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E37 - Relatability Sandwich

Curl Next Door Episode 37 - "Relatability Sandwich" - Featuring Michelle Buteau and

Andre Walker.

Hosts: Stephanie Podolak and Tamara Robbins Griffith.




Tamara: Welcome to Curl Next Door Podcast 2023


Stephanie: 2023. Hello, Tamara Robbins Griffith.


Tamara: And hello Stephanie Podolak. How are you?


Stephanie: Good. Happy New Year.


Tamara: Happy New Year to you and to our listeners. We hope you had an amazing holiday season and that your, your January was, as easy as it could be. January is a hard month, I think, for


Stephanie: It is a hard month, and I know by the time you hear this episode, it'll be the second month of the year, but it's our first episode of the year, so we still feel entitled to say Happy New Year.


Tamara: Yeah. And, that's about it. 


Stephanie: So, what's been going on on that? Do, do, do Curl Desk.


Tamara: So I, I've, you know, been on a lot of the, uh, forums. The curly hair forums, and it's been a busy month of news and conversations and just like a lot of interesting stuff has bubbled up. And I thought, you know, we can't record something in January without, without talking about this. So people may or may not know about the Mielle hair oil controversy.


Stephanie: Do


Tamara: Have you tell me, tell me like, have you heard anything? Do you know anything? Are you


Stephanie: I don't know about, no, I don't know about this one, but there's some other controversies that I'll share on the next episode.


Tamara: Okay. So we'll kind of unpack this, um, Mielle hair oil controversy. If you don't, aren't aware. So, A TikTok trend as everything goes back to TikTok these days it seemed, is reigniting discussion of the ways which white creators appropriate beauty practices from black and brown communities.


So that's kind of what this bubbles up to. So at the very end of December, a TikTok'er named Alix Earle. She's a 22 year old influencer, and she has a huge following over 3 million people. So quite a lot of reach.


Stephanie: Yeah, that's pretty significant. She American.


Tamara: yeah, she's American.


And so, you know, some of these people have quite a lot of power and influence, right? She posted a video listing her top Amazon purchases of 2022 and among them was, Mielle organics, rosemary, mint, scalp, and hair strengthening oil. So it's a product typically used by those with highly textured curly coilly hair.


And Mielle is a black-owned brand that specializes in natural hair product. So she gave it a very positive review. And some people now call this, the Alix Earle Effect where somebody says something is great and then it completely sells out. And I think what part of what happened too is that she's testing it, then other white influencers also are testing this product.


Stephanie: I think I know where this is going. Oh,


Tamara: yeah. Yeah. So, Okay, so the, I'm reading from a blog called High Snobiety, high snobiety, don't know how to pronounce that properly. Uh, this, their story was published on January 3rd, updated on the 12th. So ultimately, just to kind of fast forward, the products selling out everywhere the prices go up.


And then people who have always used this brand since its inception, you know, can't, don't have access to it anymore. It's being bought up by a lot of white people and also because ultimately it is too heavy for a lot of the hair types that are trying this oil for the first time, it's actually a bit too heavy and not really gonna do what they want it to do, right?


So you have this compounding effect of it's not available to people who really like it and wanna use it and it works well for. A lot of people buying it are then disappointed in it and posting negative reviews about the product because it's not really meant for their hair type and so on and so forth.


Now, the owner of that brand, I'm sure was happy to have this influx of interest and I think she's pretty well liked and well respected. But in other cases, what's happened when, when this occurs, then the brands start kind of chasing that new market and reformulating their product. So then it,


Stephanie: negative reviews about it, so they're adjusting?


Tamara: Apparently this has happened with other brands like Shea Moisture and you know, the, the black community is saying, you know, Hey, we have fewer products to choose from, to begin with. And then some of these products are getting co-opted and then they don't even work for us anymore. Cuz the, the company is saying like, especially if it's highly corporate and it's been bought by a larger parent company, 


Stephanie: It's all about the numbers.


Tamara: It's about num.


I mean, part of it is sort of like this piece of capitalism where, you know, these things, the, the, the brands. I mean, it depends on the brand, it depends on the owner of the brand, it depe, you know, who's in in charge at the top. but you know, like hair oiling is very important and in the black community, and so specifically when it comes to oil, it's like that's a thing that a lot of them do because as you and I have talked about, just in curly hair tending, curly, wavy, coy hairs tending to be drier because of that curl pattern, it's harder for those natural oils from the scalp to go down.


So it just, if you have wavy hair that feels dry or like a looser curl pattern that feels dry, you might need some moisturizing masks or what have you. But a lot of type four and type three hair really needs the oils more, moreso.


Stephanie: And actually it'll be a good segue to the next thing we're gonna talk about, which is hair porosity. Because the more research I did on hair porosity, the subject of oil comes up quite a bit too. So that could be a factor on, yeah, that could be a factor on how you need it or don't need it.


Tamara: Did I just say I'm interesting because what I meant was I'm interested to hear your, your, your scientific deep dive. This particular article I was referencing is saying, you know, the, the white creators are framing Mielle hair oil as this novel discovery, but the product isn't new, and it's nice that.


This black-owned brand is having a spike in searches, in searches and whatnot but people are scared they're gonna lose access to it when the price, I think I read something about the price on some websites jumping from like $10 to $30


for this little bottle of oil. In 2015, that's when Shea Moisture had reformulated one of its most popular products to better suit, a looser curl pattern of their white customers.


And then people got particularly nervous because following all of this happening in the first, you know, week of January or 10 days of January, then on January 11th, and again, back to marketing, capitalism, viral trends, all these things, Proctor and Gamble announced it was acquiring Mielle, so made people feel even more nervous about it.




Stephanie: yeah.


Tamara: So, 


Stephanie: And P&G, I mean, like any of these CPG companies, it's all about the numbers. It really is.


Tamara: Yeah. I think the thing is it's not about saying if you're white, you're not allowed to use that product. 


It's something to consider that maybe that product isn't right for your hair type anyway, and maybe just leave it. Right. So what's interesting is, and that it was brought up like Tracee Ellis Ross and Pattern, which I haven't, I still haven't tried, but I thought, oh, that looks like an amazing line.


Love Tracee Ellis Ross. We talked about her on the show. 


Like she's created that line for, for black people and for, for tighter curl patterns. It's, it's kind of like, it's not meant for me even though I, we think of this whole like, curly community, we always strive to be super inclusive from the type two A waves to the four C coils, right?


We wanna include everybody, but different hair types need different things. And frankly, on the further end of the hair typing chart people are coming at dealing with their hair from a very different life experience in general, right? So it's, it's just, complicated where it's like, there's so much nuance, there's so many layers.


But I think we have to kind of keep open-minded about all these nuances of sort of intersectionality like we've always known. It's not just beauty, it's so much deeper than that. It's about how you feel about yourself in society. It's about feminism, it's about sexism, it's about racism. It's all of these things. try to stay aware of some of these issues that are happening and bubbling up in our society. Instead of being dismissive and saying like, I should be able to buy whatever hair oil I want. It's like, well, yeah, okay, but maybe take a minute to do some introspection or, or self-reflection or learning or education.


Stephanie: Yeah, but, okay, so I think that's an interesting perspective. I also see the other perspective, which is you're a business that's trying to launch a product and you want to transact on that product. You want customers to buy that product. 


Tamara: Mm-hmm.


Stephanie: I hear what you're saying about trying to respect different groups and the maybe original intention of that product sale. But on the other hand, if this item is in the public domain and you can buy it on Amazon and you can buy it at the local drugstore and wherever else, and it's on a shelf that's available to the public, then everyone in the public should be a allowed to buy it. And for a lot of people, they don't potentially even know the backbeat, right? They may not know the history of this product. They may not know the founder or the owner or the initial intention of this product, and that it was probably developed with a very specific community in mind. But when you're shopping at the beauty store and you're going down the aisle and you're looking for a new hair product, you're not gonna research all the background of this hair product.


You're going to see, oh, this oil looks great. , maybe I've heard it talked about, maybe I haven't. And so I'm gonna try it and put it in my cart. I don't know that you should be censored from being able to buy whatever you want.


Tamara: The average person who has zero background or awareness of this. Yeah. You know, you're gonna go out there and do what you're gonna do and buy things to try them. And not everybody's like deeply immersed in these communities and listening to these conversations.


So I think it's more that, like for myself, having researched this, having listened to these voices and point of view, my perspective would be that now for me, I don't need to go out and buy that. I'll just think twice about it. Especially if, and here's the thing, as we're trying different things for our, our hair types and you know, we, you and I have always been like, let's keep testing, let's keep trying new things, new techniques, new products to see what works best.


So if I felt like, oh my God, this hair oil makes my hair look the best it's ever been in my entire life and I just love it, then you know, maybe it does work for me, but I know there's like 1000 other things I could choose out there. So I'm not specifically gonna go after the one that I know is kind of impacting.


Black communities or you know, people of colour who have a tighter curl pattern than me.


Stephanie: Sure, and don't get me wrong, I mean, obviously once you're educated about the topic, and you know, by making that choice, it means that someone else doesn't have access to it. Of course, like that's when your values and morals come into play and you're gonna make an informed decision. I think perhaps some of this responsibility lies with the influencer who promoted it and maybe should have done a little bit of research.


I mean, there's a little bit of responsibility involved with having a position of that sort of influence, and they should have done a bit more research, and they should have educated their followers on the implications of this choice.


Tamara: Yeah. I mean, Absolutely. There's a lot of influencers out there and when I say influencers, social media, influencers and also magazines, right? And online websites, like, whatever, if it's Glamour, Elle, Vogue, promoting these products all over the place and just generally putting forward information without taking responsibility for the, the effect that it has, right?


So, I mean, I, I've been listening to Maintenance Phase, a podcast a lot and, you know, they, they talk about the responsibility of, of journalists. So it's the same for a social media influencer. There's people up and down who, you know, Cosmo for instance. Like put forward this whole, put this woman of the year, I don't know what year it was, but she was like a.


They call it illness influencer, you know, like, oh, I have cancer. And then she gets millions of followers and it was all a lie, 


and it was all a lie. She didn't actually have cancer, and she was a, like pathological liar, I can't remember her name now. And, Cosmo had put her on one of their lists and not really, 


Stephanie: Done the research, which


Tamara: not really done the research at all.


And then, it's not just that this woman is a pathological liar, and then the spotlight is held up and she's, you know, it's like she's telling people with cancer to like not get chemotherapy and they can die. And she's telling them to eat a green drink, a green smoothie. So like, there's a lot of responsibility that goes along with that and, and people just don't do the research.


So yes, it's not just on the, it's not just the responsibility of the consumer in, in this. Kind of instance, if we look at the Mielle hair oil as kind of a, an example of other things, it's the responsibility of these brands as well and whether they care or not. I don't know. It's just, it's nuanced and it's complex.


Stephanie: It is, and also in fairness, we don't know the backstory. It's possible that this brand sent a sample to this influencer in the hopes of getting coverage, in which case the brand is responsible for choosing who they sent their samples to.


I mean, it's, it's a multi-layered onion for sure. I have empathy for all steps and feedback of everything you described.


Like it sucks if you are a fan of a product and have been loyal and buying it for years, and now you're paying triple the price and you have a hard time getting access.


Tamara: Mm-hmm.


Stephanie: It sucks. It totally sucks. But the initial intent of all of this could have been totally innocent, and the influencer could have been helping out this brand, right?


And the brand could have sent her the sample. And anyway, I, I can see why it's so controversial at every step of, of the


Tamara: Right. And so there's been just so much discussion throughout this whole month of January and I think it's an interesting thing to be aware of, to be educated about. And you know, it felt like how could you and I record a podcast without kind of talking about this going on in the community? And even for our listeners, right, just who, who maybe weren't aware of that when they go shopping for products.


Like, who is the product intended for? Is it really gonna work on my hair type? You know?




Stephanie: I think that's unreal. Yeah. I think that's unrealistic, to be honest with you. Like if you're shopping for hair product and you're just gonna throw something in your cart, no one's gonna stand there for 20 minutes doing research on all the products.


Tamara: no, you're not. But I mean, not while you're shopping, but I think like sometimes you're, I mean, I think of this as like your, your clothing, all of your consumption in general, your clothing, your, groceries. Like everybody's got different values, right? So maybe we think about, in my house, we think about where our meat came from, and is it a factory farm or is it, you know, somewhere, blah, blah, blah.




Stephanie: And wear your clothes are manufactured. Are they manufactured in a safe environment or in a terrible factory somewhere awful.


Tamara: Like how do I, 


Stephanie: do 


they treat their labor, labor force that kind of.


Tamara: how do I feel about this? Is it kind of slow fashion? Is it fast fashion by purchase? So it's, it's kind of more like with your hair care products too. You're gonna be investigating certain brands on Instagram or whatever before you're actually in the store. That's happening. And, uh, you know, it's a lot and, and one thing that I feel like kind of connects into it is like, Alecia May had a really good point, 


Stephanie: Alecia May the founder of CurlyCon, who we had on as on our last episode.


Tamara: right. So, I mean, I don't know if this exactly lines up properly with this TikTok'er, and Mielle, but you know, she said when we're watching influencers and getting hair advice. They're talking about what worked for their hair type. So, you know, it's not, it's never a one size fits all. And there, there may be some value in like, following people who now this person on, on TikTok had sort of straight hair with maybe a little bit of a bend in it.


So that's a, that's a kind of outlier if she really liked it. But generally speaking, it's worthwhile, like I think following people who have a similar hair type to you, if you're looking for actual product recommendations, not, and styling techniques, because it, it may not help to, to follow advice of people whose hair is vastly different than you when they say this.


This really worked,


Stephanie: Yeah. Okay. So this is a great segue to hair porosity because when, if that's okay with you, um, because when I was doing some research about hair porosity, basically the story is you could have the same curl types. So let's say you and I were both three a.


Tamara: Mm-hmm.


Stephanie: the products could work totally different because of our hair porosity.


So it's just so hard to know. I mean, there's, it's like snowflakes everyone, everybody's different, you know? 


Yeah, Okay. So Tamara and I have been threatening to talk about hair porosity for, I don't know, since episode one pretty much. And we finally got around to doing it.


And, uh, so basically hair porosity could impact the type of product that you use and the order in which you use them. And so what we wanted to do was do a porosity test. And there's some controversy about how to do porosity tests too. I don't know if you knew that.


Tamara: No, I didn't know that.


Stephanie: The common way to do it is to do a float test.


So you have clean hair and you put some of your hair in a cup of water, and if it floats, it's low porosity. If it sinks, it's high porosity, and if it floats, then sinks, it's medium porosity. Did you do the test?


Tamara: I did.


Stephanie: was yours?


Tamara: I was low porosity and I thought I was high porosity before I went into it. And so I don't know if I somehow internalized this notion of high porosity from other experiences in the past. But yeah, 


Stephanie: Okay, so 


Tamara: on top of the water and I 


Stephanie: As did mine. As did mine. And I also thought I was high porosity. And so some of the research I found said all of this is B.S.. This water test is a stupid test, and it doesn't actually tell you what you're supposed to do. So one of the articles I was reading linked me to a porosity online quiz.


So I'll tell you what it is. It's at


Tamara: Curls. Bought like a robot,


Stephanie: yeah. curlsbot, yeah. C U R L S B O P O R O S I T Y. And it's a curly hair porosity test. And


Tamara: okay.


Stephanie: when I did the curls bot porosity quiz, they said I was high porosity. And the reason I always thought I was high porosity is because it takes forever for my hair to dry.


Tamara: right?


Stephanie: but low porosity hair dries really fast. 


So these two things told me two totally different end results.


Tamara: right. So where do you go from there?


Stephanie: So where do I go from there? So I think it's you test the theories for one, see if it works. Then you test the theories for the other and see if it works.


Tamara: I'm doing it now. I'm doing


Stephanie: So while Tamara's doing it, there's, so basically what the result is supposed to tell you is some advice on how to use the product. So if you're low porosity, I, there's a great article on that I'm referencing here. If you're low porosity, your cuticles are close together and tight on the hair shaft which prevents water and moisturizer from penetrating your hair. So they say if you have low porosity hair product sits on your curls and weighs them down and could leave them with buildup. Your curls tend to look limp and have not a lot of volume, and it can take your curls hours to completely air dry. So here's the other thing with this article. Every article I read said the opposites, like I also read that high porosity hair takes a long time to dry, but this article says low porosity hair takes a long time to dry.


Tamara: Mm. So it's



Stephanie: on this description, maybe I am, what's that?


Tamara: it's a word. Salad of confusion.


Stephanie: super confusing. And then conversely, high porosity hair, they're saying your cuticle hair cuticle is always open, so it absorbs moisture more easily, but it also loses moisture fast, which means it could loo look really great when you leave the house.


And then by the end of the day it's dull and dry.


Tamara: Mm-hmm.


Stephanie: and it gets breaks and knots and tangles more often. Your hair could also soak up a lot of oils and conditioners without getting weighed down, and you always have frizz regardless of what you use, which is also me. See, this is why it's confusing for me,


Tamara: Mm-hmm. . Yeah. I mean, this quiz tells me I have normal porosity,


Stephanie: which is different than the water test that you did.


Tamara: which said I have low porosity. But the other thing I've read about poor hair porosity is that if you use a lot of product, , silicone oils and butters and, that can kind of, not clog your porosity, but kind of create a coating. So even if you're, you can't really tell the accurate porosity. So it, so what I tried doing, I got the low porosity result with the water test and I thought, well, maybe it's because I've been using some heavier product.


So I actually bought a clarifying shampoo


Stephanie: so I was just gonna say, and how did that work?


Tamara: I didn't real, so I got the same result. I was pretty surprised. It still floated on top of the water after the clarifying shampoo. But, I'm just kind of experimenting with this whole shake up of perhaps some of the products I've been using and experimenting with clarifying based on some of the information I've seen about, you know, my hair type online to certain things to avoid, certain things to do.


Basically, just kind of experimenting with clarifying like once every couple weeks.


Stephanie: Hmm. And then still, still doing shampoo, regular shampoo, conditioner in between.


Tamara: Yes. Regular shampoo and conditioner in between. Still sometimes like a mask every couple weeks, maybe not on the same day I clarify. And then also because I think it always worked well for my hair. I've reintroduced Olaplex three, which is a bond repair, not specifically for curls, but good for curls if you bleach your hair, which I do.


So I think that was an important step for me to reintroduce. And then the clarifying, interesting. I don't love the way it feels cuz it feels like a really harsh shampoo. But I think it probably is a good idea to have in the rotation. When we started this podcast, cuz it's been a while now, we were like, let's break down curly girl method, right?


Like, let's try and understand it cuz there were so many rules and I've heard a lot of people saying like, it's B.S. it doesn't make sense. Like, because the whole notion of the curly girl method is like one set of rules for everybody. But if we go by, there's a bunch of different curl types and different types of hair and different curl patterns need different things, then, there's not an, there's not a lot of nuance.


Stephanie: Yeah. And also who wants to live by a bunch of rules. No thanks. Um, I would say, and also just, it's still nice to get a blowout every once in a while. I don't wanna be told I'm not allowed to get a


Tamara: Yeah. No, no.


Stephanie: so, okay. Curious then after your clarifying shampoo and the Olaplex Bond treatment, how are you seeing a difference?


Tamara: I think that I'm not seeing a huge difference yet, but a lot of my products I haven't switched out yet. So, this is 


Stephanie: so it's a transition. You're in 


Tamara: I'm, I'm in transition to like, kind of, and I don't know about you and our listeners, but sometimes I have this and I have a lot of hair products, so in a closet or a curl shelf and a curl closet.


So I sh of all people should not be feeling this way, but I have this sometimes like scarcity mindset where I feel like it's either wasteful of product or wasteful of money to like get rid of something or throw it out. And it's really hard for me to just be like, I'm gonna get rid of this. I feel like I need to use up every last drop because I have it.


And so I might have product, if I have product, I'm like, yeah, it doesn't work that great on my hair, but I guess I have to use it up.


Stephanie: Yeah. Or what I've done with my gal pals is there's a few curly girls in my friends group and we've started exchanging them. I just give them 


Tamara: nice. 


Stephanie: Yeah. And like I know one day we'll get to that point with our Curl Next Door community too. I think some people would think it was gross to use a used product and other people would be delighted.


And I don't know if I mentioned this to you, but, um, a girlfriend of mine who lives in, uh, Midtown Toronto, her community actually has a, it's like the sisterhood of the traveling pants. So in the, in the group, they have a kit of half used product. Someone will get the kit and it's got, you know, a whole range of different curl products in it.


They go through the everything in the kit and they get to try everything a couple times, and then they go back into the Facebook group and say, okay, I've tried everything. I really like item number eight, so I'm gonna keep that one for me, but I'm gonna throw in a couple rejects for my own curl shelf.


Who wants it next? And so


Tamara: That is so cool and


Stephanie: Isn't that awesome? It's so 




Tamara: um, different concept than just like giving it away on a buy nothing group.


Stephanie: Yeah. And so it's sort of like, it's a curl kit, a traveling curl kit, and so everyone gets to try all these different sa it's like sampling basically. So that could be, that could be fun for your neighborhood, cuz I


know you're super 


Tamara: could be. And yeah, and you know what, people do that with clothing. So they'll take a bag and they'll say like, this is gonna be a traveling bag of size, small clothing or size, medium clothing or size large clothing. And it goes to one house. That person takes out what they want and puts in some more stuff than it goes to the next


Stephanie: Yeah, exactly the same idea. But you could do that with Curl product in your neighborhood. And then now, now you don't have guilt.


Tamara: right? Yeah. Yeah. Because yeah, a hundred percent. It's a great idea and maybe I'll try it. And as an aside, thank you for the CurlSmith product because I really do think it, it works well for me and I also, because Amelia has is kind of, she's like seven going on 13


Stephanie: He, he,


Tamara: She asked me to help style her hair and I was like, yep, but you've got like kind of loose waves so we don't wanna wave them down. So I used, I just sprayed and I didn't wanna make it complicated for her either cuz she's like, you know, just about to turn eight. So we sprayed down her hair with water to make it pretty, like, not sopping wet but wet and then just used a little bit of moose and it was fabulous on her.




looked so pretty and her like her day two was nice too.


Stephanie: Aw, that's so




Tamara: good. So thank you 


Stephanie: You're welcome. 


Tamara: with me. And just again, a testament to, you know, what works for one person and, and our hair is pretty similar. Like, maybe not the same, but, but not that different, but still different porosity


Stephanie: Totally. Yeah, so that was the CurlSmith foam, I think. And it was just way too lightweight for my hair, but her hair, it seems perfect. That's great. Oh, I'm delighted that it worked for 


Tamara: I, I liked it for me too, but again, like, I'm kind of in transition, I have so many , I'm using like, six different shampoos and conditioners and like six different styling products that I kind of rotate and do different things each day. And then I hope to learn something.


And have a revelation, but ultimately I'm too fixated on not wasting things that I, even if I felt like it was amazing or horrible, like I'd probably, it takes a lot for me to get rid of something cuz I think it absolutely doesn't work for me.


Stephanie: yeah. It's okay to let go. Marie Kondo, your curl closet. Get rid of it. Give it to someone who, who will like it more. Okay, so just to close the loop on this porosity research, there's folks, there's tons of information online, honestly, just go online and look up what to do for low, medium, or high porosity hair.


Uh, but there was one thing I noticed for low porosity hair, which was revolutionary or ins was new for me. So your goals are to infuse your strands with moisture while avoiding anything that can cause more buildup. And so they suggest, uh, a clarifying shampoo.


Tamara: Mm-hmm.


Stephanie: They suggest using it weekly, fyi. So maybe try that. But they also suggest a hair steaming treatment, which I had never heard of before. So there's this product that's a hair steamer, and it kind of looks like an electrical product, it's an appliance and it's handheld, and the ends kind of look like diffuser ends. Like there's prongs on the end.


Tamara: like a hair dryer, but it blows steam onto you.


Stephanie: Yeah. . I had no idea this kind of product existed. I couldn't imagine steaming my hair.


Tamara: Mm-hmm. ? No, I can't quite imagine that either. It seems counterintuitive to like, stay out if you're trying to reduce frizz to stay out of humidity.


Stephanie: yeah, so it sa, but I guess,


Tamara: in the styling process they would do this. Add the steam.


Stephanie: yeah, so it says it opens up the tight cuticles and allows moisture to enter.


Tamara: Mm-hmm. Well, I do know that for dry, like for, I don't know if it's about highly porous hair or just dry hair, but it's like you want to, you want your hair to like absorb moisture either through water or moisturizing products, and then also retain it, right?


Stephanie: Yeah. Oh. So there's an attachment you can use on your hair dryer.


Tamara: Mm-hmm.


Stephanie: So it says, after smoothing on your favorite hair mask, cover your hair.


Oh, okay. So I guess use the hair steamer when you already have some product in it.


Tamara: prior to drying


Stephanie: yeah, 




Tamara: to, we'll have to try this at 


Stephanie: I, I, I wonder, yeah, maybe it sounds like you use the steamer in lieu of a hair dryer, cuz this article's saying you put the attachment on your hair dryer if that's the direction you wanna go. And then once your product's in you hair, you steam it.


Tamara: I feel like you're like cooking your hair


Stephanie: I know it's probably not, yeah, it's probably not unlike, you know, when you're at the salon and they put you under the dome, which is a hair dryer. But imagine that was more like steam


Tamara: Yeah.


Stephanie: anyway. Okay. It is.


Tamara: it's interesting all these things that are out there to try and whether it or not it would work or improve your hair


Stephanie: Yeah, it seems 


frightening and not the kind of thing I would wanna purchase without having tried it. Trialed at first, I


Tamara: Right. Yeah. Cool.


Stephanie: Cool. Whew.


Tamara: Woo. 




Do, do you wanna go first? Do you 


Stephanie: Okay. No, I can go first.


Okay. So my C N D today is Michelle Buteau. 


Do you know Michelle Buteau?


Tamara: I don't, she 


Stephanie: I, 


Tamara: at this point.


Stephanie: she could be anything. And I think once it's gonna be like new car syndrome, like I'm gonna tell you about Michelle Buteau and then you're gonna just see her everywhere.


Tamara: Okay. 


Stephanie: Michelle is a comedian, actress and writer, and she's got standup comedy specials.


She's been on late night talk shows, and she has a really great ability to connect with audiences. But I think that's sort of table stakes if you're gonna be a comedian.


Tamara: Mm.


Stephanie: She was born in New Jersey, USA in the summer of 1977 to a Haitian father who was partially Lebanese and a Jamaican mother who was half French.


And you can really tell in her colouring, this like this melange of of history. She grew up in a really diverse and multicultural neighborhood. And growing up, as a result, she got exposed to a lot of different, uh, cultures and perspectives, which really influenced her comedy style and her ability to connect with a wide range of audiences.


She's been performing from a young age. She was always the class clown, always making her friends and family laugh. And she always knew from a young age that she wanted to pursue a career in comedy. And I think there was a pivotal point in her life where she could have either gone the standard road and like gotten a, you know, a proper job and stuff like that.


And she thought she would just try her hand at some comedy. And, you know, the, the rest is history.


Tamara: Uh,


Stephanie: After graduating from high school, she attended Howard University in Washington where she studied theatre and fine arts and she was able to really hone her skills as a performer and, and hone her skills, uh, in comedy.


She ended up moving back to New Jersey and started doing standup in New York and very quickly made a name for herself on the comedy scene. She was a regular at the Comedy Cellar and at the Laugh Factory, and it started attracting some of the bigger names in comedy and she ended up landing a comedy special on Netflix.


It's called Michelle Buteau- Welcome to Buteaupia.


Tamara: Okay. What year is this?


Stephanie: 2019.


Tamara: Okay.


Stephanie: Her style is pretty self-deprecating, but very approachable. For example, without giving too many spoilers in Welcome to Buteaupia. She sort of starts her set by comparing her body shape to a chicken leg, which is hilarious cuz she feels like she's big on top and then has the little legs


Tamara: Yep. Yep. Got it.


Stephanie: yeah, so her career's really taken off and, a alongside her standup career, she's also in a lot of TV and film.


She's been in the First Wives Club, Always Be My Maybe, she was in Russian Doll. She's made guest appearances on Broad City and Key and Peele and the Eric Andre show. she was in last year's Marry Me with J Lo. She also played the 




Tamara: everywhere. . 


How? How do I not know about her? I've


Stephanie: I 




Tamara: her and just kind of not connected it with a name, right?


Stephanie: Yeah. Like so oftentimes in these shows, she's always like the assistant or the best friend. She's never the main role, but she's always like the really good supporting woman in the wings sort of role.


Tamara: Yeah. And sh and it seems like, you know, if she's just everywhere now, she could be ready for kind of that breakout time where, or maybe you're gonna tell me she becomes more, more mainstream,


Stephanie: yeah, I I think she w I think she will, like she's getting all of these roles. I mean her biography is quite cuz she's touched a lot of different things, but she's never, aside from her standup comedy special on Netflix, which I think it's a big deal to get that kind of show.


She, she doesn't play the lead except she is hosting reality TV show The Circle, which is now in season five.


So that, I think that's a pretty big deal. 


Um, oh God. 


Tamara: Is it 


Stephanie: Sorry, listeners, if you're into this, it's just not my jam. Basically the premise is, you have a bunch of people who move into apartments and they can only communicate with each other through social media. And you're allowed to fake who you are. You could totally catfish people or be yourself.


Tamara: Oh my goodness.


Stephanie: then at the end of every episode, you basically prioritize your favourite new friends, and those with the lowest score get booted out.


Tamara: Okay. 


Stephanie: So you're c 


Tamara: yet.


Stephanie: you're constantly trying to be like super friendly and nice and funny and like, cuz you want all these points for yourself. So it's, that's sort of the idea.


Tamara: Cool. 


Did you watch the special? I like her hair.


Stephanie: Her hair is incredible.


She's got a lot of it.


Tamara: I'm looking at pictures. After you started talking, I started Googling.


Stephanie: Yeah. Yeah, she's also written for a lot of comedy shows. Such as, uh, the Jim Gaffigan show and Enlisted. She also is hosting a podcast called Adulting with co-host Jordan Carlos, it's pretty funny.


They banter and joke about important questions and random ones in life about adulting. So for example, how many days in a row should you use your shower towel before you wash it?


Tamara: a 


Stephanie: Uh, it is a very important question, but that like, just to give you a flavour of the random stuff that they talk about. It's thought that her diverse background really helps her connect with audiences and she's been a role model for many people from underrepresented communities.


Tamara: Mm-hmm.


Stephanie: And, uh, it's always nice to see someone get that kind of success.


Tamara: Yeah. Well, also her representation is, is as a BIPOC woman and also, you know, a plus size woman and she's gorgeous and, you know, that kind of just double representation matters, I think.


Stephanie: I think so too. And also she had a really hard time having kids and so she had fertilization treatments to do that and now she's got twins and so she's quite open about talking about that experience and also being, you know, I guess she's 45 now. 45, mother of two young twins and the, all the chaos that comes with motherhood as a result. But it also 


Tamara: making her like a real relatable sandwich. 


Stephanie: You got it. 


Tamara: relatability.


Stephanie: Exactly. Exactly. She's also a strong advocate for women's rights and empowerment and she, in her shows her comedy. She addresses issues relating to gender and race and she does it with flair. I mean, as most comedians do, I, they're actually the, I think comedians are the best people to really touch those super uncomfortable conversations cuz they can do and get laugh, but people in the audience understand the intent. Yeah, so she's got quite a lot to say about beauty also. So she's got, as we mentioned, this gorgeous, dark curly hair and a face full of freckles.


Tamara: I know her freckles are so cute.


Stephanie: Her freckles are so cute. And she has this issue in an interview. She said that it's quite uncommon for people of her skin colour to have freckles.


And so oftentimes she'll bump into other people who are same, same different. And they'll see each other and identify each other's freckles and be like, I get you. You know? It's kind of those random things. It's sort of like us when we see people with curly hair, we're like, oh yeah, I'm gonna beeline and talk to you cuz I wanna talk to you about your curls.


And for her, all for her, it's also her freckles cuz it's so unusual.


Tamara: right?


Stephanie: Um, and she says she's a size 18. When she was young, her mother used to straighten her hair and cover her freckles, and she says, I've done everything for society, and now I'm just effing done. I just want people to hear my story and hear my comedy.


Tamara: Yeah. 


Stephanie: is Bravo 


Tamara: Yeah,


Stephanie: She said she's had many ups and downs with her hair. I mean, haven't we all? When she was a senior in high school, she wanted to look like T-Boz from TLC, so she cut her hair, tried to dye blonde, didn't understand how much of a process that was going to be, so she ended up with dry orange hair. I feel like lots of people could probably relate to that. I mean, all these celebrities who go blonde, it always looks so freaking easy.


Tamara: Yeah.


Stephanie: Then we find out it was probably a wig, or they have all the time and money in the world to just sit there for three days and get their hair 


Tamara: the thing, right? It's hours and hours and hours. And I once had a stylist, tell me that, people complain about how much, how much it costs to get their coloured. But if you think about it in terms of like an hourly rate for a stylist and you're going through all those steps and bleaching and stripping away the colour and then adding the colour back in, it takes a long time and they need to be compensated for their time.


Even if it's just kind of waiting and checking and waiting and checking because they can't be doing another client at that time if you're gonna take up their whole day. You know,


Stephanie: yeah. That's a really good point.


Tamara: people are very impatient about it. 


Stephanie: Yep, for sure.


Tamara: Yeah.


Stephanie: Yeah, so she realizes now as an adult all the stuff that she was teased for as a kid, like her curls and her freckles. She's embracing now and loves it cuz she's identified that's what makes her unique and so she's a lot more confident with her hair. There was a funny anecdote when she came outta Covid.


She said she was more excited to see her hairdresser than her own family, her own mother, which I think we can all relate 


Tamara: Yeah. That's kind of like a universal, not a universal thing, but a lot very common sentiment.


Stephanie: It was indeed. And then when asked if she had any tips for curly hair, she said she loves using olive oil. A tiny bit goes a long way, especially on your edges, wash your hair, well get a light shampoo even if it's a kid's shampoo and get in there with your, on your scalp. That's interesting actually, we've never talked about that 


because there's so much controversy about shampoo and do you shampoo or do you just co-wash, blah blah blah.


But she's suggesting get a super light shampoo, for example, a kid's shampoo and use that to make sure your scalp is nice and clean.


Tamara: Mm-hmm.


Stephanie: Then she talked about she scrubs her roots like she's mad at them cuz she wants the product to sink in to the pores and follicles. She likes a coconut milk conditioner.


And also leave in, so you were talking about Shea's earlier. She likes Shea's moisture, Jamaican black castor oil.


Tamara: Mm-hmm.


Stephanie: And then I'll just end on this really funny social media post of her and her husband about to jump in the ocean and she said, if I'm getting my hair wet. It's real love which 


again, can relate. 


Yep. So there you go. Michelle Buteau. Check her out. She's hilarious and adorable. And I think you're gonna start seeing her around everywhere.


Tamara: Yeah. Well now , did you say it's the new car? The new car phenomenon.


Stephanie: Yeah.


Tamara: Yeah. Yeah. Awesome. Well, I, she looks great and I will try and watch her, comedy special


Stephanie: Yeah. Or 




Tamara: about hair.


Stephanie: No. And or download one of her, uh, Adulting podcasts.


Tamara: Okay, I will do that. 


Stephanie: All right. 


Tamara: I'm gonna tell you about Andre Walker. 


Stephanie: Okay. 


Tamara: is? Andre, he's a hair stylist. He was born on October 19th, 1956 in Chicago. He went to high school. Then he went to cosmetology school called Pivot Point Academy, which was also in Illinois.


Went there in 77. After graduating from cosmetology school, he was mentored by a Chicago stylist named Lee Jones, and he started working at a beauty salon in the I. Magnin & Company department store on Michigan Avenue in Chicago, and under the leadership of Stylist Rudy Hooker. And I don't know these other stylists, maybe if you're from Chicago, you know about them.


Don't have a context of how famous they are. But in 1980, he established his own studio, the Andre Walker Salon, which he operated really only for seven years. And, um, part of the reason is because he started doing hair for drum roll, Oprah. So he did her hair at his salon for a while. And then in 1985 when he still had his salon, but he'd only been open as his own salon for five years, he was hired by Harpo Productions. And he was working as Oprah's personal hairstylist.


Stephanie: Oh 


Tamara: So he


Stephanie: So she was his only.


Tamara: well at some point. Well, like when he, when he closed down his salon, I mean, he's just like, I'm sure he was highly 


compensated and also kept busy. So he has done, he did Oprah Winfrey's hair for every single cover of "O" the Oprah magazine until two, until 2015.


Because of his high profile status. As you know how Oprah puts her fairy gold fairy dust on everything . He was also the stylist of former First Lady Michelle Obama, also former First Lady Barbara Bush. Um, and he's, hi. Another claim to fame for him was creating Academy Award-winning actress Halle Berry's signature short pixie haircut.


Stephanie: Oh, that was him.


Tamara: That was him,


Stephanie: Whenever I think of Halle Berry, I always think of her in that hair phase cuz it was just the cutest.


Tamara: right? 


Stephanie: Yeah. 


Tamara: so good.


Stephanie: good.


Tamara: In 2013, Walker and Oprah's executive producer Diane Hudson founded Andre Walker Hair. Line of hair care product. And along with that, the company launched a hair care system as well as the Andre Walker hair typing system. So the reason I'm talking about Andre Walker is because we kind of universally refer to all these hair typing charts and we put it in our social media when we first started this podcast.


And it's because of him. And it was


Stephanie: the originator of the hair typing.


Tamara: Yes. So


Stephanie: get credit for it. In all the articles I've read, he never gets the credit.


Tamara: well if once you know it and you start Googling that and you Google with his name, then you come across a lot of, articles that reference him and do give him credit. And in, and I've seen, the reason I looked him up was because I've heard him referenced on curly hair forums where people are talking about these charts.


So what's 


Stephanie: Okay, 


Tamara: so, okay, so, let's keep, keep going. So he is served as an industry advisor to select fashion and trade media outlets. He promotes hair care science, hair care, education. Um, his own hair care line is not available any longer. I think it was shuttered in 2019. Or if you go to the Instagram of it, it's finished and, and there's still a website, I think Andre Walker hair.


And if you go there, it kind of says like, thanks for coming. We don't make hair products anymore. I'm sure he's probably just like sitting on a beach somewhere enjoying all all of his money and success. 


Stephanie: I, I really hope so.


Tamara: Yeah but what's interesting is he's known more for this hair chart than his actual products now.


He created the chart. As a marketing tool to sell his products.


Stephanie: Oh,




Tamara: really fit talks about them or


Stephanie: No. And now he's a legend. This chart is in this, like in the pop culture zeitgeist. It's like 


legendary now. 


Tamara: So, he is won seven daytime Emmy awards for outstanding achievement in hair styling for his work on her show. He's received some awards from the Pivot Point Academy, where he trained. He's won the Thurgood Marshall Fashion Icon Award as well, which is, you know, pretty impressive. So he's well respected in his industry for his contribution. He's a cute guy with like a great head of hair as well. However, there are some, some caveats. There's an interesting article in, uh, and mello is without, a w at the end, m e l l o hair called The Disappointing Truth about the Most Popular Hair Chart.




Stephanie: what is the disappointing truth?


Tamara: part of it is what you mentioned earlier. I feel like a lot of things that we've talked about today are, are very in interconnected. So, so part of it is just the basic fact that, you know, the chart can't tell you everything, right? Because it leaves a lot to be desired and discussed.


Doesn't give you all the information you need, like, dryness, porosity. How short is your hair? How long is your hair? Have you bleached your hair? Do you have heat damage from styling with a lot of, you know, flat irons and such? Are you going through hormonal changes, chemical changes, or even just like, how, how old are you?


Like a 20 year old's hair is different than a 70 year old's hair, right? So there's kind of limits to it in that respect. He's been criticized because he, um, at some point he has, he had said, you know, that the type four hair is sort of the least desirable, you know, so he seemed to kind of really want to control hair and, and he was sort of not embracing, the kind of coley hair that a lot of people in his community have.


Like, we should be able to embrace hair. But it's kind of like when you start saying that four C is the least desirable, it feels kind of like racism, even though he's a black man.


I mean, just something to be, something to consider in the 


Stephanie: Yeah. 


Tamara: sort of legacy. Right and then what's interesting is the chart is kind of like a starting point, right? So I mean, I, you gotta give it to him and give him his credit for that. The other challenge that's come about is that I think he started with, four, for numbers, and that's where his original chart started with basically straight, wavy, curly, coilly over the years.


Either he added to it or others have added to it with the a, b, c, just for, for differences.


Stephanie: Yeah. Yeah, yeah.


Tamara: What's happened now is that if you Google hair charts, you're gonna see a thousand different versions of this that are all different. So you might look at one hair chart and see yourself as a 3A and look at another hair chart and see yourself as a


2A and a lot of the confusion is often between twos and threes. And then in some versions of hair charts, very curly, coy types are kind of pushed off and, and not kind of given a lot of space. And there's sort of, so it's, it's tricky when everyone's creating their own version of his hair chart, and, and we're not all working off the same playbook either, right?


Stephanie: Yeah, yeah, yeah, for sure. But like science is iterative. He came up with this idea, which was probably pretty innovative at the time, and I think it's up to us to use it directionally, and then it sounds like a lot of people have reinterpreted it to make it a bit more modern and some people haven't, but I think, I think it doesn't matter.


I think ultimately the idea is if you can get a better understanding of your hair type, regardless of whether it's a two here and a three there,


Tamara: Mm-hmm.


Stephanie: it still gives you some direction to work with when you're deciding how to style your hair and what to get for your hair.


Tamara: Yeah, and I, so anyway, I'm not here to like tear him down and uh, obviously he's given Oprah a lot of amazing hairstyles over the years and I feel like I should share some of my favorite Oprah hairstyles, on, uh, our social


Stephanie: Yeah. Yeah. Great idea. 


Tamara: more kind of to bring, you know, him, the recognition that he rightly deserves, and then to bring awareness to the fact that all these hair type hair charts are kind of a little bit subjective of who's, and I think it's good to have that level of detail of the A, B, C for sure.


And just to keep mindful that some of them are very much, have kind of centered white women a little more in, in them. And so, you know, consider that as well when you're Googling it and looking at a 


Stephanie: Yeah, 


Tamara: online. 


Stephanie: that's a good point. That's a good point. It could be deprioritizing certain communities for sure. I think ultimately just use it as a tool in the toolbox.


Tamara: Yeah. And a starting point.






Stephanie: point.


Tamara: and then, obviously there's trial and error. there's also a lot of like find, as we've talked about before, find a hair stylist that you trust whose advice you can trust, that understands your hair type. You know, get your information as we do from a variety of sources.


And keep an open mind. I think it's, when it comes to my hair, I'm looking to Facebook groups where people are having conversations. I'm talking to my hairstylist. Of course I'm, I'm talking to you about my hair a lot. And then, you know, there's definitely certain. you know, Instagram influencers or YouTubers who I think like, yeah, I'm gonna get some new ideas.


And I, I have been trying some new things with my hair, but I feel like we need to save it for next time, because this is like gonna go down as one of our longer episodes.


Stephanie: Yeah, this is a marathon. Thank you so much for telling me about Andre Walker. I had no idea. And it's nice to know that the hair chart did have some credit and that he invented it, that was super interesting.


And it's nice too to see hairstylists getting some credit.


Some, I didn't know that there was an Emmy for hair,


Tamara: Yeah, there's a daytime Emmy and I think, I guess sometimes for like the Academy Awards or Golden Globes, they, they lump it in with hair and makeup.


Stephanie: yeah. Cool.


Tamara: Maybe in the daytime Emmy's. It's like those are two very separate things. 


Stephanie: Oh 


Tamara: its own category.


Stephanie: I think that would make sense. Anyway, great episode.


Tamara: Happy New Year everybody. Hope you learned a lot today and we will see you next time.


Stephanie: Bye.


Tamara: Don't forget to rate, review and subscribe to Curl Next Door Podcast, wherever you pod, and follow us on social in between episodes. We're @CurlNextDoorPodcast on Facebook and Instagram and @CurlNextDoorPod on Twitter. 


Stephanie: Do you have a curly hair story you want to tell us? 


Shoot us an email at 


Until next time curlfriends!


Alecia May - CurlyCon: I think the event really, goes about positive change because I make it be about positive change. Like we, really map out different scenarios of keynotes and panels. Like, uh, last year we had a panel on Black women in society and culture, and we talked about discrimination that they faced.


And, you know, one of, I, I heard about this one person who actually did not get the job of her dreams because of her natural hair texture and the way it looked to the employer that it wasn't professional enough. So we bring up these issues in our various panels, in our various talks, and we make it known that we are talking about it and we are trying to make a change about it in some way.


And so, and even educating others because, Before I was like, Oh, this is a thing. I didn't know this as a White woman. I didn't know this was a thing. Maybe a little bit, but not to the extent of maybe the Black community or the BIPOC community. So for me was really important because I have friends and I didn't know what they were going through.


Maybe they didn't know what I was going through. So kind of cross education is really important, making it known and really just allow ourselves to have the conversation between races between our industry itself. At the end of the day, right? We wanna make sure that we have a space where we feel safe to talk about it and not discriminated because everyone else is doing that behind, you know, employers doors and whatnot.


Um, and we want to understand that we kind of capture that conversation, in a great way to, to shine more light and to maybe make positive changes. One of our media, publications that came Fashion and InStyle last year, or last event at CurlyCon, they did a piece about it as well because they're really interested in kind of the movement that's coming about as we make changes, as we make headway for everybody in texture community.


So I think, you know, that's the way we're shaping it up and hopefully we, we continue grow and having, you know, better, bigger conversations about it, right? We're making some noise, making a splash.


Tamara Robbins Griffith: I think it's, it's so great that you're doing that and not glossing over it and, and not just acting like, White women are the center of the curly haired universe because, you know, there's, there's so many of us and, as you mentioned, you know, we feel like we had to straighten our hair and we didn't fit the beauty ideals.


And I think all these, a lot of feelings that I think White women have about their curls, It's almost just the, the bipo community. It's like, and then tenfold 


and then, and then all these other layers on top of that. Right.


Alecia May - CurlyCon: Well in the, I mean in the BIPOC community, I think early history suggested that when they were in like a lot of, in the Black community, they were enslaved. It was like part of this where they had to shave their head because it was seen as a certain view. But it was, you know, you get into the history of things and it's really interesting and I always recommend everyone to go educate and to see where all of us as a civilization, not just one race or another.


It's not about that, but it's also. Kinda coming together. And, so to me it's super important and it's important for everyone to learn and grow no matter what, where you came from or who you are. So yeah, it's a big goal. It's a big goal for CurlyCon for sure.


Stephanie Podolak: Yeah. It's so great though. Is there anything else that we haven't asked that you wanna tell us about yourself or the event?


Alecia May - CurlyCon: Definitely if you are listening, you have curly hair and you have wavy hair, coily, whatever, whatever hair it is, I, I hope you come to learn about curly Con, make a decision if it's right for you. But definitely it's a place where we're gonna celebrate you. We're gonna celebrate your curls.


I care about every single person that walks in that door. I have a personal vested interest in, you know, I packaged every single VIP box myself last year with Care and Love. So we try to do as, as best as possible to make your experience, like, you feel great when you walk in and you feel great when you leave that door.


And all of our speakers are hand selected and really, you know, taking into, again, the goal of the the event which I mentioned. So, you know, take, take a chance. Come on out April 15-16 next year and I really hope to see you there. And if you can't join us, wherever you are in the world, there's a virtual option as well.


So, you know, feel free to, uh, to ping me on Instagram too. I'm on CurlyCon 2023 and I always watch my stories, so.


Stephanie Podolak: And how does the audience buy tickets?


Alecia May - CurlyCon: Oh, you can go to, And you know, there was fun. It was funny cuz some people are like, well, I did a live couple weeks ago when we launched tickets on, uh, on Instagram and like, I wish I could come. And I said, Oh, where, where are you located? I'm in New York. I said, Well, there is such thing as a train or there is such thing as an airplane.


So. She's like, Oh, I guess you're right. And she ended up buying a VIP ticket after so, if you are looking to make a change, meet some people. I mean, this is a place where you're meeting the whole community, not just one person, but like content creators and you know, global. And actually, I maybe can drop this.


Maybe I'll give you another bean. I don't if I... 


Tamara Robbins Griffith: One bean. One bean. 


Alecia May - CurlyCon: um, we actually have, I don't know if you know her, her name is Nubia Rezo. She's from


Tamara Robbins Griffith: Yeah, we know 


Alecia May - CurlyCon: yeah. She's gonna be a speaker at my event. So she is amazing in the industry. She was part of our panel last year and she came on literally like the night before. I don't know if I should telling you this, but she's like, I wanna be part of it.


So this year she'll be part of it in a big way. She'll be a speaker. 


Tamara Robbins Griffith: Nubia is one of the first people we interviewed when we started, uh, incorporating guests onto the podcast. And we love her. She is so, her message is so positive and she's so full of love and she just, the imagery she painted in my mind about curls being like a garden of flowers.


Alecia May - CurlyCon: Oh wow. That's fantastic. 


Tamara Robbins Griffith: I can't even, like, I love this woman, so it'll be super fun to see her.


Alecia May - CurlyCon: Yes, absolutely. Yes. Yes. Among others. But I won't, I won't spill any more beans.


Tamara Robbins Griffith: Oh, we know you're gonna have some amazing guests. So thank you so much for joining us, Alecia, and we will definitely keep tabs on any news, new announcements you're making. We can reshare them on our socials as well.


And keep our listeners up to date on, any little beans, any trail crumbs that you leave with exciting news as we lead up in the winter and spring, getting closer to the event.


Alecia May - CurlyCon: I really appreciate that. Thank you so much ladies.


Stephanie Podolak: Thank you, but before we let you go, we always like to do like a speed round, so we're gonna ask you some questions and you have to answer with the first thing that comes to your mind. Okay?


Alecia May - CurlyCon: Okay, I may, I might be ready.


Stephanie Podolak: All right. First one, Who is your favorite curly haired celebrity, and why?


Alecia May - CurlyCon: Ooh. Tory Kelly. 


Tamara Robbins Griffith: Oh yes, Tori Kelly. She was in my Facebook today when I was doing something for the podcast cuz we. I think Tori Kelly has a, um, this is not rapid fire at all. This is tangential, but she has a kids book, right?


And we talked about it in an episode of the podcast. Super cute and,


Alecia May - CurlyCon: Curly. The curly girl blues. The Curly Girl Blues. That's it. 


Tamara: Oh, okay. 


Alecia May - CurlyCon: She's all about curly hair. Yeah. Okay.


Tamara Robbins Griffith: Right. I know, I know. Okay. Another question for you. If you were stranded on a desert island and you could only bring one curly haired product, what would it be?


Alecia May - CurlyCon: Definitely it would be the Curl Keeper gel. Because I need that gel like, yeah, it has to be the Curl Keeper original Liquid Gel Styler, a hundred percent. 


Stephanie Podolak: You are speaking to my heart right now. I have to tell you. It's so funny. I've been using Curl Keeper exclusively for decades. Okay. And it was a game changer in my life. And since Tamara and I have been doing this podcast, we've been privileged to have several product samples sent our way. And no matter what, I always use the Curl Keeper like as a base no matter what we try, cuz I'm so scared to not use.


Alecia May - CurlyCon: Yeah, I 


Stephanie Podolak: it's such a, it's such a commitment to do a wash day and like what if, what if I don't use it and then my hair turns into a frizz ball? So anyway, I feel you. It's always on my curl shelf too.


Alecia May - CurlyCon: Always, always, always, always. And Jonathan knows how much I love his product. I'm like, Please


give me all 


Tamara Robbins Griffith: us to Jonathan. We're, we're like closet fans, but we haven't, We should have him on 


Alecia May - CurlyCon: you should have. He's amazing. He did a, he did a workshop, so yeah. Okay. I'm


Tamara Robbins Griffith: Sold. 




Alecia May - CurlyCon: Yeah. Fantastic guy.


Stephanie Podolak: What is your favorite hair accessory?


Alecia May - CurlyCon: Oh, I like my clips. I love my clips. I know it's not really, you know, sexy or anything, but my clip is like my go-to and I love my clip and I just


Tamara Robbins Griffith: What, what type of clips?


Alecia May - CurlyCon: so my big claw clip at the back, so I do half a up, down with my little, you know, clip there and then hair falling down. I do sometimes little small clip like pigtail clips and so clips, clips, clips all the way.


I, I want to like, hair bands, but I'm not there yet mentally.


Stephanie Podolak: Yep.


Tamara Robbins Griffith: Me too! Wow. I to, Okay, so this is another totally aside, and then we'll, we'll let you get on with your day and we'll get on with our day. But, there's a wonderful woman. I have a, some great Facebook groups in my, in my neighborhood of closet edit and decor edit. The closet edit, there was a stylist in our Facebook group and she was going to full-time styling.


She was having a major blowout sale from her online business because she's moving on to full-time styling. She had these amazing claw clips and she was giving our Facebook group like a discount code. And last night at 11 o'clock at night, I'm buying all these gorgeous claw clips of like marbled, you know, like tortoise shell, but like different color combinations.


And I just like, if you can find something. I find because of the curls, even a smaller claw clip kind of can hold it in place. Like I don't need 10,000 bobby pins. It's one of the good things right, about not having straight hair that like even, Right.


Alecia May - CurlyCon: I can't do bobby pins. Like, I'm sorry, I'm starting the whole conversation here, but I can't, like my hair is so, there's so much of ha like I don't, I have very high, high density hair. So like my braid is like this thick, but like bobby pin. That's why clips for me work because I can just, different sizes and, you know, I'm, I'm crazy about clips.


Buy me clip. I'm here for life.


Tamara Robbins Griffith: It's funny you should say that you love clips because I was shopping for them last night at like 11 o'clock at night and have 


Alecia May - CurlyCon: trying to get the sale.


Tamara Robbins Griffith: Yeah, like this discount code. And it like, these women were just like, going on mass to like snap up Jenny Bird jewelry, her hair clips, like our whole Facebook group sold out her entire inventory last night.


Alecia May - CurlyCon: Invite me to your Facebook group so I shall know about these 


Tamara Robbins Griffith: I'll try, I'll try. Yeah. Um, Steph, any other rapid fire questions? 


Stephanie Podolak: One. Just one more and it's the last one. What would you tell your younger self about your hair?


Alecia May - CurlyCon: Oh gosh, this is not rapid fire at all. But I would say, you know, try to love your hair every day. Do a little affirmation in the mirror, because that helps as an adult, like, I love my hair, you know, that little girl in the mirror. I love myself, I love my day. Like, something like that. And, and, you know, just kind of say it out loud because the more you say at love, the more you believe it.


The more you believe it, the more you, you embrace it and the more confident you feel. So yes, that, that was rapid 


Stephanie Podolak: one. Yeah, good one. Uh, what a 


Tamara Robbins Griffith: That's a good note to end on.


Stephanie Podolak: It is what a delight to talk to you. Thank you so much for being our guest today. It's so nice to see you and get to know about your hair journey and your wonderful event that's coming up. And uh, we'll be sure to promote it in our social channels.


Alecia May - CurlyCon: I so appreciate that. Thank you so much, ladies.


Tamara: Wow. Thank you, Alecia. That was amazing. If you guys don't have tickets, you have, you know, three or four months left to get your tickets. However, I'm sure the new year is gonna fly by. And it will be April before we know it. CurlyCon live in Toronto and also online. A two day event. This is gonna be super fun.


So you can buy your tickets now. 


Stephanie: Go grab your tickets at


Thanks Alecia May for joining us today and thanks everyone for tuning in.


Happy Holidays. Happy almost New Year.


Tamara: See you in the new year. With more fun hair adventures.


Stephanie: Well said. Bye.


Tamara: Bye.

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