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Jamyla Bennu has always been a creative person, whether it be dancing, designing clothing or developing Web sites. This same creativity can be seen with Oyin Handmade, Bennu's line of hair and body products.The line includes botanical styling products, fragrant lotion bars and shampoo bars as well as hand-mixed tinted lip balm and luscious styling products that have become a cult hit among women with curly and textured hair.

It was only natural that Bennu would get into the haircare business.

With two 'very pro-Black hippy parents,' Bennu said she wore her hair natural most of her life.

'Home was the only place natural hair was affirmed,' she says. 'I always had a positive attitude toward natural hair. But I spent much of my life trying to figure it out.'

Bowing to peer pressure during high school, she relaxed her hair with a perm. But when she headed off to Spelman College in Atlanta, one of the nation's top black universities, she saw natural hair all around her, from locs to afro puffs to braids.

'I thought 'That's what you're supposed to do with it,'' she says 'I was awakened to all the possibilities.'

So Bennu cut off the remainder of her perm, and started experimenting with her natural hair. She tried all kinds of hair products, carefully reading the ingredients and making natural recipes with ingredients like shea butter and honey. She shared recipes online and concocted her own, creating products for her friends and family.

'I've always been a very crafty person,' she says, adding that both her husband and she are independent artists.

Two years ago, she launched her product line on her Web site. The company gets its name from the Yoruban word for honey.

'It's always been my favorite word since I was a little girl,' Bennu says. 'At a naming ceremony in Yoruban culture, oyin represents joy and sweetness and pleasure. And with my haircare line, it has another connotation because honey is in so many products and it's so good for the hair.'

Oyin Handmade started with four products. Today, the line includes six bath and body products and five haircare products loaded with such natural ingredients as unrefined shea butter, Vitamin E, honey, pure aloe vera juice and herbal infusions.

Her haircare offerings include Shine & Define Styling Serum, Whipped Pudding, Honey-Hemp Conditioner, Grand Poo Bar and Greg Juice. Each product is hand made from scratch in small batches to ensure freshness. NaturallyCurly.com is the first retailer to offer Oyin Handmade products. Go to CurlMart to buy a variety of Oyin Handmade products.

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I just bought the whipped pudding I hope I like it

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