About 18 years, it began when I left behind the expense and upkeep of permed hair, and needed a low maintenance "do" for a single working mom, so I cut my hair extremely short and went natural. At the time, there weren't many natural hair products (except hair grease and men’s pomades) or even the Internet like today to research and order products online. So, I used Nexxus Botanical Oil and light pomades and a stocking cap for a natural wave pattern. Eventually, as more products became available, my routine became Kemi Oyl and Carol's Daughter Hair Milk for my short hair.
-What is your regimen?
As an avid follower of CN, I have collected a variety of trial and error products, but now, I have a regimen which I am comfortable with and my hair seems to love. I wash bi-monthly with Giovanni 50/50 Shampoo followed by Pantene Relaxed & Natural Deep Conditioning Mask for an hour with my micro heating turban. After rinsing in cold water, my regular routine includes washing with H.E. Hello Hydration Conditioner, Jessicurl Weekly Deep Treatment and DevaCurl Heaven in Hair Intense Moisture Treatment using a wide tooth comb to detangle my wet locks. I rinse thoroughly with cool to cold water, and adding DevaCare One Conditioner as a leave-in. Currently, I do a twist out using DevaCurl Set-it Free and a home- brewed concoction (similar to Blended Beauty Curly Frizz Pudding) made with the following ingredients blended (yes, in a blender) together and poured into a spray bottle:
- 9 oz. Suave Naturals JGA Conditioner (Target)
- 3 oz. Lotta Body Setting Lotion (Sally’s)
- 2 oz. of natural coconut oil (Whole Foods)
-What is the one thing you'd tell a newbie to help her on her journey?
Patience! Once you get over the shock of no hair or straight hair, the growing phase can be frustrating for styling. When I decided to let my hair grow, I sported a TWA for months, then moved to braids for about a year where my hair really grew out for more versatility. My problem is moisturizing and shine, but the concoction has helped tremendously, along with Jamila henna applications. You have to use trial and error to figure out what your hair responds to best, and don’t be afraid to try new styles and product combos.
-How do you to maintain length?
Having worn my hair short for so long, I never worry about length…more about volume. The henna applications have been beneficial three-fold…brilliant color, volume and length.
-What's the best thing about being naturally glamorous?!
I don’t care whether anyone likes my hair natural or not because I wore it straightened for so long and I don’t want to conform to what others (especially corporate standards) deem acceptable. I don’t have to worry about getting my hair wet or the weather effects, if it’s humid and my hair gets too wild and frizzy, then I just pull it back with a clip. I enjoy being natural, but I did use commercial coloring and now I’m converting to totally natural color with henna. Woohoo!