Thursday, December 15, 2011

ESSENCE MAGAZINE AND THE DISS TO NATURAL HAIR VIDEO MAKERS ON YOUTUBE

I find it so irritating when recognition isn't given when they should. It's large corporations who like to keep their ears to the street, to find out what's hot, what's the upcoming trends, and other popular issues that relate to their customer, and in this case their readers. Now I don't know the contributing writer of the Essence article "Back To Your Roots" pg. 40 but I would assume that their not a fan of natural hair youtube videos. I think that it's much easier to show love, and praise to the MOST popular platforms, and the most sought out publications. However, INITIALLY neither Essence nor NaturallyCurly.com had information on the afro-textured haircare . Essence was not short of articles on how to style relaxed tresses, and NaturallyCurly.com catered more towards looser curls until forums specific to kinky hair came about. Youtube videos makers were few in number 3 years ago, but now there are hundreds of contributors. All I'm sayin' is "give me my props, and stop discounting the lil guys efforts and contribution. I'm sure the writer didn't mean to offend, but they did. I'm still waiting on a tweet back from Essence regarding this matter. Do you think I will get it ?











56 comments:

  1. I can see what they are saying, not everyone's hair texture is the same. And, some people give up on natural hair because "I used this product I say on so and so's YouTube channel and my hair did not come out like hers". However, the forums on Essence and naturallycurly.com are no different - people are still speaking from their own experiences. I agree with you, though; and I would like to add that it seems that Essence and naturallycurly.com are trying to make themselves the authority (by this tip, anyway) to promote themselves, and THAT AIN'T RIGHT. But, it is contradictory of naturallycurly.com because they send products to YouTubers for their honest reviews. . .maybe I'm missing something.

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  2. What's sad is that instead of offering a warning after highlighting some of the exceptional youtubers, they went for shouting out their own site and a site that is probably affiliated with theirs in some way. Low blow if you ask me. There is enough room for everyone.

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  3. When I read it, I was like "what the...?" It's thanks to Youtube Naturals of various hair textures and types that I was able to develop a routine that suited my own natural hair. I guess the writer's doing what (s)he's gotta do to steer women towards the Essence community or whatever but (s)he's got no place belittling Youtube Naturals.

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  4. Wow! Thanks for sharing! Very informative blog on this issue. I think this article was a bit 'generalizing' IMO. I think YT is fast becoming the go to for info on all things natural hair/hair, period; so paper/online mags are having to rethink their marketing strategies to regain that audience. So by down playing YT contributors' input could put doubt in the minds of readers and thus, reestablish clientele... This I doubt.

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  5. I agree with you and I don't do hair videos on youtube. After reading the article I was offended. I have learned a lot from watching your channel you're very candid about the products that you review & your always clear about what works for you may not work for everyone. As a natural I feel that youtube is a great resource.

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  6. That is some janky info,some of the most I've ever read. Ghetto--smh. This is why we can't have nice black women magazines.

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  7. Personally it was all good until
    I saw the shameless plug...ehh I
    told myself a long time ago I was
    not going to look to mainstream
    anything to tell me about my kind
    of beauty...it never caters to me
    and people like me...even Essence.

    I may by the mag every once in a while
    to look at pretty "brown" faces
    but other than that I dnt actuallly
    take what they call advice from it

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  8. WHAT?!?! That's THE reason I go to youtube to see someone with MY texture do a tutorial or review... I ain't never got jack from essence since being natural, they are always LATE on popular or useful products, and they CELEBRATE the relaxer...while products for naturals are featured on the LAST pages along side the call 1-800-psychic ads... Essence is on my last nerve... also featuring clothing or jewelry they know the majority of us cannot afford...that's why folks got bad credit they are more concerned with labels than paying their bills! But I digress... Essence get it together.

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  9. I honestly think that YouTube natural hair vloggers do an excellent job overall of DISCLAIMING that the products or regimines they share are the result of their own trial and error and their own hair textures. As rational and reasonable viewers, those of us who are clueless (and I'm speaking for myself because I don't know anything...lol) can easily infer that at the end of the day, WE will have to do the same for our hair types. It's like what we learn while we're in school; It makes sense in the classroom, but when you actually implement what you learn, it's expected that things will change with personal experience. Does Essence think we're so stupid that we won't understand that learning about our hair is no different? And I agree with the previous posts. From a marketing standpoint, this makes no sense, especially as Essence highlights natural hair bloggers (who are ALSO sharing their PERSONAL experiences) in its magazine and naturallycurly is financially benefitting from the Vloggers trial and error. It's unfortunate that Essence would rather debase it's own readers (many of which watch vloggers) for a dollar, instead of acknowledging how much courage it takes for those vloggers to share their lives and their hair with us! Kudos AfricanExport. I really respect people who not only stand for something, but walk for it too :-) Be Blessed...

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  10. They're just mad 'cause they were late to the party and now they're trying to get convince people that they "know best." SMH. Just one of the reasons I let my subscription lapse a couple of years ago.

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  11. I've been disappointed in Essence's whole take on natural hair. It was late to the bandwagon to say the least and every feature I've seen since has included information that clearly was designed to protect their turf and that of hairstylists who mostly traffic in relaxers. I don't get any of my hair advice from Essence to say the least. It was not a resource for me when I went natural four years ago. You Tubers and Fotki users and all the other natural hair web peeps were.

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  12. Im a NaturallyCurly.com blogger and vlogger and the information on NaturallyCurly.com on AFro textured hair is submitted by many of us that are on YT so he makes no sense!

    www.KinkyCurlyCoilyMe.com

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  13. I contribute my re-dedication to my self through the love of my natural hair in part to the vloggers on YouTube. I am proud to have attended, graduated and a continuing grad student of the University of YouTube. If it wasn't for the brave women of YouTube that looked like me, made mistakes like me and was willing to share them with me I wouldn't have the confidence I have now. Because of communication with these real everyday women willing to be vulnerable I am able to share my journey with confidence, ask questions, be heard and show the world that the consumer absolutely matters! I am a product of the strength of YouTube natural hair vloggers..its the reason I can blog today and make a difference in my family & community.When I started my journey over 4 years no hair publications, websites or stylist cared to show me how to care for my natural hair, love my hair or protect my hair! Thank you African Export because your hugs have saved me on a many day!

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  14. I totally understand but the editor is the one who oversees these kinds of matters. They probably hired a college intern who is majoring in PR to take over the tweeting for the fall semester. Sending an email or calling the editor would be awesome especially coming from you. Youtube definitely plays an important role but (hypothetically speaking) politics plays a role here. Maybe the editor/writer gets perks for mentioning someone as number 1 when they don't deserve it. OR maybe the writer/editor is legitimately uninformed about the major influence of youtubers. Either way, letting your voice be heard to the editor is the way to go! .-_-

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  15. By the way, hurting them where it hurts will definitely get their attention. Stop buying or supporting the magazine and watch how fast they give the readers what they want. lol!!! .-_-

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  16. I love how they say to use Naturally Curly...when Naturally Curly gets its MAIN TRAFFIC off the coattails of Naturals on YT!! Psh...I don't even know anybody that reads Essence...except at the Dr. office...

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  17. I only started learning about my natural textures BECAUSE of YouTube vloggers...not in spite of them. I think it was wrong of them to say instead of looking at YouTube videos on natural hair, join their websites. Of course everyone's videos won't apply to everybody. But every article written on Essence.com & naturallycurly.com won't apply either.

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  18. I think it is so hypocritical to make a comment that may avert potential viewers from Youtube's natural hair community, because prior to the natural hair "revolution", if I may; Essence magazine catered to its advertisers and the relaxed community that financially supported its advertisers (and hence, its magazine). Now that the Youtube community has made natural hair more prolific Essence magazine all of a sudden has become "expert" in natural hair. Hmmm? Would it have anything to do with a new lucrative advertising dollar?

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  19. I've been transitioning for 11 months and I've done most of my research on Youtube and natural hair blogs. NaturallyCurly.com DOES NOT have all the answers and I haven't gotten any life changing information after visiting that site. Most magazines really don't give detailed information on how to care for transitioning/natural hair so I appreciate the natural hair community on YT because most of you have given me insight & great tips on how to care for my own hair. Like you said in the video, Essence is always reaching out to bloggers and Youtube gurus so for them publish something like that is a contradiction and a slap in the face to those of you who take time and effort to make informative videos to help out natural hair newbies and transitioners like myself. They really should watch what they publish. SMH

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  20. I learned about 90% of what I know regarding natural hair from YouTube. I haven't read an Essence magazine......damn near ever. The selfless plug is expected, not only from them, but from any magazine and other publications regarding where to go to get information, etc. IMO, there is nothing better than seeing someone do techniques and witnessing the outcome yourself.

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  21. I had to laugh at the shameless plugging Essence made on where transitioners can find information. What I also find to be extremely ironic that they mentioned naturallycurly.com, which tends to use some YT hair vloggers to write articles for them(e.g. spicyeve). Obviously YT has a wealth of information for people of many textures. If Essence was REALLY looking to make an unbiased conclusion, they would've realized that the most popular YT hair vloggers have very different textures from one another and that the foundations of their regimen (e.g. wash, DC, moisturize, etc.) are pretty much the same. They're not telling anyone to run out and do the exact same thing because obviously no two heads of hair are the same, but the wealth of information they provide is clearly indispensable. Essence should know that virtually all of the popular YT hair vloggers are more knowledgeable, have more experience, and have the results to prove it. If they got caught saying something out of place, then we ALL know the natural hair community would be up in arms in a SECOND, so Essence is extremely narrowminded to assume that there are so many misconceptions on the Internet about AA hair, especially natural hair.

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  22. Well to be honest, I have learned more from YT about diverse textures than I have anywhere else. There are so many product reviews that I have seen that are actually done right in the video. I believe that there is a variety of natural topics that have helped me along the way and to be honest maybe Essence should have thought about doing a how to video or some kind of collaboration with some of our fellow YT Gurus and the publicity could have been good for them instead of the publicity they are getting from belittling YT. I would have never known anything about Essence's community or the other is it was not for YT. Slamming YT natural videos is not a good look for Essence, it only gives me the feeling that they are a little intimidated by Yt or at lest bitter. I will close on what my Grandma Lottie always told me..."If you don't have anything nice to say...DON'T SAY ANYTHING AT ALL!!!"

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  23. I think it was an ignorant statement to imply that a woman with a different texture of hair catn help or guide you on your natural hair journey in some way

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  24. AE thanks for the YT debate and discussion on this topic...it really got me thinking and this is my opinion...

    My first read of this paragraph doesn't give me the impression that Essence is downplaying any of our wonderful YT vloggers. It looks like they're advising users to be selective (don't jump on this and that's bandwagon) about taking other's advice, as most YT'ers are documenting what works for them. The statement seems to be encouraging users to research all-encompassing site communities like essence or naturallycurly so you can LEARN how to determine your hair type amongst the many that are featured on these sites. An added bonus is connecting/dialoguing with others in a forum environment that may be in a similar place in their journey, others that you can share with and lean on for support.

    A lone request for help in the comment section of a youtuber's page may be met (if not ignored entirely due to the sheer number of responses) with a mere response of "meh....google it" which may leave a "newbie" more disheartened and uninspired to even start the journey in the first place.

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  25. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  26. And looky what I found on their website just 6 months ago. SMH. Make up your damn mind Essence.

    Friday, June 10, 2011 | 10:47 AM
    Natural Hair Vloggers are More Influential Than Ever

    "Raise your hand if you're a natural girl who learned fab styling and maintenance tips from YouTube vloggers! According to The New York Times, you're not alone. In a recent piece on the natural hair vlogging phenomenon, the publication reported that there are hundreds of chemical-free women on YouTube, posting videos, blogs, and tutorials on products, hair tools, styling tips, "transitioning" tricks -- anything that can help their unrelaxed sisthren feel more confident about rocking her textured tresses..."

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  27. No words. I saw the article this morning when I pulled my issue out of my mailbox.

    When I first went natural in 2000, Essence didn't even talk too much about natural hair, they spotlighted Maxwell, Jill Scott and Erykah Badu to talk about natural hair, and that was about it. (Nappturality and Motown Girl were the only two sites I remember reading). I stayed natural for 2 years and went back to the creamy crack. I went back natural 2 years ago and this time around, it has been much easier due to the fact that I went back to Nappturality and YT vlogs, where each vlogger demonstrates what they are using for their hair type as well as various hairstyling/accessorizing their hair.

    Now, more women have went natural (and let's get real, the economy tanking had a lot to do with it) and we haven't seen our hair natural since we were pre-schoolers. Now, with all of the YT vids, you get to see various textures. One thing I have definitely realized: My 4C hair, DOES NOT LIKE most of the "Natural" hair products on the market. What I found does work:

    Olive Oil mixed in Organic Root Stimulator Replenishing Conditioner,
    Trader Joes Nourish Shampoo
    Olive Oil and Honey Treatments (I was surprised at this one myself)
    Shea Butter and H2O hair spritzes
    Old School product: Stay Soft Fro.

    That's it! You have to find what works, learn your scalp and hair and work with it. All these experts are a pain in the a! I dont' have Halle Berry hair, nor do I have wash and go and instant curl. I have to moisturize, and twist for 2.5 hrs and keep them in for a couple of days and then release them to get that curly look. Other than that, straight up afro a la Nina Simone. And to be even more frank, some days you just have plain ole bad hair days. Scarves, hats, headwraps to the rescue.

    It's obvious that these days, "journalists" troll the blogs and YT videos to gain whatever information they can. That's "investigative journalism" Never mind really getting into the subject. And of course, their advertisers have to be profiled and products have to be pushed. So of course there seems to be a partnership going on. How do you discredit numerous YT videos and push your site? This is just as bad as YT vloggers who make disparaging comments about some natural hair styles and pushing their own product line, because they are more of an expert than anyone else. Give me credit in learning about what works and what I need to do that's right for me, not because you pushing your product clearly made for one specific hair type!

    Keep on keepin' on sista...

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  28. I think it's all about $$$$! You can get the info you need from YT for free vs. having to pay for the mag subscriptions.....

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  29. I commented on the YT.... Chile, nobody reads Essence. Oh wait...My auntie does, she's 73 years old and she reads it after she takes her meds. It helps her SLEEP better. lmao

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  30. I've not look at Essence for my hair care needs EVER. They speak about products that they are paying for spots or about products that are out of the reach of many women of color. In my opinion products like Pantene relaxed and natural is a joke but they will place this type of product as one that we should covet. Not me. When I considered going natural 5 years ago where was Essence? Talking about weaves, and relaxed hair that's where. I don't do wigs, weaves, sew ins, clip ins etc. If some do fine but as a community show the beautiful spectrum that offer. If you can only recognize one form of beauty you will be left behind by the masses that you aren't catering to.

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  31. Well to be honest I really don't know what to say, but I will say that I have a new found respect for
    Essence. With them being a very large Quote on Quote African magazine, I found it to be very disappointing on their behalf. So many of use rely on the bigger voices in the black community to rep us and rep us well and correctly. In my experience you tube has been very resourceful and it hasn't cost me a dime for the information that I have gathered from the positive ladies on the channel. Let's just please stop the black on black crime. In this case I feel like this was murder in more ways than one. Positive energy no matter what it is from is always good and always needed.

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  32. Since curlynikki.com has a deal with naturallycurly.com, I find it interesting that:
    1) She has not commented on this, and
    2) They did not choose to put her website in there.

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  33. Again I feel this is something that we have jumped the gun on. I honestly dont think that the quote was offensive at all. They are right all internet information on natural hair is not good information. And all Youtube videos are not good videos. They are encouraging naturals to do their research before you just take someone's word for it that may not have the expertise in that area. Even my stylist has confirmed that there are more Youtube wrongs that come in her shop then Youtube rights. They did not condemn all Youtube bloggers or name any names. Everyone must agree every Youtuber that post a tutorial on natural hair don't always know what they are talking about.

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  34. I get the warning however warning against the misinformation on one vlog and blog source while uplifting another is a bit iffy. - jadedgurl86

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  35. Essence needs to go sit down, they are so irrelevant.

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  36. I understand their point, but what makes their site "full of opinions" better than a Youtuber opinion. Until its cosmeotology schools catered to ALL NATURAL HAIR opinions are the only option. If it wasnt for YT I wouldn't of made it 4yrs without a relaxer. Nevertheless I love Essence & I appreciate them for finally giving natural hair a spotlight

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  37. At K. Yancey I feel curly nikki is more for us anyway. Majority of naturallycurly images don't have my hair texture or my relatives. Its still catered to white ppl in my opinion

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  38. I can see why you're irritated by this but honestly I don't think Essence has any idea what's going on. They are so out of touch and they have been struggling to stay afloat. I'm sure they thought they were on track when they finally developed a website 15 years after the internet was invented and I'm sure they spent a lot of money developing their site and forums. Then once they thought they finally conquered the internets it turns out that you can get information through videos on a free website?! This little dig is a thinly veiled attempt to keep themselves relevant and in the loop despite the fact that they are completely clueless. Everybody knows (copyright Phaedra Parks)that naturallycurly.com is not the place for the type of curlies who read Essence magazine.

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  39. Their just mad that YT has become a free educational school for alot of things like natural hair. And we have developed a loving and sharing community where we don't have have to pay $4-6 dollars on the lame advice given in a magazine. They should be supporting their own but its obvious that their intimidate by the success of each person who has contributed to helping someone develop healthy hair habits. I went natural because my hair was damage and because i found support on here.

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  40. I have to admit that I like to view articles and photos featuring women with natural hair on Essence.com but it is not my go-to for styling, product reviews and the like. NaturallyCurly.com has some advice but most of it comes from those with whom I already have a YouTube subscription.

    I don't think anyone takes anything Essence has to say seriously since the magazine has only recently decided to feature or support articles about natural hair. Wait, isn't Essence the magazine with the article claiming natural hair is costly and is hard to keep up?

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  41. @NaturallySonja Yes Essence recently had an article about that. I think that something poorly worded gives the impression that they are totally disregarding vloggers on YT.
    @MsCinnamonKiss Yes the support and the responses and correspondence that you can get on the YT is invaluable. That is something you just cant get with a magazine and that could've been mentioned as a benefit to watching vloggers on YT

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  42. LOL @KOOKY LADIBABY Essence is granny's night cap lol

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  43. you know, I went to a ceu class for cosmetologists in sc just this past Sunday. At this class, the instructor/ presenter of said class said and I quote" I think this natural hair trend is just a fad."end quote. This person was a black woman and through the entire class all she did was promote the product line that she uses in her salon. Even though two of the 3 models she had were natural, the finished product of the completely natural model was poor and the completely flat ironed natural model was no better if not the same results I've seen on youtube of great tutes or what I do in my place. then once understanding that she had afew naturals in the room, she try to clean up what she said but it's out there in the air already. Just because you style afew naturals doesn't make you an expert. Sure she knew her stuff and gave us a quick refresher course as well as recipes for certain problems only using the products she was familiar with but,I was a li'l peeved at the fact that she dissed my ,and others like me, hair choice. No I dont want to put anymore chemicals in my hair, no I don't want to be limited with how i style my hair, no just..no!Then she said that most go natural not because of the relaxer,but because of the unskilled applier. OK.... so the millions plus naturals in the world are natural because the person putting the relaxer on their hair didn't know what they were doing? some...maybe but not all. I understand that natural may not work for everybody BUT RESPECT THOSE THAT HAVE MADE THE CHOICE TO EMBRACE IT! Yes that class was rather educational.So this whole thing with Essence was not just a drop in the bucket. And of course in a later issue they, like other big boys, will put in a retraction saying they're sorry in that oh so special wind baggy kind of way and put a whole 4 pages in the issue on(Sing it with me and Aretha!) being a natural woman.It Maybe a full issue ya never know, keep your eyes open.lol

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  44. @Myka0121 That's the reason why so many naturals have become self-specialists because of the comments the instuctor said. This is why they flock to Youtube over big brands and licensed stlists.

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  45. I went natural many years ago, however because I had no idea what to do to my hair besides press and curl, I decided to perm it. Big mistake. If natural hair care vloggers were on youtube all those years ago, I would not have permed my hair. I went natural about two years ago, and if it was not for vloggers like AE and other youtubers, I would have probably permed my hair by now. AE thanks for all of your tutorials on hair and other topics. XOXO

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  46. I watched your video and ths and read your blog about this. I do agree with what you are sayiing. I know that when going natural both my first and second big chop I looked at youtube for information. I recall the timesI have looked at essence I never really saw any big emphesis on natural hair. When you would see women with hair that was not chemically treated it did not look like ours! I thank you for speaking out! I have gotten so much information from youtube as my channel started as a way to sat upto date with ladies like you who's channels were instrumental in my natural journey! I feel like you should not knock have to put another person or source down to make their own information look better! I am like of coures they will likely endorse companies and products because its something in the deal for them. On youtube so much information can be found free of charge! This is a recession!Smiles! But I just say to all of those on youtube who have help me along this journey thank you! I feel like that is where credit is truly due! SO many of you have talked about natural hair from day one! When did essence jump on this when they realized there was a market out there! I remember looking through an essence mag from about 7 or more years ago! They were talking about sizzling summer styles! I only saw about 1 or 2 naturals featured and pages of relaxed and extensions! Not really even braids just weaves and so on! It is those very youtubers who helped me to embrace my hair and be fearless on this journey! I also read other books but I did not find much info in a magazine! Thanks for everything! Stay authentically beautiful and real! Blessings always!

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  47. i have subbed to ESSENCE magazine since 19-0-long and their info has never been as substantial to me as YOUTUBE & BLOGS......i was natural for about 8 years but never learned to manage my hair (while reading ESSENCE) until i discovered the natural hair community on youtube which led me to natural hair blogs....With the knowledge i garnered from those sites(AND FROM DIFFERENT TEXTURED WOMEN) i consider myself very capable of managing my mane

    ESSENCE mentions a natural hair product once in a while...while trying to sell it to you....their natural hair articles never really takes up 2 solid pages....and its always shallow information. by some celebrity somebody who isnt there to show you tutorials, reviews or answer questions....instead WE ARE BOMBARDED by adds to buy what ever crap that paid for an advertising space in the magazine

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  48. I have to confess. Initially, I didn't get it. But once I went back and read the statement, I understood. They basically endorsed certain online communities over natural hair bloggers/vloggers.

    I decided to remix the statement on my blog. Check out what the Essence magazine writer should have said here

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  49. I HAVE NO WORDS FOR THIS BULLSH*&T! I have learned so much from my YT ladies..

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  50. Vanisha I'm with you on this! Why is it that the Huffington Post will acknowledge the YouTube Natural Hair Community but "our" own magazine shows no respect?! They seem to insinuate that the NATURAL HAIR COMMUNITY doesn't exist on YouTube. Such an ignorant statement as I believe YouTube is actually where the Natural Hair Community was re-birthed in the 21st century!

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  51. This is just another way to keep US black women
    down. please think about it.

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  52. I concur with most of what has already been said. I will add this, I find it no surprise that Essence is tooting the horn of themselves and their subsidiaries. The establishment is scared of indie artists and entrepreneurs that are out there giving solid information and growing their own brand. I thank you so much for all the great work you have done and could only imagine the amount of time you invest in your youtube channel and other ventures! Ignore the naysayers! We love ya AE and all the vloggers out there doing their thing.

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  53. My concern is the HATERRADE as if them are the only 2 contacts in the world on haircare, Most forget how things start word of mouth, networking. I enjoy hear and seeing the different views. SHM! Keep it up cause #elbows&kneesscuffedup2012 !!!!

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  54. All I know is when I needed advice when I first went natural years ago it was the Youtube world that opened up first with tips, advice, and demos from others like me. Just saying... :/

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  55. I totally agree with u..it was the ladies on youtube that i watched that gave me the information and inspiration to go natural.everyone is talkin from the perspective if their own hair type but there are thing they can be doing dat would work for anyone or even give people ideas for how to modify the routine to cater to their own hair.i think alot of credit is due to those people who take the time to make videos and share information because alot of people dont know how much time goes into editing videos (i learnt this first hand).keep doin you.you are one of my natural hair inspirations.much love.

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  56. I have dreadlocks and I would like to know from Essence, "Where am I supposed to find information on how to care for my hair and how to do different styles with my hair - if not from YouTube?" They (Essence and many, many other natural hair care sites) rarely, if ever have suggestions for those of us with dread and/or Sisterlocks.

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