Bella Kinks hosted their 2nd Annual DFW Natural Hair Expo at the
Fashion Industry Gallery in Dallas, TX. The founder of Bella Kinks, Julian Addo brought together local and national key players in the natural hair movement from Mahisha Dellinger, the CEO of CURLS, to CNN commentator, Michaela Angela Davis with DeDe McGuire from k104 Dallas as the host.While on the surface the expo was used to bring together the Natural Hair community in the North Texas area and expose them to different products on the market. This event had a special spark of ‘Black Girl Magic’ and African American women uplifting each other during a time it is needed the most.
To begin the sprinkle of ‘Black Girl Magic’ young blogger, I’vana Holmes, performed her speech “Black Girls Are” then following her performance dancer and brand ambassador for Brown Girls Do Ballet, Olivia Bell, amazed the crowd with her swift dancing. Along with the performances were panels dedicated to providing young bloggers and entrepreneurs with advice to become successful. In the P.O.W.E.R Bloggers Edition Panel, Julian Addo sat down with natural hair bloggers, Christina Brown and Afrobella.
The two successful bloggers shared their advice on getting your brand out there and growing. To summarize the entire panel Christina Brown gave the audience, what can be considered the Golden Rule of blogging.
“Focus on being you and focus on being unique. You come to realize that people are going to come to your platform and support what you’re doing because you’re being authentic and original.”
In the P.O.W.E.R CEO Edition Panel, Addo spoke with Michelle Breyer, Mahisha Dellinger, Karonda Cook, Mia Lawrence, Janelle Stephens and Courtney Adeleye. In this portion of the Expo, the CEOs and buyers talked about breaking down barriers as ethnic brands and the different decisions you have to make as not only an Entrepreneur but a CEO.
“This idea that we are not beautiful, that we do not belong. At this point it is absurd, we have too much proof. This room is too much proof of how
dope we are. I want us to use this space that we create, of buying each other’s products because what we are doing is investing in our beauty, we are investing in our power without permission from anyone else.”
Michaela Angela Davis spent years in the media working to fight for the image of African Americans. “When I first started in this business,I had to fight to say, ‘what about a black girl’ and that is still a conversation today.” The CNN commentator shared her stories of working with CNN during the start of the #BlackLivesMatter Movement when Trayvon Martin was killed, up until her last story with the Charleston shootings.
“They’re [white news reporters] telling it like it’s a horrific story and we [African Americans Reporters] are having to shapeshift to just manage the horror, the historic horror and represent. That’s what Black women do every day. We have to manage horror, trauma, terror and we still get up and we still go to work and we still look amazing…”
Davis shared her stories of media hardships, stories every black girl could relate to and a message that while their hair is a physical feature it is so much more.”Our history, our ancestors, our hope, our dreams, our possibility, our beauty,our power, our resilience, our magic is in our hair. That’s it.”
(Photos courtesy of Jaida Brinkley)