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The Traveling Curl Skip to content Menu Home About College Resource Library Contribute Support TTC Contact & PR Menu College Life Book Reviews Self-Care Health & Fitness Skincare Style Fiction Fashion Travel Search for: Longer form posts. Essay All of my college posts and tutorials. College Coming Soon. Shop To All the Men Who Harassed Me to Read / Leave a comment Note: I’m taking a break from my usual content to get something off my chest that has been bothering me. Getting harassed is a reality in the US, but now in my travels I’ve been feeling so overwhelmed by the amount of negative, draining experiences I’ve had. Writing is a good way for me express myself, so yeh. Here it is. CW: talk of unwanted touching, harassment, anxiety, etc. To all the men who harassed me: Hello. You probably don’t remember me, but I remember you. I remember when you shouted at me, followed me, and touched me. I remember what it felt like to be safe. I remember when you made me feel ashamed of my body. I remember blaming my blackness, my makeup, and my entire self for what you did. I remember being terrified when your hand groped my thigh, when you whispered things into my ears, when you pulled out a knife from your backpack. I remember feeling dirty and violated and ashamed. I remember the panic and terror I felt as I search around for my pepper spray. I remember feeling helpless. I remember hating myself for being a woman and worst of all a Black one. I remember it every time I sit in a taxi and walk down the street. I can feel myself ceasing to be a person and instead becoming a sexualized, dehumanized commodity. I remember feeling weak and helpless and defeated. I don’t remember a time where I could just exist. A time where no one stared with their predatory gaze to pierce through my imagined cocoon of safety. I don’t remember peace or solitude. My mind cannot fathom a time where I wasn’t thinking of ways to protect myself. Carrying pepper spray. Holding my keys like claws. Glancing behind me at the slightest sound. Being apprehensive. Staying on my guard. Never going out at night. So thank you. Thank you for instilling within me an acute fear that I cannot escape. Thank you for the experiences that will always live on in my mind. And I’m sorry. I should have told you to leave me alone and go away and spouted all the profanities that sat angry and primed behind my teeth. I’m sorry that I smiled at your dumb words to placate you in hopes it would protect me. I’m sorry that I was not braver and that my cowardice and self-preservation made me shut down and not protect myself. Most of all I’m sorry that I made you think your actions were okay, that women exist for your pleasure, and that we don’t deserve the right to feel safe in our own bodies. I am sorry for me and sorry for how these experiences have irreparably hurt me. Best, Me Jordan Outfits Vol. 1 to Read / Leave a comment When I first packed for my trip to Jordan, I kept thinking about how important it was for me to dress conservatively. On the other study abroad trips I’ve taken to the Middle East, the trip leaders always try to make it clear that we (especially the girls in the group) need to be as covered up as possible. After traveling to Morocco two times, I thought I was more prepared to pack my clothes for Jordan. In my last adventure to Morocco, the trip leaders made it seem way way super duper important for us to be covered up all the time. While a lot of women do dress conservatively, there’s this big generalizations that every women dresses the same way. Just like how there’s women who dress modestly in the US and women who don’t, the same spectrum exists in the Morocco, Jordan, and throughout the world. I’ve always wondered if this push for us to dress a certain way to help us fit in another country. It’s understandable to help us as students blend in and to help us respect cultural norms. It rarely happens me fit in tbh I stand out quite a bit (hello afro puff and septum piercing). I have mostly given up on fitting in as a fool’s errand honestly. I tried not to dress conservatively in the sense that I’m wearing long sleeves and floor length skirts because a) that’s not authentic to who I am b) I’m traveling to Europe after Jordan, so that style will be very out of place there. In hopes of reconciling my desires to stay true to my aesthetic and dress in a way that respects the values of Jordan, I decided to wear basically pants, cardigans, and scoop neck shirts. Of course, I did bring some shorter skirts and tank tops for Europe, but most of the clothing I brought was pretty multipurpose. Continue reading → Jordan Travel Diary: Making Maamoul to Read / Leave a comment Happy Eid al-Fitr everyone! For the past few weeks that I’ve been in Dubai and Amman it’s been the tail end of Ramadan (to explain it simply and too general, Ramadan is the holy month of fasting that is a tenet of the Islam). Living in the Middle East, specifically theocratic states has made being in Amman and Dubai interesting. I’ve stayed in Morocco during the beginning and middle of the month of Ramadan, but this is my first time being around for the end of Ramadan. Basically, one of the most interesting things for a non-fasting/Muslim person is that within the Middle East/North Africa, eating, drinking, and smoking in public is forbidden for Muslims. For foreigners/non-Muslims/tourists it’s not forbidden in the same way, but it’s very very strongly frowned upon and to respect the cultural and religious space that I’ve been invited into, so I don’t eat or drink in public spaces. In my homestay, my host family has been very accommodating of non-fasting since they practice fasting more flexibly. Living in Jordan during Ramadan has been interesting. I’ve spent a lot of times the past couple of weeks searching for places that I can have lunch at after my colloquial Arabic class and before my anthropology class. Most of the places I’ve been frequenting have been pretty smoky café/restaurants that offer food for non-fasters. If you’ve been to Amman and happen to be here also during Ramadan, Rainbow Street has a couple of places that are open like Turtle Green, Books@Café, and Shams al-Balad. If you’ve seen my posts on Instagram (@travelingcurl), I’ve been posting a lot of the yummy things I’ve been eating the past couple of weeks. Continue reading → Dubai: A Photo Diary to Read / Leave a comment Dubai is hot. That’s the first observation I made when we got off the plane. The breeze wasn’t comforting like it is in Seattle where the wind helps to stave off overheating from the hot, hot sun. Instead the air was suffocating, hot, and heavy…did I mention it was hot? After we disembarked we traveled through the Dubai International Airport, which feels a lot like a Vegas casino with its glittering psuedo-marble floor, ornate chandeliers, and indoor water features (and no I’m not joking there was a waterfall in the airport). The airport’s intense air conditioning provided a brief moment of respite before we exited the cold haven and made our way outside. I mostly am accustomed to seeing primarily male taxi drivers, but the Dubai Airport offers a really cool option for women, where you can take taxis driven by other women. If you happen to be at the airport, be on the lookout for their super cute pink hijabs. Side note, make sure that your cab driver turns on the meter at the front of the cab, so that you don’t get scammed. If you don’t seem like a native Arabic speaker or like you’re from the area, you’ll probably experience a driver not turning on the meter so they can charge you an exorbitant price. The Dubai Mall & The Burj Khalifa Continue reading → I Review, So You Don’t Have To…The Diva Cup to Read / Leave a comment Probably one of the worst things about traveling with a uterus is the inevitability of having my period at the worst given opportunity, whether it’s when I’m on a plane, on a bus, don’t have access to a bathroom, etc. My period is an absolute troll, so I get it usually right before I go on a trip. As I write this blog post en route to Dubai, guess what? My period started a few days ago. In the past when I’ve traveled, my contingency plan to make sure I don’t end up bleeding all over the place is to shove a ridiculous, embarrassing amount of pads shoved into any place I can fit them in my suitcase. Pads and tampons pretty much suck for traveling. In many places around the world, there isn’t ideal locations to dispose of menstrual supplies or to get your preferred brand on appropriate hygiene products. Especially for me someone who prefers pretty strongly a certain brand/type of pad, not having access to my brand is a huge bummer. Many people with periods who travel a lot, have busy lifestyles, or want to decrease their amount of period related waste have started using menstrual cups as a solution to address the issues they’ve experienced with traditional menstrual supplies. In this post I’m going to describe my experiences using one of these menstrual cups, the pros and cons of these kinds of products, and if I recommend them. What is the Diva Cup? The Diva Cup is the menstrual cup that I have chosen to utilize during this summer as I travel to the U.A.E., Jordan, Greece, and Italy, The Diva Cup is a medical grade colorless silicone cup that is inserted in the vagina (similarly to a tampon) that sits at right at the base of the vaginal canal to collect menstrual blood/ejected materials (sorry that sounds really gross). The Diva Cup can be left inside the body for up to 12 hours. Why did I buy the Diva Cup? I bought the Diva Cup because I hate having to deal with my period when I travel. I hate the struggle it is to find pads that don’t feel like diapers, I hate the difficulties in finding places to dispose of pads in a way that is both sanitary, culturally sensitive, and environmentally friendly. Menstrual cups greatly appealed to me for this summer because I’m going to be gone abroad for about 3 months, I didn’t want to have to somehow shove that many months of of pads into my luggage. Also, since the Diva Cup is reusable for like up to 10 years, it’ll pay for itself pretty fast. For example, on average I spend around $144 a year on pads. If you count the amount of laundry I have to do to get blood out of my sheets, clothes, and underwear I’m sure the cost would get much closer to $200. The Diva Cup costs $45 at Whole Foods, so it ends up basically costing $3.75 a month, compared to the average $14 a month I spend on pads. Benefits of the Diva Cup The main benefits I’ve identified in my times using the Diva Cup are that it’s a really effective method of having a period, but not having your period affect your life too much. Once the Diva Cup does its sealing/suctioning action, your risk for a leak is pretty low. This gives me a lot of peace of mind/freedom to go out without worrying about what pads I’m going to bring, where I’ll store them, etc. Additionally, it’s pretty easy to deal with the Diva Cup compared to pads…however there are some cons with this that I’ll discuss in the next section. If you’re someone who cares about the environment and is interested in minimizing their impact on the Earth, the Diva Cup/any menstrual cup is a winner. Honestly, even if you try the Diva Cup for one day and then do one day of wearing pads/tampons, you can see very clearly the dearth of waste you’re creating. Finally, the Diva Cup is pretty darn great for travel. It’s just a wittle cup that can fit discreetly into a purse/luggage. Cons of the Diva Cup Most of the cons of the Diva Cup are applicable to any and all menstrual cups. If you’re squeamish, not used to touching blood, or experience some discomfort being that uh…”involved” in a bodily process the Diva Cup may not be for you. It also requires a learning curve in figuring out the most comfortable way to to it in the body and the most comfortable way to remove it. I’m still working on finding a way take the Diva Cup out that doesn’t feel like my insides are ripping apart. The biggest thing that is a con along with insertion is dealing with the blood that will be collected in the Diva Cup. I recommend not using the Diva Cup in a public place because you need to: 1)wash your hands 2) dump out the cup in the toilet 3) leave the stall to wash your hands and maybe rinse out the Diva Cup/wipe it with a paper towel in the bathroom and 4) reinsert the cup. I personally would not do any of this in public because it’s a bit complicated. It’s pretty easy to plan though around using the Diva Cup, like emptying it before you leave the house, so you don’t have to worry about it while you’re out. My last critic of the Diva Cup has very little to do with the product itself. If you look at the Diva Cup’s website, it’s incredibly gendered. There are a ton of people who have uteruses and experience periods who do not identify as women. I think that the heavily gendered language on the website, the name of it as “Diva”, and the heavy usage of traditionally feminine coloring/graphics could be a bit isolating for those who do not identify as women, but would still like to use the Diva Cup. TL;DR Overall, I would recommend the Diva Cup. It’s pretty convenient, works quite well, is cost effective, and minimizes the environmental impact of a period. If you want more information about the Diva Cup, check out their website (http://divacup.com/) and Youtube has some pretty stellar reviews, I recommend this, this, and this. Also, if you’re interested in reading other people’s experiences with the the Diva Cup and other menstrual cups, the Menstrual Cup Live Journal has all the ins and outs of basically every brand. What have your experiences been with menstrual cups? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter @travelingcurl! Sophomore Year in Review to Read / Leave a comment The quarter is finally over #blessed #yaaas. On June 8th, I’ll wrap up my sophomore year of college (well it’s also sort of almost the end of my junior year, but that’s a confusing topic for another day). This year of college has been the literally struggle, but also it’s been really rewarding too. The most notable thing that happened this school year is that I declared my majors! Now I’m officially doing a double major in Anthropology and Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations. I’m super jazzed about my course of study because I’ve found a way to incorporate my interested in culture and language into a dual degree program that seems pretty sweet. I’m also happily ending this quarter with a new job for next school year that is a much more positive, accepting, and wonderful work environment. If you’ve seen my other post, my Freshman Year in Review, you’ll know that my first year in college was not great. To be honest it was one of the toughest years of my life because of my increased anxiety, struggle with depression, and the passing of my grandfather. This year began on a similar foot as I lived in one of the worst living situations of my life. Living with my roommate was truly one of the most awful living situations of my life that made it basically hell for me, but in Spring I was able to move into a single room! Continue reading → 10 Realities of My Life Now That I Can’t Sleep to Read / Leave a comment Sleep is important. I miss sleep. Laying in bed not being able to sleep is irritating. Birds do chirp early in the morning and it’s super annoying if you haven’t sleep all night. Catching up on things I missed at Reddit until I fall asleep is a good use of time. Surprisingly none of my friends are awake at 3:30am, 4:15am, or 5am when I wake up. Chocolate tastes better at 3am. People in my dorm take baths at 2am…it’s strange. I feel more creative in the wee hours of the morning. It’s possible to survive on 5, 6, and 7 hours of sleep, but 4 hours is really pushing it. There’s something very peaceful and almost meditative about being awake in the middle of the night. Dear God I miss sleep. I Review So You Don’t Have To… Lavanila The Healthy Deodorant to Read / Leave a comment The only thing I want from my deodorant is to make me smell nice and not sweat. That’s all. I don’t expect it to transform me into Black Cinderella a la the (best) version of the story with Brandy for the 90s or to make me the coolest, least sweatiest person in the world. All I’m looking for is the basics. Well except that I’m also allergic to most deodorants. For some reason the mixture of aluminium and zinc oxides in most deodorants break my skin out to high heaven. Not to get into the knitty gritty, but I’m talking red, itchy bumps in my dang armpits. Because of my tres sensitive skin, I’ve tried all sorts of your typical hippy dippy all naturale deodorant fare, whether it be those crystal ones (don’t work), TOMS deodorant (doesn’t work), and a whole other hodge podge of products that tbh shouldn’t be sold as a deodorant because they neither make me smell nice or not sweat. Thankfully, I have found a deodorant that works for me and rarely breaks me out, so I haven’t tried out any all natural subsitutes in awhile. (Enter me 19-year old buying more unnecessary skin care from Sephora) Continue reading → OOTD: Florals? For Spring? Groundbreaking to Read / Leave a comment I try to be a super fashionista, but then I realize that I don’t have a ton of money for my desired aesthetic and I’m in college. These factors have contributed to my très “slightly better dressed than your average psuedo-hipster” aesthetic. But alas (poor Yorick!), I put together an outfit that I really really like today! It gives me very late 90s grunge meets military inspired meets girly in a really fun way. Vanity: Skincare Routine to Read / Leave a comment Why is this post called Vanity? Vanity. In many circles vanity is something that’s shunned. It creates an interesting societal contradiction of women being expected to meet the eurocentric standards of beauty where they are judged highly for going through the motions of achieving that standard of beauty. In some sense I can understand the general negativity that surrounds the word. Taking pride in one’s outer appearance counters the American value system of taking pride in accomplishments earned by merit, whereas physical appearance is not something that one earns. There’s a certain air of selfishness in vanity that makes people who pride themselves on their on their looks seems as though they don’t equally value being a good person. For myself, taking care of both my outer and inner appearance is a critical part of my own self-care. If you’re a person who lives in a stressful environment or lives with a mental illness, actions that make you feel calm and cared for are usually the first things that get abandoned, whether that be showering, eating regularly, wearing clothes that make you feel good, exercising, etc. My various beautification routines all serve the same purpose of giving my an almost therapeutic meditative space to make me feel good. When I put on my makeup and do my skincare I am taking up time in my day to something that I like to do that doesn’t benefit anyone but me. I find these routines to be incredibly empowering because it reminds me that I am worth the time and money to do the things that make me happy. And that’s why I’ve decided to call my beauty posts “VANITY”. In time I may find that this word no longer represents how I feel, but currently this word and what it means to me are something I want to share on this blog. Continue reading → Posts navigation 1 2 … 12 Next ? About Me Welcome to The Traveling Curl! A college lifestyle blog dedicated to expressing the musings of a college sophomore. Search for: Support The Traveling Curl Currently Covered Book Reviews College Essay Fiction Fashion Health & Fitness Life Natural Hair Reviews Self-Care Skincare Style Travel Uncategorized Blog Archives Blog Archives Select Month July 2016 (3) June 2016 (3) May 2016 (2) April 2016 (4) March 2016 (1) February 2016 (3) January 2016 (5) December 2015 (6) November 2015 (2) October 2015 (2) September 2015 (5) August 2015 (9) July 2015 (11) June 2015 (9) May 2015 (4) April 2015 (6) March 2015 (5) February 2015 (6) January 2015 (7) December 2014 (4) November 2014 (1) October 2014 (4) September 2014 (8) August 2014 (5) Subscribe to The Traveling Curl Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. Email Address Home About College Resource Library Contact & PR Contribute to TTC Support TTC Powered by WordPress | Built with Authority

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