CN: How long have you been natural?
I do not know the exact date. I do know that it was more than 10 years ago. During that time, I knew nothing about transitioning. What I knew was that I no longer wanted to chemically alter my hair. I did not do the BC. I wore my hair in twists, braids, buns, pinned up or flat ironed. It was not until August of 2009 that I discovered just how versatile curly hair could be and what products I could use. I spent hours scouring websites where other naturals shared their regimens and styles. Since then, I have loved playing in my hair and seeing what I can do with it.
CN: What is your current regimen?
Since I change up my hair often, I do not have a solid regimen. I typically cleanse my scalp and hair once a week with Dr. Bonner’s all in one soap or a shikakai bar. I follow this with Giovanni Smooth as Silk Xtreme, a protein treatment. For moisture after the protein treatment, I have been using Joico’s K-Pak Moisture Intense Hydrator. While styling, I make sure I use a water-based moisturizer then seal. My favorites right now are Karen’s Body Beautiful Hair Milk and Afroveda’s Totally Twisted Ginger Almond Butter. They moisturize like no other. For sealing, I love Karen’s Body Beautiful Hair Cream. I love switching things up but this is my basic hair care routine.
I also deep condition at least once a week. My favorite is Darcy’s Botanicals Deep Conditioning Mask. I may try other products but none have come close yet.
Other treatments include using ayurvedic powders and oils. I mix the powders with oil and/or water until they are a pudding consistency. I apply them from root to tip and let it sit on my hair for at least 30 minutes. I used to do them once a week. I have to start using them again. I definitely notice a lot less shedding when using them regularly.
CN: How do you maintain length? Moisture?
I always seal in the moisture. Most days I seal twice a day. I keep a couple of different kind of oils at work and in my gym bag.
Although I change my hairstyles pretty often, I wear a lot of protective styles. I also always sleep on my satin pillowcase.
Whenever I cleanse or rinse my hair, I apply moisture. To ensure my ends are thriving and healthy, I make sure they are well moisturized before sealing.
If my hair is misbehaving, I know it, and I know exactly what I need to do to get it back in shape.
CN: How do you protect your curls at night?
At night, I spritz my hair with a strong tea (I have used burdock root, green tea, peppermint and fenugreek). The ratio of tea to water is two to one. Once slightly damp, I moisturize and seal. I put my hair in my satin bonnet and sleep on a satin pillowcase.
CN: What would you tell a new natural, or transitioning diva?
Find out what your hair likes. It is easy to get caught up trying products. Once you know what products work for your hair, take the time to write down the top five ingredients in them. Before purchasing a product, you can read the ingredients to see if it has the ingredients that make your hair beautiful. This can help you save money, time and frustration.
I love the Curl Whisperer on CN. I think it is so important to ensure your hair has the proper balance of moisture and protein.
CN: What’s the best thing about being naturally glamorous?
I think it makes me look younger than my 38 years.
CN: Anything else you’d like to add?
I have a fotki (public.fotki.com/ChrsLvsBks) that I try to update regularly. You can check out more of my styles there. Perhaps I can inspire you to try something you had not thought of before. Keep it curly!