Convey your mood with your braid: Edgy vs Soft

7U6A1647Hey babes. It dawned on me a while back that besides all the different types of braids that exist, there are many ways to style a singular braid. What I mean is this. Take your average dutch braid. It can be soft and pretty and romantic, and it can also be very edgy and tribal and sharp. It can be innocent. It can be rough. It can make your head look tiny, or big. It can look very intricate or super simple. It can make you feel like a 6 year old. Or an old lady. Or a fashionista. Or a dutch-milkmaid. Or a hand-maiden. Or a viking. Or a hippie. Or a rattlesnake hunter. Or a bride when you are not really a bride. Or a human being when you are an exhausted new mom.

I began to break down in my head what it is that distinguishes these different braid-feels. Obvies, there is the deconstructing trick to soften a braid and give it that lived-in look. But beyond that, how can we use our braids to tell our story about how we feel in the moment?

I decided to put a post together about soft braids vs edgy braids, just to get you started in thinking about manipulating your braids to fit your mood. Nikki graciously volunteered to let me style and photograph her in one of her lovely kimonos and a pair of her best-selling earrings.

Soft braids.

Think romantic, bohemian, pretty, loose, natural.softbraids

Soft braids work on all hair types. I think they look best on wavy, curly, thick hair. If you do not have these things, Master-Braider is your braid boosting bff.

Soft braids are obviously done with a loose grip and no tension. Larger sections of hair are added in from each side. They are pulled apart and deconstructed using this trick.

They always have small bits falling around the face, which can be pulled down after the braid is secured. (See Ladyparts!)

Edgy braids. edgy braids

Think tight. Geometric. Intricate. Precise.

These braids can totally work on all types, but it is easiest to achieve the edgy feel in straighter hair. If your hair is wavy or curly and you want to rock an edgy braid, start with a head-wrap to straighten things out. If you are into heat styling, apply some Shiny-Dancer to your ends and flat-iron your hair to prep it.

Edgy braids are tightly wound, with tension and precision. Small partings with tiny sections added in from each side give them their textured complexity. Generally, you don’t want little hairs falling around the face to soften the look. High, tight, and precise!

As you can see in the upper right hand edgy braid style, a soft bun paired with an edgy accent braid makes a beautiful contrast! So you can bend all these rules to combine elements and create very cool hairstyles. But I want you to understand the how’s and why’s.

Here is an example of how using different sized partings and sections in your braids can change the feel of it. The top row is a standard dutch braid with very small sections added into each side as I braided. My section partings were quite precise ( As precise as a pinkie can get!)

The bottom row is also a dutch braid but with larger sections added in, and my partings weren’t as precise. See the diffy?

The photo below is the side view of the top row edgy braid.

braid science 37U6A1475These next braids are just regular french braids. The top row braid is done with very small sections, again. Edgier, right?

In the same photo, the bottom row braid has larger sections added in. It is softer and more flowing.

braid sciencePicMonkey CollageThis last photo illustrates how to make that softer french braid even more soft and pretty by pulling the edges of the braid out, loosening small sections, and pulling down pieces of hair around the face to frame it. Free your lady parts!

Food for hair-thought. I want you all to be inspired and informed master-braiders!

xo, HTHG

Cobra gets bangs. Becomes a lady.

7U6A2666  Cobra the snake. Aka, Simonne the baby. Shining almost 2 year old star, shredding the baby/toddler line and roping it like a rode warrior. Daughter of Bethefair mother Brette Howard. More than a friend to me, more like a sister.7U6A3515

Cobes got her first haircut. I had the honor. I gave her bangs, then a little up-do with a clip. She became a lady that day;)

Got a baby ready for their first haircut? Here is my DIY video for it. xo



Limited Edition Summer ShamPHree kits

7U6A3375Hey you. It’s me. I hope you all are enjoying your summers, and not working too hard.

I took my Summer vacation last week, camping with friends in the woods and at the beach. Boy were we all glad to be ShamPHree! Our hair looked and felt great the whole time.

In my beauty bag, I brought along my boar bristle brush, 3rd Day Bangs to revive in between washing, Liquid Gold to protect my ends, and Masterbraider for perfect beachy texture and fabulous braids.

On my long drive home, I thought a lot about the future of The ShamPHree Line. There are new products coming, babes. With great scent collaborations. And innovative recipes. I am excited to share them with you!

I am also pleased to share that I am offering a couple Summer Hair Specials in the ShamPHree Shop.

The first one is the Summer Hair Essentials kit which saves you money and covers all your Summer Hair bases with Masterbraider, Liquid Gold, and 3rd Day Bangs.7U6A4769

The second is the Beautiful Hair Kit for those of you who have not yet purchased or curated your own ShamPHree System tools and products and it includes your hair cleanser, Infused Beauty VInegar to condition hair and refine the skin, 3rd Day Bangs, and Liquid Gold, as well as your mixing and applying bottles, scoop, and funnel. 7U6A4763

These Kits will be available through the end of September but are in limited stock, so get yours while they are hot! Now is the time to free your hair, babes. Start with your hair and see what else happens;)

xo, hthg #freeyourhair #shamphree


Bob Barnes: Legendary social activist….. talks dandruff, ShamPHree, and living his principles.

7U6A2311Bob Barnes. Father of Nikki Jacoby and her charming ginger brother Jesse. Legendary Seattle union organizer, direct action activist for human rights and social justice. Occupy Seattle fort-holder. Papa bear and father earth. Host of an epic yearly solstice party and Columbia City’s creepiest Halloween haunted house. Santa libre to Seattle’s mini-activist children. Spirit father to a gaggle of girls and guys that are friends of his wonderful children. Husband of Sue, Tilth garden crusader and mega-greenthumb mama.

His hair and beard are long and white. He wears all black, with combat boots. Add to the list of his many non-violent fights, a fight with itchy, flaky scalp and dandruff. Like many of men ( and women, but mostly men) dandruff is not only annoying but can be uncomfortable and perplexing. Where does it come from? Why do I have it? Why do none of these store-bought solutions work? Guess what? Apple Cider Vinegar is a miracle dandruff cure.

Bob was just about to take his doctor up on some industrial-strength Dandruff pharma-solution. But then, his lovely daughter Nikki gifted him a ShamPHree kit.

He agreed to let me interview him, and here is what he said.

Bob Barnes: ShamPHree man.1.  

What do you call yourself? Personal branding statement?

Papa Bear will do.

When did you start your ShamPHree journey?

Last week of December 2013.

What inspired your switch?

Nikki.  She got me a starter kit for a solstice gift & i figured i’d better try it.  She had been encouraging me for months prior to that.

Did you have an adjustment period before you were sold on it? If so, how long and what was it like?

Loved it from the first washing.

What changes have you seen in your hair/scalp that you like since going ShamPHree?

I had pretty bad, dry, flaky dandruff & ShamPHree got it majorly under control from the first washing.  I still have some dandruff, but its not as dry & flaky & doesn’t cause a snowstorm all over my shirt, which is nice because i wear black a lot.

Have their been any surprises?

Surprised at how clean my hair feels & how the natural oils don’t feel greasy but just, uh, natural.  & it stays feel’in clean for several days.

What would you tell a friend who was on the fence about going ShamPHree?

Get off the damn fence & just do it.  If its takes an adjustment, be patient with it.

Has your experience with going ShamPHree inspired any other positive changes in your self-care routine/ life in general?

Wow-thats a lot to put on one product.  I am less self conscious about making sure i don’t have a snow flurry on my shoulders.

Anything you want to add about ShamPHree, hair, life in general?

Just a big THANK YOU for coming up with ShamPhree.  Its a great product & it feels great not contributing to the chemical industry which poisons our bodies way too much as it is.  & i guess thats a life in general thing because i feel that using ShamPhree allows me to live my principles in one more little way.

Thanks, Bob. Love ya!


Bamboo Bun

7U6A8631 7U6A4291After I did that lovely Bamboo Braid, I felt compelled to grab my favorite hair-comb, Maza by Nikki Jacoby (Available in the HTHG boutique!) an bun her up. This took the hairstyle to a new level from casual pretty to high-end fancy lady gorgeousness.  7U6A8632I think this would be an absolutely perfect bridal hairstyle for a simple, natural bride. I see a cream-colored sheath dress with a bold neckline in a japanese garden.

Bamboo Bun

bamboo bunAs usual with braids, start by prepping the hair with Masterbraider braid and wave spray. This will add lots of grip to your braid and help the bamboo ends stay put all day long.

Begin by doing a Bamboo Braid.

Begin gently wrapping the braid into a bun, slightly to one side.

Try and situate the braid so that as you wrap it, it lays flat against the head. This will show more detail in the bun.

Continue wrapping, and tuck in the end of the braid. Use your hair comb, or some large bobby pins, to secure the bun into place.

Tuck in any loose pieces and pin with additional bobbies if needed. Don’t be afraid to really get in there with the bobby pins, this bun can be a bit heavy!

Absolutely lovely.

xoxo, HTHG

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