Culture

Listen As This Latina Explains The Difference Between Appropriation And Appreciation



“When I was younger, I was constantly mocked for having crazy-thick sideburns. But everything I got made fun of for back then is trendy now.”

TeenVogue recently published a very cool series of videos featuring seven young women talking about their respective cultures’ concepts of beauty, grooming, and adornment. They showed how different styles look when they haven’t been appropriated by others, and what these different looks mean to them.

Leaf McLean, a Puerto Rican Afro-Latina from Brooklyn, talked about her ‘crazy-thick sideburns’ – which she rocks impeccably, btw.

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A photo posted by LEAF?MBM?13 (@itsmeleaf) on

Creidt: @itsmeleaf / Instagram

“Being Afro-Latina, you have a lot of hair,” she tells TeenVogue. “When I was younger, I was constantly mocked for having crazy-thick sideburns. But everything I got made fun of for back then is trendy now.”


Leaf goes on to define cultural appreciation (as opposed to appropriation) as “giving credit to a long line of people who have done this for years,” adding that part of embracing her heritage meant embracing her hair.


Check out TeenVogue’s full post here to learn more about Leaf’s style, from her earrings to her braids, plus gain insight from 6 other young women on the stories behind their looks.


WATCH: 100 Years of Dominican Beauty

What’s your relationship to your hair these days, and was it always a good one? 

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This Boricua Is Being Forced To Defend Her Identity As An Asian-Puerto Rican On TikTok

Culture

This Boricua Is Being Forced To Defend Her Identity As An Asian-Puerto Rican On TikTok

@Keishlaheli / TikTok

People of all sorts of racial identities and backgrounds exist all over the world. However, many people remain ignorant to the ways in which different cultures and races change and take on new identities – especially as mixed race individuals are so often forced to walk a thin line between their identities.

Now, a popular Tik Toker from Puerto Rico is being forced to defend her identity as a Puerto Rican because trolls are accusing her of cultural appropriation. Although she might not look like what many expect a Puerto Rican woman to look like, Keishla is all about educating her followers and giving a voice to mixed race Puerto Ricans.

TikToker Keishla is being forced to defend her identity as a Boricua simply because she also has Asian heritage.

Mixed race communities and cultures exist everywhere. Facts are facts. But it’s obvious that not everyone is willing to accept these facts. Case in point: Keishla – a very popular TikToker, who is being forced to defend her own identity.

Keishla, who was born and raised on the island in the town of Borikén is obviously of Asian descent but she also claims her Puerto Rican identity with pride. Videos addressing the topic have gone viral and the comments that followed show a widespread lack of understanding about the diversity of race in Puerto Rico and beyond.

Keishla’s parents were born in China and later migrated to Puerto Rico, she explains in several videos. Some users, however, refused to accept the facts.

Keishla has had to deal with many ignorant comments across social media, but she’s got thousands of supporters also.

Ever since she launched her TikTok channel, users have come for Keishla and her identity and many have accused her of cultural appropriation.

While apparently trying to invalidate Keishla’s identity as a Boricua, one user wrote, “Lol u may consider her Puerto Rican but I don’t. Blood is more important than how she acts to me she can copy us but will never be us.”

And in typical Keishla fashion, she had the best response: “I respect your opinion, even though it’s a shitty opinion.”

Despite all the ignorance and trolls, Keishla has also seen an outpouring of support from fellow Boricuas, Latinos, and others among her more than 53,000 TikTok followers. The conversation has even moved over to Twitter, where many are supporting her identity while also addressing the hate from others.

“There’s a whole ass history of Asians in Caribbean culture,” one user wrote.

“Asians worked next to the slaves in the sugar cane fields in Cuba. Cuba has one of the oldest China towns in the Caribbean. So many Caribbean people have Chinese descent. Y’all don’t know how colonization work.”

Keishla is not alone: the Chinese have a long history on the island of Puerto Rico.

Credit: U.S. Library of Congress

Much like the mainland United States, Puerto Rico is a diverse community of cultures and races from all over the world. Anyone in the island or anyone who visits will notice right away that there is a major Asian community. Although it’s particularly conspicuous in the restaurant industry – with the traditional comida criolla – that’s not all. The Chinese community has contributed to Puerto Rico’s culture and economy in many significant ways.

Today, there are tens of thousands of Chinese Puerto Rican’s on the island. And although the most recent Census data only reports Asians as making up 0.2% of the population, many academics believe the count to be much higher.

Chinese migration has a long and varied history in Puerto Rico, with it reaching its peak in the late 1850s to 1880s. Many were fleeing war and economic devastation, and hundreds of thousands made their way to the U.S. – including Puerto Rico.

Some of these Chinese immigrants went instead to the Caribbean, though—some first to Cuba, where they were incarcerated due to labor revolts, then to Puerto Rico, where they served their sentence in what was essentially slave labor, working on major infrastructure projects.

So, what do you think? Do you agree with Keishla? Let us know in the comments.

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Split End Serums That Will Help Hair Growth And Keep Your Ends From Splitting

Fierce

Split End Serums That Will Help Hair Growth And Keep Your Ends From Splitting

Astrid Stawiarz / Stringer

Sure, there might be more things peskier than split ends but there’s no doubt they’re a universal issue that haunts us all.

Thanks to dryness, age, heat styling, and even just existing, split ends are a real issue that people around the globe have to deal with and manage every day. As the oldest part of our hair strands, ends need a very particular type of special care. Particularly if you ever want to avoid having those splits ends work their way up the entire shaft of your hair and wreak even more havoc. While snipping off those ends are a surefire way to fix a split end problem, if you’re trying to grow your hair out there are ways to attempt to keep your ends from splitting in the first place.

We scoured the internet for top reviewed split ends. Check out what we found below!

Oribe’s Split End Seal

“My stylist gave me a sample of this to use on my thick, fine, curly, highlighted hair after a particularly strenuous bleach session. I was so impressed, I bought this when the sample ran out.

Any good stylist will tell you, it’s pretty much impossible to actually seal an end once it’s split (beyond making it appear to be sealed for a short period). But it is possible to return moisture and other nutrients to hair that is damaged or close to splitting. And this product is very good at doing that. It seals the hair to keep the good stuff in and protect against future damage from the environment. A little goes a long way if you apply it to wet hair, before applying any other styling products. Seriously, I got six uses out of the sample. It’ll take me a while to run out of the full size bottle.

This stuff really does work miracles on dry hair. The only way I’d ever be able to get rid of all my split ends would be to just shave my head. But that doesn’t mean my hair isn’t healthy. More than one stylist has pointed that out to me. That wouldn’t be the case if I didn’t use quality products like this one.” – Amazon review

Rita HazanTriple Threat Split End Remedy

“My hair deals with a lot of heat styling and hairspray so the ends get a little worse for wear. I’m growing my hair out for my wedding next year and I’m a law student, so I can’t afford to be getting regular haircuts at this point. I got a sample of this product and can’t believe what a difference it made in my hair. I can no longer see the split ends and my hairstyles pretty effortlessly now. I just ordered the full size.”- Sephora review

Moroccanoil Mending Infusion

“LOVE LOVE LOVE Moroccanoil Mending Infusion! This product works great on the ends of my hair that definitely need to be trimmed! It fuses the tips of my hair after styling so I can go longer w out a trim. It makes the ends look healthy & the smell is terrific! I use all of the Moroccanoil products & so far they are working great for me! The only negative thing I can say is that the bottle is made of thick glass which the actual quantity of the product is less than it actually appears to be. However, it takes very little product for the ends of the hair! The product still deserves 5 stars! IF for any reason these products don’t work for you, it has to be that they have been returned “as no longer needed” & possibly tampered with by a dishonest consumer. Amazon will always make things right from my experience. From reviews I’ve read in the past, I felt I needed to add this comment as I have very difficult hair, coarse, frizzy, & unmanageable unless I use an excellent product like ‘Moroccanoil products’!!”- Amazon Review

PATTERN Jojoba Oil Hair Serum

“Love it! Smells like lavender, ahhhh. I love that you can use this on your scalp and hair. It locks in the moisture from the Pattern leave-in so well for super soft and hydrated hair. I’m so happy with everything from this line. I do believe this jojoba oil is a stand out product as well. You can use it in so many ways. I will continue to purchase this and pretty much everything else from this line. Thank you, Ms. Tracee Ellis Ross, you hit the nail on the head!! Can’t wait to see what else is in store for this line.” – Sephora review

Design Essentials Silk Essentials Thermal Strengthening Serum

“My hair is natural and I usually go to a salon when I occasionally want to have it flat ironed. I decided to order Silk Essentials Thermal Strengthening Serum to do it myself and I already had the Bamboo & silk HCO leave in conditioner that I used to detangle. Wow, these 2 pair together left my hair silky and as straight as if my stylist had dRead more about review stating Love this strengthening serum!” – Site review

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