The 2nd Annual I AM BEAUTIFUL event went down today in St. Thomas and it was a truly amazing experience! The Miss Naturalista team went above and beyond and bringing this event back for a second year. All of the 400 guests were greeted by a CURLS goodie bag stuffed with samples and literature on their seat. Before launching into the main program, attendees had the chance to shop around the huge vending area where there were lots of great hair products (including some of my favorites including Curl Junkie, Koils By Nature, Alikay Naturals, and Shea Moisture), clothing, jewelry and accessories.
A prayer followed by African drummers and dancers kicked off the day with high energy. I welcomed the crowd alongside the main emcee Sheldon, a local radio star who I (and by I, I do mean Lola) inspired to name his hair DENZEL. The afternoon included, Felicia Leatherwood’s Loving Your Hair With Natural Care Workshop, a fashion demonstration, a talk from Dr. Kari Williams about taking care of children’s hair, a presentation by Petra of Natr’l Expression, Kim Coles having the audience in stitches as she talked about her natural hair journey, an amazing hair show by stylists from Shear Xtasy with lots of island flair, and a chat by BlackOnyx aka Rochelle about the different types of natural hair and the various issues they face.
My absolute favorite part of the show, was chatting it up with the group of about 50 young school girls who came out to support the event. I think this is such a crucial age to teach the young one’s about self acceptance and showing them that they are naturally beautiful just the way they are! All of them wore adorable natural styles and were so excited to be at the event!
I loved the chance to see familiar faces who attended the event last year; while everyone marveled at how short I had cut my hair, I was amazed at how much theirs had grown! I can tell in just the short period of time since we were last here, how much the natural hair community has grown and will continue to do so! A massive shout out to Denise Benjamin and her amazing team for pulling off such a wonderful event. I can’t wait for tomorrow’s in St. Croix!
I’ve got a TON of video interviews that I can’t wait to share, but for now, here’s some of my favorite shots from today’s St. Thomas event. Videos and pictures from St. Croix to come soon!