Hause of Curls “Pelo Malo Where?” T-shirts Are Opening a Pop-Up Shop in NYC

Back in September, Dominican stylist and founder of Hause of Curls, Sherly Tavarez launched her “Pelo Malo Where?” T-shirts that have since gone viral

Photo: Unsplash/@jonathan_christian_photography

Photo: Unsplash/@jonathan_christian_photography

Back in September, Dominican stylist and founder of Hause of Curls, Sherly Tavarez launched her “Pelo Malo Where?” T-shirts that have since gone viral. Her mission behind the line was to encourage women of color to embrace their natural hair texture and redefine what beauty really means to them. She’s not only done a remarkable job but Tavarez has since expanded with a holiday collection that totally speaks to curly haired Latinas everywhere. But wait because the good news does not end there. Tavarez is also opening a pop-up shop in NYC for anyone who wants to get an early start on Christmas shopping and the stuff is so good it will leave you shook. I know I am!

The holiday pop up shop takes place this Saturday, December 1st at 4020 22nd Street in Long Island City from 12:30 pm to 3 pm. Tavarez will have all the pieces from her new holiday collection for sale along with some of her original “Pelo Malo Where?” T-shirts. There will be more than just cool merch though. Special guest curly hair bloggers including @christinavega_, @curly.edgy, @cryscastles, @mamasitta, @syeda_bombom and @hispaneek will be there mingling. Coquito will be served and there will be discounts and giveaways. I’m telling you she’s going ALL out on this one.

“I really wanted to do something fun. I LOVE the holidays—especially Christmas—so naturally, I wanted to bring those things to life with a pop-up shop where I could meet some of the amazing people who have been supporting me,” she tells HipLatina. “I also wanted people to be able to come and feel the collection in person!”

As stylish and cute as Tavarez’s Hause of Curls products are, it’s also crucial to note that this Dominicana is doing very important work. For women of color with textured hair—hair is not just hair. It’s political and it ties into our identity. It’s about being able to freely wear the hair that naturally grows for our scalps and not having to change it to meet society’s Eurocentric beauty standards. Hair bias still very much exists especially for women of color with textured hair—black women especially. We still live in a society that tries to dictate how we should wear our hair whether it be at a job interview, a modeling casting—or even a first date. We grew up in a world that told us that no matter how beautiful we are, we still look our best and “most polished” when our hair is straightened. Tavarez who confidently rocks a head full of beautiful tights curls today can relate to this experience. She grew up in a Dominican home where she spent most of her life relaxing her hair to meet the “pelo bueno” standards that are placed on a lot of young Latinas. After years of straightening her curls, she finally went natural in 2016 and hasn’t looked back.

Tavarez’s line breaks the toxic myth surrounding the “pelo malo” mentality and empowers women to own their natural and brown beauty. She may not call herself one, but this Dominican beauty is in many ways an activist.

“Hair is really important to women of color with textured hair because we grew up always trying to conform to society’s beauty standards. I grew up going to the hair salon, trying to look beautiful for special occasions thinking that my natural hair wasn’t enough,” she says. “So when we all started embracing it, it’s like we all came together as a community to boycott the Eurocentric beauty standards which was amazing for everyone. It ties into our identity because we all realized the damage we were doing not only to our hair but to our self-esteem. With this collection—the Pelo Malo Where? and the holiday collection—it’s all about embracing all the various hair textures in our Latino culture during the holidays which was really the fun part about making the designs for the holidays.”

Part of what makes this collection so special is precisely the fact that it centers around the holidays. For many of us with curly hair, we were told—better said conditioned—to believe that on special occasions such as Nochebuena and holiday gatherings, we had to straighten our hair to look pretty and “polished.” But what this collection does is reminds us that we can look pretty and polished on the holidays with our natural rizos. I don’t know about you but I can’t think of a better gift to get some of my curly haired besties this Christmas!

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