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NATURA THE PROFESSIONAL GUIDE TO HEALTHY NATURAL HAIR

FALL 2012

DO HAIR VITAMINS

magazine

TM

REALLY WORK?

HOT NATURAL

HAIRSTYLES HOW TO MANAGE

DRY SCALP

& DANDRUFF

ELLE VARNER

A LUSH CONVERSATION

HOW TO MAINTAIN

YOUR NATURAL HAIR IN COLLEGE WHY SHOULD I USE

SULFATE FREE SHAMPOOS?


NATURAL HAIR | ON THE COVER

Elle Varner is an American recording artist and musician. She was raised in Los Angeles by her mother and father who both happen to be songwriters and publishers. At age six she began to play musical instruments, beginning with the flute, and later she moved on to piano and guitar. She attended several music programs including Amazing Grace Conservatory and The Hamilton Academy of Music’s Vocal Jazz Group. In 2008 Varner graduated from NYU’s renowned Clive Davis Department of Recorded Music. She released her debut single “Only Wanna Give It to You” in August 2011 from her upcoming debut studio album. The song peaked at #20 on the US Billboard R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. In preparation for her debut studio album, Varner released a mixtape in January 2012, titled Conversational Lush as promotion towards her debut. The second single from Varner’s debut album “Refill” was released to iTunes January 2012, and debuted at #78 on the US R&B chart. When asked in an interview what is to be expected from the album Varner said in a statement “a lot of color, a lot of range” on her self-written debut Perfectly Imperfect, available now. “There’s fun songs, emotional songs, deep songs, everything you could think about is on that album.”

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NATURAL HAIR | IN THIS ISSUE

14 18 26 28 39 41 50 54 56 60 62

Hot Natural Hair Styles Frequently Asked Questions How To Get Rid Of Dry Scalp How To Maintain Your Hair In College Why Should I Use Sulfate Free Shampoo? Natural Recipes For Your Hair Do Hair Vitamins Really Work? Every Body Needs Love Cover Story- Elle Varner New Artist Spotlight-Stephfon “Nibble” with Kai Chase

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IN THIS ISSUE

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NATURA MAGAZINE | A WORD

WEARING OUR

NATURAL HAIR

WITH CONFIDENCE..

As a salon owner and stylist, I have come across many

women who feel uncomfortable with their hair for one reason or another.

I’ve found in many cases, our hair “issues” stem from insecurities we developed as young children, primarily due to the dominating images we were exposed to in the media. What is often portrayed as society’s standard of “beauty,” does not reflect the hair texture and length possessed by many women of color.

“Why does our hair play such a major role in how we feel about ourselves?” 8

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I grew up in a household with sisters who felt insecure with their appearance because of their kinky or curly hair texture. Seeing their struggles and at times dealing with my own, I became determined to embrace my natural beauty. I told myself that I never wanted my own child to be affected by the stereotypes that would keep her from feeling secure about herself and her hair. We need to teach our children that the naturally curly hair that God gave us is beautiful! We must embrace it! Our mission with NATURA Magazine is to celebrate the beauty, health and versatility of our natural hair. With each issue we will bring you information and styles to help you on your natural hair journey. Lisa NATURAMAGAZINEUSA.COM


NATURA MAGAZINE | STAFF

NATURA MAGAZINE USA a Fuller Haircare Company 4208 South Blvd. Suite N Charlotte, NC 28209

www.naturamagazineusa.com Publisher Andre Fuller Editor In Chief Lisa Fuller Executive Editor Malia Brown Senior Graphic Designer Andre Fuller Senior Photographer Sharnece Edmonson Contributors Andre Michaels Evette Merritt Kristen Hodges Oluseyi Okeleye Marcus Hudnell Tenikka Smith Kai Chase Regena Reigns Robinson Stylist Natalie Wilson Oluseyi Okeleye Sonya Kinard Erin Wells Ayesha Brooks Kia Whitaker Travis Cornish Teresa White Lisa Fuller Account Executives Andre Fuller / Malia Brown ___________________ For advertising information Call Andre Fuller at 704-202-8817 ________________________ Letters to the editorial staff stylesbylisa223@yahoo.com Facebook: facebook.com/naturamagazineusa Twitter: twitter.com/naturamagazine c Fuller Hair Care. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form without the written consent of the copyright owner. Natura Magazine does not necessarily endorse the views and perceptions of contributors or advertisers.

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NATURAL HAIR | HOT HAIR STYLES

HOT NATURAL HAIRSTYLES #NaturalHair is the new trending topic and as the movement continues to grow nationwide, more and more women are rocking their natural tresses and making a statement to be recognized. Turn the pages to see funky, sexy, classy, and cool natural hairstyles that promote the beauty of our hair. 12

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NATURAL HAIR | OLD SCHOOL

PAM GRIER

aka Foxy Brown!

The original ‘blaxploitation’ queen, She was so beautiful with that afro! During the 70’s she showed the world that our natural hair could be gorgeous, sexy, elegant, and so much more. We show some Natura love to one of the pioneers of the natural hair revolution. Rock that fro “Foxy Brown”. 13

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NATURAL HAIR | FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

NATURAL HAIR

FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions Q: Do I have to cut my hair to go natural?

A: Not at all! Many of our clients choose to transition

out of their relaxer. There are many methods used for this. Those methods include: pressing your regrowth, Set styles (Spiral Sets, Roller sets,Twists, Twist outs) and many other transitioning techniques.

Q: What is a “Big Chop”? A: “Big Chop” is a term used when a person decides

to cut (or chop) off their remaining relaxer. Many call it a rebirth.

Q: How long does it take to transition to

natural? The transitioning process depends on the person. Some people grow their hair out to a certain length, while others cut the relaxer off sooner. On average most people transition for 6 months to 2 years.

A:

Q: What kind of styles can I wear while transitioning? A: Depending on where you are in your transition

Q: What natural styles are best for working out? A: Many of our clients choose sets and twist styles

for working out. These styles work well when sweat is introduced to the hair. Flat twist, two strand twist, spiral and roller sets tend to yield great results.

Q: Can I color my hair with locs?

A: Yes! You do have the option of using demi

permanent or permanent color on your hair to achieve the look you desire.

you have many options. Styling options range from pressing to sets. Many people go with spiral sets to blend the natural and relaxed textures.

Q:

Q: How often should I wash my hair?

sity, hair type, softness/coarseness and many other factors. Most natural hair contains 2 to 3 different textures. We do not follow the numbers and letter system (3b,4a, etc.) as it does not explain hair types and textures correctly. When discussing texture we prefer to explain your hair in a personalized manner.

A: Depending on the condition of your scalp, you should wash your hair every one to two weeks.

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What is my natural curl pattern?

A: Your curl pattern is determined by texture, den-

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NATURAL HAIR | FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Q: How will I maintain my hair at home? A: Depending on your style, maintenance is usually minimal. We recommend natural oils(i.e. coconut, olive, jojoba) for maintaining moisture. Most styles are easily kept with the use of a satin or silk bonnet at night.

Q: What products do you recommend?

A: In order to find the correct products for your hair

type we recommend that you come in for a free consultation. This way you will receive a true assessment of your hair. You should stay away from products that contain mineral oil and petroleum in them. Both can be very drying to the hair.

Q: What should I use for moisture?

A: Natural oils are great for adding and maintain-

ing moisture. Light oils (i.e. grape seed, almond,etc.) are good for finer hair.. Coconut, olive and castor oils are better for coarse, thick hair.

Q: How long does my hair need to be to start locs? A: In order to start locs hair should be at least 1 1/2 to 2 inches long.

Q: Do I have to cut my locs in order to remove them? A: Absolutely not! There are many ways to remove

locs. Most commonly is the comb out method. This process involves coating each loc with conditioner and gently detangling from the bottom up it usually takes 6 to 12 hours. The result is healthy, strong natural hair.

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Q: Are treatments necessary?

A: Yes! Natural hair thrives on moisture. Weekly

deep conditioning treatments help add much needed moisture. Protein treatments, which should only be done every 6-8 weeks, are imperative to strengthening natural hair. We also offer custom steam treatments, hot oil treatments and hair moisture masks.

Q: How often should I get a trim?

A: Trimming is recommended every 6 to 8 weeks.

In some cases as soon as 4 weeks and as long as 10 weeks. Trimming is a vital part of transitioning and maintaining natural hair.

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Spiral Set

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California Press

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Loc Updo

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Puffy Twist 19

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California Press

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Spiral Set 21

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NATURAL HAIR | MAINTAINING YOUR HAIR

HOW TO MAINTAIN YOUR

NATURAL HAIR IN COLLEGE C ollege is all about new experiences: meeting new people, trying new things, and for some beginning the journey of self-discovery. Not only is it said to be the best four years of your life, but it is also a time to grow and learn how to embrace your natural beauty mentally and physically.

Across the country, the major topic on college campuses is natural hair and the movement that it is creating among young women. It is becoming the “norm” to see young girls rocking their Twist-outs, Fro’s, Locs, and Braids, showing their freedom of expression. For many this is the first time that they are away from home and a hairdresser, so a major concern about going natural is not knowing how to style or take care of the hair. Inside this section of Natura we will answer questions, give tutorials, and provide resources for ways to care for your natural hair on a college budget. 22

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NATURAL HAIR | LETTERS

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available at: www.naturalstylesbylisa.com

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NATURAL HAIR | THE STRAIGHT TRUTH

THE STRAIGHT TRUTH

WHY SHOULD I USE

SULFATE FREE SHAMPOO? Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) is a very strong grease cutting detergent that is used in the foaming nature of soap. It’s used in all kinds of soap products from your shampoo and facial cleansers to your heavy duty household cleaners. It’s basic purpose is to make soap soapy. Recently researchers have discovered that the (SLS) found in our shampoos can cause irritation to the skin and scalp and can be damaging to the hair follicles, which could lead to weakened hair structure and diminished hair growth! What shampoo manufacturers have recently done is remove the sulfate and are now using alternative ingredients to clean the hair without the harsh effects.

The only downside to sulfate free shampoos is that they tend to not foam up as much which could lead you to think that you needed to use more, but they are less harsh and much healthier for your hair.

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H

NATURAL HAIR | MAINTAINING YOUR HAIR

NATURAL HAIR TOOLS 1 Cap 1 Satin You shouldn’t go a night without having

a satin cap or pillow case to protect your natural hair.

2

Clips 2 Hair Use to hold your curls in place as in pin curls.

Tooth Comb 3 Wide Because our hair is fragile especially when

3

wet, using a wide tooth comb to detangle is the best option. Start from the ends of your hair and work your way up to the roots.

4

5

4

Bottle 5 AUseSpray to mist your hair with water to refresh the products already in your natural hair. The spray bottle can also be used to mist your hair with water and essential oils to hydrate it. A must have!

6

Way Comb 6 3A great multi-purpose tool! Used for comb-

7

7

y

8 9 25

Bobby Pins Use to create various hairstyles as well as for pin curling your hair at night.

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8

9

ing, detangling and to create volume in your hair styles. The Boar Bristle Brush Is great for smoothing you hair as well as stimulating the scalp which helps to promote hair growth. Pink Hair Dryer Hood Bonnet Can be used for deep conditioners, hot oil treatments and to help dry your natural twist or spiral hair styles.

Spiral Rod Used to create soft, bouncy long lasting curls. Spiral rollers are easy to use and can be used on wet or damp hair to create curls or on dry hair to refresh curls. NATURAMAGAZINEUSA.COM


NATURAL HAIR | HAIR VITAMINS

DO HAIR

VITAMINS

REALLY WORK?

Do Vitamins for Hair, Nails and Skin Really Work? By Laura Diaz, eHow Contributor

Taking vitamins to improve the appearance of hair, skin and nails

has been effective for individuals who lack certain vitamins in their daily diets. There are specific vitamins that aid in the processes by which hair, skin and nails grow. The effectiveness of supplements is dependent on an individual’s specific needs. Working with your health care provider is the most effective way to find out the best course of action to improve your hair, skin and nails.

Facts

The processes by which hair, skin and nails grow require most of the same vitamins and minerals. Beta-carotene, vitamin B complex, vitamin C, vitamin E, magnesium, sulfur and zinc are all vital for growing healthy hair, skin and nails, according to the Vitamins and Nutrition Center. Multivitamins include most, if not all, of these vitamins. There are multivitamins specifically for hair, skin and nails that will contain all of the aforementioned vitamins. Whether or not you will see results from taking a multivitamin, or from any of these vitamins individually, depends on whether or not your body needs that vitamin. The human body absorbs the nutrients it needs from the foods and supplements you consume. Your body does not store additional vitamins; it flushes them out. This means that if you are already getting the vitamins your body needs to grow healthy hair, skin and nails, adding more of any one vitamin is not likely to improve the condition or stimulate growth. However, if you are lacking in any of these vitamins, you may see anywhere from a mild to a drastic improvement.

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Warning

It is wise to contact your health care professional if you suspect that your hair, skin or nails are not as healthy as they should be. Splitting nails, dry hair or any kind of skin problem may be an indicator about the condition of your general health. While taking a supplement may improve your condition, knowing exactly what the condition is will provide a more specific and possibly more effective treatment. If you have any preexisting medical conditions, consult your doctor before taking a multivitamin. Boar head bristles are soft and gentle on the hair and scalp. By brushing, you stimulate the production of scalp oils which lubricate the scalp and the hair. This is a good thing for dry hair, because brushing adds more oils. But for oily hair, brushing can make your hair greasier. Also, only brush hair when it is dry, because wet hair is too fragile for brushing. Brush your hair starting at the scalp and moving down to the ends. Brush your hair as much as you want. But if you notice too much breakage, cut down on the amount of brushing or stop entirely.

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NATURAL HAIR | BASICS

NATURAL HAIRCARE 101

Sulfate free shampoos are essential in keeping your hair healthy and moisturized

Choosing the right products for your natural hair is important! Here are a few great suggestions to get you on your way.

Deep conditioners are always a must! 27

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Some suggestions for defining your curls NATURAMAGAZINEUSA.COM


SILK EFFECTS

Does not sit on top of hair cuticle. It penetrates and leaves a soft feeling.

The advantage of using

SILK EFFECTS

No Build Up Rinses Out Easily Very Smooth Very Silky

Availabe at Styles by Lisa www.naturalstylesbylisa.com SUMMER 2012 | NATURAMAGAZINEUSA.COM


BEING NATURAL

NATURAL HAIR | NATURAL FRIENDS

WEARING WEAVES & M any natural haired women wear weaves for various reasons but mainly to protect their natural curls during the

transition process, and also to serve as an accessory: adding versatility to their appearance. Like with anything there are pros and cons to wearing a weave but with these helpful tips you can assure the health of your extensions and your own hair during the process.

TIPS

1. The initial state of your hair is a major factor in the outcome of your weave experience. It is crucial that you receive a protein treatment before your weave is installed, in order to provide elasticity and strength to the hair follicle allowing protection during the 6-8 weeks that your hair is braided up. 2. The option to choose synthetic or human hair is really a personal preference. However human hair is more durable and provides more versatility because it can be styled with heat. Whereas synthetic hair doesn’t last very long and it cannot be styled with heat because the hair fibers in it cause it to burn. 3. Finding the perfect “ Weaveologist” is key to a fabulous head-turning weave. When choosing a specialist you need to consider recommendations, skill, and how they care for the hair. The last thing you need is some one ripping valuable strands out of your head while your trying to get it to grow. 4. While having your weave installed make sure that your stylist refrains from braiding too tight, because this can cause unwanted tension on the scalp causing minor to severe alopecia. 5. Washing your new addition, is also a very important essential in upkeep. Even though the hair is not directly growing from your scalp, it can still become oily and tangled if it is not washed on a consistent basis. Also it is very beneficial to remove the excess buildup of dandruff, preventing your scalp from breathing. Use sulfate free shampoos and comb the hair from the ends to the roots which prevents tangling and excess shedding. It is also essential that you let the braids underneath the track dry before styling, because if left wet it is a playground for bacteria. 6. Vinegar, Grapefruit-seed oil, and Tea Tree, are great natural agents that can be used to remove buildup on the scalp. All you need to do is dilute any one of the agents with water, pour into a spray bottle, section out the parts, and apply to the scalp.

7. When you take out your weave after the 6-8 week time frame, make sure that you gently separate your hair into four sections and comb from the ends to the root to prevent breakage. Also make sure that you receive a deep conditioner to restore your hair your to its natural state. 29

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California Press 30

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Short & Sexy 31

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Natural Curls 32

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Two Strand Twist Out with Color 33

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Thermal Rod Set 34

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California Press with Curls & Color 35

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NATURAL HAIR | HOW TO...

HOW TO DO A SPIRAL SET

TOOLS NEEDED:

Spiral rods End wraps Three way comb

Rat tail comb Setting lotion inside a spray bottle

1. After hair has been shampooed and conditioned, start in the back with your rat tail comb. Using the top of your ears as your guide part out your first section from ear to ear. 2. After you have parted across (diagonal) the next section should be measured to match the width of the spiral rod (vertical) that you are using. 3. On each section you will spray setting lotion and use end wraps on the ends of the hair. You will then roll with spiral rod making sure that each rod lays flat to the head. 4. When you get to the top crown area you should set the front row forward and the rest back. This will give you a nice frame around the face. 5. After you have completed your set, sit under a hair dryer for approximately: I 1/2 hours. Some hair textures may take a little longer. Make sure the hair is completely dry before removing rods. 6. Remove rods and separate each curl into 3 sections starting from the crown area. You can use a pomade or light serum to get rid of frizzy ends and add shine. 7. Use your three way comb and lift the hair from the root with out pulling all the way through . You just want to lift the curls up to create height. 36

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TURN YOUR BACK TO RELAXERS AND GET BACK TO YOUR ROOTS.

GO NATURAL. www.naturalstylesbylisa.com

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NATURA MAGAZINE | BEHIND THE SCENES

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BEHIND THE SCENES with TENIKKA SMITH NATURAMAGAZINEUSA.COM


NATURA MAGAZINE | BEHIND THE SCENES

Three years ago, I relocated to Charlotte, NC when I was first

offered my current job. I was looking for a salon and one of my natural girlfriends who had also recently moved to the area suggested I try a salon she had found called Styles by Lisa. I was so impressed with how her naturally coiled hair had been transformed into silky, bouncy curls and I made an appointment right away. At the time, I was relaxed and dealing with dryness and breakage, especially around the nape of my neck. Lisa suggested to help strengthen and grow my

I work as a television news anchor and reporter with the

number one station in Charlotte, NC. I’ve been working in television for nearly 10 years and in my journey mother nature has been a constant and sometimes unforgiving companion. I have reported in countless rain showers, battled fierce winds, stood in unbearable humidity, and have covered everything from flooding and hurricanes, to earthquakes and deadly heat waves. For the last three years, I have done it with all

“I must admit, going natural wasn’t a process that I planned”

natral hair. I must admit, going natural wasn’t a process that I planned, toiled with, or prayed about for months on end. You hair, that I hold off on relaxing “for a few weeks.” I was skeptical with how it would turn out, but she conditioned, pressed could almost say it kind of “happened by surprise.” Let me and curled my hair. It looked amazing and I went on my way. explain. When I came back for my next appointment a few weeks later, with my roots screaming for a relaxer, Lisa told me she could see progress with my hair and once again suggested that I “hold off” on a relaxer for a “few more weeks.” Once again, after treating my hair I got another silky press and was on my way. About 20 “weeks” later, I was so amazed by the several inches of growth, health and shine that my hair possessed. Lisa also celebrated the transformation of my hair and encouraged me that I could in fact maintain natural, healthy hair - and look and feel amazing while doing it! Ironically, after years of religiously relaxing every four to six weeks, while under Lisa’s care, it never even crossed my mind that I had even gone without the “creamy crack” for months on end! I absolutely appreciate Lisa. Even though her life’s mission is caring for natural hair, she never pressured me make the Tenikka Smith is a weekday morning anchor and reporter with WSOC-TV transition. She simply was a champion for the health and beauty of my hair. Channel 9 and WAXN-TV 64 in Charlotte, NC.

You can find her Monday through Friday, from 7am-9pm on WAXN-TV64. 39

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156 weeks later, I am still a believer. :)

NATURAMAGAZINEUSA.COM


NATURAL HAIR | HOW TO...

HOW TO DO A TWO STRAND TWIST

TOOLS NEEDED: Water spray bottle Rat tail comb Leave-in conditioner

Wide tooth comb Moisturizing styling gel End papers Small to medium size perm rods

1. After hair has been shampooed and conditioned use your wide tooth comb to detangle and spray in leave-in conditioner. 2. Starting in the back with your rat tail comb, use the top of your ears as your guide and make zigzag partings from ear to ear. 3. Apply Moisturizing styling gel then take your first section and split it into two sections. 4. Start twisting the two sections around each other. Just bring the left part over the right and lightly pull the right one. Now right part will become the left. Repeat the above process, left over right. Twist the two strands until you reach the ends of your hair. 5. If you have straight or thin ends use the end papers and perm rods to roll the ends for a better curl base. Continue making and twisting your sections through out the entire head. 6. Once you have finished you will need to sit under a hair dryer or let air dry (for at least 24 hours), before untwisting and styling. Use your three way comb to lift out for height and styling. 40

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NATURAL HAIR | NATURAL RECIPES FOR YOUR HAIR

Good for your hair, Great for your budget.. HONEY CONDITIONER

HOT OIL TREATMENT

Ingredients: 1 tsp honey 2 tbsps olive oil 1 egg yolk.

Ingredients: 1/2 cup olive oil 1/2 cup boiling water

Good for moisture and shine

Provides moisture and gives luster to dull hair

Directions: Mix all ingredients in small bowl. Massage on hair in small sections. Wrap head with shower cap for 30 minutes. Rinse and shampoo.

Directions: Combine ingredients then warm on low heat. Massage mixture into the scalp and hair. Wrap hair in a hot towel for 15 minutes. Shampoo & rinse out.

APPLE CIDER BUILD-UP RINSE

COCONUT HONEY DEEP CONDITIONER

Ingredients: 1 ounce apple cider vinegar 1 quart of distilled water.

Ingredients: 4 tbls Coconut oil 2 tbls Natural honey

Eliminates mild dandruff

Directions: Combine the apple cider with the water, stir. Pour through hair to get rid of buildup and soften hair at the same time. Rinse with tap water.

Moisturizing and strengthening

Directions: Place coconut oil and honey in a small plastic bag and place the bag in a hot cup of water for 1 minute to warm. Apply to hair, wrap hair in a towel for 20 minutes. Wash then dry hair.

NATURALforRECIPES your hair. 41

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California Press with Ponytail 42

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Two Strand Twist Out Mohawk with Color

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Two Strand Twist with Color 44

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Kids Two Strand Twist 45

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Flat Twist Out

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Classic Loc Style 47

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Available at: www.naturalstylesbylisa.com


NATURAL HAIR | NATURAL FRIENDS

Natural Friends

NATURA

Tee Moore-New York,NY

Pari’ Sade’-Chicago,IL

Lani Ray-Altamonte Springs,FL

Nicole Fearon-Barringer-Clemson,SC

Sherita Daniels-Atlanta, GA

Noni Gazelle-Charlotte,NC

Rep Your City upload your photos at: naturamag11@gmail.com

Atefet Kenit Nebt Ankh-Greensboro,NC 49

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Shannon Grier-Brooklyn,NY

Crystal Glover-Charleston,SC NATURAMAGAZINEUSA.COM


NATURAL HAIR | THE TRUTH

NATURAL HAIR TIPS

PA-C Charlotte Dermatology

Bachelor of Science, Physician Assistant Studies, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston Bachelor of Science, Biology, cum laude graduate, South Carolina State University

Dry scalp/dandruff is a result caused by an over-

growth of yeast/fungus called Pityrosporum ovale. It is also due to inflammation. It is usually triggered or worsened by stress...poor sleeping habits...and other health issues.

WHY DOES MY SCALP GET SO

DRY & ITCHY, HOW DO I MANAGE MY

DANDRUFF? 50

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You can treat these conditions with over the counter Nizoral shampoo and the use of topical anti-inflammatory meds. Tea tree oil has been known to work in some cases, the more severe cases should seek help from a dermatologist. This problem can also affect the face (t zone) area causing light spots and flaking...at which point you should see a dermatologist. This problem is only treated not cured...so triggers or symptoms may reoccur.

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MIND, BODY & SOUL | WELCOME

mind, body & soul “ If you nurture your mind, body, and spirit, your time will expand. You will gain a new perspective that will allow you to accomplish much more”- Brian Koslow

Our environment is a major factor in our lives, and as we

make the decision to live healthy lifestyles we create the opportunity to promote self-wellness. Turn the pages to view articles on fitness, self-empowerment, and interviews with some of today’s hottest celebrities.

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MIND, BODY & SOUL | BE INSPIRED

BE INSPIRED!! by Evette Meritt

What inspires you?

First things first…

With all things that are wrong in the world today, how does one stay inspired and motivated? Watching the news sometimes will make the happiest person sink into a depression. All you see is poverty, unemployment and crime. People are losing their homes, their jobs and in some cases, their families. In the midst of all the chaos, it’s hard to stay focused and motivated especially when you feel as if quicksand is slowly pulling you under. How does one pull themselves up and keep moving forward to achieve their goals and dreams? What inspires you to be great and do great things?

You must believe in your dreams and believe in your beautiful self. Let your imagination run wild and set your life goals. Make a list of all the things you would like to achieve in your lifetime, this list will create a path for you to follow. Trust, there will be times where you will get side tracked or hit a few speed bumps but if you keep your focus and believe you can achieve greatness, you will!

Life is a journey Everyone has a purpose and their own journey. Your life experiences and lessons brought you where you are now and if you are not in the place you would like to be, you have the power to change the path and move towards where you inspire to be. However, some people are scared of change and are comfortable where they are in life and that’s ok. Change is not for everyone, but many times they’re story becomes “I should’ve, would’ve, could’ve.” Instead of “I will, I can, I am.” Our thought process is what keeps us where we are and in some cases we sabotage ourselves and become stuck and complacent. Being complacent is a comfort for some and at times you don’t realize it but you’re in this space because you choose to be and we can’t blame that on anyone but ourselves. But if you change your train of thought and mentally reroute yourself, you can achieve greatness! 53

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Clear out the mental clutter from within. Meditation is a great way to go deep within yourself, quiet your mind and mentally cleanse your thoughts. When you feel stuck and overwhelmed as if you can’t stay afloat it’s time for some mental cleansing. The reason we feel this way is because of the negative thoughts and energy we feed ourselves, such as, “I can’t lose weight it’s too hard.” Or “It’s too late for me to fulfill my dreams,” or even, “I can’t fly, because it’s too high up in the sky.” If you constantly tell yourself what you can’t do, you’ll believe it and there will be no room to mentally process what you can do. Take a chance and step out of the box away from your comfort zone and live a little. Those negative thoughts will allow you to give up on the goals you have set in place for yourself and the negative mind-set is keeping you trapped. Just stop right now and shift your thoughts to process

positive, stimulating and motivating images and visualize your dreams, living the life you would like to live. Once you have those images in your head, it’s time to walk, talk and be it every day until you are truly where you want to be in life. Inspiration comes from within and before we can inspire ourselves, we have to clear out the mental clutter. We can’t allow our minds to be stuck and afraid to move forward. Just think if you said to yourself, “I can, I will, I believe and I will achieve,” how much closer you will get to where you would like to be. Now I am not saying there is no work involved, you better believe there is work involved in achieving greatness but if you are up for the challenge, then no matter what, you will conquer your goals. We sabotage ourselves, by telling ourselves what we can’t do instead of highlighting what we can do or better yet what we will do.

It’s time to make a change! Inspiration is a constant growth. Today is the day to change the way you think. Don’t allow yourself to drift into a funk, life is too short to dwell on unhappiness. Make the change today! If you make small changes each day to live your best life, you will move forward, you will achieve greatness and you will create the life you were meant to live, but it has to start from within your beautiful self. Always remember, “Life is what you make it and now is your time to live it.”

“It’s never too late or too early to be whoever you want to be. There is no time limit, stop whenever you want. You can change or stay the same; there are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or worst of it.” Brad Pitt (Benjamin Button) NATURAMAGAZINEUSA.COM


MIND, BODY & SOUL | THE BODY

EVERY BODY NEEDS LOVE By Marcus Hudnell

For the most part many of us are consumed

with pretty hectic lives, and our schedules don’t permit us to have any extra time for exercise. But don’t let that prevent you from maintaining a healthy figure and lifestyle. Although you may not always be able to make it to the gym, there are a multitude of exercises that can be performed at home in order to help you stay in shape in just 15-20 minutes a day.

NICOLE CHAPLIN Fitness Enthusiast and Model www.nicolechaplin.com NATURAMAGAZINEUSA.COM


MIND, BODY & SOUL | THE BODY

Core Exercise #1: The Plank

The Plank is one of the best total body exercises anyone can do, and it can be done right in your living room! Used as a warm-up or inserted into your normal exercise routine, the plank engages muscles such as: the rectus abdominis, external/internal obliques, the hip flexors and your lower back. Step 1: Begin on hands and knees and place your forearms flat on the ground. Step 2: Lift your knees off of the ground, one by one, until only your forearms and feet are touching the ground. Step 3: Make sure to squeeze your gluteus maximus, while keeping your body parallel with the ground. Hold 15-60 seconds

Core Exercise #2 The side plank is a variation of the plank that engages the core, while also strengthening the muscles that stabilize the body all the way from the shoulders to the hips. Step 1: Begin on your side with your legs outstretched and your forearm on the ground. Step 2: Lift your hips off of the ground and hold your body rigid from head to toe while keeping yourself in line. Hold 15-60 seconds

Core Exercise #3 The Hip Bridge engages the core, while also strengthening the gluteus maximus,(butt) as well as your hamstrings (the muscles behind the upper leg). Step 1: Begin flat on your back with your hands palm down at your sides and legs outstretched. Step 2: Place your feet flat on the ground, and bring your heels towards your butt. Step 3: Squeeze your glutes while lifting your hips towards the sky. Make sure to keep your neck relaxed. Hold for 15-60 seconds.

Core Exercise #4 The Single Leg Bridge is simply a variation of the hip bridge, and can be done in succession with exercise #3. This adds a higher degree of difficulty, Step 1: Begin flat on your back with your hands palm down at your sides and legs outstretched. Step 2: Place your feet flat on the ground, and bring your heels towards your butt. Step 3: Squeeze your glutes while lifting your hips towards the sky. Make sure to keep your neck relaxed. Step 4: Slowly raise and extend one leg. Try to hold for 10-20 seconds; make sure to do both sides. 54

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MIND, BODY & SOUL | ELLE VARNER

With a sound of “ yesterday’s and embodies the new face of R&B. He fans and have made her a househ We all fell in love with her hit sing and “ Refill”, but many want to kn and the big curly hair. Lets chat w about.

elle

varner

by Malia Brown

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MIND, BODY & SOUL | ELLE VARNER

d tomorrow’s today”, Elle Varner er soulful melodies captivate her hold name in the music industry. gles “ Only Wanna Give It To You” now the woman behind the bows with Elle and see what she’s all Q. I know that you have been natural all your life, but what drives you to continue to be a natural haired woman? A. It’s really just the convenience for me as far as maintenance is concerned. I’m pretty laid back in that department, so for me natural hair is the most effortless option. Q. What are your favorite products to use on your hair? A. Lately I’ve just been using a lot of natural products that I mix together. I’ll blend Shea Butter, Vitamin E oil, Avocado oil, and sometimes mango oil, putting it on my hair while its wet and then letting it dry. Q. Why do you think that it is so important for women to embrace their natural roots? A. Don’t get me wrong sometimes I wear my hair straight, and I’ve even dyed it. But personally I think that you should be ok with how you look without all of that first. You should accept your hairs natural state and embrace it for what it is and love it for all the potential that it has. Q. What are your favorite ways to rock your natural hair? A. I love bows, headbands, and hairpieces. Sometimes I’ll just clip up one side and wear a headband or I like to just wear it out and big! Q. A lot of successful female entertainers for the most part wear their hair in weaves, or silky straight. Does it ever become a challenge as an entertainer to dare to be different and wear your hair in its natural form? A. No. Especially because the music that I make is very true to who I’am and I don’t feel pressured to be something else. Everyone knew when I was signed and throughout this whole process that we were going to do what was real and what was natural. Q. What can we expect from Elle Varner this year? A. This year is really exciting!! I have my debut album “Perfectly Imperfect” dropping August 7th, and I will be going on my first tour in the fall. I will also be doing some television appearances, and really just promoting the album. I’m trying to be everywhere! 57

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Q. How important is self-expression to you? A. Self- expression is a huge term in my life, and it’s basically how I live. I express myself through my music, fashion, hair, the colors I choose, and the notes I sing. It’s all about putting your own twist on something…. Your stamp on it. Q. What was your inspiration for your hit single “Re-fill”? A. My inspiration for that song came when I first heard the track. The violin and fiddle made me so dizzy, like that quezzy feeling that you get when your tipsy or hung-over. Somehow my brain just works in mysterious ways, and I came up with the phrase “ can I get a re-fill” and I built everything around that. Everyone doesn’t always get that the song isn’t about drinking at all, but it’s about a conversation. Q. How would you categorize your sound? A. I call it “ yesterdays and tomorrow’s today”, it definitely bridges a gap and its Hip-Hop meets Soul and R&B. Q. As a musician what sets you apart from everyone else? A. As a musician I think one thing that sets me apart, is that I don’t read music. I wasn’t formally trained on any instrument, and I’m still able to write and play. Q. What are some things that your fans don’t know about you? A. Some fans don’t know that I was bullied a lot in high school growing up. It was either for being different, heavier, or sometimes just for being happy. It was crazy. Q. What can we expect from your new album “ Perfectly Imperfect” ? A. My album is a beautiful collection of songs that tell stories of different aspects and conditions of how we deal with love, relationships, and different emotions. It expresses what a relationship is like for Elle, and I think that I covered everything. All the songs are very real to me and personal. I think that it will be a nice experience and it definitely has a classic vibe that hopefully people will enjoy. Q. What are some things that you want to accomplish in your career? A. I’m a very ambitious person, and I want to be a female mogul in the music industry. I would like to further develop my own talents and also create businesses that have the ability to fund charities from the profits. Really I just want to make a lot of money and have the ability to give it back. That’s my main goal right now. Q. What advice would you give to young girls who suffer from being bullied or who experience a lack self- confidence? A. I want to tell them that it gets better and also that no matter how tempting it is to try to conform or feel bad about yourself, you have to be true to who you are. The best thing you can do is love your self and stay positive. Make sure to talk to people: your teacher, guidance counselor, or parents, and just remember that its going to get better. Q. Who is Elle Varner? A. Elle Varner aside from the entertainer is a pretty geeky, silly person. I’m a home body and I love to read , cook, and make things.

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“PERFECTLY IMPERFECT” NOW AVAILABLE featuring “Only Wanna Give It To You”featuring J.Cole “Refill” & “I Don’t Care”.

www.ellevarner.com

PERFECTLY IMPERFECT ℗ 2012 RCA Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment


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MIND, BODY & SOUL | STEPHFON

by Malia Brown

I’m that dude that’s trying to change your perspective on the R&B act period. I had a girl

ask me with the song That Guy, “do I write love songs or am I really that guy that treats girls right”? And I really do but if I slip up I’m going to write about it because that’s my goal. I want my fans to know that I’m here to give you songs to change your perspective on situations. After you get out of a bad relationship.. pop me in, If your about to go out and party.. pop me in as well. Same for the guys if your trying to court a real nice young lady.. pop Stephfon in. I want the music for my album to show that diversity.. That through everything there is still love.

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MIND, BODY & SOUL | STEPHFON

What made you realize that you wanted to pursue a career in music? Just being in California and the whole entertainment setting. My parents used to promote gospel concerts, so I saw it a lot coming up and then I kept trying to mimic everything when I realized that I could sing a little bit then I was like “I could do this”. So then I just started writing and focusing on making real “Good Music” and then from there I knew I had a shot. How has your background affected your choice in music as an artist? I started in church, sang in the choir a little bit and did a few plays. I was always exposed to real classy music. My parents were never really big on Hip-Hop so that’s what I grew up listening to. I would deem “Good” records as their ability to last a long time and that’s what I try to accomplish with my music. How would you categorize your music? R&B, or R&M (Rhythm and Me), good music, tasteful, and just an overall positive vibe.

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What type of audience are you trying to reach with your music? I’m trying to reach anyone who wants to listen.. but my bracket is 18-25. A lot of older people respect me because they feel that I represent R&B well to be so young. What distinguishes you as an artist? Definitely my sound. A lot of people cant pin-point who I sound like and I love that because it means I’m doing something different. What was your inspiration for “ That Guy” I wanted to write a record that stood out and also that was directed towards the ladies. Just thinking back, every time I hear records its always about “ he did me wrong” or “ she did me wrong”, so with this single I wanted to wipe all that away and just be “That Guy”.

Are you in a relationship? What are you looking for in a woman? Not in a relationship at all. What I’m looking for in a young lady is style, positive energy, and just a drive. Right now with my career I would need someone that’s willing to roll with me and just understand the fast pace life that I’m moving towards. I also need someone who understands the business. She could be a model or a designer, that’s typical but she has to understand the entertainment world. If she’s with that then I could rock with her.

What are your opinions on the natural hair movement? As a man does it matter? It doesn’t matter at all… I prefer natural hair meaning your own hair, whether its straight or in a fro as long as its your hair. I’m 100% a Afro- supporter, I just cut off my hair after 8 or 9 years of growing it out so I understand the cause. It is a form of expression and you should do it for yourself because if you don’t it hinders who you truly are. Be free if it suits you do it. Men like it when you like it so just be comfortable with yourself, confidence is the most appealing. What do you think your biggest break has been so far in your musical career? Definitely my single “That Guy” its been on 22 radio stations, and capped off as a local artist with 750 spins. The single really solidified my movement and my writing as well. A lot of people didn’t know that I wrote the song and it opened my listeners eyes to what I’m capable of. What are your future projects? Right now I’m heavy in the studio working on another EP Called R&M (Rythm & Me) It will be dropping this year 2012 !! It will consist of about 8 or 9 songs, and I’m also working on a single for the summer. With elections coming up I’m involved in the voter registration tour called I believe, I pledge, I vote, which will be happening in mid summer and we are trying to reach 500,000 unregistered voters. What artists would you love to work with? I love to work with real artistic people who could groom me up and who understand how it is to be a young artist in the game clearing my own path for myself. So: Drake, Andre 3000 Chris Brown, Ne-Yo, Usher, Teddy Riley, Blackstreet, Stevie Wonder, Tank, Alicia Keys, and Music Soulchild. NATURAMAGAZINEUSA.COM


MIND, BODY & SOUL | KAI CHASE

C

elebrity chef Kai Chalon Chase is a dynamic young woman with several exciting irons in the fire. Trained in the art of traditional French cuisine at Paris’ coveted Le Cordon Bleu culinary academy, the lady has been cultivating an A-list clientele by traveling abroad, constantly cooking and planning events for global dignitaries, corporate executives, and celebrities from the worlds of entertainment and sports. As a private chef, Ms. Chase has delighted the palates of such notable figures as President Barack Obama, Congresswoman Maxine Waters, NBA star-athlete Jalen Rose, singer/songwriter Macy Gray, comedians Cedric “The Entertainer” and Bernie Mac, and actors Jamie Foxx and Eriq LaSalle, among others. She has even cooked for radio and TV star Steve Harvey who featured her on his top-rated “Steve Harvey Morning Show” on 100.3 “The Beat” in Los Angeles. Kai has also worked as an assistant chef with Wolfgang Puck Catering and Events, Spago restaurant in Chicago, and several notable independent catering companies, including her own, Kai Chase Catering which she started and cultivated at the top of 1997. Los Angeles native Chase—an alluring beauty of Creole, Cuban and NativeAmerican Indian heritage—naturally reflects her colorful culture within the flair and spice of her tantalizing culinary style. Those who have had the pleasure of tasting her mouth-watering cuisine via her Kai Chase Catering and Kai Chase Private Chef Services companies, or elsewhere, champion the lady as a consummate professional —in possession of as much style as a striking, camerafriendly personality as she has five-star skills in kitchens around the globe. “My passion resides in the art of food…and the way food makes us feel,” Kai shares.

“nibble”

with Celebrity Chef

KAI CHASE

“I believe that the foundation to good health, wealth and love stems from an internal peace only achieved by succumbing to our desires, passions and the enjoyment of life. Maybe it comes dining in the company of good friends. Maybe it’s in the anticipation of that first mesmerizing bite of a well-prepared dish or the final swallow of a libation made “just right.” ‘Savor all the Flavors!’” Now, combining her artistic loves of journalism, from her years as a staff writer of a weekly music publication, the Urban Network and the culinary arts, Kai Chalon Chase is preparing two new next-level crossover projects - a cookbook spiced with tales of food, love and passion from her journeys as a chef to the stars, and a cooking show that will find Kai in the company of a who’s who of special guests in a state-of-the-art kitchen whipping up a cross-cultural fusion of food with ingredients from all over the world.

for more delicious and healthy eating join Kai at: chefkaichase.blogspot.com/or

www.kaichase.com

“My passion resides in the art of food… and the way food makes us feel” 62

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MIND, BODY & SOUL | KAI CHASE

S

weet and savory juices have a natural and satisfying effect on our bodies. Countless variations and combinations have been created using organic, farm fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs that provided powerful assistance to the healing, well-being and day to day performance of our bodies. The lovely combination of organic carrots and juicy oranges is a refreshing combination full of beta-carotene, Vitamin A, B Vitamins, Vitamin E and many minerals. Combined with organic fresh juiced OJ - (an excellent choice of Vitamin C and potassium) and you’ve got yourself a refreshing blend to be consumed not only in the morning, but around the clock. Yes, I know organic juicing can be time consuming, but the benefit is so worth the extra effort when taking care of YOU is priority one!  Just a few minutes out of your day to treat yourself to Mother Nature’s organic harvest in a glass is a treat that will surely become a blissful and easy routine.  In no time you’ll soon find yourself scanning your refrigerator for any and all juice-able items with which to create your own rich natural blend.” 

Organic Carrot-Orange Juice Ingredients: 10 organic carrots, ends cut off 4 juicing oranges, skin cut off, seeded and quartered Method: In a large mixing bowl gather the ingredients and take to the power juicer. Have a small mixing bowl ready to gather the juice and a strainer.  Turn on the juicer and place the fruit and vegetable through until all are juiced.  Place the carrot-orange juice through a strainer (small batches at a time) with a small mixing bowl underneath to catch the juice.  Strain and pour into a carafe.  Refrigerate and enjoy.  You can add ice to a glass and pour the juice over if desired.

Inspired by my former boss and friend Michael Jackson (while getting ready for the “This Is It”) tour, I created many invigorating, natural juices, but the organic carrotorange was one of his “anytime” favorite “super-health-comforting” blends.  And now 3 years later his lovely daughter Paris Jackson still remembers and is following his lead, keeping with the healthy spirit of the power of juicing and healthy eating.

“Rock Shrimp Ceviche “Shooters.” Ingredients:

A

perfect accompaniment for my signature “Rock-A-Mole” are my “Rock Shrimp Ceviche “Shooters.” These refreshing and light small bites are just the answer for your Cinco De Mayo celebration. Just fill tequila shot glasses to the rim, garnish with cilantro sprigs and serve chilled with small demitasse spoons.

1 Lb. Fresh Rock Shrimp 1 Large Haas Avocado, Firm and Small Diced 1 Jalapeno Chile, Small Diced ½ Medium Red Onion, Small Diced ½ c Cilantro, Chopped 3 Limes, Fresh Squeezed 2 Oranges, Small, Fresh Squeezed ½ Hothouse Cucumber, Skin-On, Small Diced 2 Vine-Ripened Tomato, Small Diced 2 Grilled Corn-on-the-Cobb, Kernels Shaved from the Cobb Orange-Infused Olive Oil (Drizzle) Sea Salt & Fresh Ground Pepper (to taste) Cilantro Sprigs (Garnish) Method:

In a large pot add 4 quarts boiling water. Remove from the heat and add the shrimp to lightly cook. Drain the shrimp from the boiling water and refrigerate for about and hour. In a large mixing bowl add the shrimp, cucumber, tomato, corn, cilantro, jalapeno and red onion. Add the fresh lime and orange juice and gently fold in the avocado. Season the ceviche with sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper to taste and lightly drizzle with the orange infused olive oil. Garnish with cilantro sprigs. Recipes Courtesy of: Kai Chase 63

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the Spoken word

MIND, BODY & SOUL | THE SPOKEN WORD

Meet Natural Queen Regena Reigns Robinson With the rhythm of a fluid wave breaking against a rugged shore, Regena Reigns Robinson poetically known as “Sonray,” delivers her hypnotic hybrid of powerful prose tempered by a loving tone that speaks of kindness, service and purpose. This multi-talented artist earned a B.A. in communications from the University of Michigan and a M.A. from American University. Her discipline initially propelled her into a successful journalist career where she worked for such media outlets as NBC-TV, C-SPAN, and the Kojo Nnamdi Show, however, the inspirational words and stories of many of the authors Regena interviewed soon began to direct her down another path. “I met a lot of authors who’d in different ways told me writing saved their lives and gave them a real chance to see life clearly, develop their voice and truly be heard,” Reigns explains. “Words are power and have a therapeutic nature.” As a natural storyteller, Regena made history in Upper Michigan to serve as the first woman director of the NBC & Fox affiliates. Even with a packed schedule, Regena finds time for volunteerism. Along with her husband Sir, she co-founded the non-profit organization, the World Poetry Agency where she taught poetry to more than 150 children in the Nation’s Capital. She also participates in a myriad of community service projects through Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority. Regena is a multiple pageant winner and is the reigning Mrs. Michigan International! She also holds the Mrs. District of Columbia 2010, Mrs. Maryland United States 2008 and Mrs. Baltimore United States title. This natural pageant queen uses her crown to serve others! Regena is a dynamic, caring woman who strives to inspire others through her artistry; whether it’s as a journalist, poet or author. “My goal is to convey messages that enlighten, uplift and empower which places me on a pathway of leaving a legacy of service and goodwill in the community.” Mrs. Michigan International 2012 Read my blog at www.queendomreigns.blogspot.com Visit my Mrs. Michigan International page here: http://www.mrsinternational.com/vcontestantdetails.php?id=555 Friend me on Facebook: www.facebook.com/regenareigns Let’s tweet: www.twitter.com/regenareigns 64

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MIND, BODY & SOUL | THE SPOKEN WORD

Crown and Glory

I liked the feeling yet my scalp and spirit needed healing and release from the relaxers I depended on. Like a lover scorned the chemicals started taking patches of my hair along with my self esteem until one day I decided to embrace my authenticity and wear my hair naturally. Serendipitously, My hair story my crown as Mrs. Michigan Internationally began with my mother holds the perfect fit when my hair is curly. having to contend with combing hair Just as my crown only accepts me in my authentic state for three girls who criedI’ve escaped from the desire to wear weaves and wigs “Ouch that hurts” that gave me a heartache “The pressing comb is hot” My mother realized styling hair in the kitchen must stop. Coincidentally, people like me as natural Queen She took us to the beauty salon to get a perm casting directors request the curly me. as my scalp burned More importantly I didn’t know there were lessons I needed to learn. I was born royal bound I must admit and reconnected with my found I was tricked crown and glory. by all of the compliments. “Your hair is so silky” “You look like a model” The habit of getting touch ups lasted for more than two decades as I re-played the benefits in my mindadmiration of stares silky hair helped me to advance in television news movies pageantry. I must admit I’ve been tricked by the images in society about the definition of beauty. A huge part of this miseducation was the separation with my unprocessed crown and glory.

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MIND, BODY & SOUL | THE WORD

How Do I How do I keep getting up every morning, again and again? It is because of Christ Jesus for I believe in Him. For in the Bible, The Holy Bible I can read the wonderful words He spoke! I take each one of His Words as pure Gospel--it’s not some kind of joke. It is for everyone of us to have a relationship with our only Savior. He died on the cross and His rebirth has changed many people’s behavior! Yes, You Lord have changed the world, in God’s wisdom your death was Victory! Your precious blood was shed for all of us, even a lowly sinner like me! I know I cannot face God without faith in you Dear Christ Jesus! You forgive our sins and Dear Lord, when we confess -You will save us!! Written by George Edward Noe


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A natural hair and healthy lifestyle magazine for all women.