Where the Amla At, Tho? - Using Amla Oil to Promote Hair Growth

#Repost
#KnowYoIngredients
#TruthInAdvertising

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Remember that one time when I went to India?  Well, besides hipster trinkets like my fake nose ring, a gorgeous, ornate clutch and ALL the pashmina scarves, I also brought back a few beauty secrets!  Indian women are known for their strong, long, healthy locks.  And heads like this--


-- didn't even turn heads over there (well, except for ours).  Dope hair is what they do.  So when I was offered top shelf henna from M.S. Bitta and homemade amla oil from one of our hosts, Shakuntala, I didn't turn down nothin' but my collar.  I've been dipping into my private stash for the last 3 weeks and while the henna is not all that different, *insert Katt Williams voice* this sh*t right here... this amla oil situation, is something else entirely. I've been using it to pre-poo and my hair is, well.... 

#Fleekin

Amla Oil (coconut or sesame oil infused with dried amla pieces/powder) has been a staple in Indian households for centuries, and when used regularly as a pre-poo treatment, results in darker, shinier, THICKER hair.  They claim that it promotes hair growth and reduces premature hair fall.   I had heard all of this, so she didn't need to convince me... but my previous experiences with amla oil had been less than productive.   

1. Soft Sheen Carson Optimum Amla Oil- ($11/5oz)  I was gifted a few bottles last year and they were promptly re-gifted when I flipped the bottle over to check out the ingredients.  As you know, I'm all about that first five... if the 'featured ingredient' is suspiciously absent from the top of the list, I'm not here for it.  #WheresTheAmlaAtTho   In this case, it was number 8... of 10 ingredients... after the fragrance.  It's Natural Hair101, folks-- ingredients near the end of the list are typically comprised of less than 1% of the total. TheBeautyBrains appropriately refers to situations like this as 'fairy dust'--
'They are added to increase consumer appeal. These ingredients are also called pixie dust, fairy dust, marketing ingredients and a few other names. These are truly “inactive” because they’re added ONLY because they look good as part of the label. They serve no function other than to attract consumer’s attention. These ingredients include botanicals, vitamins and minerals, (some) proteins and just about anything else “natural.” You can easily spot these ingredients because they are often incorporated into the product name (Sun-kissed Raspberry Shampoo) or placed on the front label (lotion with jojoba oil). This depends on the product – if you have a shampoo with natural jojoba oil . It’s likely to be used as a featured ingredient. It would be at a very low level and it would be rinsed away.'
I cannot. They're charging what it would cost to source amla from India, except they don't have the decency to actually put amla in the damn bottles! 

#WhyTheseBrandsGottaLieFor #CantFoolMe #Next 

Mumbai #TheOuttakes


As the sun sets on our Indian adventure, I wanted to take a moment to thank you guys for coming along with me.  Your support, hilarious comments, engagement and prayers were felt and sincerely appreciated.  I also want to take a moment to thank the sponsors, Romwe and HennaSooq.  There aren't a lot of brands that support these types of initiatives (including some of your favorites) and these are two that put their money where their mouth is.  I hope you will support them.  So before we leave, check out what we left out--

Read On!>>>

Real G's...

and the winner is... Saundra Irving! Congrats, chica! Email me your address to [email protected]

I Wasn't Ready #FromMumbaitoPakistan

The winners are!
 
Jackie W- $100 Romwe giftcard
 
Tieasha- Year's supply of Hennasooq's Red Raj
 
Congrats!  Email me your mailing address to [email protected] using what you won as the subject line! Thanks!
________________________
 
when you riding with a crew and you ready to go home, but they heading to another spot... #HelpMeSomebody

Since we didn't anticipate the decadence of our second spot, we ended up ringing in the New Year, alone,  from one of our big-ass windows. 

 Hubby says my silhouette looked like the scarecrow from the Wiz #ItDoesTho

We popped a complimentary bottle of champagne (which hubby was mixing with Hennessy for some reason-- not I tho, #BrownWillBringYouDown), listened to T.I. go in on "About the Money" #MissMeWitIt and let our eyeballs feast on the spectacle-- 5 independent firework shows, spotlights, candle-lit lanterns and hella people on the street. So instead of heading to the club (to be subjected to lame house music), we simply got fresh, and stepped just outside the hotel doors onto the waterfront to #GoUp with the locals. #AsRealAsItGets

#RosesForBoogie

I woke up on the first day of 2015 with a mission… to do absolutely nothing.  Not even blog... and I love y'all more than Kanye loves Kanye, so you know I was tired. We knew we had scheduled a brief street food tour with Reality Tours that evening, so the plan was to chill all day in our hotel-house, get a little culture and then turn-up that night with our new friend Nyasha.   She was coming down for drinks with an associate and then planned to hook up with us later that evening so we could hit these streets.  Oh, and because she lives 40 minutes away, we invited her to crash with us! #SleepOver #NoNewFriends #OneNewFriend

That WAS the plan.

Read On!>>>

'Opulence, I has it'. The Trident Hotel in Mumbai


#Bollywoodin #LikeARockStar

I must apologize in advance for the ballerific nature of this post. I'm no stranger to the red carpet treatment and we've stayed in fabulous cribs in fabulous destinations but *insert Katt Williams voice* this sh*t right here... this is something else entirely.

I called ahead to the Trident, a 5 star hotel in Nariman Point, Mumbai, to alert them of our pending arrival from Bandra West. #ExpectUs

Now I ain't gonna lie, I told them I was kind of a big deal *bats eyelashes innocently* 


...and after what I assume was a brief Google search, they informed us that they were happy to provide complimentary accommodations.  I'm thinking they're going to give us a suite. Dope, right?

Little did I know...

Read On!>>>

Called to Serve- Young, Black & Single in India


 
Yesterday, I shared the emotional story of how Nyasha and I connected.  Today, I want you to read the amazing stories she told me and hubby over dinner, about life as a single, natural, Black, Christian woman living and working in India! Enjoy!

Tell us your story- How did you get here? How long have you been in Mumbai?
Well, I have always had a desire to work and serve internationally. I had an amazing opportunity to study abroad in South Africa and Namibia during my undergrad years at NYU and since then I’ve felt my life mission was to work internationally with organizations, businesses, churches, individuals and cities to help them to be their best.

This March a friend at my church in New York told me about an organization in India that he was working with called Vision Rescue. They were based in Mumbai and focused on educating children in the slums, rescuing and restoring young woman/girls from sex trafficking and proving health care for those in need. I instantly became interested and found out that the NGO had volunteer opportunities. I felt that this could be my first open door into international work and so I asked my current employer (a New York based NGO and Church- The Legacy Center/Christ Tabernacle) if I could go on a short-term mission trip to India for six weeks. Well, they agreed and to show their support gave me a six week paid leave to come explore and serve in India! Who does that?? This for me was a sign that God was opening up the doors for me to pursue my dreams and purpose of serving overseas. Before I left for my trip I actually decided to give notice and move out of my beautiful apartment in Harlem. I had such a strong feeling and belief that once I got to India more doors would open for me to remain long term.

Read On!>>>

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