Afro Hair and Beauty Live 2017: brands to look out for

With just a few days away until Europe’s biggest event dedicated to afro hair, beauty and lifestyle, keep note of the following three brands which will be present on the day!

Looking to refresh your hair regime? Or could you do with a trusted introduction to botanical skincare? Or, maybe you’re in need of new and glam makeup brushes? If you’ve answered yes to any of those questions, then have a look at what could be your next best natural based product yet!

Mielle Organics

Launched in 2014, Mielle Organics is a US based hair and skin brand, which uses a unique blend of herbs, amino acids and minerals to support healthy hair, skin, nails and your immune system too!

Hair products range from an Avocado Hair Milk Moisturizer, Babassu Oil Conditioning Shampoo, Babassu Oil & Mint Deep Conditioner, as well  as Detangling Co-washes and a Peony Leave-In Conditioner. Products also include Mint Almond Oil which is said to be a ‘scalp sensation’, and a great stimulant for hair growth.

The brand also makes products which cater towards children, including a cleansing shampoo, detangling conditioner, and a curling cream all of which contain the key and main ingredient, sacha inchi oil – a South American superfood rich in vegetable sources of omega-3 fatty acids, proteins, vitamins and antioxidants.

To aid hair growth for you child, you can also get an edible daily multi-vitamin,  chewable gummy, great for kids, even as young as 2. With a  combination of Vitamin A, folic acid, and biotin, starting a journey of healthy hair just got easier. Don’t worry, there’s an adult formula too!

Find out more:


Based in the UK, Phytobotanicals is a botanic skin care range for beautifying your skin and relaxing your mind. What better way to treat yourself inside and out, using nature’s charms! Products include soaps, deep cleansing face balms, shea butter, natural beauty oils, body polishes and botanic face oil blends. Ingredients, which can be found on the site’s glossary, are a basket a nature’s goods. Here are some of the ingredients used across the products:

  • Avocado oil
  • Apricot kernel oil
  • Beeswax
  • Black cumin seed
  • Borage seed oil
  • Frankincense
  • Geranium
  • Lavender
  • Broccoli seed oil – yes  broccoli. Who’d have thought it eh.

Find out more:

Peach and Pearl

If you’re in need of new and beautiful makeup brushes then set your eyes on these gorgeous gems from UK based brand, Peach and Pearl. Slay all day with these brushes, fit for all beauty Queen which are conveniently designed for all abilities. Whether you are a beginner, the seasonal pro or a professional makeup artist, you can work your magic with ease. An added bonus is that Peach and Purl brushes are vegan so you needn’t worry if you have super sensitive skin or suffer from skin allergies Peach and Pearl is beauty made simple and glamorous. What more could we want?

Find out more:

Start or reboot your 100%natural hair and skin journey with Afro Hair and Beauty Live 2017 The event kicks off at 10:30am and will end at 18:00pm. Get your tickets now while you still can, and grab any of the brands featured. Enjoy!

To see what else is going on in the Black community, see our Black Events page.

Black Dolls Galore – “I want one just like me”

Self-love is key to self awareness, self-consciousness and self-esteem. When our children are growing up in a society which chooses not to represent them in the toys they play with, or the books they read, this is the beginning of sef-destruction. Let us take control and plant the seeds of self-worth so our children will look at a black doll and say – I want one just like me.

Take your daughters down to the 9th Black Doll Expo!

Saturday May 13, 2017 at 13:30 – 17:30pm. Maa Maat Centre – Community Bookshop, Tottenham. Tickets £0 – £8.03


Operation Sankofa presents the 9th Black Dolls Expo – a platform for discussion, making and buying all things black dolls from around the world! A panel of experts will be on hand to share information about creating, manufacturing, distrusting, selling, collecting, and most important of all, celebrating and promoting BLACK DOLLS. So, come along and join in the discussoion, sign up for a doll making workshop, choose a special Black Doll from a wide selection, and look out for some bargains!

The expo will feature the first Jamaican Patois speaking doll, rom the Zuree Dolls range!


To buy tickets, please click here.

We all ready know that the high street does not want to sell black dolls the way it sells white ones, but there are black sisters and brothers who are taking a stand and making their own.

Here are other Black Dolls available to buy online:

To see what else is going on in the Black community, see our Black Events page.

Afro Hair and Beauty Live 2017

If you didn’t go last year then you have to go this time round and experience the biggest show in Europe dedicated to black hair, beauty and lifestyle! Aiming to provide the most inspiring and exciting show experience, Afro Hair and Beauty Live returns to London for the 36th edition of what is sure to be an amazing event!

What to expect?

If you’re looking for something new, US brands such as  Mielle Organics, and organic haircare lines Camille Rose and Carol Brown’s O’Natreal, will be available to buy on the day. Oh and don’t forget to pick up your goodies and give-aways to take home from Design Essentials, Crème of Nature, Lottabody, Sofn’free, GroHealthy and more!

This year, the event will be welcoming a new brand built for the men. Introducing Afro Man – the destination for male grooming, hair and lifestyle products, so ladies you won’t have to worry about dragging your men to join you.

Afro Hair and Beauty Live are looking for the ultimate beard and styling barber. Tell your men to sign-up and get their clippers ready for Lusters SCurl Battle of the Barbers! And if that isn’t enough, skincare by Bump Patrol and S-Curls beard grooming range by Lusters will be present at the show. For men suffering from hair loss, be amongst the first in the UK to see My Hair Bar’s exclusive live demonstration of The Man Weave technique, the non-surgical hair unit for men.

Now, back to the ladies. Could you be the next #NewFaceofPink? Lusters Face of Pink, in collaboration with Black Beauty & Hair Magazine, is giving you the chance to represent the brand. Head over to their stand to enter. The Lusters Education team will also be on hand, demonstrating styling techniques, hair analysis and sharing tips on how to keep your hair happy and healthy.


Does your skin feel like it needs a re-boot? Look out for Phyto Botanicals – a premium hair and skin care range of oils, balms, soaps and body scrubs. DivaWorld will also be at the show with tips on how to achieve flawless beautiful skin, free from artificial, colourings and perfumes.  Mature skin will love Aviela, so visit their stand and experience the nourishing, softening and anti-aging powers of Shea butter!


For beauty at your fingertips, the glam squadess’ will be on hand with make-up and brushes for your kit. Brand NEW to #AHBLIVE black|Up Paris for women of colour, be sure to get in line for free makeovers, goody bags and make-up masterclasses.

Keep an eye out for Peaches & Pearl, straight from the pages of Harper’s Bazaar UK, who will be showcasing their beautiful range of rose gold vegan make-up brushes. Hit Congolese make up brand Kitoko, will be showing you how it’s done, with their matt liquid lipsticks. Try before you buy and take home the perfect shade for your skin tone.


The Afro Chic Boutique and catwalk will be gracing the stage once again, with clothing and accessories from U.K, European and African designers. Sponsored by Palmer’s, this year’s show will be edgy with creative street style looks styled by Chi-Chi Chinakwe, with hair by award winning My Hair Bar and make up looks by Kitoko. Look out for your favourites Afrocentric850, Aso-Global, Eldimaa and more!

Afro Hair & Beauty LIVE will also be hosting free seminars presented by trusted experts and professionals. Whether you are looking to change your routine but you are not sure where to start, or you are looking to address a hair issue, this is the place to be. Be inspired, empowered and embrace the ‘fro!`

Food for thought and hair – see Arise and Shine Cosmetics and Restored Naturally who will be presenting Real Hair Food seminar on nutrition for healthy hair growth.

What to know what your hair type is? Find out at the Get To Know Your Hair Type with Cantu and multi-award winning hair stylist and colourist Victoria Akuagwu of Ziuzo.

Tickets to all seminars are free, so get in line early to secure your seat.

With a huge variety of new brands and great quality natural products, there’s something for everyone, so grab your friends and family and get down to Afro Hair & Beauty LIVE.


Doors open 10.30am – 6:00pm on Sunday May 28 – Monday 29, 2017, at the Business Design Centre 52 Upper Street London N1 0QH

To see what else is going on in the Black community, see our Black Events page.


Little Queens With Royal Dreams

Following a recent trip to Ghana, the team behind Nana Dolls visited Cape Coast Elmina castle. The team were touched by the heart breaking and traumatic stories they learnt about the north-Atlantic slave trade, and how brave women fought for black freedom.  This inspired the creation of Nana Dolls, which strives to teach and educate our children and future generations to come, about these beautiful and powerful women in our history – a history which western schools will not bother to teach.

‘Nana’, from the Akan language spoken by the Akan people of Ghana, means ‘Queen’, and what better way to represent the ancestral characters these dolls represent. There are countless historical women – and men of course, all over the continent who helped to fight for freedom, who we should never forget. Amongst those are four who have inspired Nana dolls. Yaa Asantewaa from Ghana, Mbuya Nehanda from Zimbabwe, Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti from Nigeria and Miriam Makeba from South Africa.

Nall Dolls said: “We want to teach the younger generation the important history in a fun way”

Take your children on this exciting journey as they learn about their ancestors and their ultimate bravery. Knowledge is power, so empower your children with the knowledge of self.

To buy a Nana Doll, see:

Back to Black

We talk about Black businesses all the time, but are we really practicing this doctrine of Black consciousness? As a collective, Black people claim they are about group economics but how many of us actually practice it? Yes, some of us have businesses in our community. Yes there is a growing trend for young Black people starting businesses after further education, but we are missing the key business links to connect us together. We have become too complacent with the system, to a point where we are not willing to bite the hand that feeds us.

Western society is built on imperialist and capitalist ideologies, which we consider to be the determining factor of what is best, whether we realise it or not. Now is the time to realise this. The Afrocentric must consider his or hers subconscious perspective. Do you still continue to think based upon Western ideology, or have you opened your eyes?

Marketing companies, sports athletes and celebrities have convinced the masses into buying products based on a logo. What a way to programme the mind. Afrocentrics believe that European ideals are the standard for fashion and business. People don’t buy iPhones because they are the best on the market – Android phones are – yet the majority of us will still buy the iPhone. As a brand that is powerful and global, apple remains to have the greatest impact on what we choose to buy.

Michael Jordan (former NBA player for the Chicago Bulls), created his famous basketball shoes, which is now highly recognised around the world. Despite this, the RRP for these shoes continue to rise up to as much as $400! Yet it only costs $100 to manufacture. Other well-known brands such as Adidas, Reebok, Puma, Nike, Under Armour, New Balance also have a range of shoes and prices.

So, what can we do to change our narrative?

Education – after all, knowledge is power! Once we know ourselves, we will love who we are. As a collective, Black people will strive to see a new found sense of being reflected throughout our community.

Re-directing the flow of money is crucial for Black business to thrive. Black Britain has a buying power of an estimated £300 billion, compared to Black America who have a buying power of $1 trillion. Imagine how many Black business owners, male and female, could be millionaires and billionaires? We spend our money like some of us eat jollof. Think of the youth centres we fight for but fail to keep open because of the lack of government funding. Think of the self-defence or computer science workshops we could be setting up. These are the kinds of services we must have in place to enrich and empower our children.

Hair and skincare products are problematic for Afrocentric consumers who are not catered for in the mainstream market. We are not a universal shade of colour. Black women spend over $9 billion on just HAIR. The market is a lucrative business and over the years, relaxer sales have been declining. As a result, mainstream hair product designers have resorted to promoting natural hair creams as Black women have gone natural. Yet, the Black community is slacking behind. Nearly all of our hair shops are dominated by Asian owners, who have been successful in creating franchises while selling to Black customers.

Asian owners who thrive from our own money is an example of the lack of collective in the Black community. We as Black people need to put aside our differences, build with each other and sell at realistic prices. Such a change will bring forth the circulation of money we must have in our community. We will be able to put food on the table for our brothers and sisters, and lay down the foundations needed to kick start our growth. In the Black community there is a lack of teamwork, and we fail to expose and create effective branding. As ridiculous as it sounds, some of us fear we will be cheated by our own brothers and sisters. By doing this we fail to promote each other which prohibits any growth and development.

Time is money and talk is cheap.

We like to talk more about the issue at hand rather than dealing with it head on. Part of the reason why Black businesses fail to grow is due to marketing. Social media has been effective in showcasing great new brands. Instagram and twitter are effective platforms for gaining the exposure we need.


Networking is instrumental. Meeting with other Afrocentric people, sharing business cards and ideas can help to increase our target audiences. Creating a blog, or radio show can also add to the mix of potential beginnings of success. By promoting one another, we can help to expand our businesses and re-ignite our form of unity.

Education is and always will be important, particularly regarding careers paths in science, technology, engineering, maths, law, teaching etc. Whilst we teach our children the fundamentals of education, we must also teach them to create a business. It is possible to have an education and a business, many have done so and continue to do so. Not only will having a business instil economic foundation, but it can be passed on to next generations to ensure the stability of our future.

As Black people, it is essential that we respond to our clouded perception of consumerism and business. We must understand how not buying Black is destroying what potential we have to thrive as a community. Let us make some noise with our coins. Let us change the narrative and go back to Black!


Eunice and Ogechi