CN: Were you a long term or short term transitioner, and why?
CK: I was a long transitioner. I didn’t want to part with too much length at once so I stopped relaxing my hair in December 2007 and finally made the decision to go natural and started my transition.

CN: When did you BC? What was your initial reaction to your natural hair?
CK: I did my BC in November of 2008. I just got sick and tired of dealing with the two textures and the dry ends. Although I still had shoulder length hair, it was still hard to cope with the drastic difference in length. All my life, I have never had hair shorter than bra strap length. So I definitely went through an adjustment/self-conscious period. But as I looked in the mirror more and more and saw how healthy my hair actually was and how much better products responded to my hair, my mindset changed and I’ve been loving it ever since.

CN: What was your transition routine? Staple Hair Styles?
CK: I kept my hair in ponytails. That’s all I knew. Even when I was relaxed, because my hair would get puffy a few days after I had spent all day in the beauty shop or in front of the mirror straightening, a ponytail was my old standby. So the ponytail is what I stuck with.

CN: How did you moisturize your hair to prevent breakage at the new growth line?
CK: Ok so sad to say, I thought Carol’s Daughter was the only natural hair care line out there. So as soon as I decided to stop relaxing my hair, I bought her entire line of products. Through trial and error I found that the Carol’s Daughter Mimosa Hair Honey and the Kizzie Stay Put Pomade helped me keep my new growth moisturized and my ponytails slicked back *haha*. I still use both those products today on my ponytails and pony puffs.

CN: Why did you choose to go natural? Are you happy with your decision?
CK: I moved from Chicago, a haven of black hair care, to a VERY small city in Southwest Missouri where black hair care is basically obsolete. So I had to start doing my hair myself. Then I noticed how the relaxer and poor hair care had literally ate off a section of my hair. It was 6 inches shorter than the rest of my hair. So much so that I couldn’t cover it up or hide it in the midst of the rest of my hair anymore. I remembered my hair as a young girl and how thick and luscious it was. My mom didn’t even let me get a relaxer until the day before my junior high school prom. Before I got my relaxer, it even went so far as my mom would not even blow dry my hair after she washed it. She would wash it, let it air dry overnight and then press it in the morning. I was strictly a “press and curl” girl *haha*. I just decided to take it back to the basics (without the press and curl). And I am loving my decision.

The decision to go natural, especially in the corporate world and today’s society was a very hard decision. The process of transitioning to natural is also a very emotional and expensive experience. But it’s also VERY rewarding. I am glad that there are sites on the Internet that provide me with the resources and support necessary that have made this process so much easier. I love the versatility of my hair now. I love that I don’t have to worry about taking hot showers, getting caught in the rain, sweating while I’m outside in the summer time or sweating while exercising or doing any extra-curricular activity. I love that I have options in hairstyles. I know my husband is loving not seeing shedding hair all over the place. But most importantly, I’m loving that I’m learning how healthy hair is reflected in a healthy lifestyle overall.