This past weekend, Natural Selection hit the road to go visit our natural sisters to the south for a two-stop weekend of Naturals Night Out events sponsored by Shea Moisture. Los Angeles was up first on Friday night where we spent the evening with our gracious hostesses of Mahogany Hair Revolution . The salon, which was founded by trichologist Dr. Kari Williams, was an inspiring and knowledge-rich environment and the evening proved to be informative for both veteran and new naturals alike. Using Shea Moisture products, stylists executed a wide variety of styles throughout the evening including flat twist/updo combos, two strand twists, and cornrows.
One of the highlights of the evening was actually the result of a last minute switch up in the program in which I asked fellow blogger EllePixie of Quest for the Perfect Curl to stand in as a hair model. Boyyyyy was Elle resistant, but after being wooed with the promise of free flowing champagne and no scissors she agreed to sit in the styling chair for the FIRST TIME SINCE HER BIG CHOP!!!!!! (!!!!!!) I know the terror that comes with putting ones’ precious curls in the hands of an unknown stylist, but props to Elle for taking a risk because what unfolded of the course of the evening was one of the dopest natural hair styles I’ve ever seen. Blending 2 sizes of cornrows, two-strand twists, mohawk and three bouffant-esque puffs Izzy (the name of Elle’s hair) walked out of that salon looking capital H Hawt!
Aside from finally meeting Elle (after over a year of correspondence on the interweb via forums and emails), I also got to meet fellow blogger Daily of DailyCurlz, and other LA-based readers. After two rendez-vous on the East Coast at Atlanta hair events, I was thrilled to share some West Coast natural love and community with stylist Felicia Leatherwood who has become not only an natural hair inspiration and style icon but a friend.
Somehow, after wrapping up the evening chatting hair on a street corner until 2am (the love of hair chat knows no limits), I got up on Saturday and drove down to San Diego for the second SoCal event at Upscale Gallery Hair Salon. Many of the ladies on Saturday night were members of the local meet up group called Showing My Roots (who you may have heard of before for their organization of the West Coast Natural Hair Cruise in October). This event took on a much more hands-on and involved approach as attendees kicked off the evening by passing around and testing out Shea Moisture products. Within minutes, I was demonstrating a smoothing/shingling technique on one attendees head using a Shea Moisture’s Curl Enhancing Smoothie then switching to another head to put in a two-strand twist using the Deep Treatment Masque (a product that gave me one of the best twist outs I’ve ever had. You can see it up there in that picture of me on the header of this blog riiiight now!). Almost everyone had their hands in someone else’s head— feeling moisture levels, checking out curl patterns, and seeing how each product reacted differently to another’s curl. One attendee took the time to do her own set of two strand twists throughout the evening using the provided products!
Upscale Gallery stylists demonstrated a wide variety of styles including wash’n’gos, finger coils, and a spiral set. I was really amazed at the results of the spiral set in which the stylist used Shea Moisture’s Curl Enhancing Smoothie because of the definition achieved as well as the fact that the style should last for up to two weeks with proper maintenance.
If you read this blog frequently, you know that I rarely let go of my trusty wash’n’go and so I spent a good chunk of time explaining and walking attendees through my weekly wash’n’go routines. One of the highlights from this San Diego event was having Chimole, the Marketing representative from Shea Moisture, styled in a wash’n’go. Chimole expressed that she rarely (never?) wears her hair loose and frequently pulls her hair back in a ponytail. The thing is that she has a gorgeous curl pattern that to me was just screaming to be let loose and I thought that her wash’n’go looked great. I want to announce publicly here on this blog right here, right now, that Chimole *promised* me that she would wear a wash’n’go for two weeks. A promise is a promise. You heard it here first and we’ll be checking up on her often :)
All in all, it was a great duo of events and I’m so glad to have made the trip to Southern California! I loved meeting new friends and providing a space for others to connect and learn through Naturals Night Out!
I want to say special, heartfelt and warm thank-you’s to:
- Mahogany Revolution and Upscale Gallery Hair Salon for sharing their space and natural hair know-how with all of us.
- Naturals Night Out sponsor Shea Moisture for supporting our West Coast natural hair communities— it was truly a pleasure to have this amazing product line participate in the event and share the experience with Chimole; thank you for making the trip from New York to join us!
- Myisha of Sheena’s Events who keeps me and Naturals Night Out running smoothly. In addition to making Naturals Night Out the great experience that it is, Myisha also proved to be an excellent travel mate and I’m very thankful to share these adventures with her!
- All of YOU! For attending, reading, supporting. Thank you thank you thank you!
Without further ado, the full galleries from the events: