CN: Have you always embraced your natural curls? If not, who or what inspired you?
No most of my life I wanted to fit in with society’s view of beauty, which was straight hair. I hated my curls and I would flat iron my hair so stick straight that I wouldn’t even bump the ends at times. In October of 2009, after years of fighting it, I finally wanted to embrace my natural curls, however I had a tremendous amount of heat damage from the years of searing it with the iron. I was inspired by beautiful curly headed women that I would meet or see in the streets. I was also inspired by some celebrities, namely Rachel True, Kelis and Tracee Ellis Ross. I admired their beautiful, curly, full of personality hair and longed to be able to express my true curly self.
CN: How have family, friends, and strangers responded to your curls? How do you respond to them?
Surprisingly and thankfully most people that I encounter love my hair curly. My husband loves it because he says it makes me look edgy and wild. My family was a bit shocked at first but have grown to love and accept my curls. My friends couldn’t believe that my natural hair was this curly and not straight and they love it.
CN: What are your must have products?
I love Curl Junkie Curl Theory Conditioner for a bit of protein as a rinse out. I alternate with Curl Junkie Rehab when I need moisture. For cleansing, I use Nature’s Gate Aloe Vera Shampoo. For deep treatments I absolutely love Karen’s Body Beautiful Luscious Locks Hair Mask. For moisture I like Karen’s Body Beautiful Hair Nectar. Finally for styling I use either Kinky Curly Knot Today Leave-in Conditioner or Curl Junkie Coco Coffee Curl Cream topped with a little bit of Kinky Curly Curling Custard.
CN: Routine for the the perfect curl?
I shampoo my hair once a week (other days I either water wash or co-wash with Suave Naturals) I always use a rinse out conditioner. I then section my hair in 5 sections and smooth and rake through my leave in conditioner, then scrunch in my styler and diffuse until 100% dry. I alternate between diffusing right side up and upside down so that I can achieve volume. I love as much volume as possible, and don’t mind a little frizz.
CN: How do you deal with the high dew points and humidity of summer?
I may water wash my hair more often instead of co-washing it. I also try not to layer too many products on my hair as leave ins. Instead of a leave-in conditioner and a styler, I may just use a light leave-in conditioner. My hair actually likes the humidity and gets more voluminous, which I like.