Cancer Hairoscope

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coverFriends old and new, thanks for visiting us today for the 4nd edition of the Free Your Hair HOROSCOPE honoring the Cancer.

I offer this series to all as an ever-changing and morphing guide for Hair-Centered Radical Self Care, Ritual and Beauty in honor and tribute to each sign as they enter into their place in the Sun Rotation.

With this Hairoscope, we hope to inspire each sign of the zodiac to take some extra time on their birthday month to really love on and care for themselves. Every month, we will pull a card to share from The Moon Deck to inspire your monthly self-care ritual. With the sage advice of The Moon Deck, we will adapt our monthly mantras to bless and honor our own hair. We invite you to share these monthly Hairoscopes with your friends who are of that month’s astrological sign and help them take some time for self love!


For this series, I worked with artist Madison McClain to create our women of the horoscope, and with intuitive writer and healer Aarona Ganesan, co-creator of The Moon Deck, which is the Tarot Deck I use daily to inspire my own personal self-care rituals.

This month, we honor the Cancer

Moon Deck Ritual:

(Words and Rituals adapted from the Moon Deck Guidebook, changed slightly to speak specifically to our hair.)

Hair Brush Mantra:

‘Healthy Boundaries keep me centered and balanced ‘

Setting healthy boundaries is essential for our physical and emotional well-being. We each have a need to care for our unique nature, enforce certain limits and maintain self-respect. 

Tune into your central power source as you create and relate in the world with healthy boundaries. When your boundaries are too weak you may give away too much, let too much in, or set yourself up for unhealthy dependency. 

Yet if your boundaries are too rigid, or thorny you can become tense and isolated. Either extreme can be physically and emotionally painful over time.

Recognize habits that drain your energy and discover the tender balance for yourself. The positive impact of healthy clear boundaries will ripple into every aspect of your life. Take 5 minutes today to brush this mantra into your hair, repeating it to yourself with every stroke. Be in a comfortable, calm place without distraction. Close your eyes and breath, centering your body as you brush. If you are not a regular hair brusher, here is why we think you should try it, and here is where to get yourself a beautiful hair brush to work into your hair care ritual. If you are more of the combing type, consider a wooden wide toothed comb or your own fingers for a relaxing scalp massage.

Honey Anointment Ritual

Honey is a nourishing ointment, made by bees who work humbly in service to their queen and know their own limitations. This ritual calls in the power of the honey bee, great self-contained pollinator of happy gardens and healthy boundaries.

Get some organic honey, preferably gathered from your region. You will need about a 1/4 cup. Warm the honey by diluting it with 1 part hot water. Mix until blended.

Take a warm shower, and exfoliate using soap and a loofah or a scrubby mitt to remove dead skin from your whole body. Once rinsed, drain water from the shower and lay down in the bathtub, still wet.

Starting with your feet, begin applying your honey water, splashing it on and rubbing it into your skin. Apply it all over your body, making a sticky mess of yourself. Include your face. Once you are slathered up, lay back and take some deep breaths. Try to stay for a full 20 minutes, letting the honey soak into your skin. Think about your own boundaries, and how you can draw them with strength, clarity and kindness.

Rinse your whole body well with warm water. Let your skin air dry, by putting a towel on your bed and laying on it, allowing your skin to breath in the new sweetness of your Honey Anointment.

Hair Advice:

Cancer: Honey on the body, Honey in the hair. This month, to add protection from the elements and massive moisture to your Summer-dry strands, treat your hair to the softening, shine inducing and curl maximizing loveliness of a honey hair treatment.

Mix 2 tablespoons of Organic raw honey with a teaspoon of warm coconut oil in a small bowl. Wet your hair in the morning, and towel dry it. Apply the mixture from scalp to ends, massaging it through your hair thoroughly. Wrap your hair up in a bun, or use an old scarf to turban it. Go about your day, attracting honey bee’s and reflecting on their wisdom as you honor your hair with this honey treatment.

In the evening before you go to bed, rinse your hair very well with warm water. Wake up with heavenly hair.

 

Moon Phases in Cancer:

The New Moon and Full Moon are the most potent times for setting new intentions for healthy habits and relationships and creating rituals that are potent in their action. I highly recommend this months Honey Rituals be done around both the June 24th to observe the New Moon, setting an intention of what you are ready to let go of in your life/in your hair/in your relationship to yourself in physical and spiritual form, and around July 9th to observe the Full Moon, setting intention for what you are ready to bring in to your life. What do you want to manifest? Now is the time.

And how do you set an intention? for those who haven’t practiced it……Speak a little prayer to yourself. Honor it with the ritual of Honey on your Hair and Body.  Hold the prayer in your heart as you practice self love. Make it so!


Please check out The Moon Deck for more musings. Cancer babes, may we suggest you get your own deck as a birthday gift to yourself and make a vow to love yourself and your hair more in this coming year.

What would you like to see woven into our monthly Hairoscope? I would love to hear your feedback! We are excited to watch this series grow and change with your input.

xo, HTHG and The Moon Deck

 

 

DIY Popsicle Haircolor

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Hi Babes. 

I’m dropping in today to share with y’all a fun DIY hair color technique that is a result of an intense popsicle craving I have had in the past month of Pregnancy. Here is the inspiration, from a Rainbow Popsicle Recipe from The First Year Blog.

I thought these pops were so lovely that I had to recreate them in the hair of my neighbor babes, Birch and Cameron. Because once I get that visual inspiration in my head, I can’t shake it until it has been brought forth, and this seems to be a blessing and a curse. I’m workin on it;)

Here are photos of the finished technique:

DIY Popsicle Hair Color is the technique, and for a video demo, please check out @howtohairgirl Instagram, under the hashtag #HTHGpopsicle or #freeyourhaircolor

This DIY color technique is so easy, you can  be a total beginner to do it. I used Manic Panic Colors, in an assortment of different shades. Check out our blog sidebar to order yours today.

 

xoxoxoxox, Color Freak

Reflections on Shaving my Head

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I would like to thank Rachael Nilsson of Tree Trunk Wise Yoga for her bravery and creativity in the process of creating this fundraiser. It was an honor to help facilitate, and we sure hope to keep the hat passing around to continue raising money to protect our sacred wild lands through your donations to the NRDC. Please donate here!


REFLECTIONS ON SHAVING MY HEAD

It came to me in a dream, the idea to shave off my hair.

Shortly after the idea had implanted itself into my consciousness this way, a friend put out a call for women seeking to shave their heads to release something. She wanted to offer them a space for a healing ritual head-shaving, followed by her painting prayers and colors into the newly shaved heads.

It took me a while to contact her. I wanted to make sure I wasn’t having some kind of a mid-life “crisis”. I also wanted to do some good with the momentous occasion. After all, it’s not every day I shave my head– perhaps I could extend the reach of the positive results beyond my own healing ceremony.

So, I decided to raise funds for the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). I asked for twice as much as I thought I could raise. I raised almost twice that in only a few days. Turns out, shaving your head for a cause gets people fired up.

Before the ceremony, I reflected: What was it I wanted to let go of in my personal life? What was I asking to be reborn as through this head-shaving?

I realized that the biggest meaning in my making this public and tying it to a fundraising campaign was this:

I finally wanted to step into the light and be public about my passion for activism.

As a female– in particular, someone raised in the South– I grew up learning that I could care about things, but that being perceived as too opinionated and outspoken made me seem intimidating, and being honest about my views often made me feel judged.

Even within my own family– arguably, a supportive one, and without too much hyperbole in their adherence to gender roles– I found myself becoming afraid to speak up about things I was learning, things I found really disturbing in the world and our country.

The more I learned, the more I realized that learning can be very uncomfortable. And as someone who studies the mindful exploration of that discomfort, I’ve come to know one thing for sure:

Most people are not comfortable with being uncomfortable.

So, I made assumptions about the people around me– that they did not want to be made uncomfortable by someone who was in their own process of learning and personal growth. I made assumptions that people’s opinions of me might change if they knew that I felt strongly about social issues. I made assumptions about myself– that I wouldn’t be able to handle those conversations within my own family or– on the opposite, much larger end of the scale– if I decided to start writing publicly about my beliefs (outspoken women online are very often victims of extremely violent verbal abuse and reactivity, mostly from white, straight males).

With the exception of that last part, my assumptions were not really based in truth as much as they were formed by a social construct I’d been working within since my birth into the female gender.

Granted, I’d been opinionated (even angry) and political as a teenager– perhaps that was the closest I’ve come to showing that part of myself– but people expect teenagers to experiment with personalities and to exaggerate emotional responses. They also expect them to grow out of it at some point.

At that same time, I was also learning to be funny and charming on cue, and to call upon my feminine softness at will to smooth over situations in order to keep the peace or to keep face or to stay safe. It’s a skill that’s valued in women in our culture more highly than intelligence or leadership.

By shaving my head for a cause, I was going to confront that idea head-on. 

A friend shared a story with me about mundan, a ritual head-shaving ceremony in India, in which (first babies, and later adults) shave their heads to rid themselves of past karmas. The hair is then thrown into the Ganges river as an act of release and purification.

As I ran the clippers over my scalp, I practiced presence and breath. I was with myself in that moment, not needing to speak or to think, but only knowing: Everything is Yoga.

This is the Yoga of Action. This is the Yoga of Renewal. This is the Yoga of Death and Rebirth.

I collected the long strands of hair that fell around me and imagined that they had been all of the worries growing out of my head, manifesting into a physical form– old karmas and beliefs ready to be let go. I would make an offering of them to the earth and water in another ceremony.

 

EPILOGUE

By far, the hardest part about this new look for me has been having my newly fuzzy head painted blue– somewhat surprising, since I had been wearing green at the ends of my long hair for much of the previous year.

It’s made me confront my vanity in a new way. It’s made me realize that, even with a shaved head, I had assumed I could pass for a relatively “normal”– i.e. quiet, unobtrusive, and relatable– person when in the presence of others.

But having a shaved head that is also painted blue (and with art on top of that– I mean, I don’t even feel comfortable wearing t-shirts with slogans), has made me see the depth of my self-consciousness, especially where wearing my beliefs on my sleeve– or head– are concerned.

Plus, removing your hair puts all of your perceived imperfections in a new light– wrinkles, sun spots, and crooked noses and mouths all come into full view given the new space to blossom.

As women, we can spend a lifetime trying to get to a place where we are finally comfortable with our appearance. But how much of that is the habitual building of comfort? –Comfort in wearing a certain type of clothing, comfort in styling our hair a certain way, comfort in never leaving the house without x, y, or z on our faces…

We can build our whole lives in such a way as to keep the most vulnerable parts of ourselves protected, fearing that their exposure might leave us so exposed that we could shrivel up on the spot and cease to exist. We may deny that these parts of ourselves even exist, because to acknowledge them would be to call out their hiding place, to shine a light on them, and to look them straight in the eye.

Fortunately, I’ve been able to draw on my yoga and mindfulness practices to observe these reactions in myself while realizing that they are much more fleeting and less overwhelming than they might have been at another time in my life.

I understand that this is a necessary gift– the gift of testing a part of myself that’s been allowed to stay comfortable.

My hair will not be blue forever, and, of course, it will grow back. This is a only temporary change in physical appearance, but a good reminder that the reality is that we change every day.

We are all constantly changing, aging, and evolving. And to do so with pieces of ourselves hidden away, or with fear rather than admiration of what our aging appearance and our personal evolutions might say about us, is to deny ourselves a graceful way of being, the artfulness of inhabiting ourselves, and the chance to reflect back to others that authenticity is the only true beauty– and a very powerful one at that.

Please visit Rachael’s blog here for more musings:)

xo

Brook’s Hair Transformation

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Babes:)

Welcome back to the 3rd Edition of HTHG’s Ritual Hair Shave/ Paint/Transformation. This time, we feature my sister and muse, Brook.

Brook had wanted to shave her head for years. She had a beloved friend in high school who had a shaved head, who we all woman-crushed on for her fierce look and rebellious independence.

Brook recently started singing and song-writing in a punk band, and to celebrate her first stage debut, it seemed the perfect time for a shave and paint. So, we shaved her head, leaving a few bits and pieces around her face and featuring the uniqueness of her awesome head shape and hairline. Then, I bleached her and mixed up her colors. 

This time, I had drawn out a rough idea of what I wanted to do with her color, and free-hand painted it into her hair. Was such a blast. She is such a brave Aries woman.

Check out our IG for more video footage of this series, under the hashtag #hthgtransformation

xo, HTHG

A Conversation on Ancestral Haircare with Becca Piastrelli

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Hello my dears.

Today, my heart is heavy because I am not on my way to the Spirit Weavers Gathering which takes place on it’s own beautiful homeland in Southern Oregon, where many of my dearest sisters are communing together and preparing and blessing the land for 600 women who will meet this weekend and next for a sharing of ancestral earth skills, sacred activism, healing, empowerment, adornment, and on and on and on.

I have been to this gathering the past 2 years, and it has filled an empty longing in my heart that I had carried with me my entire life. I didn’t know why exactly I wanted to go in the first place, I just felt drawn to it and now I know why……Because it has facilitated in me a necessary awakening that holds me to my path in a beautiful space with many other seeking souls.

I could really go on and on here but I don’t want to go too deep right now, I just have to get off my chest how sad I feel to miss it this year. No regrets on my choice not to go, I’m simply too pregnant. I’m just having spiritual FOMO and missing my sisters and the forest. Thanks for bearing with me.

Today, I want to take a minute to share with you a beautiful conversation that I had a few weeks back with Becca Piastrelli, Bay area writer and Blogger whom I met at last  year’s Spirit Weavers Gathering. 

She hosted me in her beautiful Mill Valley home for a Braid/ Haircare Workshop a few months back, and then got back in touch about doing an interview on the topic of Hair as Adornment, Self-care, Brushing Ritual, Braids and Ancestry. We dropped in together over video-chat and she asked me some great questions that I really enjoyed answering and am glad to share with you today.

Here is her beautiful intro for the blog post she put together with the video footage.

Words from Becca Piastrelli…..

As I journey deeper into the ancestral traditions of the women of my lineage, I feel all the more connected to my own body.

I often look at my hands with such awe and reverence for what they are capable of and how all the women that came before me are helping to guide them in my daily acts of making (from breakfast to writing emails to dip dyeing fiber in indigo).

Having grown up in this beauty-obsessed culture, feeling comparison with the hair (and bodies) of the women plastered on billboards and in the pages of magazines has come up for me often. There have been times where I’ve hated that I wasn’t blonde, didn’t have curly enough hair, didn’t have straight enough hair, or sucked at making it look good.

But a lot of that has shifted over the past year as I’ve begun a deeper exploration of my hair as an expression of who I am and my connection to the earth and the people who came before me.

Here is the post/ video Interview. Give it a look, and let us know your thoughts!

Also, follow Becca here on IG for more life musings for the creative heart.

 

Thank you for being here, lots of love.

RJH