Monday, April 28, 2014

All Hail Jamaican Black Castor Oil

If I had to choose a favorite oil, it would have to be Jamaican Black Castor Oil (JBCO), hands down. JBCO is different from the castor oil you might find at Whole Foods, which is typically clear or slightly opaque. JBCO has a very rich caramel color caused by the fact that the castor beans used in it are roasted and ground, producing a high ash content, increasing the effectiveness of the oil. Below are a few of my favorite uses for JBCO.

JBCO for Thickening Hair
Castor oil is wonderful for thickening hair. No one ever believes me when I say this, but my hair was pretty thin a couple years ago. Don't get me wrong, I think I have average density, but the diameter of each individual strand prior to using JBCO regularly was very thin. This caused my hair to be very fragile and easily breakable, which is obviously not good for the health of natural hair. I've been using JBCO for a couple years now, and I have definitely noticed a change in the thickness of my hair. One tell-tale sign is my twists used to come out "scalp-y," but now they're full and plump.

JBCO for Regrowing Hair
I've had some damage to my edges because of braids that were done way too tightly. I use JBCO directly on my edges about twice a week. Several months ago, I said I'd be taking weekly pictures of my edges to track progress. I clearly failed at that, but I have noticed some regrown hair. I'll do an update on this at some point.

JBCO for Locking in Moisture
Water moisturizes your hair and oil locks in that moisture. I love using JBCO to lock in moisture because it makes my hair soft and fluffy, and also gives it excellent shine. Oftentimes, after I wash and deep condition my hair, I section my damp hair and apply a small amount of JBCO, focusing on the ends of my hair. I twist each section and let my hair air dry. If you try this, do note that JBCO is a very thick oil and a little goes a long way. I like to use a hair cream as a second step sometimes (LOC method), but honestly, JBCO is enough for my hair when the weather isn't too cold/dry.

What's your favorite oil?

Tuesday, April 15, 2014


I've been hesitant to hop on the crop top bandwagon for a few reasons. I'm usually not one for prescriptive clothing for one's 'body type' and do, in fact, agree that if it comes in my size, I have every right to wear it, thankyouverymuch. One of my hesitations about crop tops is that at a size 14/16/18 (depends on the brand), I have a belly that I don't necessarily want to draw attention to.

Don't get me wrong; I am all about the fat acceptance movement and even have a body positive tumblr (warning: some NSFW content). This blog and the tumblr community have done wonders to boost my confidence and has allowed me to truly recognize beauty at any size. So, in line with my growing confidence, I thought to myself, 'Yes, I have a belly, but this crop top  has been sitting in my closet, with the tags still on, for nearly a year....' and decided to finally wear it.

Crop tops read pretty 90s to me, especially mine with 'WORD' written all over it. I fully embraced that 90s theme by pairing the top with an open denim shirt and printed pants. I rounded out the outfit with hoop earrings, a wooden statement necklace, and some grey Olsenboye ankle boots I got from JCP a few years ago.

Outfit details: 
'WORD' crop top: ASOS // Denim shirt: F21+ (sold out; similar here)// Printed pants: F21+ (sold out; similar here) // Boots: Olsenboye

I was pretty happy with the resulting outfit. I felt very playful and wore two little afro-puffs in my hair to complete the ensemble.  

Would you wear a crop top?