Shikamoo Diamond Platnumz "Salome"

Ok don’t get it twisted, I am and will always be Team Ali Kiba but this new Diamond Platnumz feat. Rayvanny song “Salome” is hot.  And I may actually love it. The song is a modern version or remake of Saida Karoli’s “Maria Salome”.  The original song is a classic and this one may as well become one.  I like the swag and overall vibe of the video. The lyrics I'm still trying to decipher with my basic Swahili lol. The female dancers are killing it with the choreography.  Hamisa Mobeto is beautiful and I am hoping this appearance will boost her modeling career.  My only critique is some of the clothes and styling on the video are more West African than Tanzanian.  I would have loved and appreciated the video more if Tanzanian attire/accessories were used instead. For example in one of the shots Hamisa is wearing on her shoulders and head what appears to be Coral beads, which are traditionally worn by West Africans. Can we also note the on screen chemistry between Diamond and Hamisa? I like them as a couple.

Here is the original version by Saida Karoli

All in all I'm glad Bongo Flava is winning and putting Tanzania on the map.

Black Girls Fight for Acceptance of their Natural Hair

In case you missed it…Pretoria High School in South Africa was trending two days ago when black female students protested against the school’s code of conduct that restricted how they could wear their natural hair.  Black students have reported that faculty members have instructed them to straighten their hair and banned them from wearing afros (which is not listed in the code of conduct).  No matter if the afro is kept neat, the girls were told to “chemically straighten” their hair because it was “untidy” or “looked like a bird’s nest”.  The girls are protesting because they believe that the code of conduct is discriminatory against black students.

Zulaikha Patel, one of the girls protesting, has had to change schools three times due to her hair.  She has rocked an afro since she was a toddler but has also been bullied for wearing her hair in its natural state. 

Photo: Courtesy of Twitter/lennoxbacela

Image obtained from HowSouthAfrica.com

Image obtained from HowSouthAfrica.com

The protests have garnered both national and international attention.  South African’s Economic Freedom Fighters party accuses the school of seeking “to directly suppress blackness in its aesthetics and culture” which are also my thoughts exactly.  I find what is happening in this school ironic given that this is taking place in Africa, a continent predominantly black. And let us not forget South Africa's racism history.

 

I love the whole natural hair movement, but it truly isn’t for me.  I did try to transition to natural hair and went one year without relaxing my hair (I have chemically relaxed my hair since age 15). That was such a disaster because I ended up damaging my hair. I am convinced that my hair type/texture cannot be managed naturally. I threw in the towel and went back to using relaxers.  I decided that going natural wasn’t for me because of my personality and lifestyle.  Maintaining natural hair requires time, effort, and patience… none of which I wish to spare on hair. So it is entirely a personal choice.  I do admire my sister, friends, and coworkers that rock natural hairstyles.  I vowed not to use any chemicals on my daughters’ hair however they may choose to relax it once they turn 18.

I am not sure why other races find natural hairstyles (afros, locs, twists, braids) intimidating.  I once read a report that wearing natural hair may deter an employer from offering employment. I am sure corporate America isn’t exactly welcoming naturalistas with open arms.  The U.S military recently reviewed its definition of acceptable natural hair styles after receiving criticism and backlash to previous rules that banned afros, locs, and two strand twists.  According to TIME, all three branches of the military now allow two-strand twists and increased the size of acceptable braids.  But let us not forget about Olympic Gold medalist Gabby Douglas and the criticism she received about her hair not looking up to par during the Olympics.  What was worse was the criticism was coming from Black people!!! As a society, we have to change our perception of what good hair is, and accept that black hair is also beautiful.  Let us set aside the notion that European hair is the standard to compare all other hair types and styles.  

If you studied in Africa what hairstyles were allowed and which ones were banned? As an adult now what are your thoughts about those restrictions? Please comment below.

Check out 2frochics on Instagram for natural hair inspiration

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How do you Khanga?

Oh the multifaceted Khanga. Such a staple in the wardrobe of the east African woman.  I mean, khangas are used everyday and for everything.  From wearing them while doing house chores, while attending funerals,  or wearing as a throw when it gets chilly outside.  Lately I like to use my khangas as a head wrap.  The khanga material is flexible and soft making it perfect for head wraps.  I bought a bunch during my trip back home (Tanzania) this past summer.

To stock up on beautiful Khangas visit HausOfMaurafriK

Blushes - Brown girl friendly

Blush is an essential item in a makeup collection. A good blush will highlight, brighten, and illuminate your face with minimal effort. The problem I faced when I started getting into makeup was finding the right shades for my dark complexion.  I ran into blushes that were not pigmented enough to appear through my dark skin. Through research, trial and error, I have narrowed my favorite makeup brands that sell blushes that are women of color (WOC) friendly. At the top of my list is NARS, followed by MAC, SLEEK Makeup, and Milani.  I generally select vibrant berry hues since they complement my skin’s cool undertones.  In the summer I like to have that sun-kissed glow look so I wear blushes with earth tone plus shimmering hues.

Top right to Bottom:

Taj Mahal

Albatross

Exhibit A

Sunrise

Sweet as Cocoa

Berry Amore

So the NARS blushes are a little bit pricey but a little goes a LONG way with these blushes so its worth the investment.  Same goes for MAC blushes, you truly get your money worth.

Swatches from top to bottom: Berry Amore, Albratoss, Sunrise, Taj Mahal, Sweet as Cocoa, and Exhibit A.  (Don't let the swatches scare you, I swatched them on my arm just to give you an idea of how pigmented they are.  When applied with a brush on the cheeks they are quite beautiful!

Swatches from top to bottom: Berry Amore, Albratoss, Sunrise, Taj Mahal, Sweet as Cocoa, and Exhibit A.  (Don't let the swatches scare you, I swatched them on my arm just to give you an idea of how pigmented they are.  When applied with a brush on the cheeks they are quite beautiful!

Sauti Sol ft. Ali Kiba Create East African Banger!

When Kenya meets Tanzania, great things happen.  The Kenyan group Sauti Sol has collaborated with Tanzania’s finest Ali Kiba on a new song “Unconditionally Bae”.  The song is accompanied by two videos, one shot in beautiful Mombasa, Kenya and the other is a choreography video that includes the mentioned artist. 

Ok so you already know that I am an Ali Kiba fan (please check my previous posts) but I also like the group Sauti Sol.  I loved their “Sura Yako” song so much that my entire bridal party performed a choreographed routine to the song at the beginning of the wedding reception.  The guys have great vocal capabilities, and their fashion style is fresh and hip, and they are proud to show off their Kenyan culture.  I appreciate the fact that they chose to shoot this video in their home country of Kenya, rather than South Africa (yes, S.A is beautiful but so is Tanzania and Kenya, I need more artists to be proud and show off their countries).  The choreography video is on point. I am sure we all are going to try these moves on the dance floor (or in the privacy of our living room/bathrooms lol).

Jaden Smith is the Face of Louis Vuitton's New Womenswear Campaign

In case you missed it Jaden Smith is the face of the new Louis Vuitton’s Spring 2016 womenswear campaign.  Yes, Will and Jada Smith’s son is modeling women’s clothes.  This is not a surprise since Jaden has been challenging society’s norm with his fashion sense.  He has publicly worn skirts and dresses for various high profile occasions. 

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