2014 was a rollercoaster year in both my personal and my hair’s life. I took some time off graduate school and returned, tried my hand at hairstyling and non-profit work, and collaborated with many different types of companies, all while trying to expand the scope and reach of this site. As for my hair, I tried countless different products and experimented with new kinds of protective styles, all the while experiencing a serious lack of growth retention. Let’s take a closer look at the year and what went down in my life and with my hair.
In January I’d just return from a holiday in Nigeria with my whole family, and began to seriously question whether I should stay in graduate school because the previous semester had been less than stellar, to say the least. Luckily I wasn’t worrying about my hair, because it was in a great set of jumbo braids that I got in Nigeria in a pretty cool color – 33, which is much darker than typical 33’s in the US.
February I added the letters M.A. to my life by receiving my Master’s Degree (speaking of, I have no idea where that thing is)! By this time I’d setup my Styleseat page and was doing hair just about every weekend, and was absolutely loving it! I blew out my hair around Valentine’s Day and continued to maintain it for the whole month! I also did this cute and easy updo that ended up in a Buzzfeed round-up of hairstyles for prom – so I basically became Buzzfeed famous lol.
March is such a dreary month, and the only good thing about it is spring break! Man what will I do once I’m no longer in school… anyway I went to Puerto Rico with a few of my girlfriends and it was one of the best trips of my life. There’s absolutely nothing better than communing with like minded folks who can encourage, push, and pray with you about all your worries – and also split a dozen honey buttered Church’s biscuits every morning! They really encouraged me to not feel like I had to stay in my program if I wasn’t happy with it, and to not feel like a failure if I pursued other things. I dropped all my classes immediately when we returned. Hairwise, I did loose twists on my blown out hair and loved the results, and it was the perfect vacation hairstyle because of its low maintenance.
Feeling so much freer in April, I did a cool updo challenge with a few other bloggers whose hairstyle game is on fleek. I was also on my job hustle, as well as planning the Summer Protective Styling Brunch. We reached a huge milestone on the site, garnering over 100,000 views, and I fell in love with Dark and Lovely’s Anti-Breakage line! I also learned how to do my brows, which may seem trivial to most, but it was a big deal for my life.
May was consumed with final touches on the Summer Protective Styling Brunch, starting my new job, and getting adjusted to BIG hair. I also dropped the hyphen from the website name, after finally being able to obtain it from a ghost. I traveled to an academic conference in Chicago where I became reinvigorated about school, and went to quite a few natural hair events as the summer season began in full swing. I had the opportunity to rock the Haute Kinks Collection by Haute Kinky Hair, which fooled many heads and started my new obsession with realistic, kinky textured weaves and wigs.
Summer summer summer time! Honestly, I don’t remember much about June but I did some frolicking about New York. Oh, and somehow ended up teaching a class of 9th graders about social media even though I was hired to talk about health related things. I tried more styles with my weave, including bantu knot outs, updos, and such.
July came around and ALL I could do was think, talk about, and breathe moving into my very own place! It was one of my goals to live by myself in NYC, and I managed to do so (and at perfect timing because I was all the way through with my roommate situation minus 1 person). I didn’t do too much with my hair, just let it breathe post weave. After several months of struggle for the year, I really felt like my life turned around for good.
August meant the last round of summer hair events, but this time I traveled out of state, went on a brunch cruise, went to my first all white event, and sat on my first panel! I met Whitney of Naptural85 and Nigerian actress Adepero Oduye. I also ran a 5K and welcomed by boyfriend back from 2 years in Nigeria and Kenya with open arms! Getting to spend time with him gave me the last bit of rejuvenation I needed to go back to school.
September was my birthday month but so much else happened! I got to be backstage at NYFW with Mizani for Victor dE Souza, making me feel like a real blogger and motivating me to get a real DSLR camera. I randomly won the Miss Harlem Shake 2014 contest that I entered over the summer simply because I had eaten so many burgers there I figured winning an unlimited supply wouldn’t hurt. My hair went from loose twists while I was visiting California to a blow out/failed wand curl attempt (that I never told ya’ll about) for the contest and the subsequent African-American Day parade I got to participate in, to a sideswept updo that always seems to be my birthday hairstyle.
October was all about minitwists, often accessorized by my (no longer new) favorite fall/winter hat. I wore them straight, curly, up, and down, and otherwise had no worries. California called my name again, and I made a bucket list before my next birthday (of which I’ve done about zero, but that’ll change by the end of January). Otherwise, I was just schooling and working, going to bed and repeat.
November was a good month for me as a blogger, as I had a few opportunities I just couldn’t pass up. I got to see Above the Lights in advance, had my hair styled by Johnny Wright via the SoftSheen Carson HydraSteam, partnered with LottaBody for their My Style Matters campaign (which was my first paid campaign!), and got an Influenster VoxBox with a whole bunch of free goodies to review. It was also pretty sweet in real life, as I went back to my alma mater for homecoming and was able to see several of my really good friends from college. Plus Fingercomber hooked me up with the greatest half wig of all time, taking me from ordinary to glamorous just in time for my 3 year anniversary!
By December I’d come full circle in terms of grad school – not only did I finish an outstanding paper that had been holding me hostage since last year, I got a 96 in a statistics class and presented a poster at an academic conference. Wanting to end the year strong with another protective style, I got crochet braids that will take me right into the new year.
…and the Best Moments Were
According to Instagram likes, people really enjoyed all the weave and wiggery I had going on in 2014!
In reflection, my mantra for the year was to pursue happiness, and I’m happy to say that I’m ending the year full of joy, peace, and happiness. While I haven’t yet decided what 2015’s mantra will be, I do know that I need a little vacation (I’m taking that solo trip from my bucket list!), and will be taking somewhat of a hiatus until the middle/end of January. I don’t know if it means that I won’t post at all, or that I’ll post here and there, but you won’t see updates on the site three times a week as usual. I’m hoping this break from school, work, and the blog will give me enough recharge to start 2015 on the best foot! Of course, you can always catch me on Instagram, Twitter, or on my Facebook page, so make sure you’re following one of those to keep in touch!
As always, THANK YOU all so much for reading, following, commenting, supporting, encouraging, laughing, and loving along with me. See you next year!