Articles By Evelyn Ngugi

Evelyn Ngugi

Evelyn has been writing and creating videos for NaturallyCurly since 2010. Since then she's become an internet sensation, highly revered for her YouTube channel Evelyn From the Internets.

L TO R: DESHONICA KERRIE OF DESIGN ESSENTIALS, EVELYN OF NATURALLYCURLY, KIKI OF MAHOGANYKNOTS, JESS OF MAHOGANYCURLS, AND TASHA SIMONE OF HOT 107.7

As NaturallyCurly.com's social media manager, I spend a lot of time "behind the screens." I'm glued to my laptop or iPhone, making sure we connect with heads of curls, coils, and waves around the world. And let me tell you -- it's a special moment when I finally get the chance to meet these Internet friends in real life.

Needless to say, I was pumped to fly from Texas to Alabama for the Natural Hair & Health Expo by Visions Beauty Distributors! Our friends at Design Essentials invited me to speak at Curls & Conversations, one of the panels during the expo. I would join - get this - MahoganyCurls and MahoganyKnots to chat about all things natural hair. I've watched their YouTube videos for years!  Click through my slideshow to see more of my trip!

 


Looking for a product that will define your natural curl pattern?

There are so many gels, custards and curl creams, that it can be confusing and frustrating to find the right one, so we've put together a list of our favorite top curl definers.

Remember: no two heads of hair are the same, even if they fall in the same curl category.

What works for thin 4b hair may not work for thick 4b hair, and what you thought wouldn’t work on your hair texture may turn out to be a holy grail!


 


Imagine -- natural hair meetups happening on the same day in 60 cities from Amsterdam to Austin! Sound too good to be true?
We're happy to tell you it's real! International Natural Hair Meetup Day (INHMD) was Saturday, May 18! Adeaa Rogers and the INHMD team saw the value and increasing popularity of natural hair meetups and created a day when naturalistas can come together across the globe. Each city's meetup is hosted by a naturalista from that community and can plan the event to fit the curly scene.
I (Evelyn) attended the meetup here in Austin, Texas, home of the NaturallyCurly headquarters, over the weekend. According to Bridgett Lee, the meetup's hostess, our city's meetup "Curly, Kinky, & Coily in the Capitol" completely sold out. There were giveaways (I won!!! Excited to try my Komaza Care goodies), guest speakers, and tons of laughter. Bridgett even big chopped on stage! I'm pretty new to the meetup scene, but I had a lot of fun and can't wait to see what's in store for next year!

The next meetup

INHMD announced that May 17, 2014 is next year's International Natural Hair Meetup Day. Save the date!

Visit the website: 

 


YouTuber, comedian, and loc inspiration Franchesca "Chescaleigh" Ramsey teamed up with us here at NaturallyCurly.com for her South by Southwest #chescaTX meetup! She wanted to meet all her Texan fans who were in town for the conference, so on March 9  we brought swag bags full of NEW Tigi BedHead products and tickets for free beverages to The Upper Decks in Austin, TX. Franchesca brought her beautiful personality, sense of humor and of course that hair we all admire so much! We took photos, gushed over her amazing YouTube videos, and got to connect with other men and women in our community over a shared love of all things Chescaleigh! Thank you to TIGI for the swag bags, and thanks for making a stop in Austin, Franchesca!



Is the wash & go your staple style?  Some people use the winter months to wear protective styles, shielding their curls and coils from harsh weather. We know that’s not a desirable route for everybody, and the wash and go will continue year-round.

But how can you avoid leaving the warmth of your home to fare frozen temperatures with wet hair? We’ve done the work for you and found a couple popular ways people still enjoy wash and gos without catching a cold in the process.

Wash & Go in the evenings + pineapple + air dry

If you already have a preference for night showers, these next three methods will be easy to get used to. First, try doing your wash and gos in the evening, giving your hair time to air dry in the comfort of your warm home. Experiment with the pineapple method and gather all your hair (or sections of it) into a high puff(s) or ponytail(s). Just wrap the hair tie once or twice around. This will keep the roots stretched as they dry, but the length of your hair will stay defined through the night.

In the morning, just take out the hair ties, shake/fluff, and go!

MORE: How to Pineapple Your Hair

Wash & Go in the evenings + air dry + light mist in the morning

If the pineapple method just isn’t for you – either your hair is too short, or the pineapples stretch your hair too much – skip them altogether. Cowash and style your wash and go in the evening and let it air dry as you cook dinner and catch up on that episode of "Scandal."

In the morning, your coils will probably be smooshed and compact. Spray your hair with a bit of water and shake or fluff to achieve the desired shape. Finish getting ready for the day, and your hair should be dry before you walk out of the door!

Option #2

If you hair air dries quickly, you can add three or four light spritzes of water to your wash and go and cover with a shower cap before bed. Be sure to mist a small amount of water. Overnight, the light moisture will be trapped, keeping your coils moist, but not wet. Remove the shower cap, fluff, and go! Naptural85 on YouTube made a video showing how she maintains her wash and go using this method.

How To Maintain Wash and Go for 5 Days or More


Wash & Go in the evenings  + big loose twists

We saw this method on Naptural85’s YouTube channel. It needs no product, and admittedly, looks like a twist out. If you do the twists large and loose enough on wet hair, when you unravel them in the morning, they might still be slightly damp enough to be a fuller, more defined version of your traditional wash and go.

The Perfect Winter Wash and Go Method


Use a diffuser

Buy a diffuser attachment for your blow dryer and get to diffusin’! The purpose of this attachment is to spread the air over a larger area. It won’t focus so much heat on a section of hair, providing a much more immediate wash and go without using too much heat.

Tilt your head to the side, gather a section of hair on top of the diffuser attachment and let the air gently dry your hair and scalp. Keep alternating sections to ensure an even process. Watch IAmNaturallyCurious’ video for a visual.

If you don’t mind wet hair in the colder months, or it’s sunny year round, we’re jealous! Pass this on to a friend who needs it.


MORE: How to Use a Hair Diffuser


Shrinkage: A Love Story

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I hope you checked out the seven curly kids books suggested to read with your child for naturally curly hair acceptance. But the list doesn’t stop there! Scouring the Internet produced seven more books the kiddies will love! Some are specifically about curly hair, while others just feature a main character with lusciously springy locks! Try to find these at your local public library, and if you come up empty-handed, try Amazon or eBay.


MORE: Curly Kids


 


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two Curly sisters

1. The store cashier thinks your sister is your daughter, but you’re only five years apart. 

Your hair is aging you! Maybe your hair color is washing out your youthful features. Visit a colorist in your area to assess how light or dark you should go. Sometimes you just have to accept that a deep red looks a lot better against your skin than jet black. If you’re in absolute love with your hair color, maybe a new hairstyle is in order. It can be as simple as parting your hair down the middle instead of to the right. Are your curls too long? A shorter, layered cut can make your curls seem more light and bouncy.

MORE: 6 Hair Tips to Make You Look Younger

 

 

 

 

 

 

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frightening Frizz

2. Your coworker assumes you’re going to be an 80s hair band rocker for the company Halloween party.

A modern haircut is in order! Gone are the days of insane frizz, teased crowns and bangs, and side ponytails. A layered haircut will add dimension and natural shape to your curls. Maybe you need to thin your curls out a little to tone down the volume. Visit a stylist you trust who knows how curly hair grows and frames the face. To bring your frizz down to 21st century levels, make sure your curls are properly deep conditioned – dry hair means frizzy hair!

MORE: Are Curly 80s Hair Styles Now Retro?

 

 

 

 

 

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athletic lady with coily hair

3. People always ask if you’re headed to the gym.

Ditch the messy buns, thick headbands, and big, cotton scrunchies. Those are for the gym, not the workplace. Embrace your curls and wear them loud and proud! Don’t believe the myth that curly hair is unprofessional. Rock a wash & go using your favorite gel or try twists and braids to alter your curl pattern into loose waves or tight curls over night without heat. You can also pull them back into a sleek, fashionable bun, but use more discreet hair accessories this time.

MORE: 5 Tips for Exercising With Natural Hair

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Blonde Shockwave

4. People always ask if you’re feeling well, but haven’t even sneezed and you have no tissues in hand.

Hair color can change how warm or cool our skin looks. If your hair is too dark, it can wash out your features and make you look very tired and pale. If your hair is colored too light, it can make you look like an ice queen, a la Tilda Swinton. Visit your stylist and ask for some warmth and dimension through highlights and lowlights.

Make sure your hair color matches your skin undertones. Those with cool undertones can go as deep as bluish black. Warmer undertones need deep browns and golds. It’s also on trend to change your hair color with each major change in season. By Thanksgiving, switch out your sun-kissed highlights for a deeper, richer color.

MORE: 8 Foods for Healthy Skin

 

 

 

 

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pensive annoyed lady with curly hair

5. During conversations, people stare just above your face. My eyes are down here, fellas! 

Time to touch up those roots! Seems like the contrast between your natural color and your dye job is distracting. If you know how to DIY it, go for it! If not, make a hair appointment ASAP. Darker roots on a lighter dye job can make your hair look greasy, while your blonde roots with a brunette ponytail just looks wonky!

MORE: How to Hide Oily Roots

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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sticky note on fridge

6. Your mother keeps posting sticky notes with the address to her favorite salon on your fridge when she comes over.

Ugh, mom is trying to send a message, isn’t she? Maybe it’s time for a new color to bring in the changing season, or maybe your curls look a bit droopy and a slightly layered cut is in order. Maybe your hair just has a bad case of the dry frizzies. Treat yourself to a moisturizing deep conditioner to bring the moisture and definition back to your hair. If it’s humid outside, more moisture won’t tame those fuzzies. Try a humidity serum or gel to smooth down those flyaways.

MORE: 5 Bad Curly Hair Habits to Break

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Ahh, autumn. The leaves change color, the air is crisp and it’s finally cardigan season again...except here in Texas. It’s about 80 degrees these days, so we southerners have to usher in the new season a bit differently. Nothing gets me in the autumn mood faster than comfy, yummy fragrances. Here are some hair products with sugar, spice, and everything nice to get me in the autumn mood. As the weather starts to get cooler, these products also provide a massive moisture boost, so our coils won’t dry out.


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Belle Butters Pumpkin Pie Butter

Pumpkin Pie Butter

Belle Butters

Keeping in the pumpkin theme, Belle Butters has created a delectable pumpkin pie butter suitable for hair and skin. And because it's made from cocoa butter and avocado butter, a little goes a very long way. By the end of the day, the spicy pumpkin smell fades into a light, vanilla aroma.

Pumpkin Pie Butter, $13; Belle Butters

MORE: Add Pumpkin to Your Beauty Routine

 

 

 

 

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Sweet Cocoa Bean Curl Smoothing Cream

Sweet Cocoa Bean Curl Smoothing Cream

Darcy's Botanicals

I first tried this product in the spring as part of my CurlBox, and I couldn’t get enough of the smell! I know some people don’t like chocolate fragrances in the hotter months (picture a melting chocolate bar mess!) so now is the perfect time to give this product a try. I use it as a leave-in conditioner and moisturizer, and it plumps up my dry twists instantly!

Darcy's Botanicals Sweet Cocoa Bean Curl Smoothing Cream, $12; CurlMart

MORE: 7 Days To Healthier Hair

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Oyin Handmade Whipped Pudding

Whipped Pudding

Oyin Handmade

Speaking of chocolate…here’s a natural hair classic! Oyin’s Whipped Pudding is so decadent there should be a suggested serving size! Like the Pumpkin Pie Butter by Belle Butters, this is great for the hair and skin.

Pair it with the Darcy’s Botanicals smoothing cream for a chocolate power punch, or layer it with the Pumpkin Seed Moisturizing Conditioner for a multifaceted scent. Since it’s so thick, it’s perfect for long-term and protective styling. It may be too heavy for those of us with fine hair, so use a very small amount if it’s your first time trying this dense slice of heaven.

Oyin Handmade Whipped Pudding, $12; CurlMart

MORE: How to Beat the Winter Skin Blues

 

 

 

 

 

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Oyin Handmade Burnt Sugar Pomade

Burnt Sugar Pomade

Oyin Handmade

I’ve been using Burnt Sugar Pomade for years! It’s a healthy hair grease made of castor, olive, soybean and coconut oils, plus other amazing ingredients to nourish and seal your coils. The smell: warm, caramelized sugar. It’s so enticing I’ve had to talk myself out of eating it a couple times! It’s not edible, but it is nutritious for our hair and smells delicious!

Burnt Sugar Pomade, $13; CurlMart

MORE: 7 Books for Curly Kids

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Oyin Handmade Hair Dew

Hair Dew

Oyin Handmade

Oyin's Hair Dew has the same delicious scent as their Burnt Sugar Pomade, but has a different function. Hair Dew is a creamy leave-in and moisturizer, great on my freshly washed hair or on thirsty mid-week hair. Warning: the warm vanilla and caramel scent might cause the strong desire to frolic outside during the cool evenings, but at least your hair will be moisturized throughout your autumn adventures. If you like your hair products to smell the same, layer the Burnt Sugar Pomade on top of the Hair Dew for long-lasting moisture and scent.

Hair Dew, $13; CurlMart

MORE: Natural Hair on TV: Rudy Huxtable

Which hair products remind you of autumn? Let us know!

 

 

 

 

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Roll call: who got their first relaxer around 6 years of age? If you’re raising your hand, you’re not alone! I got my first relaxer around that time also. My mother never said natural hair wasn’t beautiful or presentable, but it was always explained that straight hair was just more manageable: easier to wash, easier to style and most importantly, easier to comb. I was never teased too horribly about my hair being “too big” or “too nappy,” but a good dose of self-love is always in order!

If you have little ones who are starting to beg for the flat iron, or if you just want to help build a sense of self-love in a curly-positive home, check out these children’s books!

MORE: Does Natural Hair Love Start at Home?

 



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