How long have you been natural?
I decided to go natural August 2011, but I did it all wrong in the beginning. I wasn't listening to my hair or carefully reading the ingredients in the products I used. I didn't even understand the importance of using certain ingredients in cold and hot weather. So I like to say that I started my natural journey September 2012 because I chopped off 90% of my heat damage and did it the right way.
What motivated you to transition? Were you a transitioner or a Big Chopper & why?
I was definitely a transitioner at first. Although I knew I had alot of heat damage, I wasn't ready to walk around with short hair. I was motivated to cut my hair when I realized the heat damage was continuing to break off and this prevented me from noticing any real growth. So in September 2012, I cut off about 7 inches of hair. I cried but I knew it was needed.
How would you describe your hair?
My hair is all over the place! The front has a wavy curl pattern and the rest (80%) are kinky curly ringlets. It is so thick that Im tempted to do a big chop quite often. But I have learned which products help with detangling and manageability.
What do you love most about your hair?
As much as I complain about it, I love the thickness. I have been told by some ladies that they don't like wearing wash and go's because their hair isn't thick. I'm blessed to have my texture. It allows me to try different looks and the thickness is what helps me hide bad hair days.
What has been the most memorable part of your journey? Has it been easy or difficult or both?!
Honestly, helping other women along their journey has been the most memorable. I never thought I would be the one who other naturals ask for advice and that makes it even more worth it. I am the one who has tried to bleach black dye out of my hair, cut my hair with the wrong scissors, used glycerin on my hair in winter and not understand the importance of water. I have definitely had my fair share of trials and errors and if I can help others avoid my mistakes I will.
What are some of your favorite transitioning hairstyles?
My favorite hairstyle during the week is just the simple two french braids pinned back. This hairstyle serves two purposes...it protects my hair during the week and it also produces a fierce braid out for the weekends. I love wearing a big puff! Its my go to on weekends when I am having a bad hair day. I also love twisted updo's in winter and elegant updo's for special occasions.
What have your experiences been as a ‘natural?’ Any memorable reactions from family or others?
My family has been supportive but they are so used to me having long hair most of my life that they didn't know how to handle my haircut. I wore senegalese twists in the beginning to hide my haircut from my grandfather. He is old school and believes a woman's beauty is in her hair. My mother loves my natural hair! My curls make her think back to how curly my hair was when I was little and she can't keep her hands off my hair. She spoils me with hair products!
What is your hair regimen (including fav products)?
My regimen right now is co washing first with any Tresemme conditioner, I do this to detangle under water. Then I shampoo with Nexxus humectant shampoo to remove scalp residue, then I condition again with Aussie Moist conditioner. Every 2-3 weeks I deep condition with Vatika egg and protein treatment or Camille Rose Algae hair mask. After that I put my hair in two french braids and my hair is ready for the week. This is how I retain my length.
What are some of your favorite natural hair websites,YouTuber’s, or blogs?
Naptural85, Eclark6, MahoganyCurls, Neffyfrofro, Chimeedwards, MeechyMonroe, MsVaughntv and Tiffanynicholsdesign
Anything you want the readers to know? Inspirational words?
Being natural requires confidence. Why? Because it requires confidence to not conform to the social norms that tell us WE should look as European as possible. It requires confidence to be proud that our kinky and curly hair is not straight and silky blowing in the wind. It requires confidence to not want to look like everyone else. It requires confidence to rock the texture God gave us. So applaud all naturals because we are a confident group of men AND women...and THAT is a beautiful thing. ---Bri
Where can people find you for more information?