Head Wraps

I didn't start covering my hair at night until my early teens. My hair was relaxed at the time and I would use an old pair of stockings with the legs cut off and the ends tied into a knot. Which over the years was switched in favor of a bandana and cotton ones at that. It wasn't until I went natural a few years ago that I discovered how bad that was for my hair.

Using a material such as cotton will suck the moisture out of your hair leaving your hair dry. Using cotton pillowcases also causes friction which can lead to excess breakage.

So while it is important to protect your hair by covering it while you sleep, it is also important to use a material that won't damage your hair. And you can achieve these two things, by wearing a satin/silk scarf or bonnet or by using satin/silk pillowcases. Which helps keep the moisture in your hair. It also causes less friction thereby decreasing breakage and therefore helping you retain length.

Covering your hair also keeps your hair neat lessening tangles in the mornings. Making it easier and more manageable saving you time in your morning routine.

Four Loko Energy Drink

Four Loko is a high alcohol, high caffeine drink that can be found in many convenience stores. Each fruit punch-flavored 23.5-ounce can has about 2.82 ounces of alcohol and about 156 milligrams of caffeine.

Four states have banned Four Loko after dozens of students have been hospitalized after drinking the energy drink.

New York Sen. Charles Schumer's office is reporting that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is set to rule as early as today that the drink is unsafe and may be banned.

The makers of the drink, Chicago-based Phusion Projects announced it would reformulate its products to remove caffeine, guarana and taurine nationwide.

"Going forward, Phusion will produce only non-caffeinated versions of Four Loko," company co-founders Chris Hunter, Jeff Wright and Jaisen Freeman said in a joint statement.

The three said that the combination of alcohol and caffeine is safe.

"If it were unsafe, popular drinks like rum and colas or Irish coffees that have been consumed safely and responsibly for years would face the same scrutiny that our products have recently faced," they said.

The Food and Drug Administration and the Federal Trade Commission, are expected to warn manufacturers that adding caffeine to alcoholic drinks is not safe and will caution them against marketing such beverages, Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y. said.

Doing so "will effectively ban products from the market," Schumer said.

Tetris As A Treatment For PTSD

Tetris is not just for procrastination anymore. A new recent study from Oxford University shows playing Tetris a few hours after being exposed to trauma can help reduce symptoms associated with post-traumatic stress disorder.

Researchers found the block-dropping action-a visually oriented task will positively interfere with other visual (negative) memories. The research also shows the opposite is true—if you perform a verbal task such as playing a quiz game after a traumatic event, you'll likely experience more trauma flashbacks.

The study is based on two experiments with 60 participants.In the first experiment, participants watched a movie for 30 minutes that contained disturbing images such as scenes of injury and death. Then given a 10 minute break and split into three groups. 20 played Tetris, 20 played a game called Pub Quiz and the final 20 sat and did nothing.

The participants who played Tetris suffered from fewer flashbacks. The group who played Pub Quiz suffered from the worst flashbacks out of all the groups.

The second experiment extended the time spent watching the movie from 30 minutes to 4 hours. After watching the film, Tetris players were still found to experience fewer flashbacks than any other group.

Brazillian Blowout Harmful

The Brazilian Blowout, is a popular hair-straightening treatment that promises to eliminate frizz and give you smooth and straight hair for months.

In lab tests, the Brazilian Blowout solution has been found to contain 12 percent formaldehyde, (a known carcinogen) when only 0.2 per cent is permitted in cosmetics.

On its website, Brazilian Blowout advertises that all of its products have been tested as "formaldehyde free.

Derek Bodnarchuk, owner of Aru Spa and Salon in White Rock, said that the product was heavily marketed as being formaldehyde-free.

"That was their competitive advantage," he said. "It's alarming for us, because we're the type of place that's trying to promote a healthy, natural lifestyle."

The national health agency has received complaints of breathing difficulties, burning eyes, nose, throat, and even one case of hair loss associated with the treatment. The agency believes that the reactions are triggering when the solution is heated during blow-drying and flat-ironing.

Health Canada is now asking hair salons to stop using the Brazilian Blowout Solution immediately, and is advising customers who have suffered adverse effects to contact their doctors.

Isolde Semple, a Stylist in Vancouver said Thursday that she has stopped using the treatment.
"I think it's absolutely devastating that it got approved,". "There's a lot of victims here, and I'm absolutely upset at the people who produced the product."

Semple said that the treatment does have an awful smell, but she didn't think it was anything serious.

"It makes your eyes kind of water, but it's the same thing as when you're cutting an onion," she said. Some customers have reported feeling slightly ill afterwards. "Now people are realizing, maybe it wasn't what I ate."

Semple said she was charging around $350 for the treatment, and could now be out quite a bit of money.

"If I can't return the product, I'm sucking it up as a very big lesson learned," she said.

Now Semple will have to find a new way to help customers straighten their hair.

"It did a great thing to the hair -- that's the worst part." Other Brazilian Blowout products are not affected by the Health Canada warning.

World's Most Powerful Woman: Michelle Obama

Forbes magazine has ranked First Lady Michelle Obama as the world's most powerful woman. Beating out heads of state, chief executives and celebrities.

So who rounded the top 5 spots in Forbes magazine's annual listing?
Irene Rosenfeld Chief Executive of Kraft Foods, who led a hostile $18 billion takeover of Britain’s Cadbury, came in second, with talk show host Oprah Winfrey, (who after 25 years is ending The Oprah Winfrey Show next year to launch her cable network, own) coming in third.

Angela Merkel, German Counsil came in fourth, followed by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who was put in charge of brokering Middle East peace coming in the firth spot.

Moira Forbes, vice president and publisher of Forbes Woman, said the women on the business magazine’s list were “shaping many of the agenda-setting conversations of the day.”

“They have built companies and brands, sometimes by non-traditional means and they have broken through gender barriers in areas of commerce, politics, sports and media and cultural zeitgeist, and thereby affecting the lives of millions, sometimes billions of people,” she said.

In previous years Forbes ranked women based on power and wealth. This year, however, they decided to concentrate on more on creative influence and entrepreneurship.

Last year Obama ranked No. 40 with the winner being Merkel, followed by Sheila Bair, chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.

Forbes said Obama topped the list this year because “she has made the office of first lady her own” while remaining popular.

“In a telling sign of her charisma, the White House is putting her on the campaign trail to headline fundraising events in battleground states like California and Colorado,” Forbes said.

“She’s also effective: In response to her Let’s Move! campaign against childhood obesity, companies like Coca-Cola, Kellogg and General Mills have pledged to reduce the calorie content of their foods by 2015,” it said.

Last week, PepsiCo Inc Chief Executive Indra Nooyi, was named the most powerful woman in U.S. business for the fifth year in a row by Fortune, was in sixth place, while singer Lady Gaga got the number 7 spot.

Gail Kelly, chief executive of Australia’s Westpac Banking Corp, came in eighth place, followed by singer Beyonce Knowles for 9th. Talk show host Ellen DeGeneres rounded out the top 10.

Natural Hair Care Tips

Afro hair tends to be dryer and more prone to breakage. That is because the structure of our hair makes it more difficult for the oils to work their way from the scalp to the ends of the hair. And if you relax your hair, you've weakened the hair and reduced the ability for the scalp to naturally oil it.

The points where the hair twists and curls are also points where the hair tends to break. The more of these points, the more the hair is prone to breakage. Also, because our hair is kinky, it tends to tangle more and pulling these tangles out can cause breakage.

So keeping these things in mind it is important that when you are taking care of your hair to treat it gently. Think of your favorite fine silk blouse or delicate piece of clothing. You wouldn't be rough with it, would you? So why be rough with your hair? Treating your hair with care will cause less breakage and lead to healthier hair.

Caring for your hair requires -a few basic tools:
-A large/wide toothed comb.
-A strong bristled brush.
-A Denman Brush
-A silk scarf or "do-rag"
Or a silk pillowcase
-Moisturizing shampoo
-De-tangling conditioner. Most conditioners are de-tangling, but a few are not. Suave, Swiss Formula, White Rain, and almost every one labeled for African hair are. -Deep conditioners are usually not.
-Natural Oil - Coconut oil, Olive oil, (Sweet)Almond oil, Hair wax/hair food, or clear leave-in conditioner
-A spray bottle to mist your hair.

Reducing breakage means retaining length. And there are several things you can do:
Plait or twist it, tie it back or wrap it up using a silk/satin scarf before going to bed. If you don't want to wear a scarf, you can use a silk/satin pillowcase. This will reduce the number of tangles you have to comb out the next morning, which will reduce the chances of breaking your hair. By using silk or satin doesn't suck the moisture out of your hair as a cotton pillow case would. It also helps in avoiding split ends caused by the rubbing of your hair against a cotton "rough" pillow case.

Comb your hair out while you're conditioning it to remove the tangles while it's wet and relatively slick.

Do a deep conditioner or hot oil treatment once a month.

Oil your scalp on a regular basis with a good natural oil like (sweet almond oil).

Try to avoid products with mineral oil or petroleum. They tend to block the pores and are not readily absorbed.

Put as little heat as possible on your hair. Heat, especially combined with perms is very damaging to hair.

Why do you Ignore People?

If a black person asks a white person a question and they refuse to answer and just ignores them because the person asking is black, is that racism?

I think so.

So if the reverse happens, a white person asks a question and the black person refuses to answer just because the asker is white, that must be racism too. They choose to ignore the person simply because of their skin colour.

Ignoring people, whether because they're Asian, Indian, Native, a different nationality, a different sex, gay, lesbian, straight, queer or whatever... if you choose to ignore someone because of somekind of racism, sexism or bigotry then wait until it happens to you. The tables can be turned very easily.

Now there are several exceptions I can think of:

#1. Ignoring bullies / violent people.

#2. Ignoring the taunts and insults of homeless people.

Any other time that you ignore someone its rude. The question we have to ask ourselves is why do we snub or ignore these people? Is our reason valid or are we basing our decision on a bigoted stereotype?

Peter Nygard: 21st Century Slaveowner

Peter Nygard is one of the wealthiest men in the world. He's not a billionaire... but he does have a net worth of $800 million USD.

He owns an island in the Bahamas staffed with hundreds of employees... but they are employees in name only, because of two things: #1. According to former employees they are treated like slaves. #2. They aren't allowed to leave without Mr Nygard's permission.

So if they're effectively prisoners on his island... and they're treated like slaves, but still paid... but wait, the employees there are also docked wages constantly for not performing up to Peter Nygard's standards.

According to court documents one of his employees was docked wages so often he was making 87 cents per hour. If that is not slavery then its at least sweatshop conditions.

And its not just small time employees who are treated like dirt. Its managers too. In a recent CBC documentary which exposed Peter Nygard as the two-bit liar he is a multitude of former managers came out to admit how they and other employees (hundreds of them) have been physically abused, intimidated, threatened, verbally berated and even sexually abused.

It doesn't stop there either. According to witnesses 67-year-old Peter Nygard may have even raped a 16-year-old girl from the Dominican Republic... but it can't be verified because the girl has since been bought off by Peter Nygard's lawyers and the girl has disappeared...

Dare I say the Bermuda Triangle?

Or should we say he had the poor girl murdered so that she could be kept silent?

Rapist? Murderer? Who knows? What is known is that Peter Nygard's lawyers are now working over time trying to censor any media group that publishes anything bad about him...

And it hasn't stopped there. His lawyers are also working to intimidate bloggers, trying to insist the CBC documentary is false. They argue the real Peter Nygard doesn't have drunken sex parties with underage women (despite videos on his own website showing otherwise) and that he's really a kind fellow with a heart of gold. They are threatening bloggers with lawsuits just for posting so much as an opinion on whether Peter Nygard is a virtual slaveowner, a rapist... or even speculating on whether he murdered a 16-year-old girl and had her body dumped.

The end result is that Peter Nygard isn't just a criminal, his lawyers are complicit too because they're working to hide his crimes from the public eye. His fashion empire needs to be boycotted.

Jason Alexander as Jenny Craig Spokesperson

Seinfeld star Jason Alexander is the latest star to step onto the scales for Jenny Craig— to she pounds as the newest spokesperson for Jenny Craig. “It’s like someone’s clubbing me over the head it’s so obvious I should be doing this,” the funnyman told PEOPLE on Monday. “It was a deadly combination of I’m fat and they work,” he says of his decision to try the program. The former KFC spokesperson says he was drawn to Jenny Craig after watching footage of his recent appearances in film and television. “I just got to a point where when I would look at the Seinfeld reunion stuff or one of these other projects that I had done, I said, ‘I don’t like the way that guy looks. That guy is not attractive in any way, shape or form to me,’” he says. “It made me go, ‘Oh, yuck!’” Alexander hopes to lose between 30 to 40 pounds to reflect his weight during the early years of the show that made him a star. He jokes “Over the course of the nine years of Seinfeld, I can actually see my hairline go away and my waistline increase. One of them I can do nothing about; the other I can,”. He credits his initial weight gain to sympathy-weight during his wife’s two pregnancies where gained about 15 pounds during each — and the increased quality of craft services on the Seinfeld set — “it will absolutely kill ya!”

Jason was also inspired by the success of friend and fellow Jenny Craig spokesperson Bertinelli. The actor says he’s excited to join the mostly-female ranks of Jenny Craig spokespeople. “It’s hard for me to think of the Jenny Craig program — or any weight loss program — as a female thing,” he says. L.A. Clippers player Baron Davis has also endorsed the program. “I’m trying not only to do it for myself but I’m encouraging other guys to come on board and say we can do this. This will work for us, and we can do this and deal with the problem,” says Alexander. “If somebody goes, ‘Well, if George can do it, I can do it!’ – that’s great. Whatever it takes to get you heading in the right direction. If I’m it, great!”

Profiteerism as Haiti suffers

POLITICS - There should be a law against trying to make a profit off a bad situation.

ie. Someone trying to take advantage of the recent earthquake in Haiti to sell a calendar and promote a TV show.

I received a spam from someone trying to promote the sale of Max "The Body" Philisaire calendars, claiming part of the proceeds will help people in Haiti. Really? When?

It takes time to transfer funds, by the time his calendars get sold and Max Philisaire actually cuts a cheque for the people in Haiti, by then international aid will have already arrived and done its job in helping the beleaguered people living there.

What the Haitian people need is immediate help. Not some lame "we'll send money later" scheme, which really only has one purpose and that is to extend the fame/reputation/wealth of Max Philisaire. Despicable.

Furthermore the same spam email also promoted Max's participation in an upcoming TV show called "Rupaul's Drag Race Season 2". In other words its more profiteerism. Nothing to do with helping Haiti at all.

And this is just one example. There are plenty of other people, companies and corporations trying to gouge the public right now for a few extra dollars and its questionable how much of that money will actually go to Haiti quickly enough to make any difference.

Wyclef Jean's charity Yele Haiti Foundation is currently under financial scrutiny because apparently its been operating on a "for profit" basis for many years now, without the musician's knowledge.

A number of credit card companies were taking a substantial cut for donations to Haiti and were making millions off it. The Huffington Post got wind of this and blasted the credit card companies for pure profiteerism. Since then the various credit card companies have backpedaled in an angry media firestorm and many of them are now pledging 100% of donations will go directly to Haiti.

Now not everybody is trying to make a profit off the situation. Google and Microsoft have stepped forward just plain giving immediate cash to be spent on food, medicine and relief supplies.

But Apple on the other hand is offering people a way to donate via iTunes, but is refusing to say whether its taking a cut. Shame on Apple!

A lot of cell phone companies have also offered ways to donate by texting "Haiti" to specific numbers, but its questionable how much of that money will actually be sent as relief aid to Haiti.

Worse, telemarketers are now cashing in on Haiti. The situation is so bad in the USA politicians are warning people to watch out for scams using the following tips:

1. Don’t respond to unsolicited e-mails and text messages asking you to donate.
2. Watch out for pushy telemarketers.
3. Don’t give cash over the phone.
4. Protect your personal information.

If you want to donate to Haiti's relief effort I recommend doing your research on the individual charity to make sure what you're sending will actually go to helping people and won't be lining the pockets of bankers or businessmen. Or anybody else who would so greedily try to take advantage of such a catastrophe.

If you are looking for the most reputable organization I recommend The Red Cross.

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