Page 1

May 21, 2012

loving the natural you

Solange Knowles

All about personal style, going natural and being a mom

What the Follicle!? Understanding the curly stuff growing out of your head

Protective Styling

Learn the do’s and don’t’s for caring for you natural tresses

Hair Butters

Great products to keep your hair healthy and moisturized

Be natural, condident, YOU This ultra-moisturizing trio hydrates parched hair, making detangling a cinch and leaving your strands soft, shiny and easy to maintain. PLUS, No Parabens, No Petroleum, No Mineral Oil, No Artificial Colors.

Scan here to shop

For more information or to purchase visit Source: /success_carol.jpg.

57 Solange Knowles

We can’t get enough of Solange Knowles!

45 On the Couch with Nabiha

Identiy goes one on one with this rising star about her music.

49 The Art of Thrifting

Learn how to make your wardrobe chique just by shopping at the thrift store.

62 Natural in Vogue?

Is natural hair becoming more popular in the fashion industry?

65 Angela Davis

A conversation with Angela Davis, one of the most influential, controversial, and fearless activists.

7 Identity || Sping 2012 |

Image Source: Top: Solange Knowles www. . Left: Image Source:Natural Model: Bottom: Bottom Right Photo�


About the Cover

This months issue is dedicated to educating our readers about what it means to be natural and how to care for your hair.

identity spring 2012



12 Summer Look Book

17 I Feel Pretty

13 Top 5 Must Have Summer Shoes.

19 How to Pick Your Summer Bronzer

See the best look for your shape.

Our editor has picked her favorite for this season.

15 Try This!

Create your own scarf from an old t-shirt

9 Identity || Sping 2012 |

Make-up ideas for day & night looks.

Picking the right bronzer for your skin tone

Photo Source: Photo 1: 2: Photo


Product Junkie

Blogger of the Month

26 Hair Butters

Check out these hair butters that will enhance your hair!

42 All About Ms. Vaughn Check out this blogger to get insights on her personal style and hair.

Hair Care

Industry News

29 Protective Styling

58 Online Shops

Do’s and Dont’s

See whose setting up shop online.

32 Summer Routine

The best way to care for your hair during the hot months.

Artist of the month:

Sister to Sister 37 Naturally Confident

On how to be naturally confident no matter what.

62 Paulina Nguyen

graphic designer and illustrater showcases her work.



Hair Care

29 Identity | Spring 2012 |

Photo Source: upload/240520436318802538_OngBUuhH.jpg

Protective Styling

Source: Black Girl With Long Hair blog http://blackgirllonghair. com/2011/12/protective-styling-dos-and-donts/

“Is protective styling a dirty word?� There are some women who think of protective styles as boring and even unattractive. Then, there are a second set of women who regard protective styles as a necessarily evil on the way to longer hair. You also have the third set who regard protective styles as quick and low maintenance. No matter where you stand, protective styling has its benefits and can work for you if you let it. Inquiring minds ask, do you really need to protective style to grow long hair?

The scientific answer lies in what protective styling can do for you. It is intended to help retain length by reducing or eliminating manipulation of hair and therefore stopping breakage and damage to hair that has grown. The primary reason why natural hair of African origin breaks is due to manipulation (i.e combing during the detangling process). However there is a great variation in the curl, kink, thickness and behavior of hair. Continued to page 50 â–ś



Photo Source: urce=Black+Girl+with+Long+Hair+Newsletter&utm_campaign=9850cb0fce-6+Best+Styles+for+Hiding+Multipl e&utm_medium=email

Continued from page 30

Do’s & Dont’s Do’s: In order for a protective style to be effective in

retaining length it has to eliminate breakage or severely reduce knotting and tangling . Naturals will often class protective styles into low manipulation or no manipulation styles. Low manipulation styles are those that will require some regular daily handling. Examples include braid or twist outs which are rebraided or retwisted at night. Buns and tucked in styles (french rolls, cinnabuns etc) where hair is free but kept tucked away and off the shoulders are also low manipulation styles.

For retaining length, a protective style is not effective unless it is kept for a sufficient time. This is especially when prevention of breakage is a priority.

No manipulation styles are those where free strands of hair are not handled. Examples include twists, braids , cornrows, flat twists, sew in weaves and wigs where hair is braided or twisted underneath and does not require daily combing.Without any combing (finger or actual comb) of freestrands, the no manipulation styles are the most effective in terms of prohibiting breakage, knotting and tangling. When performed correctly, low manipulation styles may result in very little damage depending upon your hair type.

Taking a quick survey of naturals with long type 4 hair, the most success seems to arise from a period of two weeks (though often 3-4 weeks) or longer in twists or braids. Hair is not subsequently left free for long (usually 2-3 days) but is instead rebraided or retwisted for another 2 week (or longer) period. Many of these ladies will have periods of free hair but often not for long during the year. I would estimate that until getting to around mid back length most will be spending 70% or more of the time with twists or braids.

Dont’s: Never to pull hair too tight when

styling it in any manner (buns, twists or braids). This can result in breakage and traction alopecia around the hairline. It is recommended that you avoid micro braids and twists. These can look very beautiful but are usually terrible for the hairline. If you or your hairdresser has sufficient experience in installing and taking down micros, they are perfectly fine. The big risk is usually at the take down stage where if you have insufficient skill or patience you may end up breaking a lot of the length that you were attempting to retain. When hair is in a no manipulation style, your regular routine should not be postponed. You can still wash your hair as normal as

well as apply water and oil to moisturise your hair (or whatever you normally use) whenever you feel the need. For no manipulation styles, there is a danger of build up such as lint and matting which can all lead to a loss of length as more aggressive combing, cutting and trimming may be necessary. It is possible to keep a protective style well beyond 2 weeks (even up to 8 weeks). However, a key factor in successfully doing thisis to watch out for the possible build up and matting and pay special attention to the hair around the perimeter taking care to redo it every 2 weeks or so. y

Identity 50

Product Junkie Product


Cantu Shea Butter Retail Price $4.99

Budget Conscious

This product is an intensive deep penetrating leave in cream conditioning treatment that is made with pure shea butter and other natural oils to stop and mend breakage, repair split ends, and add manageability and shine with every application. When used daily, this cream helps promote strong, long, healthy hair. Formulated for severely damaged, dry or coarse hair.

Curl Enhancing Smoothie Shea Moisture Retail Price $9.99


Nutrient rich vegetable butters condition hair, restoring moisture, body and shine. Enhances curls, minimizes frizz and provides curl control. For thick, curly hair. Sulfate-free and color-safe. Coconut oil: Hydrates and protects hair from heat and chemical damage, Silk protein: Reduces breakage, strengthens hair, adds smoothness and silkiness.

Tui Hair Smoothie Carol’s Daughter www. Retail Price $20.00


Deeply moisturizes to rescue extra dry and dull hair. The rich blend of Shea Butter and Pro-vitamin B5 intensely conditions your hair so it has a healthy texture and natural shine. Quickly absorbs into your hair so you’ll notice an immediate difference and hair will not get weighed-down.

Contunued to page 44 ▶

26 Identity Magazine | Summer 2012 |

Photo Source: Photo1: Cantu Shea Butter, Photo 2: Shea Moisture, Photo 3: Tui Hair Smothie, Naturally Avocado: Coconut:

Hair Butters

Continued from page 26

Why Moisturize? Moisturized hair is not wet. There is a big difference between wet, damp or misted hair and moisturized hair. To the touch, moisturized hair does not have a wet feeling. The moisture which differentiates it from dry hair is locked within the strand and not on the surface of the hair. Humidity or humectants (such as aloe vera, honey and glycerin) which act to increase the outer moisture of the hair do not change the fact that the hair is 100% dry to the touch.


he key to finding a good moisturizer lies in knowing which products have most effect on your hair. If your hair does’nt care for deep conditioning (there is little/no difference whether you use heat or not and whether you leave the conditioner on for 20 minutes or 2 hours), you may find that your hair will respond better to humectant heavy conditioners which create humidity around your hair shaft (examples curl activator, non drying gels such as ecostyler). This is as opposed to conditioners that attempt to soften hair (emollient rich) or drive moisture into your hair (water rich). Your hair may be less responsive to these type of moisturisers. However, if you live in an area with dry air (low humidity), you may need to use a water rich moisturiser in addition to make sure the humectant can work. If you find that your hair has a tendency to become soft very quickly when you leave hair conditioner on it and also maintain that softness for a few days, then you may find water based, emollient and oil rich moisturiser may work for you (examples homemade water oil mixes, giovanni direct, herbal essences long term relationship). You may want to avoid humectant rich conditioners as they may make your hair feel mushy or sticky especially if you live somewhere humid.

Moisturized hair is a sound. The instantly recognizable feature associated with dry hair which is not moisturized is crackling. Dry unmoisturized hair tends to have a rasping sound when the strands are rubbed against each other. The drier hair gets, the more perceptible the sound becomes. Moisturized hair on the other hand is almost noiseless. The strands of hair can generally glide past each other and even where they tangle or knot, they do not make the same crunchy crackling of dry hair. y

Photo Source:

Source: Black Girl With Long Hair Blog

More Tips

Water is essential for the health of hair for a number of reasons. The hair is one quarter water. That fact alone should accentuate how important water is for the hair. Water also carries vital vitamins to the hair root and hydrates the entire hair strand from the inside. Water is the main source of energy for hair cells, including the cells that generate new hair growth. Water also clears the body from pollutants, which also cause hair loss. Without proper hydration, you will see dryness in your hair and skin that can only be restored by drinking 8 to 10 glasses of water a day.

Identity 44

Sister to Sister

Naturally Confident Source: Natural Sunshine blog


o matter what stage you’re in as a natural there is always a need to work on maintaining your confidence level. Even though more and more women are embracing their natural textures and wearing them with pride, you may be one of the few naturals you knowKeeping the confidence strong can be challenging at times but it is key to remaining in Curly-Kinky Land.

37 Identity Magazine | Summer 2012 |

Even though there are moments when you may want to either rewind to the fresh big chop look or fast forward to when you can at least throw your hair into a bunnytail, he key is to learn to be content where you are and feel beautiful no matter what. Here are three easy ways to maintain your confidence.

1. Don’t allow your looks to be your sole source of confidence Going natural has taught me to focus on other qualities which make me beautiful and not my looks alone. I continue to strengthen that commitment. I keep my confidence no matter what my hair is doing because when I walk into a room I know that the best parts of me have nothing to do with my hair at all. When has hair ever spoken encouraging words to someone? When has hair ever gotten a job promotion? The things that make you wonderful (and beautiful) have very little to do with your hair. You are just as smart, talented, creative, articulate, athletic, funny, and compassionate as you were before you went natural.

2. Accept Your Hair For What It Is When you come to a point where you stop comparing your hair to everyone else’s and decide that your hair is beautiful because it is yours; you are well on your way to having confidence that will last a lifetime. My hair has its own personality. It is not like anyone else’s, just like I am not like anyone else. Learning to appreciate it for what it is and not being angry with it for what it isn’t has helped me to feel good about myself no matter what.

3. Pamper Your Hair Take the time to care for you hair and pamper it every once in a while. The more comfortable you are with your hair the more confident you will feel. We have to spend time with it and get to know it, and know what works for it. You can’t just buy a product and magically expect your hair to start singing. You have to be willing to spend time figuring out what works for you. y

Photo Source:

You haven’t changed. Remember all the things you have going for yourself that have nothing to do with your looks and there you will find a foundation for confidence which will last.

Identity 38

All about personal style, going natural and being a mom Source:, &

57 Identity Magazine | Summer 2012 |


ot only is Solange Knowles an actress, DJ, mother, and aunt — to quite possibly the most famous baby in the world — she’s also a budding style icon, making waves in the fashion industry with her quirky, covetable looks. To say that Solange has confidence is an understatement; she rocks bold, colorful looks, big hair, and beautiful ethnic-inspired prints, all with a sophistication and effortlessness that quickens our heartbeat. She’s a veritable mix master with the uncanny ability to blend downtown cool-girl with well-traveled aplomb, pairing embroidered separates with attentiongetting heels, printed turbans, and chunky beaded jewelry. Today, despite the torrential rain, she’s wearing an aqua green oversized sweater, flared hot-pink Armani trousers, brown Fendi heels and a decidedly unwaterproof leopardprint faux-fur coat. ‘Wow,’ she says, smiling. ‘Really not the best day to ride my bike here! She’s happy and contented, living with her new boyfriend, the video director Alan Ferguson, putting the finishing touches to her third album, which she hopes to release in June, and raising her son Julez, now seven.

“To say that Solange has confidence is an understatement” You recently made the move from L.A. to Brooklyn. How are you adjusting? I love it. My entire family lives here, and since my niece, Blue Ivy was born, I love being close to her. What are some of your favorite things to do in the city? I definitely have that sort of Brooklyn vibe of “oh, crossing the bridge is sooo far,” so we stay pretty local in terms of our restaurants, movie theaters and bowling alleys. But really, I love eating out. Some of my favorite new spots in the neighborhood are Buttermilk Channel and Frankies [457 Spuntino]. I’ve definitely packed on the pounds since moving here. Continued on page 67 ▶

Identity 58

Our favorite looks from Solange A geometric-printed tank looks fresh and

Vibrant maxi skirt with a black, tied-up top

modern when paired with tailored red

and leopard-print heels, making for a sexy,

shorts and thin-strapped neon sandals.

attention-getting ensemble.

She channels a sweet ‘60s look with a colorblock shift dress and mint-colored Stuart Weitzman cap-toe pumps.

She channeled the star with big hair and a fabulous drapey white Alexandra Rich gown

She recently donned a bright orange

necklace and leg-lengthening nude heels.


Her Striped sweater and bird-print skirt, brought

minidress with a beaded statement

two unlikely patterns together for a fresh, fun daytime look.

Identity Magazine | Summer 2012 |

Photo Source: Intro Page: Page 68: http://www.

“Style is what makes us who we are.” Where are some of your favorite places to shop?

interested in style than fashion—style is what makes us who we are.

Opening Ceremony is my number one favorite place to shop here. It’s the only place I’ll shop in New York with my son. All of the sales people are so cool; the music is great; it’s just like a big fun house, so he stays entertained. I like the Barneys [co-op] in Brooklyn because it’s very laidback and chill; there’s not as much hustle and bustle as the one in the city. Aside from that, I literally buy everything online. Once I had my son, I stopped shopping in stores because it’s not an easy process to try on clothes—and I’m not an impulsive buyer.

Do you have any fashion icons?

Who are some of your favorite designers? I love Tibi for all of my classic staples; Suno because I’m a print girl and they do it so well; and Diane von Furstenberg because she does a phenomenal job with prints and color and just makes wearable, accessible women’s wear that’s easy to throw on. You’ve been getting quite a bit of attention from the fashion industry. What’s your take on that? I’m humbled and excited about it, but I’m not trying to be a huge designer or a big model. I’ve been clear I just want to express myself. I’m really appreciative for the love and respect from the fashion community, but I just want to do the fun stuff. I’m a lot more

I’m inspired by my mother from the ‘70s and ‘80s--she looked like a walking American Apparel ad. She definitely set the bar in terms of style. I’m also inspired by Bjrk, Erykah Badu and Diana Ross. I gravitate to the people who have stood the test of time; that’s why so many of my style icons are older. If you can conquer that many decades and that many trends and still look timeless and beautiful—that’s where I’d like to be. What are you working on now? I’ve been working on my album for two years. It’s my first independent record and it’s been a journey. It will be out this summer. How is it different from your last album? It’s very sensual, very percussive and the song writing is a lot more complex than my previous music. It’s inspired by ‘80s R&B, pop and soul. Pop has become a term of cheese now, of selling out, but it was never like that in the past. Right now it just seems like a trend is so important— people find a formula of what’s working and what’s successful, and they try to re-create it, or a variation of that. You turn on the radio, and it’s like 60 minutes of one song. I hope 25 years from now, my son can look at the pop stars [of today] and have that same feeling that I have when I listen to Whitney Houston or Mariah Carey records, and experience that timelessness of just good songs. It’s musical integrity. y

Identity 69

The newest pack of Black models storming the catwalks in full embrace of their natural hairstyles


61 Identity Magazine | Summer 2012 |

in Vogue? As if by rite of passage, the Black model archive is filled with trials of hapharzard handling of one’s hair. Left in the hands of hairstylists deaf to the temperaments of Black tresses, Black fashion pioneers have recounted tales of their coils and strands being stretched to their breaking, frayed ends; scalps carelessly permed, harshly scorched, battered with color, and left to be restored by weaves, wigs, and the shearing of frazzled locks. These haunting experiences are now often shrouded in frustrated one-off tweets, or woeful interview admissions from present-day Black fashion favorites Jourdan Dunn and Chanel Iman, messages that acknowledge a

problem, but rarely hold few responsible. This while Black model stalwarts Naomi Campbell and Tyra Banks have fought the effects of alopecia publicly, Banks raising significant awareness to the damaging toll modeling has caused to her hair by going completely natural in 2010. It is uplifting then to see the newest pack of Black models storming the catwalks in full embrace of their natural hairstyles, from cropped Afros, flat tops, to buzzed scalps-and in turn being embraced by the industry that has typically approached Black hair with harsh critique. As Canadian model, Herieth Paul’s, almost

Photo Credit:

“It is uplifting then to see the newest pack of black models storming the catwalks in full embrace of their natural” ubiquitous presence on the top Fall 2012 catwalks of Burberry Prorsum, Diane Von Furstenberg, Yigal Azourel, Costello Tagliapietra shown, the model’s coiffed ‘fro isn’t for a second deterring her imminent ascent. Then there is of course Ajak Deng’s signature buzz that has marked her career, creating a striking, anomalous silhouette along the runways of Suno, Roksanda Ilincic, and Issa this season, as well as with her turns on couture’s Spring 2012 stages just last month. Newcomer Akuol de Mabior, the beautiful offspring of Sudan’s former Vice President, walked for Jasper Conran and Louise Gray under a crown of curls that bore a striking resemblance to the very style lauded actress, Viola Davis, made famous at Sunday’s Academy Awards. While Flaviana Mataka,

Nana Keita, and Elyce Cole reimagined the Afro in its various forms for Vivienne Westwood Red, Ashish, and William Okpo, respectively. And how could one ignore the direct nod London sister-design duo, Tata Naka, made towards Motown’s glory days? Vibrantly patterned designs seamlessly played off the leaping afros of the show’s diverse cast of models, who wore their natural styles with elegance and total assuredness, and made quite a ripple in London Fashion Week this season.

Continued on page: 71 ▶| Sping 2012 | Identity 62

Continued from page 62

Transcending Barriers

Of course these girls and designers represent a small majority of the fashion industry, but this reoccurring presence of natural Black hair on the runways could be correlated to the natural Black hair craze that is taking place off the runway. Though one may beg to argue that this conclusion is far too precise in its measurement, as certain models like Alek Wek and Noemi Lenoir have made their natural tresses a signature component to their success for years. One can’t help to argue that such a general upsurge in visibility surrounding natural Black hairstyles, if they be worn by fashion darlings Julia Sarr-Jamois or Solange Knowles, or are documented thoroughly by the press (the NYTimes, most famously), is helping usher in a new era of hair treatment for Black women broadly, and Black models specifically. As natural hair products corner the beauty market, knowledge concerning Black hair care could reach the hands of the industry’s top hair masters that have long remained unaware of Black hair’s habits, and as Herieth Paul revealed to Vogue Italia recently, it may just make a model’s career. y

71 Identity|| Sping 2012

Identity Magazine  

ARTT458 UMD 2012

Identity Magazine  

ARTT458 UMD 2012