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Hair

Instant Braids, Can You Handle?

I think we can all agree that we all dread sitting for hours at a time to install the braids, only to have to repeat the process weeks later to remove them.

Ugh! I literally don’t have time for that.

Enter Braid Wigs Australia.

How we met was interesting. I posted a question via my Instagram stories asking people “to braid or not to braid my hair?”. Mya, who owns the Instagram page Braid Wigs Australia, then contacted me simply saying, “Why not try a braided wig?”.

To be honest, it’s a concept I had never thought of, but I must admit it intrigued me. I stalked her page at length and asked her a million and one questions – long story short we exchanged details and here I am rocking the braided hair wig.

“How you do you wear it?” Well..

Step One: Braid your hair into cornrows to ensure the wig lays flat on your head.
Step Two: Using the pre-determined part as a guide, place the wig on your head.
Step Three: You will need four or more bobby pins to keep the wig secure on your head.
Step Four: Pretend you sat in a salon, not just for hours but days, to install these braids and rock the hair!

I must admit, I was slightly intimidated by the hair color at first – it seemed bright and out there. I guess this is because I mainly rock dark hair, but I am really feeling it now. These braided wigs come in many assorted colors: red, black, blonde, purple and blue.

To get yours please contact Mya.

Special thanks to Mya for opening my eyes and giving me back my time so that I can concentrate on other things.

IamTinashe

Hair

In My Natural State

For the last say eight months, I have been wearing a lace front wig.

I am sharing my secrets – so I will give you a moment so it can marinate in your mind.

Back in the day, it used to be embarrassing to say that – but in this modern world, it’s a status symbol! Women of colour from all over the world are proud to tell anyone that will listen about the number of bundles on their head.

Anyway, I digress.

Needless to say, with so much going on I had what you would call a “brain fart” on a Sunday night. I randomly decided that I just wanted to let my hair breath. It sounded good in theory, but the reality was very different. You see, my hair has grown significantly in the last eight months. Dealing with hair that does not want to be tamed each day…well, let’s just say, time is of the essence! I had forgotten how much work is required to keep an afro looking fresh, healthy, and bouncy. No shrinkage allowed!

To make matters worse half way through my work week I realised that I was due to present at a local university. The image of me on stage with big afro hair and matching big bold African print just didn’t marry well with the conservative nature of my organisation of employment. I suddenly remembered why I had originally chosen the unassuming lace front wig.

Later that night I panic braided my natural hair, found an old wig with a fringe and rocked it for the remaining work days. My work colleagues were confused – wondering how I had managed to get my hair so dead straight. I really didn’t entertain the conversations – they couldn’t handle the truth.

Again, I learnt the valuable lesson that hair is one thing that I never want to think about. Any hairstyle that I invite into my life should make me look and feel glamorous with minimal effort.

Top – Dotti | Jeans – Supre | Heels – Wittner

Style

An African Fairy Tale

I read fairy tales to my little girl each day but I can never really connect with them.

Naturally, I decided to write my own fairy tale focusing on key messages I want to share with her developing mind.

The fairy tale starts now.

Once upon a time, in a land far far away, a little African princess would not be caught dead wearing African print, let alone African attire.

As a child of parents who had left their African kingdom to settle in a new foreign land, she could see that she was no longer part of the majority, but the minority. 

The African princess desperately wanted to blend in and not draw too much attention to her royal status. 

Looking around she noticed that she looked different and spoke with an accent  therefore dressing differently was not an option. For years she tried to blend in, but it never quite worked – there was always something.

Her ancestors would often come to her in dreams reminding her that, “you can’t run away from who you are“. 

Fast forward twenty plus years and the African princess is all grown up and knows the new land like the back of her hand.  

The African princess no longer shuns her royal African identity, instead embracing it with open arms. African attire is now a staple in her wardrobe, giving life. With personal, professional, spiritual and emotional growth the African princess decided that the key to incorporating African print into her modern life was to pick material that was unapologetically African but make the cuts and designs modern, classy and sophisticated. 

The best of both worlds.

The African princess wore her African print pieces day and night – and lived happily ever after.

The end.

Jacket and Cullotes – IamTinasheCustom | T- Shirt – Gucci | Heels – Wittner

IamTinashe xoxo

Hair

Crotchet Life…

This blog post is being written by popular demand.

I literally have had other women of colour stop and ask about my hair. Most have been shocked when I let them know that it was crotchet braids and not my real hair.

Basically this blog posts has been written to explain my crotchet braid process.

Its no surprise that I love big hair. The bigger the hair the closer you are to God. Me myself, I am a natural haired girl – no chemicals can be found on my nappy head. Achieving this look day in and day out would just be too hard as I would be fighting against elements beyond my control.

After extensive research I settled on crotchet braids using hair that could pass as my natural hair.

To achieve this look you’ll need the following things:

  • Hair extensions – I used a random afro braid I found in my hair suitcase.
  • A long bobby pin – You will need to open it at about a 45 degree angle, as this will be you crotchet instrument. You can also use a crotchet hook but I found that it not only painful but also broke my own hair,
  • Scissors – these will allow you to shape and even out the hair.

Step One:
To lay the foundation for you crotchet braids, cornrow your entire head of hair from the forehead to the nape of the neck.

Step Two:
Starting from the back row, insert your bobby pin under your braid line. Grab a piece of your extension and insert the hair in to the loop created by the bobby pin. Once the extension is secure in the loop pull the bobby pin throw the cornrow ensuring that you are holding on to the end of the extension. Using your fingers pull the extension through the loop and tighten – basically doing a knot to secure the hair.

Step Three:
Repeat step two until you have covered all the cornrow braids on you head.

Step Four:
Cut and style to your heart’s content.

By following these four steps you can achieve the look you want for at least three to four weeks.

Now that is satisfaction!

Earrings – Lovisa, Turtle Neck – Zara.

IamTinashe. xx

Hair

New Hair, Who Dis?

Hey, thanks for joining me! How was your weekend going? Ours has been pretty damn good thank you – we have enjoyed our first long weekend of 2017.

What’s funny is I had been working so hard of late this long weekend kind of crept up on me – a wonderful surprise! We got to just chill – to lounge as a family and catch up on TV shows we don’t get to watch during the week. Thanks to YouTube, we spent some time watching TV shows like Generations – the Legacy, Date My Family, etc.

The TV shows were a welcome distraction, but one thing I could not get over was how everyone was immaculately dressed and the Afrocentric hairstyles everyone was rocking. I particularly loved the idea of having braids. Their braids looked so neat and perfect.

Let’s rewind for a second. When I got this new job, I talked myself into purchasing an expensive lace front wig. I thought that by buying the wig the morning routine would be faster for me with less time doing hair.

It has been three months of me rocking the lace front and I think I grossly underestimated the time it takes to make a lace front look somewhat realistic.

When you get it right it looks amazing and you have the confidence of the Roman army. Get it wrong and you spend most of the day paranoid that everyone knows it’s a wig and is looking and laughing at you. I have experienced both emotions and it’s an emotional rollercoaster.

I invested so much money in my lace front wig because I wanted to wear this relatively safe and low maintenance hair until I passed probation. I would normally change my hair once a month – so I don’t think I was being completely honest with myself -thinking I wasn’t going to get bored at some point.

To cut a long story short, after flirting with the idea of braiding my hair and umming and ahhing I decided to, as Nike says, Just Do it.

The braids were cheap at $10 for two packets. It costs between $AUD150 – 200 to have braids installed in your hair. Thank God for YouTube – braiding is a skill I learnt many years ago, so I don’t have to spend a dime. It took me 6 hours to do the hair – the only downside being that I had to braid my hair at ungodly hours so that I could finish it without interference from baby girl.

The truth is, I am very excited to be rocking these old school braids again. This is the hairstyle I used to rock in my teens – and I feel so young and carefree again!

Whats your fail safe hair style?

IamTinashe

Style

Wake. Pray. Slay

Twinkle Twinkle little star, how I wonder what you are… I have that bloody nursery rhyme going round and round in my head. It’s like the song is on repeat, playing over and over. Kill me now!

It is just after 10pm and baby-girl and husbae are fast asleep – exhausted from daycare and work respectively.

This is probably going to be the only time that I will have to myself to put my thoughts in writing. Even though I am tired as, I want to take this opportunity to just write. It’s vital.

Firstly, can we just ask ourselves – where has the year gone? We’re already staring at Christmas dead in the eye and the New Year is just around the corner. It feels like I blinked and 2016 is gone – a true sign of ageing. Naturally, like you, I have been reflecting on 2016. How has your year been?

Imagine we are all checking for 2017 and 2016 S comes out – some Apple humor there.

2016 was unique for me, because I spent the first half of the year being a stay at home mother and the second half of the year as a working mother. Two equally challenging jobs, but both so different. Looking back, I am tremendously proud that I managed to make the transition. Of course, I didn’t do it all on my own – I had a lot of help from my support network which I will forever be grateful for.

It hasn’t always been easy. The struggle of getting a routine together and sticking to it, making sound business decisions on very limited sleep, and consuming copious amounts of coffee.

In order for the transition to work, some things had to change. We had to modify our behavior, routine and adapt to the changing situation. It was necessary.

To put this blog post into context I went back to work after 9 months at home with our gorgeous little girl. Thankfully, there wasn’t any financial pressure so I could have stayed at home longer (in fact husbae encouraged it) but I was itching to get back to work. Again, I know how lucky I was. I had the choice to return to work when I was ready – this is not the reality for a lot of women/couples out there.

After being a stay at home mother, the task of returning back to work full time can seem a little daunting. You know you can do it but for some reason you still have doubts. It is at times like these that those naysayers have a platform to basically judge you for returning to the workforce – “What is the rush? The baby needs her mother! It’s just too soon”.

With hormones swirling through my body, these comments shook me. They upset me because part of me thought maybe I was running away from being a mother, or selfishly honoring my career goals – or worse, both. Thoughts like these made me lose balance for a moment, but I quickly regrouped. I kept my end goal in mind: to be the best role model I could be for our little girl and lead by example. Each day she sees me (frantically) armor up and get ready for another working day, and hopefully by seeing this from a young age she too will value independence, perseverance, having a strong work ethic, and doing something you love.

Below I share the reasons why I think it is important to head back to work after having a baby:

  • Remember, You Had A Purpose Before You Had A Baby – I found this quote by Michele Borba interesting, “if a child is a woman’s only goal, everyone suffers, including the child.” Not to mention the thousands of dollars you invested in your career (university, TAFE etc.) and the endless hours you spent mastering your chosen profession. Just like that, are you prepared to let it go?
  • Financial Freedom – In some marriages a spouse may die at a young age, lose their ability to earn money through an injury or illness, or worse still, just get an upgrade and leave for someone else. Now, if you are not working and generating some kind of income, where does that leave you?
  • Variety Is the Spice Of Life – I remember when I was a stay at home mum. After about 5 months I literally felt like the four walls were closing in on me. I was doing the same thing over and over and even though I tried to make time to watch the news every day, I found my conversation topic range became smaller and smaller. I missed work because being at work gave me so much exposure to people from all walks of life, cultural backgrounds, sexual orientation and, hell, tax brackets etc. All which makes for a more enriching experience and exciting stories to share with your partner! Juicy.
  • Relationship Goals – When you are at home all the time, you may become a little bit nutty. For instance, you might obsess over a used glass (without a coaster) on the dining table that hasn’t been placed in the dishwasher. How does one just drink a beverage and leave the empty cup there? I am just going to leave it there. Day 4 the glass is still there. Wage war until the white flag is raised. They will surrender and place the cup in the dishwasher!

You see what I mean? Madness.

Having a focus outside of your home will make you appreciate each other just like when you first met and, as a bonus, you can carry the financial load together.

Now, I know this blog post may be polarizing and that I may hear from women who are happily stay at home mothers who may not necessarily agree with what I am saying. With that in mind, I want to be clear on one thing. Even though I talk about reasons why I think you should go back to work after a baby, there is no “one timeframe fits all” when it comes to going back to work. There is no one right way to rejoin the workforce either.

You, as a mother and as a woman, will make the decision about when or even IF you will go back to work.

Why?

As Bobby Brown once said, it’s your prerogative.

Dress – McFayden Trends, Belt – Country Road, Strappy Heels – Target