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Jo on the Go's Beauty Blog

My ‘Good Hair’ Moment

imgresWhen my nephew remarks offhandedly “You have nice hair,” it made me have that predictable ah-so-cute moment because only a three year old can deliver compliments like that.   Besides being way too adorable, his words made me remember…I do not in fact always have good hair and can have ‘dry spells’ that seem to last forever.  I wish my hair could look like 1/10 as nice as the locks on Paula Patton.  

My friend J and I were discussing hair care products recently.  J said that she totally uses products marketed toward African American women as they work well for her tend-to-be-dry red locks and have reasonable price points to boot.  When asked for specific product recommendations, she said: “Nothing that I can think of.  I just tend to go to that section and read the labels for all of the different types of
Motions Moisture Plus Conditioner 1 opt
conditioner and pick what I think will work best.”

My hairdresser has Motions products in her station, and recently an African American friend tested some products too for another piece.  Thus, I choose Motions’ Lavish Conditioning Shampoo ($4.99) and Moisture Plus Conditioner ($3.99) because I like to try different brands in order to expand my hair care arsenal and the cost won't break the budget.  My first time washing and conditioning my hair was like every other experience: normal.  My hair is soft right as I air-dry it. 

Motions Lavish Conditioning Shampoo 1 optToday, I spend some extra time on the conditioning and use double the amount. This is what happens to me.  I accidentally ingest some conditioner during the rinsing part.  The silicone taste is unpleasant, it seems to coat my teeth, and I am coughing too. My hair is very soft afterwards. 

Another Caribbean-American tester tries out the products too.  Her feedback is overall positive: “I liked the smells of the products.  I liked the conditioner, it was very thick which I liked because usually conditioners are more on the liquidy side and you have to use a lot.  I also liked how it made my hair soft immediately after applying to more hair.  And my hair didn't tangle when I combed it.  However, I wished it didn't have some ingredients that are harmful like the sodium lauryl sulfate.”



Like that gal Cleopatra

Cleopatra optGold intrigued the ancients and in modern times continues its reign. Through the centuries, the
multi-faceted nature of this precious resource is shown in its uses. It has been worn, sometimes eaten, functions as a decorative element for art and architecture, and used in skin beautification.  Cleopatra is said to have used a gold facial mask to improve her skin’s luminosity. Great civilizations and cultures have been destroyed for the sake of this metal. The 1848 California Gold Rush changed the historical landscape of the US and impacted the economy in many significant ways.  

It is reported that the fierce Boudicca, queen of the Iceni, wore a gold medallion boud optand necklace into battle.  My own personal experiences with gold are both common and uncommon.  First piece of gold jewelry was a wee little baby bracelet worn for pictures and since stored in a safety deposit box.  Then, a gold cross necklace was gifted to me at the age of nine. Despite gold jewelry being a little out of fashion now with the masses, it will make a comeback - even in my own jewelry repertoire. I have tasted edible gold on top of a carrot cake cupcake and thought it tasted interesting in that it had no discernible taste.  I can even claim that gold bars saved my family tree in that it procured plane tickets to flee a bombed city.


Kai’s Triple Threat

“What do you think?” I whisper conspiratorially to J indicating my hands as we wait for “The Hunger Games” to
start rolling.  The kai body lotion ($37) I am applying has a light scent due to the shea butter, apricot kernel oil, cucumber fruit extract, lavender extract, and safflower seed oil.  He sniffs and smiles.  “Nice,” J tells me in response to my inquiry.  The habit of applying lotion as I sit on the bus, in movie theatres is well known by my friends but the last few weeks finds me applying this scent over and over.

I like the overall subtle, consistent, yet light fragrance that reaches my nose and doesn’t clash with any perfumes that I happen to be wearing. And doesn’t have a hint of that overpowering fruit smell some brands have. Gaye Straza, founder, told me: “safflower seed oil acts as a protective barrier to help skin retain moisture. It is used in body care as a lubricant to soften dry skin and smooth roughness.”


That Dress…

michelle optSome recent iconic fashion moments can be summed up as the intersection of daring and unexpected loveliness that leaves in its wake the fairy dust of pure inspiration.  Case in point First Lady Michelle Obama choosing an up and coming designer to make her inaugural gown.  That brilliant white off the shoulder gown worn by a hip Mrs. Obama was not your typical dress.  What you would expect.  Like the safe Oscar de la Renta number that former First Lady Laura Bush wore.  This intricately beaded gown was photographed and discussed.  11 brand collaborations later, including Target, propelled Jason Wu to über stardom.  A recent WSJ Magazine March article followed the designer as Jason Wu went through one day in his life that included fittings, meetings, etc.


The Bare Necessities

RedGuard optMariko Kanto, doesn’t need make-up for her part in the American Repertory Theater’s production of “Wild Swans”.  Actually in this case less is definitely more. She tells me, “I need to look famished for a famine scene. So, looking tired and plain works better.” During rehearsals, she sported no make-up and was tired and therefore had the ideal look. Mariko confides, “Some of us were told we had too much makeup on and had to lighten it.”


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