Talking Vision, Inspiration, Society, and Hair with Brittani Sensabaugh


I found Brittsense a week ago while combing through Losthairdressers, which is one of my favorite Instagram feeds for hair inspiration. I went to her website, and spent the next hour pouring over the photography of Brittani Sensabaugh and her Power of Melanin Project, feeling like I had stumbled upon a golden palace of shimmering, uplifting energy, vision, beauty and strength. I reached out, she graciously agreed to share some photos and some words with HTHG readers.

Stunned, I have no other words but to introduce Brittani Sensabaugh and thank her for sharing her art, her point of view, her mission, and her words with us. Please read on, then check out her work, and share in her potent vision of healing, empowerment and love.

All photos in this feature were taken by Brittani Sensabaugh

Talking Vision, Inspiration, Society, and Hair with Brittani Sensabaugh

Dear Nubian Empress, Every root of your hair tells a different story, Do not be fooled by fools that will tell you otherwise… It grows out like a bush because YOU are a reflection of the SUN.. It dances around because your MELANIN has soul & like Gold it will continue to shine. There’s no way to duplicate it which makes you one of a kind, Remain pure & Continue to Embrace it. Always wear your Crown of History Proudly because no one can erase it – Poem by brittsense

IMG_3809Her Vision/Mission-

I created the “Power Of Melanin” series to show the strength & different levels of beauty that my people embody. My people struggle physically but even more mentally. When you are raised up in broken communities without any resources or a blueprint in society to guide you through your journey, it’s much harder to maneuver & build a foundation. When you are ruled under a system that is meant to destroy you & not build you up, It makes you question your worth. When your identity has been erased and replaced with misguided truths, You feel lost & angry.

A lot of us are out in the world creating a foundation from nothing & that is something I will always give us credit for.

Whether your 9 to 5 is owning a business, creating art, playing sports, getting an education, making music or selling drugs, the common denominator is survival & trying to make sense of situations that make you feel hopeless. We learn from the individuals & environment around us & when that is constantly destroyed you feel defeated & trapped.

Processed with VSCOcam with g3 presetTHE MISSION of this series is to REMIND my people of the Power, beauty, strength, but most importantly the LOVE in the pain we may often feel daily. It’s to show you that no matter HOW MUCH we go through, WE still shine & will always shine in all that we do because MELANIN is Real Power. Our hair, Communication & everyday movement is because of the Melanin within our skin.


I became a documentarian once I realized the Power of Energy. The biggest gift the universe has given me is the ability to FEEL. I feel EVERYTHING & that has allowed me to connect with other souls that want to feel but are scared. I see so many people on this earth that walk around just existing because society has made them feel that being numb is the way to survive.

I started 222forgottencities to bring back awareness, but most importantly the ability to feel throughout every moment in your journey while being on this earth. I wake up everyday crying because there are so many emotions that flow through me constantly & I’m super aware of the energy around me.

Daily I’ve become truly thankful for all of my transitions & Emotions because I learn the balance of discipline, acceptance, patience, & Unconditional Love.

I have realized that whenever you submit your will to someone else’s opinion apart of you dies.


Society has a way to make us feel that in order to obtain a certain level of happiness you have to ‘believe in this, have this much money, know these many types of people, look & act this certain way, love this way, do things in this order’ & most times it leaves us feeling confused, disappointed, dissatisfied, & not worthy because it doesn’t happen the way we expected.

My biggest gift when documenting 222forgottencities is being able to be transparent with everyone I come across & showing each soul I connect with that it’s okay to not know & that we are in the trenches together despite how society makes us feel.

Showing them that they aren’t FORGOTTEN because their a reflection of me through all conditions, & that being numb isn’t surviving but it’s disconnecting them from the unconditional Love they deserve to feel.

I see & learn from them & they see & learn from me which is what makes US so powerful.

I see life in pictures & I freeze frame every moment I see in my head.

It’s almost as if I’m living in a motion picture.  Every since I was younger I’ve been able to feel the pain of the world but most importantly the Love. My camera allows me to balance out both energies.


With all of my documentations my mission is bringing awareness to different aspects that are overlooked in society & Hair is one of them.

Hair has always been a big part of my life since I was a little girl, especially Hair braiding. I used to cry every time I got my hair braided because I was tender headed & super hyper so sitting for long periods of time was challenging for me.

I remember feeling really pretty though afterwards because my sister would braid my hair in funky styles that no one else had at school & everyone always wanted to touch the colorful beads on my braids.

I remember when I got my first perm & I cried even more because I didn’t understand why I had to put something in my hair that burned & made me feel super uncomfortable just to get my hair straight when braids were a style that I had already gotten used to. 

As I got older, when my sister did my hair not only was it beautiful to get all the funky styles but the process behind It was even more amazing.

IMG_9327-2I also realized that sitting down getting my hair braided became a way for me to build with my people.

My sister used to tell me that your hair is Love & you should always take care of it but most importantly embrace it. Once I became an adult I started realizing more how much my people are conditioned to believe that their hair holds no value because of Societies negative perceptions.

For years our hair has been talked about in such a bad light & my mission when documenting is to bring back the value & Importance. I want people to realize the creativity but most importantly the love & building behind hair braiding & the uniqueness of the texture that Black hair has.

My mission is to also bring awareness for all the little empress that don’t Overstand the beauty of their hair because they’re bombarded with Imagery that shows them differently. I wrote that poem for them.

When I’m not wearing my hair Natural, I wear it in protective styles such as Braids & Marley twists. Most of the time my hair is wrapped up in fabric which makes people assume that I’m Muslim, but I wrap my hair to protect my realm from toxin energy.

Visit her website:

Tumblr – Brittsense

Instagram – @Brittsense

Thank you all so much for being here, and for reading and sharing this vision.

xo, HTHG and Brittsense


Something Borrowed: Mayan Inspired Headwrap Technique

7U6A4116Today, I will share a trick that I learned from my friend Jules, who has traveled the world and learned many cool things from many different cultures. She recently came over to my house and demonstrated this great headdress, using a Free Your Hair Ceremonial Headwrap and a wrapping technique that she witnessed while spending time in Guatamala.

Traditionally, this technique would be done with a scarf like this one, called an Aquateca Headwrap.7U6A4004

‘The headdress is an important article of women’s clothing in many Highland Maya towns. One of the most beautiful is that worn by Aguatecas, who, although they have largely given up weaving their own huipiles and skirt material, still take great pride in making their headwraps. The Aguateca headwrap consists of a 2-3 inch wide cinta richly decorated with brocaded designs, and terminated at each end with large tassels. It is worn wrapped around and around the long hair, which is pulled across the forehead, with the full width of the cinta exposed across the top of the head, and the tassels dangling at each side.’

Description of the highland Maya cultural tradition of headdress, from the Traje

Today, I am excited to share with you this wonderful way to wear a long headwrap, like the Ceremonial Head Wrap featured in this tutorial, honoring a tradition from the Aguatecas peoples. This tutorial should be done on long hair, using a long scarf, wrap or ribbon (At least 4 feet long.)

Jules demonstrates:jules guatamala

Begin by finding the middle point of your scarf or ribbon. Lay it against the top of the head.

Now wrap the ends around your head, and tie them once in the back, underneath your hairline.

Take one long end, and gather your hair into a ponytail…..Begin wrapping the scarf around the base of the ponytail.

Continue wrapping down the length of the ponytail, tightly and evenly.

Once you reach the ends, grab the ends of the ponytail and the scarf tightly, and bring it up around the front of your head.

Tuck in any ends of hair that stick out, as you continue to wrap the end of the scarf around our head, wrapping the other end the other way around.

Continue wrapping both ends until they can’t wrap anymore, then tie the ends together and tuck them under the headdress.

Isn’t this trick so awesome??? I can’t wait until my hair is long enough to rock this.

xo, HTHG


On Leaving Fear Behind

img112Dear readers: This post is not hair related, it is an offering to you of a personal experience that has helped me learn. I want to thank you all for being here, reading my words, and believing in what I do. Without you all, none of this would be happening.

Because of you, I have had the nerve to share myself in a way that has been both healing and empowering, you have accompanied me through the journey of the last 5 years of my life, and I am eternally grateful. I can only hope that you have gained valuable insight, inspiration, (great hair;) and knowledge as well……I thank you from the bottom and the top of my heart.

DSC03905This post is about following your heart, making the jump, opening new doors, leaving behind fear. The photos in this post are from our first ShamPHree shoot, several years ago at the buffalo river with a big group of wonderful women, jumping off bluffs in dresses. Photos are by me, with the exception of the black and whites, which were shot by Bob Cochran. I know, I know. You have already seen these photos if you have been reading HTHG for a while now…..They keep popping up. Why? because jumping off seems to be a central theme here at HTHG. ‘Stuck in hair, stuck in life;)’

On Leaving Fear Behind

You are such a selfish asshole. Also, you are a complete idiot. What makes you think that you should follow your heart, and do what every cell in your body knows you should do? I am the fear part of your brain.) You are firmly in my grasp. I dare you to defy me.I apologize for beginning this essay with such a graphic display of self-abuse. But this is the backdrop for my story.

It’s stunning for me to realize how much time and energy I spend beating myself up. Internally, I am constantly in a battle to try to hold down the voice of my own heart for no other reason than bad habit and a well-worn neuropath that depends upon fear. Fear seems to be my path of least resistance.

I spend a lot of time riding this well-worn road in my head, allowing fear to keep me stuck in life, holding me back from the goodness of letting go of old comforts in pursuit of unknown blessings.

img1256 months ago, my heart tried to stop traffic on fear’s busy 4-lane highway. Heart signaled that it wanted me to quit my job as a hairstylist at a salon which I have loved and for most of my adult life. Deep down, I knew that I had to pursue an impractical yet deeply imaginative and uncharted path of a free-lancing renaissance woman. A small but sure voice suggested that I rely solely on my own skills and ingenuity to create a distinctive career path allows me to create and give back and maximize output energy in meaningful directions. Once I heeded heart’s signal, everywhere I looked, I saw signs that it was time to move on.

While I felt deeply sure of this vision in my heart, the prospect of quitting a job I loved and that had provided sure and steady support for me and my daughters really upset me. It just didn’t make sense. Why would I leave something that I love? I truly loved my job. Sure, there were things about it that were frustrating, but that is par for the course. In my inner dialogue, the loud voice of fear shamed me for considering something as selfish and impractical as a heartfelt choice.

I began to spin out mentally. I knew what I had to do, but I was bewildered as the inner brawl between heart and fear played out in my Self. I felt paralyzed and restless at the same time. The rapid-firing fear was a desperate attempt to distract my heart from following the signs and making an imaginative choice. I was terrified to leave the comfort of a regular gig for an unknown world of independence, even though I knew that it was the right thing. Deep down, I was not only afraid of pursuing a new path but even of leaving behind the comfort of my own fear MO, the place where I go naturally……..I tortured myself for 6 months. I was nearing the edge, afraid to jump.

IMG_4548It seemed as though the closer I got to jumping off and following my heart, the louder the fear spoke in me, with more intensity and determination. Like a junkie, my fear-addicted brain panicked at the thought of being abandoned for the warmth and comfort of a heartfelt choice.

After chatting about my conundrum with a good friend, she said in a very matter of fact way ‘It is time for you to move forward without fear.’ Clear and simple………I remembered past advice from yet another friend, who once called the Fear-based radio station which plays in the forefront of our brains and background of our lives ‘K-Fuckd.’ She had read about it in a book. She found that by calling it this name, it became easier to metaphorically change the station. I carried these bits of advice and metaphors under my wings, moving even closer to the edge.

Several weeks ago, I met a woman who seemingly moved through life without the voice of fear to cloud her connection with her own heart, a woman who manifested her own visions with confidence, humility, and grace, creating a vibrant life of connection and purpose. That I though, is how I want to live. What a relief to follow the heart without fear.

Then, I talked to my mother. She listened, nodded, didn’t try and talk sense into me. She told me she believed in me to make the right choice. I silently vowed to remember this and show the same grace for my daughters when they stood on the edge in life.

The next day, I jumped. I quit my job. I vowed to myself to turn off K-Fuckd every time it started rambling in my head. I vowed to move forward with confidence. Say yes, give back, share with others, make connections, and accept abundance. I vowed to thank my friends and my mom for their words of affirmation. I vowed to stick with my heart through ups and downs, be more kind to myself, and to turn off K-Fuckd, or at least keep the volume turned way down.

IMG_4729Letting go of fear is scary. Fear is VERY assertive and sometimes feels like all we have to hang our hats on. Meanwhile, our hearts are speaking, too, trying to bust through the fog of fear. We can choose to listen, or we can choose to beat ourselves up for entertaining the selfish idea that it is appropriate to listen to our hearts. It can take major overhauling, un-conditioning, self-soothing, and rebuilding to allow ourselves to open that gift……the listening to our hearts gift.

Moral of this story: When you are stuck in life, with all signs pointing to ‘jump’ and all that holds you back is the voice of fear…….. breathe deeply, walk sure-footedly to the edge, jump, and let your heart carry you.

xo, HTHG

Earth Punk Hair

Hi Dears.

My daughter Marley gave me the gift of inspiration when she described her personal style as Earth Punk. She had been reading pages from her diary from when she was 6, and had described her style at the time as Girly and Fancy. She remarked at how those words just really don’t describe her anymore. I had a proud mom moment hearing her identify her sense of style with the Earth and Punk.

It got me thinking about the beauty of the unconventional, the undone, the natural state, the free-thinking, and the organic deconstruction of perfection which gives us a look into the process. Expressing ourselves. Experimenting. I’m talking, of course, about hair;)

Earth Punk, to me, is all of these things. The ‘Earth’ part is the regard for what we have naturally, and what we are given by the Earth around us. Our natural state, and the gifts of the elements which we are always surrounded by.

The ‘Punk’ is the DIY part of it, and the free-thinking/alternative seeking qualities…..The rejection of standards and mindfulness to aid in the creation of an authentic life, authentic style, authentic haircut. It is taking matters into our own hands, cutting our own hair, following our own path, and watching the beautiful process as it unfolds.  Mindfulness and DIY are cornerstone ideologies of Punk.

Today, I wanted to share some Earth Punk Hair, to inspire you all to appreciate your natural wild hairs, to think outside the box, and to notice how the Earth plays into your life. The weather outside, the plants you eat, the ground you walk on, the products you use in your daily life, the resources you consume.DSC039427U6A3323 DSC05161 DSC04862 DSC05223 IMG_4787 DSC04140 DSC06488 DSC05229 DSC05298 DSC04941 DSC04961 DSC05582 DSC05690

This weekend, take some time to be mindful of the small ways that you take care of yourselves, and think of some ways to give back to the earth, even if it is just by being grateful for what it provides. Smell a flower, pick up trash, get your hands dirty. Enjoy your hair in it’s wild, natural state. Experiment. Forage for flowers to adorn your crown. Give thanks to the plant that you pick from. Play around. Do some Dirty Girl Hairstyling.

Channel your inner Earth Punk.

Check out our shop if you are needing an overhaul of Mindfulness and Embrace the Natural in your hair care routine. We at HTHG believe that hair is a great place to start .

xo, HTHG

Country Music’s Best, Macefield Music Fest, Hair.

I have to take a minute to introduce you to my two favorite babes in the Country Music scene, who I had the pleasure of styling last weekend.

Meet Jaime Wyatt of Jaime Wyatt and the Bang Bangs and Lucile Kuntz from The Crying Shame, both up and coming country music lady legends in their own right……and by Country, I mean like some real chops, throw-back to the greats of country music Country, but with just the right amount of Pacific Northwest Flavor, like the same flavor that happened when Loretta Lynn lived in Aberdeen, WA.

I met these gals at Bandittown last month through Missbeehivin’ Holley, where they both played gigs. This past weekend, their bands played at the Macefield Music Festival in Seattle and I got to style their hair up right quick before they played.

7U6A2739 7U6A2722Jaime got a little bit of a Keith Richards Rock n’ Roll braid with white leather tassels and a couple of feathers wrapped into the ends. She said it reminded her of a pony that her family used to have named Feather who was a real asshole and bit her once on the stomach. Jaime’s sister used to braid feathers into Feather’s pony hair.7U6A26927U6A2695

Lucile got a daringly sweet little low half-up beehive bump with a little braid coming from each side, and a little white stripped leather bow pinned into it.

Sadly, I couldn’t make it to hear them play that night, I had to be home with the kids. Which was great, I just really wanted to stay for the music…..But as my grandfather would say….’ you can’t kiss all the girls.’ So there.

6G7A4708 copyPhoto by Ryan Jorgensen

Check these ladies out and listen to what they have been working on and while you are ad it check out their tour dates to see when you can catch em in your town…….I have a hunch that you will be really into it.

Need more Country Lady Legend hairstyle inspiration? Check out these 3 tutorials!

xo, HTHG

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