Short answer: I’m a big chopper! I’ve done it twice. Long answer: I’m way too impatient to transition. My first time, in 2006, was an attempt to beat the annoyance of hair on my back during the summer heat. I cut my relaxed hair into a cropped pixie style; but moving to California and not having a hairdresser resulted in me growing out my perm.
Making the step towards chemical freedom wasn’t a conscious decision. I had been wearing relaxers for so long that it was routine for me and it didn’t occur to me that I had the option to stop perming my hair…until I just did. Even though I stopped getting perms I didn’t know how to take care of my hair properly, so it was damaged. If there was an online natural hair community, I wasn’t aware of it. Most of the “naturals” I came across had locs so it was hard for me to learn what was good for my hair. Damage from coloring the full length of my hair (every 2 months or so) along with heat damage from straightening without protection lead to my second big chop in October 09. I’ve been better to my hair since then but recently I have been dealing with a setback from coloring. Let’s hope I learn my lesson next time!
Had you always embraced your texture?
Ehhh, yes and no. In the beginning I had a lot of frustration with my hair as a whole because I didn’t know how to treat it. Once I began to learn my hair needs, I fell in love with it! I love my texture and its fullness because it is mine.
How’d your family and friends react to your decision to go natural? How did they react to the new you? What was your response to them?
I think a lot of people assumed it was a phase because when I was relaxed, I loved to switch things up. After a few months, I started to get questions like “When will you straighten your hair again?” Going natural led to me learning the truth about perms (thank you Google) so I would just share what I’ve learned and keep it pushing. It wasn’t until I passed the TWA phase that I started to receive a lot of positive responses.
Describe your hair.
My hair is porous, quite dense and it is naturally dry. When it isn’t moisturized, it’s brittle. If it is moisturized, it is soft and my curls are really defined. I have combination hair. It’s mostly coily throughout, kinky along the nape of my head and curlier at the top. I never leave my hair in a shrunken state anymore but when I did I had tiny ringlet curls when wet. My hair generally does what I want when I’m treating it right. Overall, I’ll say that my hair is fun!
What’s your current hair routine? Wash, condition, and style, favorite products…
I’ve recently made some changes to my regimen. If you have any suggestions, please let me know! I colored my hair and had to do a heavy handed trim because of shedding and because my ends were so dry. I wash my hair once a week. The night before washing I finger detangle my hair with coconut or grapeseed oil. I then put my hair in loose plaits and cover it with a plastic cap until I’m ready to wash. Since coloring, I’ve completely eliminated shampoo. I’ve fallen in love with Terresentials Pure Earth mud wash for cleansing; it removes the dirt without stripping my hair. I’ve also fallen for Camille Rose Naturals Algae Deep Conditioner. It’s the best deep conditioner I’ve ever used! It smells awesome as well. I haven’t found a great leave-in as of yet. I wait until my hair is about 75% dry, then I moisturize with a spray made with water, glycerin and peppermint oil, or I moisturize with Shea Moisture’s Curl Enhancing Smoothie. Throughout the week I re-spray my hair with water and moisturize with whipped Shea butter, or a combination of oils depending on my hair needs. I recently started to seal my ends with Jamaican Black Castor oil and I love it!
How do you maintain your hair at night?
I always sleep on satin pillowcases. I never sleep with my hair out, I either pineapple or plait it up. I’ve been bad about wearing my scarf, but I try to more often than not.
How do you maintain a healthy length?
I trim when needed. Sometimes it’ll be 3 times a year, other times it’ll be every couple of months. I’ve learned not to use a schedule when it comes to my hair. I gauge what it needs by the look and how my hair feels, then I treat it. Sealing my ends is an absolute must especially after coloring.
What’s the best thing about being curly?
I love that textured hair for its endless styling options. I love individuality and I’m a girl that loves to make a statement, being curly helps me to do just that!
Where can folks find you on the web?
My sister and I finally started a blog and YouTube channel. Yayy! We can be found at:
Youtube username : SecretsDesSoeurs
You can also find me on instagram @: Instagram.com/adreamdiffered