CN:Were you a long term or short term transitioner, and why?
Jennika: I transitioned for 13 months. Not sure if that is long or short, but I wasn’t mentally prepared to have short hair. Also, I wasn’t sure what type of hair style I wanted for my wedding.

CN: When did you BC? What was your initial reaction to your natural hair?
Jennika: I BC’ed soon after my wedding, June 2. I loved what I saw! The curl pattern in the front was more loose then the back, and I think the stylist saw my confusion, so she pulled the front into some twists for me. It was a huge sigh of relief to have the remaining relaxer cut off. I felt very free.

CN: What was your transition routine?
Jennika: I decided to go natural while I had braids in my hair. When I took them out, I flat ironed. I would wash weekly, and use Biolage products(the shampoo/conditioner I used while relaxed) until I started reading on what was good for my natural hair. Then I began using a shampoo/conditioner I found, called the Naked Bee. It worked well for the natural and relaxed hair, in my opinion.

CN: What was your staple hair style during the transition?
Jennika: At the beginning, I flat ironed every two weeks or so. I decided in Jan 09 I wasn’t going to flat iron again until my wedding in May. From then on, I would wash and wear my phony puff. There was a few times I went to the stylist to get my hair trimmed, and she would do a twist out on me, which I loved!

CN: How did you moisturize your hair to prevent breakage at the new growth line?
Jennika: I was much more worried about taking care of my natural/relaxed line, and I think by way of that, my new growth line just happened to get moisturized! I deep conditioned whenever I washed. I used a coconut milk DC by Palmers.

CN: Why did you choose to go natural?
Jennika: I didn’t get my first relaxer until I was 14, so I remember my hair before I relaxed. I loved how my hair looked relaxed, but I was worried about what all those chemicals were doing to my hair. So I thought long and hard about why I relaxed. I came to the conclusion, that I didn’t think I was as pretty, without my hair straight. Sad, I know. This was just the surface of a whole heap of self esteem issues I didn’t realize I had! The transition period was more then a physical transition for me. It was VERY mental. I mean, there were days my hair was not looking so hot. But I had to go to work and fight through that “I am not looking too good today” feeling. In the end, I love walking around knowing that I am not my hair.

  • The first pic is my hair, 7 months post relaxer
  • The second, is my twist out
  • The third is a week after my BC

JennikaDe’Nae