Saturday, March 30, 2013

India Arie skin lightening: India Arie denies bleaching skin for ‘Cocoa Butter’ single photo

India Arie/Facebook
Natural hair beauty India Arie is facing a new kind of controversy.  According to a March 29 TMZ report, Arie is taking some heat for her very “light” complexion on the cover of her new single, “Cocoa Butter.”

The singer, who waxed poetic about her “Brown Skin” is reportedly defending the album cover, telling friends that she has not bleached or lightened her gorgeous dark skin.  Sources close to TMZ tell the publication that public criticism is ridiculous and blame Arie’s lightened skin color on the album cover to the “camera flash and angle.”  They also confirm that the singer did not ask for a skin color change on the cover.  Arie cannot escape the fact that she did in fact approve the photo, which appears to inaccurately reflect her actual skin color.

In response to the controversy, Arie tweeted, “Personally speaking! i'm happy to say I have NOT BLEACHED my skin LOL! ROTF at the thought.”  She continued, “1. I wouldn't endanger my health that way 2. i'm so in love with myself I have no DESIRE to BLEACH myself. 3. The GLOW you see IS (magnificent) lighting 4. THE LIGHT you see, Well thats all ME!!”

The Huffington Post articulates the public surprise and confusion surrounding the lightened image, especially when Arie’s reaction to Zoe Saldana’s complexion change for the “Nina Simone Biopic”  is taken into consideration.  Upset over Saldana’s darkened skin and fakeafro hair for the movie, the singer opined, “Yes there should be a movie made, and YES they should have chosen someone who LOOKS like Nina Simone, ESPECIALLY since her RACE played such a PIVOTAL role in WHO, WHAT and WHY, she was.”

Arie is not the only one who has been accused of bleaching/lightening her skin tone or approving a publication of images featuring much lighter skin color.  Beyonce faced the same drama for her Loreal commercials.

The bigger issue is lost in the skin discussion – her highly anticipated new single, “Cocoa Butter.”

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Protective hairstyles for natural hair: Long does not equal healthy (Part 1) (Photos)


There are several styling options for natural hair.  Even those of us who love to rock big afros need to give our hair strands some rest.  These series of protective hairstyle articles are not about length retention, but about styling options for those individuals who want options. 

Protective styles can be worn during any season.  Most women prefer to use these style options in the winter when hair is more brittle and susceptible to breakage.
Protective styling involves minimal hair manipulation that limits possible breakage or damage.  Minimal manipulation of hair prevents tangling and breaking; two things that damage hair, natural or otherwise.  

There are some women who attest to healthy hair growth from protective styling.  For others, protective styling does nothing but create ......... 

CLICK HERE to continue reading this article on the National Beauty Examiner.

Monday, December 31, 2012

Natural beauty gift guide: Gifts for the beauty diva who shuns chemicals

Josie Maran cosmetics
From birthdays to Christmas and Mother's Day celebrations, the natural beauty in your life is always happy to indulge in beauty treatments that soothe the body and awake the senses.

Whether it is lotion, soap, lip balm or makeup, it should moisturize, add glow and protect the skin. There is no need to spend on fortune on natural beauty gifts. To get the beauty ball rolling, the Natural Beauty Examiner has curated a few beauty gifts that will be sure to please any natural beauty fashionista and leave extra cash in the gifter's wallet.

Natural hair care tools and products: The naturalista's tool kit for managing healthy natural hair

photo credit:  MiMi
Every woman sporting natural hair knows there are some essential tools and products necessary for a good natural hair care regimen. From fingers to water and the right brush, simplicity is the key. There is no need to break the bank buying everything one’s natural hair girlfriends have in their collection. Every head of hair is unique in its own way, so one should shop for one’s hair needs and not just to accumulate hair products or accessories.

Water: Like brown on rice, water and natural hair go hand in hand. Nothing loves moisture more than natural hair and this should be a top priority on the list. Water can mixed with other natural essential oils to make excellent hair strand moisturizers during dry summer months, and it is also great for detangling hair.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Natural hair care: How to deep condition natural hair with coconut oil


Coconut oil is one of the most effective natural oils for treating dry or damaged hair. It is high in saturated fats and rich enough in antioxidants to reduce the harmful effects of the sun, dandruff and chemical treatments.
It works well to condition and restore the hair’s natural moisture. Whether coconut oil is used for deep conditioning or a hot oil treatment on porous hair, it offers the same results.............

CLICK HERE to read the rest of this article on the National Beauty Examiner.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Holiday Gifts for the Natural Fashionista: Natural Hair Gift Guide featuring stylish Afro fashion

photo credit:  Boutique Mix

We all know that natural hairlistas are always looking for the next best hair moisturizer, cream, smoothie, oil....... you name it.  This holiday season, switch it up a bit and give the gift of casual chic style with some of my favorite Boutique Mix holiday gifts for the natural fashionista

Visit to find everything you need for everyone on your gift list!


One year later............ MiMi's natural hair journey update

It's been a year since I got serious about taking care of my hair. It wasn't about growth retention or anything like that. I just wanted to get healthy.
From my body to my mind, my soul and my hair, I started a journey to take good care of myself.  2012 would be all about health and new direction.   After all, I only have one life to far as I know. Here is what my hair looked like on November 21, 2011............ (after a mild blowout)

photo credit:  Kev
I kept my promise to myself and I've invested the time and energy to take care of myself this year.  I've grown a lot in more ways than one and my hair has taken on a mind of its own.  This is what my hair looks like one year later........ Nov 21, 2012.............(in its shrinkage afro state)


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Black Girl with Long Hair Natural Hair Style Icon Feature


A fabulous thank you to the lovely ladies of the popular 'Black Girl with Long Hair' blog for featuring me as a Natural Hair Style Icon today.  When I started my natural hair journey, all I wanted was a healthy mind, healthy body and healthy hair.  It's been great so far! 

Introduce yourself!
My name is MiMi and I live in the DMV area. I was born in Sierra Leone, West Africa and moved to the States when I was a teenager.

Why did you make the decision to go natural?
I wanted to try something different. I get bored very easily and love afros, so over the last 12 years I have done a big chop every three years. My hair would grow back long and healthy and I’d get a fresh perm and do the whole chemical hair thing for another 3 years, miss my afro and do another big chop and start over. In 2009 I just decided that I’d stick with natural for good. It was healthier for my hair and I wanted a fresh start.

How would you describe your texture?
My texture is some sort of 4. I still cannot distinguish all these alphabet hair types. My strands are pretty coarse most of the time, especially when I’m eating well, taking my vitamins and being healthy. When I slack off they get pretty thin and break off.

Describe your styling regimen over the course of the month.
My styling regimen is pretty simple. My day job requires a lot of international travel so I strive to wear my hair in ways that will make it manageable no matter where in the world I find myself. Some of the places I go to do not necessarily have a salon or running water so finding something

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Natural Hair at Work: My afrolicious day in the studio

It's that time of year when I design and handcraft my accessories for Boutique Mix's
( Spring fashion and trunk shows. From necklaces to bracelets, wallets, purses and dresses, it is a busy time.
Between my new baby and trying to craft, working in my studio has been one long, sometimes ridiculous balancing act. I wouldn't change any minute of it though. Things are coming along great and I'm really excited about this new line. Here is a peek at what's coming up in 2013!!!

Love when I have these afrolicious work days!!