Friday, October 10, 2014
A few years ago I had visited Nigeria and wanted my hair done. The lady was shocked to see that I had thick, kinky natural hair and asked if I wanted it relaxed. "Nope, I just want braids," I responded. But it's going to be hard and too thick, she responded. I turned, and looked at her. She was quiet and made my hair the way I wanted it to be. This truly surprised me. In a land where people are born with hair like mine, now it's becoming unacceptable to have? Well, it did not end there. Some people thought I had an Afro wig on when they saw my natural hair as if there was no way I would dare to have my hair like that.
But you know what? I'm really happy that these days, there is a wide spread of acceptance of black/ African natural kinky hair. I see more people going back to their roots, literally. It's refreshing and beautiful. Some people leave them puffy and some make them dreadlocks. What I'm hoping for the future is a wide acceptance of this hair texture at work places.
Wednesday, October 1, 2014
I rarely write about myself on my blog but I have decided to explain the main reason why I didn't pursue modeling as a career to the disappointment of most people. Here goes:
Some girls have dreams of being models especially if they fulfill the fashion industry's requirements. I was told time without number to delve into modeling full time and that I might make it. Yes, there was that possibility. Then after one specific trial, I turned my back on that so called dream. I had bigger things to do with my time and energy and I couldn't work in a narrow minded industry that had specific beliefs that I constantly disagreed with.
I walked into an agency and walked out more confused than I've ever been. Who decides what the acceptable standards should be? A friend told me that I gave up too soon but I was only too happy to respond that I wasn't going to subject myself to a standard that made me less than the happy person I should be. It's not news that the modeling industry is now embracing several nationalities and accepting diversity but what I didn't expect was the discrimination within a certain ethnicity. I, of course, identified myself as an African. It should be no surprise to anyone who works internationally that Africans can have different appearances. But what I found out shocked me. Apparently, there is a kind of "African" that was easily embraced in the modeling industry. It wasn't enough to be tall, and lanky. "Caramel," like I was called, was not what they were looking for. It took me a moment to realize that they meant my skin color. The African in me bursted out with a loud hiss and a catwalk out of their presence. The follow up call I got that tried to mend the situation said they were looking in terms of you know, the "Wek" look; sweet dark chocolate like I call her. It didn't end there, apparently my full head of hair was a problem too.
(ukoemem - Author; Ola Y - Editor)
Monday, September 22, 2014
Thursday, September 11, 2014
I'm enjoying this crazy fashion week that has started in New York; admiring fabulous upcoming collections for Spring/Summer 2015 from big names, industry favorites, and new designers such as BCBG MAXAZRIA, Rebecca Minkoff, Monique Lhuillier, Carolina Herrera, Zang Toi, Michael Kors, Christian Siriano etc. New York fashion week set up a show that started on the 4th and will continue till the 11th of September, and then will move on to London, Milan, and Paris. It's thrilling to watch and see all the models in action in these new designs. I have seen the super-models prepare and talk about what they're looking forward to during fashion week and which name brand they'll be walking for. It's been exciting to fashion lovers like me but I started to think differently about the whole thing when I watched an interview with Shaun Ross, best known as the first male albino fashion model.
Shaun, like any other model, was excited about fashion week but the point he made that stuck with me was how models of these days are not known and how they do not represent anything. They are not made muses or shown any importance by the fashion industry. We don't know most of their names or give them fair identities. "They are just like blank canvases" and I agree with that. I have written about models once and I thought that they were treated like 'walking hangers.' It's all about what they have on and nothing else.
(ukoemem - Author; Ola Y - Editor)
Thursday, September 4, 2014
On this fateful day, I planned on joining the ranks of those who styled their hair themselves. I've always had an excuse when it came to that and my excuses have always been valid. My hair is too full and thick; I don't have eyes at the back of my head to correctly style the whole hair; and my hands are not built for it. Valid excuses, right? But I have seen many people accomplish styling their hair perfectly. Why not me?
So I set out this particular morning with the intent of giving myself curls. My hair is "natural," which is another word for kinky African hair. It has a tight curly texture and it takes a village to maintain. I finished with the double strand twist style and I was pretty happy with it. I let it air dry for hours. When I was satisfied with how dry it was, I proceeded to carefully uncurl it and separate the curls in order to get fuller smaller curls. For a first-timer I was pretty impressed with the outcome. In fact I took my selfies as proof.
Hours later, when it was time to go out, I looked at the mirror and almost screamed. "Where did my curls go?" I was pretty sure I didn't touch my hair the whole day. "What happened?" "What did I do differently?" "Didn't I put enough hair product?" All these questions went through my head because I didn't understand how the style could easily vanish in a few hours.
Then someone explained the reason why I lost those awesome curls and gave me wonderful advice. "Humidity was the cause and next time I should keep the twist for a few more days longer and make it tighter and it will last longer." Lesson learned. Earlier when I lost the curls, I was tempted to say I'll leave the hair-making to the professionals but I think I'll like to try again.
Tuesday, September 2, 2014
Sunday, August 31, 2014
“Forget yesterday - it has already forgotten you. Don't sweat tomorrow - you haven't even met. Instead, open your eyes and your heart to a truly precious gift - today.”― Steve Maraboli
“Love is friendship that has caught fire. It is quiet understanding, mutual confidence, sharing and forgiving. It is loyalty through good and bad times. It settles for less than perfection and makes allowances for human weaknesses.”― Ann Landers
“The willingness to forgive is a sign of spiritual and emotional maturity. It is one of the great virtues to which we all should aspire. Imagine a world filled with individuals willing both to apologize and to accept an apology. Is there any problem that could not be solved among people who possessed the humility and largeness of spirit and soul to do either -- or both -- when needed.”― Gordon B. Hinckley
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Thursday, August 28, 2014
I was so impressed with most of the looks on the 2014 Emmy Awards red carpet that it took me a while to select my best ten looks of the evening. Here they are:
|Camila Alves and Matthew McConaughey|
Tuesday, August 26, 2014
There were many "What Were They Thinking Looks" at the VMAs this year but I'm going to select three of my least favorite looks and three of my best looks.
|She showed up at the wrong club!|
|Don't ask me to raise up my hands|
Wednesday, August 13, 2014
What is ASAP54 some of you may ask? I'll answer that question in a moment. Have you ever seen someone on the street or at work or a party, and wondered where they bought their clothes? But then you can't approach them and ask them because you are either shy or you think it's rude. Well, I happen to be a very observant person when it comes to fashion and I see so many outfits on a daily basis that I would like to find. Approaching people to ask them where they got what they're wearing is not easy. Sometimes it's the wrong place to ask about their outfit and other times it's just the group they're with. Coming home and trying to search on Google never works because guess what, typing "grey sweater with red flowers on the right shoulder," doesn't narrow things enough. Then you give up eventually. Now this is where ASAP54 comes in. A genius thought, "what if I created an app that can visually recognize a clothing and find where you can purchase it or purchase something similar?" And there you have it. That genius by the way is Sao Paulo born and raised Daniela Cecilio. Check out the website for more cool functions of ASAP54.