Tell me about yourself!
My name is Natrietia. Pronounced NA-TREE-SHA. Born and bred in So-Cal. I am a wifey and mommy. Lover of people, language, fashion and art. I am a published author (The Lady’s Rage), a poet, make up artist and a philanthropist at heart. I have received many gifts in this life and I’d like to spend my life giving what I have received.
Were you a transitioner or a Big Chopper? What was your journey like?
I big chopped. My journey to the big chop was quite easy actually. I grew tired of the expense, time and energy that it took to maintain relaxed hair. So after a couple months of wearing braids, I took them out and big chopped. It was the best decision I have made concerning my hair.
Had you always embraced your texture?
Not as a child. I grew up in an era and to parents from an era that did not embrace “nappy” hair. As a teen, however, I big chopped before it was called that. I recall my dad saying to me that summer, “Do you want to get your hair done?” Apparently, my hair in its natural state looked undone. Ironically, I did get my hair done that summer and after the press and curl I received my hair suffered from heat damage on one side of my head. I literally, had to use perm rods to make that side of my hair blend in with my other coils. That natural hair journey ended after 2 years, for lack of product knowledge and information on how to care for my natural hair. So, I reverted to relaxers.
At this stage in my life however, love was the motivating factor in my decision to return to natural. Yes, I was tired of relaxers but I have two daughters. I would tell my oldest daughter how beautiful her hair was, thick and coily but I had my hair relaxed. It just seemed like such a big contradiction. I wanted my daughters to see me as an example, of a woman who loved her hair and wasn’t conformed to anyone’s idea of what beauty was/is.
How did family and friends react to your decision to go natural? What was your response to them?
“You have always been different.” “It looks good on you.” I think my family has embraced it because it is reflective of me. It just makes sense that I would be the one to wear my hair natural and own it. And I do. My friends, likewise, are supportive; but really, I don’t see why my hair should be a topic of offense. Like, what does my hair have to do with anyone else. Its my hair. I think my family/friends know that about me. Especially, my husband, who is such a supporter and lover of my natural hair. I think the culture says if you wear your hair natural you are a rebel and a defender of all things black. But, my hair isn’t about me rebelling against society, or proving my blackness… its about me embracing Natrietia.
Describe your hair (fine or coarse, thin or thick, highly porous, low, etc.) My hair is coarse and thick.
I would be “classified” as having 4C hair.
What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done to your hair?
I’m really not crazy with my hair. It took me about 6 months to discover the products and routines that worked for me; and I stuck with that. I’m pretty practical with my hair routine.
What’s your biggest hair related regret?
Not embracing my TWA stage. I was so anxious to see growth that I didn’t feel as whole as I should have rocking my TWA. I think that it wasn’t until the tail end of my TWA stage that I was like, I love my hair. It’s awesome.
What’s your current hair routine? How often do you wash, condition, and style? Favorite products! Deets!
Okay, here goes. People ask me all the time. I wash & deep condition my hair once a week. And I drink lots of agua (water for the Spanish illiterate).
#1 Drink Water
#2 My Weekly Routine:
Wash Once a week with Shea Moisture Yucca & Baobob Thickening Shampoo
Deep Condition with Shea Moisture Raw Shea Deep Treatment Mask
Leave In Condition with Giovanni Direct Leave-In Weightless Moisture Conditioner
#3 My Daily Routine:
Water, Olive Oil, Vegetable Glycerin and Leave In Conditioner
Quarter sized amount of Shea Moisture
Style with Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie
#4 Night Time Routine:
Sleep with Satin Scarf (Though I’ve been wanting a bonnet)
#5 Monthly ACV Rinse
What’s your favorite hairstyle? Where do you get hairstyle inspiration?
My go to styles are twist outs/braid outs, puff, mini twist and roll and tuck. Oh my gosh, I have learned so much from the many many natural hair vloggers like Curly Nikki, Jessica Pettaway, Jenell Stewart, iknowlee and CaribBeauty in this journey. I thank God for these women, who share their personal journeys and put themselves out there for us to glean from. I am forever grateful, to these bold women for helping me achieve the successes I have in my personal journey. I spent hours researching and being inspired on YouTube. In fact, Curly Nikki’s blog was the first person that I started following. I would go to the page and look up info, and stories like these and just glean from her and other women. I learned so much.
Who is your curl crush?
My hair crush…hmm jfashiongirl aka Jessica Pettaway. She’s pretty fly. Hair and otherwise. LOL
How do you maintain your hair at night?
If I have time I do my spritz (water, vegetable glycerin, olive oil and leave in) and then double strand twist or braid my hair. Then cover with a scarf. If I have no time (too lazy/sleepy) I cover my hair and spritz in the morning
How do you maintain healthy length?
I really don’t try to “grow” my hair. But it grows because I take care of me. Drinking water, healthy diet and exercise I believe are key components to my hair growth. On a surface level, I do wash and condition my hair. And keep it moisturized. And more than wearing my hair “out” I usually wear it in a roll and tuck.
What’s the best thing about being natural?
Authenticity. I feel like my whole self. From the crown of my head to the soles of my feet. I am 100% Natrietia.