Vlogger, Taren Guy Appearance Canceled at Natural Hair Expo Due to Freeform Locs

Update: Julian R. Addo founder of Bella Kinks™ and Bella Kinks DFW Natural Hair Expo Event organizer has released statement: [Taren Guy] misleading her audience on the narrative for her cancellation.

Bella Kinks DFW Natural Hair Expo rescinded an offer for vlogger, Taren Guy to host and speak at the 2016 Bella Kinks DFW Natural Hair Expo at the event’s Bloggers Lounge and Panel of  Women Empowerment Radiating event due to her growing freeform locs.

You can see the organizer’s cancellation email below. In response, Taren Guy took to her Instagram share why she was canceled from the Panel of Women Empowerment Radiating event. The following Instagram posts have since been deleted. In following this story, we have concluded with Julian R. Addo founder of Bella Kinks™ and Bella Kinks DFW Natural Hair Expo Event organizer response to Guy’s cancellation.

Julian R. Addo founder of Bella Kinks™ and Bella Kinks DFW Natural Hair Expo Event organizer has released statement: [Taren Guy] “misleading her audience on the narrative for her cancellation.”

Addo did offer to book Guy for the panel only. Email below.

Screenshot 2016-09-06 21.06.58

The email canceling Guy’s appearance states

“when I booked you for this portion I had no idea you were growing your in locs, which would have caused me to take a different decision. The locs does not work with our audience base, sponsors, or the entitlements that needs to be completed as part of the booking. Not using products (and stating so) doesn’t necessarily coincide when we are trying to promote our sponsors and will not be an organic partnership for our audience base.”

My appearance has been cancelled from the @dallastexturedhairmarketplace and I will not be in attendance. I’m not sure if my Afro was booked or if “I”was booked. Women can show up or be featured at some of these events with some of the best Afro weaves/wigs, the smoothest flat iron, and the biggest chop, (rightfully so) but… I guess locs are excluded from the exclusive club that has now been bought.. I remember it used to be a space for empowerment, real life transition and fun discovery. I am so grateful to have been able to help create and experience that part of the wave and hope some of that essence still remains. This post is not intended to blast anyone, I just feel that it is my right to state the fact, especially if some of you purchased tickets to this very public NATURAL HAIR event through some of my promotions.
To make things clear, I was booked to speak on the POWER Panel and had no obligation to review product on my hair or be to used as a model for demonstration. I was blatantly told that my appearance was canceled due to my transition into locs — And I quote: “The locs does not work with our audience base, sponsors or the entitlements that needs to be completed as part of the booking.” — My job was to speak, mingle and share some sponsored gifts via social from the bloggers lounge. I’m not entirely sure sure how having locs hinder those obligations. CONTRACT POSTED IN THE NEXT POST! (They took it there)
Anyway, remember LOCS are a beautiful and relevant part of the Natural Hair experience. Don’t let anyone make you feel different or tell you otherwise.
I am not afraid to have the real conversations. A new level has been created and I intend to participate. #LoveAndLight #NewChapters #IcantMakeThisUp

Screenshot 2016-09-06 21.06.41

Julian R. Addo founder of Bella Kinks™ and Bella Kinks DFW Natural Hair Expo Event organizer responses with this post. It has since been deleted. It was also posted here :

To all the @tarenguy supporters, I appreciate your passion for this industry, it’s quite admirable. I hope you go hard like that across the board. I’m not sure why Taren chose to ignore THIS email and post to social media that she was canceled. By the way this email was never replied to (and she neglected to post). We do not discriminate and never have. That’s not my nature or business. I have a fiducial responsibility to my clients first and as you can see, attempted to work with her in a limited fashion. She took the road less professional. But Taren has a lot of supporters and I am certain will create or book another event to speak about locs. My statements earlier were inappropriate abc I am a human being. I apologize to my supporters for that. Thank you for your comments. God bless! -Julian Addo

Screenshot 2016-09-06 21.08.48

In response, released another statement on Instagram [Taren Guy] misleading her audience on the narrative for her cancellation.

This isn’t about locs, this is about her not using products and publicly stating so.
Taren was booked for 2 events, only posted about one that had nothing to do with the issue, while misleading her audience on the narrative for her cancellation. The ultimate bloggers lounge which is a separate part of the expo where the review was for, is a private event for bloggers only that they do not pay for. This is all about the expo’s recap and promoting our sponsors in a true and organic fashion, 100%. Its not about expos soley pushing product or a certain type of natural hair, this is about agreeing to promote product and sponsorship and due to you no longer using products, your inability to do so. It saddens me that we have to be intentionally divisive and play on the weakness of our community. This is why the narrative of division perpetuates. Individuals creating insecurities out of sheer selfishness. Thank you to everyone who was able to see this for what it was and your support of my expo. The devil was busy here and his attack did not win. Instead I have made relationships and have additional people that have bought tickets from all over the country in solidarity. So just know that what the devil means for your harm, God will use for your good.
See you all next month. Julian



12 thoughts on “Vlogger, Taren Guy Appearance Canceled at Natural Hair Expo Due to Freeform Locs

  1. Flufffy

    The division is so clear in the natural hair community, ugh! Stop expecting every single person to walk in the door with an Afro. I’d love to host Taren to speak for me one day.

  2. Jovon

    Yeah this is sad, I hate that these women could not have emPOWERed themselves and taken the higher road. A phone call would have been nice but most times when doing business you need that paper trail and I can understand why it was done, but there should have also been a call made for the sake of professional courtesy. Maybe the bigger issue here is who were the sponsors for a natural hair even that had a problem with locs??

  3. Miesha

    Locs is a Natural Hair Process, too. The sponsors who told her that are idiots . I would put you on blast for it, too. Educate these individuals on all types of natural hair.

  4. Veverly

    I thought it was in poor taste to cancel Ms. Guy. We black women have so much work to do to wear our hair proudly in the workplace and now have one of our own tell us that our styles are not acceptable is a stab. We should inbrace all natural styles and let the people decide if they wanted to hear what she had to bring to the table. I like versital hair so locking would not be for me but my son and grandson rock the most awesome locks so that would have been good information.

    1. Toia B.

      You make some good points embracing all natural hair. However, Taren was not hired to speak about locs. The event planner states that she (Taren) wouldn’t be able fulfill part of the agreement pertaining to product promotion because she no longer uses products. You can’t (or shouldn’t) rightly promote what you don’t use.

      She didn’t tell her that her locs are not acceptable nor did she tell her that she could no longer attend the event. She was offered the option to remain a part of the event in another aspect. Julian did what she felt she needed to do as a business woman and event planner… in private. The fact that this was all made public is sad. This could’ve been dealt with another way.

  5. manetalkonair

    Taren was correct when she said “it’s much bigger than her”! I work with all types of beautiful black women with all different hair types and those who CHOOSE to relax their hair have felt the same type of discrimination from women who CHOOSE to wear their hair natural. In a nutshell this is discrimination due to a woman’s choice on how she CHOOSES to wear her hair! We need to stop this hair bullying! I’m floored that this has happened but not surprised as this type of bullying and discrimination has been going on for some years now!

    1. Fluffy

      I totally agree with your comment. Maybe her viewpoints didn’t align with what the Hair Expo wanted but they should’ve made that clear before offering her a platform.

  6. Toia B.

    Her cancelation is not about her having locs. Plain and simple. Sure, maybe the email could’ve been worded slightly differently but the fact still remains that it’s not SOLELY about her having locs. I’ve never known Julian to be exclusive of locs and has supported events executed by loc-wearers.

    If she’s required, by contract, to promote a product in any way but doesn’t use products at all, how will anyone take her seriously? She’d be doing the very thing that many people complain bloggers and vloggers do: promote a product just for the coins. As a person who has done events, I understand that requirements have to be met. I’ve never had to make such a tough decision but if someone (a sponsor) is paying her to do a thing but she can’t actually do the thing, they can’t work together.

    It’s so easy for people to cry “foul” because there’s always been this divide within the natural hair community, sad to say, and this just plays it up.

  7. siante

    I don’t follow Taren, but after reading this entire article it’s easy to see the real reason Taren was cancelled & that’s money. It sounds like the planner was so concerned about getting & keeping her coins for this event that she overlooked the bigger picture- & that bigger picture is that selling her soul to the sponsors may not be the best financial plan in the long run & allowing sponsors to cause you to alienate our beautiful locced sisters who choose not to use products is hurtful to the overall mission of the natural hair community. There are women with locs who don’t use products (but can purchase other products from vendors) and those who do. How are they any less significant to the natural hair community. It’s sad to see things like this.

    1. Carla

      Spelling and grammar check are so important when dealing with people in a professional relationship. I could barely get through the host’s email response to Taren.
      All that aside I agree with the previous poster that said that the sponsors were calling the shots. The expo is clearly all about money but at this point they will be lucky if everyone isn’t looking for a refund


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