au naturale, aunaturale, lupie chick, lupus, miss naturale, mz sixx, natural, natural hair, womens health

Day 1 #HAWMC Why I Write

HAWMC_2012_dayprompt-1

I am super excited to be taking part in the Health Activist Writer’s Month Challenge which is being hosted by WEGO Health! The entire month of April will be dedicated to sharing our stories as well as educating and raising awareness!

Day 1 #HAWMC Why I Write

Initially, I had a blog relative to natural hair. I LOVED talking about natural hair, and offering advice & tips as to how to care for natural hair. Au Naturale by Mz. Sixx was my baby. I had gained followers, was getting offers from companies to host giveaways, & meetups – I was on to something. In 2011 Lupus creped his ugly head into my life. I could no longer keep up with blogging, attending social events and was lost as to what was happening to my body. After being diagnosed, I was stumped as to how I would tell my friends and family I finally had a reason for the scarring on my face and the extreme exhaustion. I took to my blog and posted Hello-I’m A Lupie Chick.

That was the first time I had actually said the words “I have Lupus”. Wow, the response was overwhelming as most of my friends and family was not educated or aware about Lupus. The inbox messages, text, emails began to be too much. First, blogging about Lupus was a “relief” and a way that I could provide my friends and family with updates. There were moments when I felt like I was complaining or no one was reading. Months had gone by without any posts, because I didn’t want to burden my followers with my Lupie Chick issues. I started to receive tweets stating that they were about Lupus because of my blogging and interactions on social media. There were a few people in my life who suffered in silence and they were speaking through me and the blog. WHAT A BURDEN THAT WAS FOR ME TO CARRY. Additionally, I was still posting on the natural hair blog. It was too much, What if I said the wrong thing? What if I felt like saying F*uck it-would I offend someone? Would I receive hatful messages because someone didn’t like my post? How can I keep up the pace with informative content on two blogs?  I came to realize that I’m human; I’m not a robot that you can switch off and on. I don’t have to blog daily or weekly. I have feelings, emotions and a voice that I refuse to silence to spare anyone else’s feelings.

In March of 2013, I combined both blogs- Au’Naturale by Mz. Sixx and The Lupie Chick = Naturally Lupie.  I write to be a voice and a face to a little known invisible disease. I write in a conversational way….my grammar isn’t always correct, I occasionally use slang and or profanity-not to get attention, but because that how I speak to my friends or that’s how I’m feeling at the time. I didn’t want my blog to be a text book encyclopedia type of blog. I didn’t want my blog to be a repeat of every other natural hair blog. I wanted my blog to tell the struggle and be a pillar of strength for the weak and weary. My blog is the little thing in your head saying “yes you can and YOU WILL”. I’ve always been loud and in your face type of person (some say obnoxious)-I’m not the whispering type…so why start now? Mister (my Lupus) is loud and obxinous too- when he wants attention he show up on my face and my hair. He has tried his best to take my beauty and silence me. Most recently, I’ve had to cut all my hair off aka Big Chop the day before a huge event I was hosting to celebrate women, as a result of a Lupus flare (talk about loud and obnoxious). The hair loss has left me bald around the edges and nape of my head. I posted about it on Instagram w/ pictures, and guess what- I received 36 comments where other Lupies have or had experienced the same thing.

THAT’S WHY I WRITE; to speak up and not suffer in silence or alone. I have had moments where I had no idea what to write and felt like I had no meaningful content left to offer. I have had moments where I’ve felt completely inadequate to try to offer hope to readers when I felt so helpless myself. I have had moments as recently as this weekend when I’ve felt like I physically didn’t have anything left to give. But I do- I have LOTS more to give and I will continue to write- not only for you but for ME!

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The almighty chase of the curl & definition

Day 3-4 of a flat twist out


I’m always asked the question ” what do you use to get your hair curly?” ” How do you define your curls?”  The answer has remained the same for the last 6 months- I do flat twist out, using diluted lottabody setting lotion and my homemade whipped shea butter. I pineapple my hair at night, shake, and fluff in the am and ROCK OUT!

I have curly hair, however I’m no longer chasing curls and demanding that my hair is ” defined” 24/7. I do my twist out on Sunday and I don’t re twist until the following Sunday. I stretch a twist out for 5 days ( sometimes 6). The picture above is a 3rd or 4th day twist out. In the morning, I take down my hair ( from the pineapple), take my shower ( the steam help loosen the hair), after the shower ( i don’t not wet the hair- I just let the steam work), spritz with Oyin Handmade Juice N Berries ( or you could use water), fluff and go.. I’m now in love with my hair on day 3-5 of my twist out- I love the volume and loose curl. Day 1-2 the pattern is really tight and and not ” big” as I would like- not my fav look ( on myself).

Day 2 of a flat twist out 

MOISTURE is what defines and shapes our curls, not product. MOISTURE is what chases frizz away. Use products to enchace what you have, not create something that isn’t there. Curls come naturally- not in a jar ( or tube, or bottle).

{ posted on BlackGirlLongHair.com/} ” Don’t fight nature, embrace it. Haute hair, begins with healthy hair. So, moisturize, moisturize, moisturize! Trim every 3 months. Choose protective styles whenever possible. Avoid heat like the plague. Once you have mastered these principles, explore styling options that work with your natural curl pattern. If your hair is very kinky, roll with it…literally. Styles like finger twists and comb twists will produce awesome lasting texture with ease. These styles also tend to look better as they age. Gently separate the twist after a few days for greater volume and variety.”

Now that summer is creeping up on us and the the heat and humidity is in FULL EFFECT- Below are links to a few post to help you maintain healthy summer hair and keep the curls popping by providing tips on how to moisturize & maintain length.

Co-Washing Natural Hair

Moisturizing & Sealing Natural Hair

My ( daily/weekly/monthly) Regime

Disclaimer: These images may not be reproduced, copied, transmitted or manipulated without the written permission of Mz. Sixx. Use of any image as the basis for another photographic concept or illustration (digital, artist rendering or alike) is a violation of the United States and International Copyright laws. All images are copyrighted © 2012 – Au’Naturale by Mz. Sixx

Altonia Dugar, au naturale, awareness, lupie chick, lupus, lupus foundation, Lupus Walk, miss naturale, miss sixx, natural hair, natural hair care, women, world lupus day

31 Days of Lupus Awareness Facts



Lupus Awareness Month is observed during May to increase public understanding of this unpredictable and potentially life-threatening disease that affects an estimated 1.5 million Americans. Here’s today’s important fact about lupus.

May 1: Lupus is an unpredictable and complex autoimmune disease that causes inflammation and can damage any organ in the body with life-threatening consequences.

May 2: Ninety percent of the people who develop lupus are female. Males also can develop lupus and their disease can be more severe in some organs.

May 3: Lupus develops most often between ages 15 and 44. However, between 10 and 20 percent of cases develop during childhood and these cases can evolve more rapidly into serious health complications.

May 4: In lupus, something goes wrong with the immune system, which is the part of the body that fights off viruses, bacteria, and germs. The result is the production of autoantibodies that causes inflammation.

May 5: Some people have genes that allow them to develop lupus. Factors that may trigger lupus in these people include infections, ultraviolet light, extreme stress, certain prescription drugs, and certain hormones.

May 6: Many symptoms of lupus mimic those of other illnesses, and symptoms can come and go over time, which makes diagnosis more difficult. Consequently, lupus can take three to five years or more to diagnose.

May 7: There is no single laboratory test that can determine whether a person has lupus. Diagnosing lupus involves analyzing the results of several lab tests, a review of the person’s entire medical history, and the history of close family members.

May 8: Lupus is treated by a rheumatologist, a physician who specializes in conditions affecting the joints and muscles. Some people with lupus may need additional care from specialists, like a dermatologist for skin problems, a nephrologist for kidney disease, or a cardiologist for heart complications.

May 9: More than 90 percent of people with lupus will experience joint and/or muscle pain that can be disabling. Medication and mind-body therapies can be used to help control the pain associated with lupus.

May 10: Lupus can be an expensive disease. The average annual cost to provide healthcare for a person with lupus is $12,643, and rises to nearly $21,000 when lost work productivity is included.

May 11: African Americans, Hispanics/Latinas, Asians and Pacific Islanders, and Native Americans are diagnosed with lupus two or three times more frequently than Caucasians; however, lupus affects people of all races and ethnicities.

May 12: Successful treatment of lupus often requires a combination of medications. A new treatment for lupus was approved recently, and nearly two-dozen clinical studies are underway to develop a full arsenal of treatments.

May 13: As many as 80 percent of people with lupus experience fatigue. For some, fatigue can be debilitating, even to the point of forcing them to stop working.

May 14: People with lupus are usually encouraged to engage in appropriate daily exercise in order to maintain muscle and bone strength. Care should be taken, however, to balance exercise with rest.

May 15: Systemic lupus is the most common type of lupus. Systemic lupus can affect any organ system of the body, including the heart, kidneys, lungs, blood, joints, and skin.

May 16: Discoid lupus (the most common form of skin lupus) accounts for approximately 10 percent of all cases of lupus and occurs in 20 percent of those with systemic lupus.

May 17: Drug-induced lupus is a lupus-like disease caused by taking specific prescription drugs. The symptoms usually disappear after these medications are stopped.

May 18: Women with lupus are at increased risk for loss of bone mass (osteoporosis) and are nearly five times more likely to experience a fracture.

May 19: Blood disorders such as anemia (a low number of circulating red blood cells) are common in lupus, affecting about half of all people with active disease.

May 20: People with lupus should eat a nutritious, well-balanced, and varied diet that contains plenty of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and moderate amounts of fish and lean meats. Lifestyle adjustments should always include quitting smoking, as tobacco products can cause flares of lupus symptoms.

May 21: More than 80 percent of people with systemic lupus will experience some type of nervous system complication, ranging from mild confusion or memory loss to strokes, seizures, and vision problems.

May 22: The malar, or “butterfly” rash on the face is present in about one-third of those with systemic lupus. This flat, reddish rash across the bridge of the nose and cheeks, is often the only visible symptom of this form of lupus.

May 23: As many as 40 percent of all people with lupus, and as many as two-thirds of all children with lupus, will develop kidney complications that require treatment.

May 24: Only 10 percent of people with lupus will have a close relative who has lupus or may develop lupus, and only five percent of children born to a mother with lupus will develop the disease.

May 25: About 40 percent of people who were originally diagnosed with cutaneous lupus, which affects only the skin, will go on to develop systemic lupus that can affect any organ in the body.

May 26: Neonatal lupus is a rare condition that affects infants of women who have lupus. With proper testing, physicians can identify most at-risk mothers, and the infant can be successfully treated before or at birth.

May 27: Lupus is not contagious and cannot be “given” to another person. Lupus is not like or related to HIV/AIDS or any other infectious disease.

May 28: With current methods of therapy, 80 to 90 percent of people with non-organ threatening lupus can look forward to a normal lifespan.

May 29: Advancing technology and better understanding of the disease have improved pregnancy outcomes. Today, 80 percent of women with inactive lupus can have successful pregnancies.

May 30: Most people with lupus are able to continue to work. However, some people may require modifications to their work environment and schedules, such as flexible work hours, job-sharing, and telecommuting.

May 31: Today people with lupus are leading healthier lives and living longer than at any time in history, thanks to researchers who continue to discover more about the underlying science of the immune system.



Click Here to Learn more about Lupus

Click Here to donate to team Lupie Chicks in the 2012 Walk for Lupus- Baltimore MD – September 29, 2012

Click Here to Join Team Lupie Chicks in the 2012 Walk for Lupus- Baltimore MD – September 29, 2012

au naturale, lupie chick, lupus, lupus foundation, Lupus Walk, miss naturale, miss sixx, purple, put on purple day

Put on Purple For Lupus- Lupus Awareness Fact

May 18: Women with lupus are at increased risk for loss of bone mass (osteoporosis) and are nearly five times more likely to experience a fracture.

Natural Hair- 3 day old flat twist out- rolled and tucked
 My Brand New #Purple Eyeglasses- Purple Everything
 Lupus Bracelet ” Someone You Know Has Lupus” –
That someone is ” ME”
 Purple Eye Make-Up ( Elf Palette), Purple Lip Stan ( Miliani Cosmetics), Purple Crochet Earrings ( Atlanta World Natural Hair), Purple Print Top ( Burlington Coat Factory)
I’m rocking purple today for myself and all my fellow #lupieChicks!!!!!!!!
au naturale, auto, butterfly, lupus, lupus foundation, Lupus Walk, miss naturale, miss sixx, purple, put on purple day, women

May 17- Lupus Awareness Fact

May 17: Drug-induced lupus is a lupus-like disease caused by taking specific prescription drugs. The symptoms usually disappear after these medications are stopped.

Don’t forget to Put Your Purple On Tomorrow For Lupus
May 18th
By joining the Lupus Foundation of America and thousands of people nationwide for Put On Purple Day you can promote Lupus awareness and support the research for a cure.

Click Here to learn more about Lupus

Click Here to donate to ” Team Lupie Chicks”

Click Here to Join Team Lupie Chicks

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4th day hair-Flat Twist Out

“The Juices”
Nourishing Herbal Leave-ins by Oyin

Our nourishing herbal leave-in tonics have been our most popular products since we first introduced “Greg Juice,” the original citrus-herbal version, in 2004. Now available in three unique scents, this oil-free mixture of vegetable moisturizers and herbal essences remains hugely popular among people with many different hair types and needs!

Greg Juice contains no added fragrance, only the citrus and lavender essential oils that are in each formula. It smells like a mild, citrusy-herbal refreshing breeze.

Frank Juice is scented with Frankincense and Myrrh fragrance oils. Juices & Berries is fragranced like a juicy fruit punch, bursting with flavor!

 

4th day hair- flat twist out

Night Time

Gather all hair and pull into a “loose” pony tail on top of your head using a scrunchie ( Pineapple Method). A scrunchie will not leave the indention from being in a pony tail, and keeping the ponytail loose will not disturb the curls. Also tuck the ends of the hair under the scrunchie

Morning Time

Remove scrunchie, lightly spritz with Oyin Handmade Juice & Berries, shake, fluff,  and GO!!!

** The T-shirt in the pictures can be purchased at Oyinhandmade.com or at the store located 2103 North Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218 **

au naturale, awareness, butterfly, chronic autoimmune, lupie chick, lupus, Lupus Walk, miss sixx, natural hair, natural hair care, women

May 11th Lupus Awareness Fact

May 11: African Americans, Hispanics/Latinas, Asians and Pacific Islanders, and Native Americans are diagnosed with lupus two or three times more frequently than Caucasians; however, lupus affects people of all races and ethnicities. Lupus can be an expensive disease. The average annual cost to provide healthcare for a person with lupus is $12,643, and rises to nearly $21,000 when lost work productivity is included.



Click Here to learn more about Lupus

Click Here to Donate to Team ” Lupie Chicks”

Click Here to Join Team Lupie Chicks at the Walk for Lupus in Sept 29 at Druid Hill Park, Baltimore, MD