Tell me about yourself!
I am Michelle Wales. I am 32 years old.
Were you a transitioner or a Big Chopper? What was your journey like?
I guess you can say I was both. I transitioned for about 7 months and then did a big chop. I got my last relaxer in December of 2005, and I big chopped in June of 2006. My journey was definitely a learning experience. I wouldn’t change anything about my journey because I truly know and understand my own hair.
Had you always embraced your texture?
For the most part, I have always embraced it but for a while I got addicted to flat ironing it.
How did family and friends react to your decision to go natural? What was your response to them?
My family was really receptive. Some of my older family members were “shocked” but my personality doesn’t allow me to care too much about what others think of me. One of my cousins went natural shortly after me, and now all of the women in my family are natural. So, I guess they loved it, eventually! ☺
Describe your hair (fine or coarse, thin or thick, highly porous, low, etc.)
I have thick hair that is kind of in between coarse and fine, if that makes sense. I do not know if my hair is porous or not, nor do I hair type. I, personally, don’t think it is necessary. I think it is important to know your own hair and while it may seem like good practice to know your hair type, it isn’t always helpful. Some people get so caught up on typing but they fail to realize that everyone has different hair even if it is similar in type. Also, there is skin attached to our hair and that also has to be taken into consideration when typing and you may have the same hair type as someone but your skin/scalp may not like a product that works for your hair type. Sorry for the book but I don’t hair type. I just know what works for my hair.
What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done to your hair?
The craziest thing… Ummm, I put Monistat (or what I call “yeast grease”) in my hair. I have learned not to try things that are too far out there even if there are claims that it works.
What’s your biggest hair related regret?
I would have to say my biggest regret would be when I had become a heat trained natural. After being natural for about 4 years, I got addicted to heat. I kept my hair straight for about 4 years. After all that heat my hair was damaged and it thinned out a lot so I ended up transitioning again. Then another big chop. But honestly, I don’t consider it a regret, I consider it a learning experience. My last big chop was in March of 2013!
What’s your current hair routine? How often do you wash, condition, and style? Favorite products! Deets!
Currently, I co-wash about every 2-3 weeks. I wash with a shampoo about every 3 months. When I co-wash, I use olive oil in my conditioner and put coconut oil on my hair before I let it air dry. When I shampoo my hair every 3 months, I also get my hair professionally straightened and trimmed. I straighten and trim every 3 months. My absolute must have products are olive oil, coconut oil, Tresemme Naturals, Aussie Moist line, Aussie 3 minute miracle condish, Aussie Leave-in Condish + Mousse, Dark and Lovely Au Naturale conditioner, Crème of Nature Argon Oil Spray, Just Natural Vinegar Nutritive Rinse Cleanser, and crushed Pre-natal pills that I put in my Shampoo. I almost forgot Tresemme Climate Control finishing spray. I use this spray with almost every hairstyle, it helps me shape my hair when I want a particular style or cut (look-a-like) and it helps with humidity on straight or curly styles.
What’s your favorite hairstyle? Where do you get hairstyle inspiration?
My favorite hairstyle at the moment is the mini twist and the mini twist out. I love how I can wear my hair twisted for about a week and then unravel and wear out for up to two weeks. My hairstyle inspiration is simplicity so that’s what I practice. Simplicity! Very low manipulation works best for me and my hair.
Who is your curl crush?
My hair crush is/was Domineque aka Longhairdontcare2011! (R.I.P Domineque)
How do you maintain your hair at night?
My nightly routine is pretty simple. I just put a bonnet on my head and go to sleep. I have learned that since I no longer use any heavy creams that my hair doesn’t smash. I do spray a water/coconut oil mist on my hair every 3-4 days but I apply that in the morning so that it can absorb some and so that I am not risking break outs by the oil coming off on my pillow at night.
How do you maintain healthy length?
I maintain healthy length by getting my hair trimmed regularly (for me that’s every 3 months) and practice low manipulation. I do not have “hands in hair” syndrome! ☺
What’s the best thing about being natural?
The best thing about being natural, to me, is the versatility that comes when you can be curly one day and straight the next.
Where can folks find you on the web?
On Facebook, I am Michelle Wales
On Instagram, I am mwales28