Tell me about yourself!
Hi! I’m Caressa, 23 years old. I was born and raised in Amsterdam. I love to travel, learn foreign languages and music is a big part of my life.
Were you a transitioner or a Big Chopper? What was your journey like?
I transitioned when I was 16 years old after relaxing for four years. I took more time in between relaxers and one day I just decided not to do it anymore. I transitioned for a long time, roller setting my hair in the beginning. It wasn’t until two years after taking the last relaxer, I started to wear my hair curly.
Had you always embraced your texture?
Yes, but I was very lazy. I have thick hair and I used to think that relaxing my hair would give it less maintenance. After transitioning, it also took me a couple of years to actually take good care of my hair and to find the right regimen. Before that, my hair was always in a bun and it definitely needed more moisture.
How did family and friends react to your decision to go natural? What was your response to them?
They were happy and supportive, they didn’t really understand why I ever relaxed my hair in the first place. During the years I relaxed, my mom asked me a couple of times when I would stop relaxing, so when I finally did, she was relieved.
Describe your hair (fine or coarse, thin or thick, highly porous, low, etc.)
My hair is low porosity, so I absolutely love leave in conditioners but it is harder for me to find a cream or butter that works for my hair. It is thick and dense, especially in the back and my crown area.
What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done to your hair?
Nothing, haha! I am very safe when it comes to my hair. I have only dyed it once and also a very safe color: black.
What’s your biggest hair related regret?
That I ever relaxed my hair in the first place.
What’s your current hair routine? How often do you wash, condition, and style? Favorite products! Deets!
I pre-poo my hair before every wash with Jamaican black castor oil or coconut oil. I wash my hair every five or seven days with Shea Moisture Retention Shampoo (or another sulfate free shampoo I can grab) and I condition with Tresemme Naturals Moisture Conditioner or Yes to Carrots Conditioner. Then I deep condition 15-20 minutes with a homemade deep conditioner or one of my favorite deep conditioners:
– Crème of Nature Argan Oil Intensive Conditioning Treatment
– KeraCare Intensive Restorative Masque
– L’Oreal Ever Rich Nourishing Intense Mask
For styling, I either use Giovanni’s Direct Leave In Conditioner, Ouidad’s Leave in Conditioner or Shea Moisture curl and style milk in combination with Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie. I don’t always seal but when I do, I use either Eco Styler Olive Oil Gel or Aubrey Organic Aloe Vera and I let my hair air dry.
What’s your favorite hairstyle? Where do you get hairstyle inspiration?
Wash n Go’s, because they are fast and easy but lately I also like to use curl formers on my hair a lot because it is a style that last longer. Since I work with food, I have been on pinterest a lot, to look for more protective hairstyles because I can’t wear my hair down.
Who is your curl crush?
I love Mahoganycurls, she has very beautiful hair. I also like the instagram curlies AmberJanielle, MsBeautifulcurls and bighair_dontcare.
How do you maintain your hair at night?
I pineapple and cover my head with a satin scarf and satin bonnet cap or when my hair is wet I plop it in a t-shirt.
How do you maintain healthy length?
In the past I used to trim a lot, more than necessary, but now I deep condition regularly and I coat my ends with coconut oil every other night.
What’s the best thing about being natural?
I don’t have to worry anymore about the weather, haha! I love that curly hair is so different and versatile. You never have the same look twice and there are so many hairstyles you can rock.