I’ve been natural all my life, 42 years, minus the three months when I got a Jherri Curl when I was about 10.
2. Why and how did you go natural? (Did you transition? What products and styles did you use?)
I’ve always straightened my hair with the old-fashioned hot comb, but three years ago this July, I gave it up. I was straightening my hair while the AC was on. I finished half my hair, but when I started working on the other half, the first half was already frizzing so I wondered why I was bothering at all. After that day, I have retired my hot comb and opted to wear my hair in its natural state.
3. Did you transition long term or do the big chop? Why?
I did not transition or do a big chop, but when I had my Jherri Curl, I did let it transition. I lost most of my hair, but my mom bought me some braid hair so I’d make little ponytails and attach them to what was left of my hair until it all grew back. Oh, and I did do a big chop when I had dreadlocks about 10 or 11 years ago. I got bored with them and wondered (aloud) what I’d look like without them. My daughter immediately ran to grab the scissors and started cutting them off.
4. Tell us about your hair regimen. What products and techniques do you use? How do you keep your hair moisturized?
4. How would you describe this experience?
I love my wash day and wish I could do it every day! Yes, it takes me about 4-5 hours, but it’s worth it since I only do my hair once a week. My wash day is my zen moment. It’s soothing and relaxing.
5. What was others response to your naturality?
My partner, parents and friends like my natural hair. I’m not sure how my daughter feels about it. But, sometimes my mom accuses me of wearing a wig or a weave.
6. Who was your biggest influence/support? How did they provide support during your natural hair transition?
My partner has been my biggest supporter and even encouraged me and invested in me to sell what I was making and using in my own hair. I can’t say I’ve had any influence other than a few hair crushes I’ve had until I realized my hair won’t look like theirs because we have different textures, etc.
7. What have you learned since being natural (about yourself, your hair and other people)?
8. What advice would you give to those transitioning or concerning natural
Be prepared for let downs until you learn your hair. Let it speak to you and pay close attention to it. It will tell you what it needs and wants, when it wants and needs it. And, don’t be fooled. Natural hair is not low maintenance. It’s work. And, to be natural versus going natural, you have to be emotionally prepared to handle comments both good and bad. Just remember, it’s your hair so do what you want with it.