"I believe that every person is born with talent. I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life loves to be taken by the lapel and told: 'I'm with you kid. Let's go.'"

After avoiding it for nearly two years, I finally watched the documentary Dark Girls. I’d been putting it off because I didn’t want to get upset. I didn’t want to watch something that would only remind me of the strong impact colorism has had in my world. Even now when I type my own name into a Google search, the option “Nikia Phoenix race” appears. Wow! That’s something people actually look up. I know who I am. I know where I come from. Sure, my complexion may have you confused. Those freckles probably throw you for a loop. But my super kinky hair is an obvious indicator of my African roots. The subject of Black hair is another conversation that we’ll save for later. Let’s get back to skin. READ MORE

There’s always going to be something going on with you or with someone you love. If you’re not distracted by your own problems, maybe you feel heavy with all the dysfunction in the world around you. Maybe you didn’t wash clothes this weekend and you have to wear your ugly bra or your uncomfortable panties today. Maybe you’re cutting back on sugar and caffeine and you feel like slapping someone. READ MORE

Not everyone sees or knows that though. Everyone wants to see well-dressed, put together, composed Black women all the time. That is not alright. We have burdens we carry and crosses we bear on our backs too.
"It was just like, she’s on the cover of these magazines? I’d never seen anyone like me on the cover. You can affect and inspire people without knowing it. Your work is done and you have no idea. That’s really powerful so thank you for being that for me."

“It’s not for me to decide [if someone can live with Eartha Kitt]. That’s for someone who decides to live with me to decide. Not for me. Compromise? What is compromising? Compromise for what? Compromising for what? Compromising for what reason? To compromise for what? To compromise? What is compromise? [laughs] Stupid. A man comes into my life and I have to compromise? You must think about that one again. READ MORE

“I was born to a very beautiful family. My father looked like a matinee idol; my mother was literally so beautiful that she would stop traffic. When I looked in the mirror, all I could think was that when I was born, God was on a lunch break. I didn’t look pretty, so I set out to be very good at what I did. I found self-esteem in other ways — I was a majorette, I sang in the choir, I played viola, I ended up being a very good student. It wouldn’t be until much later that I felt beautiful. READ MORE

You have to be able to make fun of yourself. We are constantly being judged based on our appearances and it's difficult not to take that criticism to heart. To get through the hard times, sometimes, you've just got to laugh.




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THE KINKY GIRL'S GUIDE TO HEALTHY HAIR, FLY STYLE AND LIVING WELL