Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Beads, Braids & Beyond

Nikki from Beads, Braids & Beyond  has a great blog where she shows how to create cute hair styles for little girls, along with useful styling tips and kid friendly product information. She also highlights a lot of her readers children and their hair styles.  Look below for my interview with Nikki -


What inspired you to create the Beads Braids Beyond blog?
The lack of information on Biracial/African American children's hair care inspired me to create the blog. I remember being "the clueless mom" and not knowing where to start when it came to my daughter’s hair. I remember goggling and goggling and never being able to find a lot of information on my daughter’s hair type, or being able to find styles that I could. I found countless blogs for children with naturally straight hair, "what about our children?" … I thought. Don't get me wrong, I love those other blogs, but I wanted to see a blog dedicated to natural Biracial/African American children’s hair. I wanted to see our children’s hair being embraced. 
How do you come up with so many creative styles?
All of my style inspirations come from other women and mothers. I browse a lot of different forums, blogs, and other hair care sites and I try to tweak a lot of styles so they are appropriate for my daughter’s age. There are so many talented women out there so I definitely owe my style inspiration to them.
How old is your daughter, and what does she like most about being the star of your blog?
My daughter is 4 years old. I think her favorite thing to do is seeing all of the other children featured on the blog. My daughter is the only child with curly hair in her class so I think it's a nice change to see so many other natural children with curly hair.
She seems to love participating in the styling process. Most kids don't have the patience! What keeps her interested showing off her cool hairstyles?
Well, depending on how long the style takes, we might take breaks. Snack breaks, run around the kitchen table breaks, restroom breaks, etc. I think I keep her interested. We talk the whole time I am styling or washing her hair. If we're watching one of her favorite cartoons/movies I make it a point to sing along with her and dance. Her current favorite is The Princess and the Frog. The songs are really great and when mommy gets into them....it's over! She definitely gets into it and forgets her hair is even being styled! I think the styling process is all about mother and daughter bonding time. It's important for me to show her that doing her hair is not a chore, that I enjoy it, and we should enjoy this time together.
You have a great following. How long have you been blogging?
I started Beads, Braids & Beyond at the end of October 2009. I think it's amazing that the word got out so quickly. This goes to show that people were waiting for something for our kids. I mean...I was waiting myself! I couldn't wait any longer. I actually asked some moms on another hair board if they would make a blog but it seemed like everyone was too busy, so I took the plunge. Your styles and post have been great inspirations to other Moms.
What has been one of your most cherished moments as result of sharing your knowledge through your blog?
Probably all of the emails and comments I get. So many mothers (and non-mothers) email me thanking me for taking the time out to create this blog. Some moms find the blog and are like me when I first started, clueless. They tell me how much the information I provide helps and show me pictures. They tell me there are no more tears during "hair time" and that they now look forward to the mother and daughter bonding experience. I have also had emails and comments thanking me for my Texture Softener post because they were going to use it on their child. I am always happy to hear that they changed their mind about relaxing their child’s hair, or that they are transitioning their little diva.
What are some of the products you use regularly for your daughters hair type?
Right now we are experimenting with products. We have tried lots and it's funny because most of her staple products are pretty cheap: Virgin coconut oil, unrefined shea butter, Herbal Essence Hello Hydration conditioner, Giovanni Direct Leave-in, ORS Lock & Twist Gel. I currently love Blended Cutie Down & Out Styles for her hair. There are other products I really like for her hair but those are the main ones we use.
What is your advice for styling curly hair?
Don't try to fight it! It will fight you back. If your hair wants to be big, it will be big. LET IT BE BIG! A lot of people email me asking how to get "the wet look" and in my opinion, you cannot get the wet look! You can define your curls but it definitely will not look like it does when it's wet once it dries. I don't care what product you use. If the hair wants to be frizzy one day, let it be frizzy. Don't keep chasing your child around the house with a spray bottle filled with water. I am going to take a quote I see in so many forums..."Let it do what it do!"

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