Wednesday, June 8, 2011


“Living Naturally You”
Artist Appreciation
New Natural Stars on the Rise

1.          What is your band and whom is it’s members?
Queen Cleopatra (Solo Artist)
2.          When was this band founded and in what city?
The first group I was in started in 2003 by name of Crew Grrl Order. I am still apart of today and pursuing my solo career in Charlotte N.C.

3.          Why as a band have you decided to promote the natural lifestyle?
I do not try to promote being natural, it’s just me..being me. I don’t feel you have to work hard at being something so simple if it’s truly your way of life.
4.          How would you describe your style?
My style is eclectic and tribal with a fun twist. 
5.          What are some people that inspire you most?
I’m inspired by women such as Diana Ross, Les Nubians and Zap Mama.
6.          What the general mission of your group’s music?
The mission is to enlighten and inspire the mind, body and spirit by invoking pure emotions through sounds.

7.          What are some your accomplishments  and describe in detail some of your most recent performances?
I have many accomplishments, but to narrow it down. I have performed with many hip-hop legions, including shooting a video with MC Lyte, which is profound considering that she is a hip hop icon. I have also been able to do what I love for a living from music to fashion and enjoy the journey that come along with it. The most rewarding aspect of it all is watching my children's talents manifest and being able to understand their desire to create.

8.          Where can we find the bands music?
You can find my music on all over the Internet, in place like iTunes, cdbaby, amazon, etc. You may also view my videos on

9.        What advice would you give to others who wanted to go natural or live a more natural based lifestyle?
Be true to yourself. Don’t do it religiously, do what feels good to you.
             10.        What’s your favorite quote?
"Be the change you want to see in the world"

Permed Vs Natural


Read any C+C article about natural or relaxed hair and you’ll find a flood of comments from readers debating about which style is better. Remarks often veer on the argumentative side with naturals and relaxed pitted against one other.
The comments can get ugly. Claims that natural hair is unattractive and that women with relaxed hair want to look white are hurtful and antagonistic. When did our hairstyle choices make us enemies?
When the natural vs. relaxed tension materializes in our personal lives, the divide is felt even deeper. Hair is a bonding experience for many women who run style ideas by each other, share product recommendations and even coordinate salon visits. So what happens when you decide to go natural and your best friend is relaxed?
Though my best friend didn’t initially understand why I went natural, we haven’t had one argument or even a negative comment about my transition. Instead of attacking each other because of our differences, we chose to reach a place of mutual respect and understanding.
Here are three things I learned in the process that can help us all celebrate our individual hairstyle choices while still loving and embracing those who rock their hair differently:

1. Know that it’s a personal choice.

Women go natural or choose to relax their hair for various reasons which are ultimately personal. While one woman may find the natural hair journey liberating and self-affirming, another’s motivation might be purely aesthetic. There are women who relax their hair to fit the mainstream standard of beauty; others simply because it’s easier to manage. Sweeping generalizations, like the idea that all naturals embrace being black and women with relaxers don’t, are not only disrespectful, they’re inaccurate. It’s important to own your choices and experiences without projecting them on others.

2. Educate yourself.

Few things insult naturals more than ignorant comments regarding the look, texture and style of their hair. Comments that equate all natural hairstyles to a “nappy ‘fro” are insulting and untrue; not every natural wears their hair in the same style and some even regularly straighten their hair. Likewise, the myth that natural hair is unkempt and undone is highly offensive; it takes a lot of work, patience, time and money to achieve and maintain natural styles. Before making incendiary comments about natural haircare like Method Man for example, educate yourself about it.

3. Realize it’s just hair.

As black women, we are the target of too many attacks against us by the mainstream, Psychology Today studies included, to turn on each other over a hairstyle. At the end of the day, our similarities as women of color strongly outweigh the differences surrounding how we style our tresses.

Have you ever experienced tension between women with natural and relaxed hair? How do you deal with it?

-Jessica C. Andrews

Basic Locing Fundamentals : Part 1 Bunching Up Beauty

We have twisted. We have braided. Naturally the next step for many of us is just locing this stuff up!! ( At least that how it went for me lol). This article seeks to inform the average person on how the locking process works. There are so many ways to loc one's hair that I could literally write a book on this topic, but for the purpose of this article i will keep it simple . The most commonly used methods to loc natural hair is free form, palm roll, and starting locs from braids or twists.  Now this is only a taste of the many ways we loc. Advanced topics on all of my hair series ( braiding , locking , twisting, and protective styling) All coming soon:)

Free Form

Free form locs are exactly that! All one needs to know for this method is how to keep the hair clean as mentioned in our previous hair article  "Tool kit for healthy hair success" . You simply let the hair mat on its on with out parting or combing and your free form locs will do just that....Form. Some people may opt to gently separate their hair with their fingers to give their forming locs more definition. Others may opt out of that option and simply allow their hair to form however it freely does.

Palm Rolling

Tools you will need for palm rolling are usually a rat tailed comb, alot of hair clamps( to keep hair separated) and your favorite locing gel ( preferably natural of course). Part the hair with your desired method ( most people use the box parting method). The size of the part part determines the size of the loc so please keep this in mind when forming your locs. Most people need at least an inch of hair to start this process. Saturate the portion of hair that you have parted with your natural locing gel. Proceed the take the rat tailed comb and use the teeth of the comb to twirl the hair in a circular motion to create a "cylinder cone" in the client's head. Repeat this process throughout the entire head and you are done. If hair is longer than an inch when re tightening you can literally take the hair (after u applied the gel to the entire loc) in your palm and roll both palms in a twisting motion. Another option may be to tighten the hair by only apply the gel to the root of the loc and literally twisting the roots with your fingers.

Creating Locks From Twists or Braids

To create locks from twists or braid simply part in desired method and braid or twist hair as explained in my previous articles  Basic Braiding Methods and  Twisting Methods Part 2 .
Wash and maintain hair as you normally would but in a more careful manner being sure not to unravel the twists or braids. You can proceed after getting some new growth to palm roll or twists the roots as explained previously. Many people opt for this method of starting locks because it is a bit more secure than the palm rolling or comb coil method alone. 

NOTE: With ALL Methods mentioned above hair takes about 6 months on average to look loced.

Stayed tuned for our PART 2 of our locing series adding on the add on and special locing methods. Hope you have enjoyed:) I know I did:)
By M Kyles of Kyles Natural