009

New Hobby



Photography



I have found another hobby to get into. I want a digital slr camera! Over the course of the year, I've been bitten by the photography bug. This blog and my growing interests in doing make up, designing accessories, and showcasing all things kinky-kurly-koily hair has encouraged this newfound love as well. I'm researching prices, brands, and models. I know one thing, these suckers aint cheap!

Do any of you have one? Suggestions and tips are very much appreciated.

Giveaway Winner!!!

Hey Ladies. I didn't announce the winner yesterday because my computer was being fixed. It had been plagued by yet another nasty virus! I got it fixed yesterday and am almost back up to speed. But I digress....

Entry winner was selected via random selection using www.random.org


AND THE WINNER IIIIIIISSSSS:

#12 Sana!



Congrats! I will email you for your shipping info and get it out to you.

Thanks to all who participated and be on the lookout for future giveaways!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

ATCM: Trucks and Pearls Neck Warmer

Accessories That Can Mac: Add a neck warmer to your winter gear




For the cold months, I need one of these Trucks and Pearls hand knit neck warmers in my life.

I stumbled across their shop doing an Etsy search for knit neck warmers (I'm a lil tired of fussing with (pashmina) scarves; they look great but don't keep my neck all that warm in the coldest months) and this is one of the shops that immediately grabbed my eye.

When the Holidays are over, I think I will treat myself to one of these. www.TrucksandPearls.etsy.com =)

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