INHMD: Charlotte International Natural Hair Meet-Up Day Review

Okay, so I’m going to jump straight into this post. My mother and I have been natural for 2 years now. Her hair type is 3c and mines is 4a-4b. I wear protective styles year round mainly in the form of upart wigs, bantu knots, etc… This summer I’ve decided to wear only my hair during protective styling… no weave 😦 She (my mom)  only wears wigs. She had relaxed hair that was a little longer than waist length, but due to the anesthesia from her surgery 2 years ago, her hair fell out! According to her, up until the event, she didn’t even know she had a curl pattern or what ‘Sulfate, Paraben, Dye Free’ on labels meant. Recently my mother and I went to our first natural hair event/get together. The event was May 17, 2014 from 12p.m. – 4p.m. International Natural Hair Meet-Up Day, also known as INHMD, is a fairly new event that happens in major cities across the U.S. and overseas… on the same day, under the same organization, with the same purpose – to create a comfortable environment where naturalistas can come together and socialize with each other, test new products, learn from each other’s experiences, etc… In this post I’ll contrast between ‘what I expected’, and ‘what I experienced.’

The Venue

 What I Expected:

To me 12a.m.-4p.m. was such a long time just to talk about something as simple as hair. I thought we (my mom and I) could just walk in a big building that maybe  resembled a big convention in Atlanta, and that we could leave at whatever time we wanted to. I thought the event would be packed with hundreds of people and that the event would be an impersonal experience.

What I Experienced:

The event was held at Genesis Events venue and was very down to Earth! As soon as we walked in the building, not only did the volunteers greet us, but the actual event planner, Katrina, greeted us and expressed her gratitude for us taking the time to come to the event. Were hundreds of people there? No, and it was perfect that way. First, hundreds of people wouldn’t have been able to fit inside the room, Second the amount of people in the room – about 150 – made the environment seem intimate. No question asked by the audience was deemed as shameful or looked upon as stupid, but was seen as a common question that ALL of the audience wanted to ask. Not to sound too cliche, but it sort of felt how when I was younger and I was around all of my aunts and cousins, and they shared hair tips, and ate food, swapped hair products,  and just had a good time. The atmosphere was very laid back, yet very professional.

Professional Hair Stylist

What I Expected:

Honestly I expected a very rude, high on the horse, hair stylist that’d be upset if you questioned them because they just knew they were the sh*t and you had no right to question them! I expected them to be overly expensive. I thought they’d be recommending products simply because of the brand, and not because of it’s quality or outcome on a person’s hair. I know on this natural hair journey, no two heads are exactly the same, but if the product doesn’t work on at least one person’s head……. it’s not the person, it’s the product. I just thought negative of them (I know, I was judging the book by it’s cover) my bad 😦

What I Experienced:

I was VERY pleased with the professional natural hair stylist Angela (I’ll put her hair salon and contact information at the bottom of this post.) The moment she stood up and spoke with confidence, I was confident in her abilities and trusted the knowledge she had about natural hair. Now moment of honesty, WE ALL know how some hair stylist are. They claim to do natural hair, but they don’t even have a natural hair license. They claim to know about natural hair, but they’ rocking a relaxer (no offense against relaxed heads) and have never considered going natural. They faithfully try to push their love of natural hair onto you, to make it seem as if they’ve been schooled at a natural hair school, but really the only thing they’ve studied is YouTube. I have nothing against YouTube, but not all information on there is accurate. Anyways, that’s not the vibe I got off of Angela. She talked about natural hair so much, that even my mom – a person very hard to please- started writing down notes and tips from her. She had a live demonstration on a client, and used products that she sold at her salon and used on her clients. She had multiple items for sale at her table- satin pillow cases, oil treatments, shampoo/conditioner for colored natural hair, etc…- needless to say, when I was at her table scheduling my hair appointment with her for the following  day (don’t worry, I’ll be posting about my experience at her shop in a day or two,) I wasn’t the only naturalista scheduling an appointment.

The Vendors

What I Expected? 

Honestly, I don’t know what I expected really. Like I said in the beginning, I thought the event was going to be a big convention, so I imagined about 50 vendors would be there. I didn’t expect them to have bad quality products, I just expected their products  to be expensive. Not thinking they would try to cheat me out of my money, but because manufacturing your own products with 100% goods can be pricey depending on your technique.

What I Experienced:

I didn’t get to visit all of the vendor’s tables, due to the discussion panel starting on time, but I did over hear reviews from others and they seemed to enjoy it. There were about (an estimate) 10 vendors there. The products they sold ranged from t-shirts and body scrubs to natural hair products and and jewelry. The products I bought (Oil treatment, Satin Pillow Cases) were not expensive. For 2 pillow cases and oil, I paid about $30.

The Discussion Panel

What I Expected:

I expected what I experienced, so I’ll skip right to what I experienced.

What I Experienced:

The Discussion Panel was made up of various professional women. Katrina, the Charlotte INHMD event planner, asked a series of questions to each woman to gain their perspective on them [the questions.] Each woman came from a different background. One woman was a new mom and had a 3 year old son. One woman was a blogger in her spare time. One woman was older than the others. One woman was a life coach. The things these ladies all had in common was that they all worked in corporate America and wore their natural hair. One thing that I liked about the panel is that they were open to questions and comments from the audience. Also, they were very honest in their responses.

  The Gift Bags

What I Expected?

I didn’t expect much from the giveaway. I knew that this year, information about Lupus and Suicide would be included in the bag to inform event attendees about the two. That’s all I really expected.

What I Experienced?

I walked in the event and received a white bag. I had about 4 mini sized products (that I can’t use right now because of my no shampoo challenge, but in 5 months when the challenge is over, I’ll do a blog post about that) in my bag and papers on the different vendors at the event, Lupus & Suicide Prevention, and a book full of black owned business in the area. I bought 2 general admissions tickets, but I do know that VIP tickets were offered and were sold out by the time I saw the event online. I think VIP gift bags were filled with  full-sized products, but I’m not sure.

The Promptness of the Event & The Giveaways

What I Expected:

All of my expectations were blown out of the water when I first arrived at the venue because I thought it’d be a big convention. Now, each participant received a raffle ticket and at the time of the giveaway if your raffle ticket was chosen from the bag, you got one of the prizes. One thing I liked is how they encouraged each participant to being a full bottle or half full bottle of natural hair product for 3 options- A.) Cancer Survivors, B.) Homeless people (or domestic abuse survivors but I’m not sure),and C.) Members of the Armed Services. Each product you bring, earns you one more raffle ticket.

What I Experienced?

I arrived at the event at 12:04 p.m. and the event didn’t really start until 12:45. I wasn’t upset about the time it started because that was apart of the schedule and everything was on time and going according to plan. Now to the giveaways. I, a former product junkie, brought all of the old products that I didn’t use anymore, and gave them to charity. I received extra raffle tickets and my extra raffle tickets actually won me 2 gifts! I’ll put pictures below of the things I bought at the event, and the things I won.

Eden Body shampoo, conditioner, deep conditioner

Eden Body shampoo, conditioner, deep conditioner


For Real Girl (Grow On Me Oil)


Skin eScentuals Body Scrub & Body Butter. Omggg! This stuff os amazing and works so well!!

Let me make a brief disclaimer. I’m not a spokeswoman, or a paid advertiser for INHMD (nor am I for any company.) I was just an attendee at the event, and I thought I should share my experience. I paid for two general admissions tickets just like everyone else did, and yes everything I said about the event was pretty good, but it’s my honest opinion. I’d never falsely post about something because I know that if it was me paying my hard earned money for something, when I read reviews, I’d want to know the truth.

The information for the natural hair stylist is below:

For Real Girl Salon — (704) 663- 1223

125 East Plaza Fr. Suite #113,  Mooresville, NC 28115

Again, leave comments, subscribe, and constructive criticism and have a good day!!!


2 responses to “INHMD: Charlotte International Natural Hair Meet-Up Day Review

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