Friday, January 7, 2011

Just Like Mama

Marlie has been having trouble lately with the fact that she just doesn't look like her Mama. She is always trying to find ways to match me, but it's difficult to accomplish beyond clothing. For a year she's been asking for a purple streak in her hair like mine. For a year I've been saying no.

But with the increasing frustration she's had lately over our differences in appearance, I've been re-thinking it. Still on the fence, it was Marshall who changed my mind. He was all for Marlie getting a purple streak, telling me, "It's just hair!". And he's right. And I started to think, if this simple gesture will help her bridge a little gap between our physical differences, it will be worth it. But before I told her yes, I consulted with her African American hair stylist and with my hair stylist (who does my purple streak) to make sure it would be safe to do on a child so young. (both stylists work at the same place and know each other well) They both assured me it would be just fine to do. It would change the texture slightly and require more conditioner than the rest of her hair but otherwise be fine.

Soooooo... I came home and told Marlie we could give her a purple streak in her hair. To say she was excited is an understatement. She was elated. It was just before Christmas when we told her she could get it done, and she would ask almost daily when she was getting her purple hair. Finally I made an appointment for her to get her hair done today.

This week she was counting down the day until her appointment. She kept informing her big brothers she had an "appointment" to get her purple hair. Last night she was excited to go to bed and go to sleep early so today would come sooner. This morning she couldn't wait to get to the hair salon. And while I gave her the option of picking the location of the purple streak, I was unsurprised that she chose to have it in the same place, same side as I have mine.

Here is her "before" picture.

In order for the purple to show up on her hair, they had to first bleach her hair. They have to do the same thing to my hair as well.

Then Marlie had to spend some time under the heat lamp while her hair lightened. I wisely brought along an iPad to help her pass the time.

Surprise! Marlie has "yellow" hair!!! She thought it was so silly.

Now time to apply the purple!

Then she got her hair blown dry and flat ironed. While the purple was still soaking in her hair, I had my hair washed and blown straight as well, so she and I would both have "flat" hair together.

As soon as her hair was finished and I took her out of the salon chair, she hugged me tightly and thanked me for letting her have purple hair. Once we got home, Daddy wanted to take some pictures outside with his fancy camera.

Some people might judge me for letting her do this. Heck, a few years ago I would've judged someone for coloring their young child's hair. But having seen Marlie increasingly struggle with our differences in appearances, and knowing how much this small gesture means to her... I wouldn't hesitate to do it again. Of course there are some lines I won't cross, like chemically straightening her hair or coloring the entire thing, but when it comes to a purple streak... it's just hair.

Friday, December 31, 2010

Princess Tiana Hair Made Easy


The other day Marlie asked me to make her hair look like Princess Tiana. A big bun on top of her head, no problem! But what if your daughter doesn't have much hair? Or even if she has a lot of hair, the bun ends up being small?

Here's an incredibly easy way to get the look of a big bun on top of the head without having to have much hair... (I learned this from my college roommate)

Start with making a pony tail on top of the head. Then add a scrunchie. (like this one)


Scrunchie should be close to hair color so it blends in. Just put the scrunchie on loose instead of twisting and putting it through the hair again. Take the pony tail, spread hair out and over the scrunchie.

The scrunchie is going to give you all the size/volume under the hair to make the bun look large.

Once hair is spread over the scrunchie, take a rubber hair band and place it on top of the bun, at the base which should keep the hair in place.

Add a princess tiara and you're done. The entire hairstyle should take less than 5 minutes. Perfect for a day of playing dress-up.




Tuesday, October 19, 2010


One of my friends posted a link to a blog on Facebook and I've been hooked on that site ever since. It's called Beads, Braids, & Beyond and is authored by a mom of two biracial children who is a whiz with hair. Her site is a great resource and has inspired me to try new things.

From looking at her blog, I've found many styles I want to try out on Marlie. I loved how she made a heart shaped design on her daughter's hair so I decided to try a variation of that on Marlie.

It was fairly simple. I just used a rat tail comb to make the heart shape part by just drawing a heart shape with the comb in the back. The front part of her head I split down the middle and put into two pigtails that I braided. The back "heart" part I french braided. Simple, but a fun, new design for me. And I think the look on Marlie's face shows she was pretty happy with the new design as well.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Carol's Daughter Sale

My friend Karen (who knows I love Carol's Daughter) just forwarded me an email that Carol's Daughter is retiring two of its scents, Ocean and Mango Melange. *gasp* Mango Melange Shea Souffle is one of my long time favorite body lotions for Marlie's skin. The good news is while they are retiring this, they are selling off the rest of their stock at super discounted prices. So get shopping and stock up before they are gone!!!

Just leave some for me!

To go directly to their sale page, CLICK HERE.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Getting Ponies & Braids to Stay Neat/Slicked

My friend Karen asked this on Facebook:

Moms of curly heads: when you do multiple ponies with crazy parts all over the place, what gel/product do you use to get your ponies to stay neat/slicked? Or are morning after fuzzies just a reality for all?

What I use on Marlie's hair when doing one of her hairstyles is either:

Kizzi "Stay Put" Hair Pomade


Mimosa Hair Honey

When selecting a piece of hair to put in a little pony tail or braid, I get a tiny pinch of whichever product I'm using and run it through that little section of hair before styling it. (section by section)

I find when I use either of those, there is a huge difference to how well the hair stays put in the braids, little pony tails, etc. as opposed to when I don't use anything. You don't need to use much, so the jar lasts quite a while. (or at least it does for me)

Both products are found at

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Free Hair No More???

Since I took Marlie to the salon in March, and she had her hair blown out and flat ironed for the first time, she has insisted I do that EVERY TIME I WASH HER HAIR. And honestly, since it is sooooo much easier to keep the tangles under control when it's flat ironed, I've complied to her wishes. It's a fun time when we do her hair. She sits on the counter of my bathroom vanity while I do her hair. Sometimes we talk about fairies. Sometimes we talk about God, Heaven and her deceased Ethiopian parents. Sometimes we sing songs from The Sound of Music.

Flat ironing her hair is certainly much kinder on the fingers than braiding. It has been soooooooo long since I left her hair free (in its original state) that it took quite a bit of convincing, but she agreed to leave it curly the other day. Well... I don't know if it's the fact that the flat ironing allowed her hair to get longer without breaking under the combing out of tangles, or if her hair itself doesn't want to be curly anymore. Because it is now no where near as curly as it was before we started flat ironing it. Perhaps someone with more experience flat ironing hair can weigh in on why this is.

I used to be able to get a seriously awesome 'fro out of her, but now it's just long and wavy. It's very cute. I like her hair in all it's forms. But then we had the attack of the tangles again and it reminded me why I've been doing all the flat ironing on her hair. So we're back to flat ironing.

Today she asked for pigtails. This was the first time I've done them with her flat ironed hair.

After I finished her hair, she declared that she loves loves LOVES her hair and she wants it to be in pigtails every day for the rest of her life. *snort* She's such a girl. Anyway, it's absolutely insane how blowing out her hair and flat ironing it, will take her hair from thick and tangle-prone to thin and silky. It's like magic.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Free Hair Daily Regimen

When I'm not flat ironing my daughter's hair or putting it into a hairstyle, I leave her hair free. This is the daily regimen for her hair.

Wash hair once a week, using Tui Herbal Shampoo and follow with Tui Hair Smoothie. Use generous amount of Hair Smoothie, working it into the hair. Then set the timer for 15 minutes.

After the timer goes off, while the Hair Smoothie is STILL IN THE HAIR, use a wide tooth comb to comb through the hair. Never force the comb through the hair, and start at the ends, working your way up to the scalp. Once you have worked through the hair with a wide tooth comb, you can follow through with a more narrow tooth comb, if you like. Then thoroughly rinse hair when finished.

Gently pat the hair dry with a towel, (don't rub dry). Spray Hair with Black Vanilla or Tui Leave-in Conditioner. Comb through hair again with a wide tooth comb.

Put a dime to quarter sized amount (depending on how long the hair is) of Hair Milk on the ends of the hair, and work through with your fingers. This will leave the curls separate and silky.


On days that you don't wash the hair, this is the daily regimen:

(and I do mean DAILY regimen) There are days you'll miss combing out the hair and you (and your child) will surely pay for it the next day.

Example of a bad hair/lazy Mama day:

When your daughter wakes up in the morning, spray liberally with leave-in conditioner. Add a small amount of Healthy Hair Butter to the hair and work in, for added moisture. If you don't like that, you can use Tui Hair Oil, or even some Hair Milk (sparingly). Then comb through with a wide tooth comb, making sure there are no tangles. If you haven't already added Hair Milk, finish up with a small amount of Hair Milk, working it through the curls with your hands.

And you're done! If you find that the hair is still too dry to comb through with that method, you can add healthy hair butter to the hair before bed, and it will be well moisturized in the morning, though you may want your child to wear a sleep cap (good luck getting them to keep it on) to avoid getting the pillow greasy.

*All Products Listed are Carol's Daughter products available online or in some Sephora Stores.