The Curls You Don’t Even Know You Have

When the “right age” to get my hair straightened with a chemical relaxer came, I was beyond excited. At 15, in the 1990’s, many Latinas with curly hair were getting their hair “fixed.” But first, why wait until the girl reaches fifteen? Traditionally, in most Latino countries it means that she has transitioned from being a child to being a woman. Childhood is over for her; she’s a quinceañera now and, therefore, she’s allowed to do grownup stuff, such as wear makeup and, apparently, dip her hair in acid? To recap, women chemically relax their hair because society thinks curly or kinky hair is “bad hair” and it’s unacceptable. (I highly recommend watching Chris Rock’s movie Good Hair, by the way – it’s an eye opener.) Thus, of course, my hair was victim of this misconception. It wasn’t even that hard to tame. It was big and frizzy as heck, […]

your curls

origins charcoal mask

Charcoal Mask to Clear Pores

Finding a reputable skin care product these days can turn into an odyssey, not to mention a good facial mask that won’t dry out your (already dry) skin. With so many choices in the market today you just don’t know where to look. But believe that it’s possible. I know some of us won’t just try anything without good ratings these days. And because I know the importance of an honest product review, I am writing yet another review here. In my experience, this charcoal mask by Origins works quite well. What it claims to do: It’s a mask with activated charcoal to draw out deep-dwelling pore-cloggers. Activated charcoal acts like a magnet to draw out deep-dwelling pore-cloggers. White China clay absorbs environmental toxins, and lecithin dissolves impurities. Good for all skin types. Does it deliver? Well, Don’t expect a $120-valued facial with this facial mask; it doesn’t do extractions […]

Simple Summer Hair Styles [Video]

Sharing this video with the SummerHair community. These quick hairstyles are cute, easy and simple enough for anyone. Love what she does with the hat! (I think it’s look # 5) One can never have too many options when it comes to hair!

Curls before and after

The Two Faces of My Curly Hair

After seeing my straight hair, some people have asked me what I put on my hair when it is curly. My response: nothing. Well, of course I always condition after shampooing — imagine this hair without any moisture. If I want it to stay “grounded” for a longer period of time, I use mousse. But for the most part, with the exception of conditioner, no chemicals are used to get my hair to curl that way. I use my regular conditioner and rinse it out a bit, or I may use a leave-in conditioner. It depends on how tight or loose I want the curls to be. The before-and-after picture here is from last time I wore my hair curly. I liked the curls AND the straight hair the next day, so I snapped a photo to show how dramatic my hair transformation is — in length and all. I […]

Jungle Queen Lipstick Review

There’s a new orange resident in my purse, and I’m loving it! Jungle Queen: a fabulous moisturizing lipstick with natural oils by Poppy (though this brand is new to me). What it is: a semi-sheer, moisturizing formula enriched with nourishing natural oils, protective antioxidant vitamin E that conditions and hydrates the lips. It promises to flatter all skin complexions. What it does: It definitely moisturizes. It is glossy, so if you prefer the feel and color of matte, this may not be a good pick. I like that the color pops; it’s orange and looks great. What I don’t like is that it smears easily and doesn’t last. But I haven’t tried it with a primer yet, so can’t say I don’t absolutely love it yet! I’ll update this once I do. Overall, it was a good buy.

Lipstick Jungle

utra black mascara

Mascara Review: Atomic Volume Ultra Black

By Sephora, this mascara is one that I adore. What it is: “An innovative tubular brush applicator with a lash-lengthening comb that perfectly separates lashes for a full, sexy flutter.” Does it deliver? Yes! Although I’m not the biggest fan of the comb — it’s one of those hard bristle combs and poking has happened enough times when in a rush — it does give the lashes more length and fullness. In my experience, though it is not waterproof, this mascara stays put and doesn’t smudge under the eyes. Of course, as long as you’re not walking through a rainstorm. It comes off easily with eye-makeup remover. The texture is not too thick either and the black color looks fantastic on brown eyes. Also fantastic, is the fact that it’s not too expensive! I don’t know if they carry it anymore in the stores. I’m running out myself and will […]

Give Your Hair a “Rest”

Beach season is here once again, and with it comes the need for more attention to our hair care regime. When humidity strikes, it is always a challenge for us, the curly-haired, to keep things under control. The first tools we run to for rescue? Blow-dryer and flat/curling iron. Guilty! Can’t blame a chica for wanting a quick fix. Well, I thought I’d write a quick late-night post about how I also like to give my hair a break from time to time. Here’s what I do: let the hair be! Whenever I over-work my hair—as I did this past week—or after flat-ironing too many days in a row, I like to give it a couple of days where I just let my hair be whatever it wants to be. Free and wild, its natural state. By that I mean I apply a leave-in conditioner after shampooing and, from a […]

Bouncy Curls

kids weaves

Weaves: From a Kid’s Perspective

I was going for a walk with one of my nieces the other day when she struck a conversation about how she’d “rather be bald than wear fake hair.” She was talking about some of her classmates apparently wearing synthetic hair. My niece is only 12 years old, so I imagine her classmates are all around that age, as well, which is sort of new to me to learn that girls that young are wearing weaves and wigs? It is a whole different culture and perhaps a bit complex for my niece to understand yet. However, I totally know where she’s coming from. “They wear this…weave, or whatever, and I don’t understand why,” said my niece, highly confused. “You can see some of the hair peeking through and some of it is straight, some is curly…it looks like a mess! Why not just shave your head completely and let your […]

Right Mousse for Defined Curls

Looking for a great mousse? Look no further! I’ve tried some good mousses in the past, but this is the best one yet. Haven’t seen it in stores here in the US (I got mine in Spain), but you might be able to find it online. It ranges from moderate to extra strong hold and it’s alcohol-free. What I like most about it is that the hair doesn’t feel like a rock — it still bounces! — and it comes off easily when washing or combing. I like to apply it while the hair is still wet; that way, as the hair begins to dry out in its natural way, the mousse holds it in that spiral form. It’s a great mousse, recommended.

schwarzkopf mousse

Stila tinted moisturizer

Great Tinted Moisturizer for Dry Skin

I love makeup. I love all of it. But what I’ve never been able to get into is foundation. I am not a fan of foundation. Don’t get me wrong, I dig it every once in a while. I just don’t like it as part of my makeup routine for a couple of reasons. I have dry skin and the times that I have applied foundation, it dries out on weird spots on my face (even though I always use a moisturizer). It kinda accentuates my (few) fine lines and I don’t like the look of that. Not to mention how badly it clogs the pores. When I worked at Sephora, I tried different foundations and tinted moisturizers in an attempt to find the perfect match for my skin type. Among the brands carrying foundations that I felt worked best on me were Yves Saint Laurent, Laura Mercier, and Givenchy. […]