New York's Coolest New Festival Has Nothing To Do With Music

Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
Festivals are synonymous with fashion, yummy food, amazing bands, and nearly-unbearable weather conditions. And, of course, hair. Some of the boldest (and budding) trends debut at some of the biggest, including Coachella and Afropunk. But, with all due respect, we've got a new contender to take the crown: Brooklyn's very own Curlfest, held at Prospect Park this past weekend.
What the heck is CurlFest? Well, you still get all of the fashion, food, and music that your heart desires. But this event, free to all, is a celebration of natural hair and Black beauty. The fourth annual event, dreamt up by the Curly Girl Collective, has already reached "It" status. The founders told us that the crowds have quadrupled in size from the first year, with people flying in from Brazil and South Africa to see and be seen. And it's not just because of the swanky gift bags, packed with full-sized products from our favorite brands. No, Curlfest is also a reminder for Black women to dust off their crowns, like the queens that they are.
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The sentiment between the women behind Curly Girl Collective —Tracey, Charisse, Simone, Melody, and Gia — is clear: Black women should be celebrated. The founders explain that often times, women of color forget that fact while in many settings where they aren't the majority. That's why they created this opportunity: A chance for Black women to all look around and admire people in our likeness — and we did just that.
As you might imagine, spending an entire day at the festival with a photographer yields some killer beauty street style, which made it very hard to whittle down ,into one slideshow. It's a tough job, but someone's got to do it. See the results, ahead.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
A bright red 'fro and matching red lipstick immediately caught our eye in the park.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
Want to go blond, like this beauty? Make sure to baby your curls each week with a rich deep conditioner (find out how to pick the right one here).
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
Another rad red lip and hair combo.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
Bantu knots aren't just for achieving effortless waves: they look pretty darn cool when decorated with gold filigrees, too.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
Whoever said that the big chop was scary should seriously reconsider.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
Space buns dominated at Coachella and carried over to Curlfest.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
We'd guess this CurlFest attendee was inspired by Solange's enviable wedding day 'do.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
A touch of gold wire decorated this standout style.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
It wouldn't be a festival without at least one flower crown, right?
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
This beauty's delicate ink drew our eyes towards her sharp, shaved 'do.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
One of the best ways to let your true texture do its thing is by air-drying.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
@TheBabyVegan had it right — her dark brown coils deserved a crown, damn it.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
"My curls mean everything to me," Khoudia Diop (aka Melanin Goddess) tells us. "In Senegal, relaxing your hair is as normal as brushing your teeth. Now that I'm here, I'm embracing it and loving it."
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
A rosy outlook probably isn't that hard to maintain with this style.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
If you want to add a little oomph to your 'fro, try folding a printed headscarf into a headband.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
More filigree and flower power.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
This bobby-pinned halo likely only took a few minutes — and a few dollars, too.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
Thinking pink, from the hair down to the lippie.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
It's a pineapple...and a pineapple! This beauty differentiated hers by letting her curls hang low, rather than at the top of her head.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
Frenchy from Grease would be so proud.
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Photographed by Rochelle Brockington.
For a puff as perfect as this one, some edge control and a hard brush should help keep your base in place.
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