PAST EVENT REVIEW:

On Thursday, February 15th, Hair Care Revolution (HCR) hosted its first event of 2018, the highly anticipated launch of the Afro Hair & Beauty Association (AHBA). I was so humbled and honoured to attend the highly anticipated launch of Afro Hair & Beauty Association (AHBA), hosted by Hair Care Revolution (HCR) at the Jamaican High Commission in Kensington, London.

It has always been reported that Black women spend six times more on hair products than their white counterparts or any other ethnic group – but very few reap any financial rewards from an industry said to be worth in excess of $7.5 billion dollars globally. HCR founded the AHBA in 2017 to utilise an already established network to facilitate a much-needed support & developmental structure for the benefit of members of the association, as well as the wider community. The AHBA aims to be the first Black British Afro Hair & Beauty organisation of its kind in the UK tasked with the privilege of representing Black British hair and beauty brands around the
world.

Hair Care Revolution (HCR) founded by Ovi King acts as a hair care pop-up shop experience offering the Black community the option to spend their money within their community. Their aim is to add value by providing a professional service, exciting events, and a memorable experience. Coupled with inspiring others within the community to work closer together and encourage the creation of financially successful platforms, businesses & opportunities for ourselves. The HCR Team have events scheduled this 2018 in countries like Paris and Amsterdam where brands and individuals can display their products to the wider European community. They are committed and passionate about bringing ideas to life and becoming instigators for the change we desire.

The AHBA event was attended by top Afro hair & beauty professionals, bloggers, press, enthusiasts, independent brand owners, distributors and on & offline retailers. Presenter Caz Mac, the founder of No Ordinary Woman chat show, kept the evening flowing. The theme of the evening was ‘Black Excellence’ and it certainly lived up to the expectations I had placed. The glittering guest list comprised of respected veterans within the hair and cosmetics industry including Mr. Rudi Page, former International Marketing Manager for the legendary Dyke & Dryden (who is allegedly responsible for coining the term ‘Afro hair & beauty’), Connie Jackson, former General Manager of Fashion Fair UK, Eryca Freemantle, a
Transformational Coach and Global Beauty Strategist amongst others high profile attendees.

Eryca is well-known in the global circles of health, beauty, and makeup, particularly for her campaigns to encourage the beauty industry to take a broader and more inclusive strategic position by ‘Embracing all Tones of Women’. She strongly believes in sharing her journey through her own life story so it enables others to realise that they too can uplift themselves from any situation. (www.erycafreemantle.com)

There was an opening speech by a representative from the Jamaican High Commission who touched on empowering ourselves to step out of our comfort zone and boldly into our calling. She also spoke about how the High Commission aims to facilitate business start-ups and collaborations between businesses within the UK and Jamaica.

We were treated to a classical ballet piece composed by Tonye Scott Obene, who is a 20-year old pilot-in-training, taekwondo expert, and classically trained ballet dancer. His family runs the popular Miami Health Club based in South-East London where he coaches and empowers young people and adults. Tonye is the example of Black Excellence exemplified.

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Ovi King, the founder, and president of AHBA then shared the aims and visions of what the association aims to bring to the Beauty Industry, which is to focus on Empowering, Innovation & Collaboration of Black Hair & Beauty Brands within the Beauty Industry. HCR founded the AHBA in 2017 to utilise an already established network to facilitate a much-needed support and developmental structure for the benefit of members of the association, as well as the wider community. Ovi went on to explain that AHBA aims to provide a voice for the industry, sharing knowledge and offering support where it is needed. They also aim to constantly raise standards in the industry so customers may receive exceptional products, high-quality services that build solid reputations & exceed expectations.

Aims & Goals:

  • The association will seek out the best resources available in order to provide members the following:
  • Advice & guidance – Provide support, advice and training resources
  • Promotion – Promote the UK Afro hair and beauty industry nationally & internationally.
  • Opportunity – Create opportunities that benefit our members.
  • Stimulate trade- Form trade links & strategic partnerships globally especially between Africa the USA & the Caribbean.
  • Professional Development- offer continuing education and professional development.
  • Showcase best practices- Provide a forum for promoting/sharing industry-wide best practices.

The Vision for the Future:

  • Legacy – We will support brands wholeheartedly that makes a positive impact on the community they serve not just for the short term but also for the next 100 years and beyond.
  • Shared Values – ABHA 5 pillar ethos – Professionalism, Success, Integrity, Unity, and ownership.
  • Leadership – Develop and cultivate the next generation of business leaders and influencers who will dominate the Afro hair & beauty industry globally.

The carefully selected committed AHBA Board Members made up of some experienced veterans of the Afro hair & beauty industry were finally revealed to us, which followed with a photo session where each board member had to sign the Article of The ABHA Association stating their commitment to AHBA and its concept.

The Advisory board members have graciously agreed to offer their time, support and advice to this special association, where they will share a common goal of creating a new and exciting future for UK Afro hair & beauty brands. All will bring their extensive talents, vision & business expertise to the association.

Four lucky independent business owners were given the opportunity to pitch their products to a Dragon’s Den style panel including award-winning celebrity hair stylist, Verona White, and UK Black Business Show founder, Raphael Sofoluke.

  • Fit 4 a Kiing is a healthy lifestyle company that presented their toothpaste and skin care brand using natural activated charcoal, which is an alternative to Fluoride that is a slow poison.  The customer is at the centre of the Fit 4 a Kiing brand focus. 
  • Mama-sia is a brand that 5,000 people in local villages in Ghana are positively affected by. Their beard oils and wellbeing products are sourced from Ghana but made in the UK.
  • Nylah celebrates African heritage, hair, and science. The mumpreneur created a safe, gentle and effective natural alternative for daughter Nylah. Partnering with a black cosmetic scientist and a trichologist, Nylah provides plant-based skin and hair care products. Kameese also leads local racial esteem workshops in Birmingham. 
  • MonShea Ltd, are made from pure shea oil.  Even men and women with locs can use the products, as they are more moisturising than shea butter.  This brand also believes in natural packaging for natural products.

Congratulations to Mama-sia for winning first prize for the AHBA Excellence Award on the night, which is a one-to-one mentoring session with one of the high calibre board members and 2 years free membership. Brand runner-up Nylah, won the Rising Star Award. 

As a previous Afro Hair & Beauty model (from back in the 90s), it was such pleasure to unite with old associates (hair stylists, fellow old models, and brands) sharing memories and networking with new hair and beauty insiders discussing our expectations of better and bigger things to come from AHBA.

Signing out with a quote from Ovi: “A rising tide lifts all boats.”

Congratulations, AHBA and Hair Care Revolution on this excitable Black Excellence journey.

To join their mailing list and get notified of the latest info & news; visit the AHBA website and interested in becoming a member: visit ‘the membership area’.

Do share your thoughts about diversity and your experiences within the Hair & Beauty industry in the comments below!

Do like, comment and follow my BLOG for more jaw-dropping posts coming your way.

Yours in love – The Renaissance Lady © 

Do like, comment and follow my BLOG for more jaw-dropping posts coming your way.

Yours in love – The Renaissance Lady © 

Do like, comment and follow my BLOG for more jaw-dropping posts coming your way.

Yours in love – The Renaissance Lady © 

Research these sites (oDesk, Guru, and PeopleperHour) to see which skills-set you can profile. There are FREE to register but you must market/brand yourself as the job only goes to the best or those who sell themselves. When you treat your profile as a conversation with a potential employer, more ideal employers will be drawn to you. 

BRAND YOURSELF

Listed below are some mistakes that keep you unemployed because your profile has not sold YOU.

Mistake #1: Not thinking of yourself as a product. Even though everyone on oDesk is in the service business, you have to think of yourself as a product.  Think of your picture and profile as the packaging, your description as the package design (or the copy that gets the potential customer excited about the product), and your skills and knowledge as the features and capabilities of the product.

When your potential clients are searching the database and results pop up, it’s like looking across of grocery shelf filled with boxes.  So your job is to describe and design yourself in a way that attracts exactly the kinds of jobs that you are best at and clients will hire you for again and again.

Mistake #2:  An unprofessional picture. You must have a professional picture as part of your profile.  It doesn’t have to be professionally taken, but it should be a headshot, meaning that it’s taken above the shoulders.  Dress as you would when going into an interview.  

In so many ways, when a client sees your pictures, it’s as if you just walked through the office door.  So look your best and have a friendly smile.  ‘oDesk, Guru and PeopleperHour’ are not ‘Facebook’, so avoid using overly casual pictures with silly clothes or hats.

Mistake #3:  Your description is about your goals and not my needs. As a potential employer, I’m coming to these freelance sites with a specific project.  If a description starts with your objective to grow your business or the kind of client you are looking for, I pass this by because it doesn’t match what I’m looking for. 

The way to get chosen is to focus on the keywords that best describe the tasks or skills that your ideal client is looking for.  For example, if you are good at interviewing and doing market research on the phone, write that down because that is the task clients would be hiring you for. Your goal is to describe the talents and tasks that you love to do and that clients would want.

Mistake #4:  Your description is too conversational or just a list. Your description is the only face-to-face conversation you will have with a potential client. Don’t count on them calling you for an interview unless the description sounds like a professional introduction.  

The best and most appealing descriptions are those that are friendly, a little conversational (not overly so), and loaded with tasks, capabilities, and talents.  Great descriptions are written in full sentences and say things like, “I’m great at writing keyword rich articles that sell.” Or “I can complete an hour-long transcription in two hours from the time you give it to me.”

Mistake #5:  Too many different skills and abilities in the description. While it’s possible that you have many skills, talents, and abilities, it’s best to focus on the ones you love to do most of the ones where you perform the highest quality work.  Placing too many skills in an overview description won’t attract more customers, it will attract less.  

When potential clients see too many skills, they won’t know which ones you do best. Focus on what you want to be known for.  You can list the others, but don’t describe or “sell” more than five unrelated skills — especially when these skills are different such as programming and copywriting.  If that is your talent than only focus on those two and don’t confuse people with more.

Lastly, may I be the first person to congratulate you on this new step of empowerment and encourage you to spread your wings to the world of opportunities around and available to you.

Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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Yours in love – The Renaissance Lady © 

Sometimes Passion Just Isn’t Enough

Those who know me well are aware that one of my passions is empowering. I love speaking into people’s life and encouraging them to find their true God’s given potential for their lives.

Man on top of mountain. Conceptual design.

It truly excites me to see someone I called ‘my own’ walk into and operate in THEIR CALLING.

Discovering your God-given purpose or gift is really only the first step in creating a fulfilling life. I sourced this article and it was as if the author was speaking my mind so enjoy and be enlightened to reach your POTENTIAL.

Don’t waste time pursuing a passion you haven’t taken the time to perfect. There, I said it! I had to get it off my chest once and for all. In the pop tart, microwave, faster than the speed of light world we live in today, entitlement runs rampant throughout our community. The days of working hard to achieve a goal have basically been tossed out the window. All we know is it’s ours and we want it now; and not like right now, but like yesterday! Who cares if you are naturally good at something? While you’re somewhere pouting about people not recognizing how “good” you are, there are others out there taking the same skill and making it GREAT!

Once you’ve been fortunate enough to realize what the gift is, I believe the equation to true passion driven success may resemble something like this:

GIFT + PASSION + PLANNING + PERFECTING + PURSUING + TIME = PROSPERITY

The problem in our culture is we want to acknowledge the fact that we are passionate about something and just pursue and prosper! Forget planning and who has time to perfect? And don’t mention time! We don’t have time to put the time in. We just want to throw something together and get the reward right now! But honestly, whatever happened to this concept of putting time in, honing your skills, paying your dues? What happened to our ability to recognize that most overnight successes actually work on their craft for 5, 10 or even 15 years before we even hear a faint whisper about who they are?

Are You Really Pursuing The Right GoalsLet’s be clear, your gift is the thing you do the best with the least amount of effort. Your passion is the activity you have a strong desire for or the thing that gives you the most energy. Just because you are passionate about something, it doesn’t mean that it’s your God-given gift.

In other words, it doesn’t mean you’re even good at it. With planning and perfecting, you may become better, but you’d have to put some time into even figure that out and well, that’s where most folks get lost in wasting precious time pursuing dreams that will likely never come true.

Now, with those things I do actually have a shot in the dark at, i.e. speaking, coaching, etc., it’s my job to be intentional about the actions I take on my way to pursuing my passion. In other words, I have to plan ways to exercise my talent as I look towards being recognized for it. It is also my job to perfect this gift which I am passionate about.

Remember, just because I’m good at it, that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t put effort into being great at it. Not to mention, there are people that I will meet along the way that can help me fulfill my goals that much faster. How will I meet them, though if I’m not actively and purposefully putting time into attending the right seminars, joining the right organizations and obtaining the education that will help me perfect what I say I’m passionate about?

follow-your-passion-704Lastly, remember that being prosperous doesn’t always refer to profit or financial gain. Prosper means to flourish, to thrive or to grow. That may mean financially, but can also mean spiritually, emotionally or mentally. Prospering can mean that you’re just all around happier because you’re inundated with work that you love to do.

In a nutshell, it’s time to get passionate about your gift and then put some effort into planning, perfecting and then pursuing it! If you’re not making progress on something you’re passionate about perhaps it’s because you’re skipping a few steps!

Share your thoughts in the comments below!

Do like, comment and follow my BLOG for more jaw-dropping posts coming your way.

Yours in love – The Renaissance Lady © 

Happy New Month of December, Beloveds!

 

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Yours in love – The Renaissance Lady ©

 

 

About a week ago, I stumbled upon a ‘challenge’ post by Dakore Akande and Feyi Luther Mbanugo called the ‘Stepping out in Faith Challenge’ – #steppingoutinfaithchallenge and it got me inspired to participate as I have discovered that these days, people lack belief in themselves and the power that is assigned to them. This was a 5-day challenge that ended on Saturday but I would still encourage everyone to participate as this will give you all Food for Thought at the end on what affects and also reflects in your life and how to make the change to allow positivity and also productivity!

Day 1 focused on Gratitude and what we are grateful for: I am grateful for still standing in spite of the adversities that I have faced this year and the previous years. I am grateful for His grace upon my life and the new journey that I am currently on. I am grateful for my son and family who have my back. I am grateful for consistency in my career. I am grateful for my blog and the opportunities that have come for expressing my thoughts on paper. I am grateful for friends who have stood by me with truth and love. I am grateful for much more coming my way so I stand and pose with Style, Grace, and Confidence…

Day 2 focused on being Mindful and turning negativity into positivity. I decided to post a quote which speaks a lot about how I choose to tackle life situations these days: “If It doesn’t CHALLENGE You, It doesn’t CHANGE YOU.” That has been my go-to affirmation on life challenges and negative thoughts. Besides, there is a popular quote by the famous philosopher – Friedrich Nietzsche: ‘What Doesn’t Kill You, Makes You Stronger!

Day 3 focused on Forgiveness: letting go of hurt and pain. Boy, can I relate to hurt and pain? But through it all, I realised through experience that I should never give another person the power to control my emotions so I forgive them and move on (but with wisdom and caution). Besides I’m a LEO and we Queens can’t allow that kind of toxins into our lives now, can we ??!

Day 4 focused on MANTRA which is positive words of affirmation to inspire and encourage us in our daily lives. I have so many affirmations to go by and have written various blog posts on the importance of affirmations like: ‘The Gratitude Challenge’ or Be the CEO of Your Life. My favourite bible verse is from Romans 8:28 – “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” & this has been my daily mantra in all situations. When Travis Greene bought the song ‘Intentional’ – it was as if he took my thoughts and made it into a motivating song… And I end up by saying that the power of affirmations bring us closer to what we want by feeling that they’re already in our reach.

Day 5 focused on Letting Go and Letting Our Light Shine. This challenge has taught me that life does have its ups and downs but through it all; it makes us stronger and we should always see the brighter side in the midst of the storm (yea, I know it is easier said than done). But I truly believe in that concept and that is what has kept me going through the challenges of life… I allow myself to always see the good and brighter side thus it has kept me looking much younger than my true age and I ain’t stopping for no-one. Just Live: Let Go and Let GOD!

Well, the challenge ended on Saturday and all participants were told to wait for an announcement advising of the best inspiring posts. Well today, I got to work only to get a notification from @flm_mamak that I have been given a ‘special recognition’ for my posts on the #steppingoutinfaithchallenge which has been enlightening for me.

Drum ? roll !!!!!! Wow, we had so many amazing posts during the #steppingoutinfaithchallenge and honestly, I would have chosen each and every one of you. Well @dakoreea and I came together and chose the 5 best posts and then we just had to give special recognition to two other followers who just blew us away!! So without further ado !!!

The 5 best posts go to:

And special recognition goes to @therenaissancelady and @oluwalonirosay !! Ladies, your stories, and delivery touched our hearts. We are so blessed that the #steppingoutinfaithchallenge touched you all !! I will be announcing a special event on Friday and hope you guys look out for it!! Much love ? cc @dakoreea ™@flm_mamak

As previously said: I would still encourage everyone to participate as this will give you all Food for Thought at the end on what affects and also reflects in your life and how to make the change to allow positivity and also productivity!

Do like, comment and follow my BLOG for upcoming posts.

Yours in love – The Renaissance Lady © 

Happy Monday Beloveds ❤.

Had an interesting conversation with some sista-friends recently on relationships and life and we touched on the word ‘LOVE’ which brought on loads of emotional outbursts and concepts. The only thing that stood out was when it was stated that LOVE is an Action Word and not just an emotion which has always been how I view it.

What’s your concept of LOVE?

Is it just an Emotion or is it an Action Word for you?

Let’s Discuss!

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Yours in love – The Renaissance Lady © 

Yvonne, you are not ordinary but Extraordinary’ and that is what I tell myself daily and I Stand by that Affirmation!

Why, I hear you ask? I have always this deep desire to make a change in the world and be successful in all I lay my hands to. And defining Success can be quite relative?

So what does Success mean to You?

Success starts with being hungry. I have always been hungry for success I guess all my life but got somewhat distracted along the way until I understood the principle of Self-Belief and Affirmations. Sometimes, it helps to talk with and to ‘self’ – do refer to an old blog-post titled ‘Be the CEO of Your Life!‘ about how affirmations can help your mindset to achieve even the impossible.

Instead of being all bitter and mad at words said to you; turn that around as motivation. That should be your power. Go out there and say: I’m going take this and do something with my life. I’m gonna better myself. I want to better my condition. I need to break the negative cycles that are going on in my house with my family and everything around me. The power of positive words is amazing to a mindset.

We all have heard the saying: ‘If at first you don’t succeed; try, try, try again.’ And that is the daily mantra in my household! The word ‘can’t’ is not allowed to exist at all. The word ‘failure’ is banned as I
believe you allow yourself to fail – the power is all in your hands. Hence the phrase: ‘Failure is not an Option‘ is constantly repeated when negative thoughts or doubt sets in.

60776c65-3cf0-4e65-8590-7f7959714cadInvest in things that will lift you up to greater heights to be the Best You that You can Be: be it motivational books, empowering friends and network amongst others. Part of my 2017 manifesto was to change my environment settings and surround myself with things and people that will help bring out the best Yvonne that lies within. Hence the famous quote: Your Network is Your Net Worth!

I tell people all the time, that success is a race and most times, it’s not about coming in first place. It’s about finishing. It is about keeping your word. It’s about being loyal. And just knowing the most important investment that you could make in this race is in yourself.

So what are you waiting for? What is holding you back? Go ahead and make that most important investment – Yourself!

Do like, comment and follow my BLOG for upcoming posts.

Yours in love – The Renaissance Lady ©

What are we without our girlfriends? Like Oprah Winfrey and Gayle King, Tyra Banks and Kimora Lee Simmons — nothing is more valuable than a friend that you can laugh and cry with, share all parts of your life with, and count on in time of need.

Good girlfriends are hard to find, in real live and on television. Every once in a while the sitcom gods bring together a magical set of ladies and we find ourselves laughing and crying with them and joining in on all of the perfectly timed side-eyes and mmm hmmms. Sure you could live without your girlfriends, but would you really want to? Who would you shop, workout, talk trash or watch reality TV with? Who would you tell your deepest, darkest secrets? Who would you cry to or celebrate with?  My girlfriends or ‘Sista-Friends’ [as I call them] are like my personal army and each soldier has had a vital roll to play in my life. Friends can be a source of strength or a source of stress, a source of motivation or a source of mess! I have been blessed with good friends who I love and who love me back; Friends that I laugh and cry with, friends that I am accountable to, friend that I can get advice from and give advice to. My sista-friends are the best!

We’ve all known each other since elementary school or high school. Most of us grew up on the  same block and at the same church. We’ve been through hell and high water together. Boyfriends, babies, husbands, cancer, death of loved ones, college, university, divorces, fights, you name it we’ve been through it….always together! We believe in friendship. We couldn’t imagine growing old, not having any friends who knew us way back when. We have the feisty ones, the peacemakers, the complainers, the jokers, the serious ones, the friend who’s always late. We don’t judge each other; we accept each other’s faults and all.

I refuse to lose a GOOD friend because I don’t want to do the work and have the conversations that are hard to have. I’m willing to say the uncomfortable stuff and speak my truth, always in honesty and in love for the sake of the friendship. And I’m willing to receive my friends’ truth, even when it’s not what I want to hear. It’s an honour to have someone trust you with the issues of their life. Treat it with the same respect you’d want them to treat your private stuff with. Be an honourable friend but, first, be an honourable person. I’m definitely not saying that we’ve been perfect friends but our friends know we love them and that we value their friendship by the way we treat them, rather our times together are frequent or infrequent.

Establish some reasonable friendship requirements such as: we must be able to tell each other the truth no matter what, we must be OK with each other’s personal decisions that don’t directly affect our friendship, we must have realistic expectations of each other because we have lives outside of our friendship, we must be able to celebrate and support each other no matter who’s doing well in life or who isn’t. Perhaps some boundaries need to be set as well, because sometimes friends can confuse themselves with being our parents, our financial or spiritual advisor, our schedule planners, or life coach. If you need something or someone to control, start your own business, buy a pet or have some kids, lol. Remember, being a friend does not mean you get to run someone’s life because you don’t want them running yours. If your core values are the same, work through the challenges and keep on laughing and crying and growing together.

Sometimes it takes just a moment to lose a friend but most often it takes years to gain a real one. So make sure you’re a good friend, a real friend, an honourable friend. Be there for them the way you’d like them to be there for you. Protect them the way you’d want them to protect. Stop trying to run their life because you don’t want them to try and run yours. Have some expectation but don’t be needy, we all want a friend, not a liability. 

Through thick and thin, your girls are always there to share some  laughs, to wipe your tears and to have your back when the going gets rough. No one can replace your best friends, but it’s nice when Hollywood gets the dynamic of your relationships right. I salute our favourite girlfriends in some of our favourite movies today. 
 
So call up your ladies and rent one of these flicks this weekend and have a fabulous girls’ night in. The bottom line is, be the friend that you would want to have. Now can somebody give me an Amen!
 
Share your FAVOURITE SISTA-FRIEND TALE in the comments below!
 
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Yours in love – The Renaissance Lady © 

Do like, comment and follow my BLOG for upcoming posts.

Yours in love – The Renaissance Lady © – Follow my blog with Bloglovin

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Do like, comment and follow my BLOG for upcoming posts.

Yours in love – The Renaissance Lady © – Follow my blog with Bloglovin