Hey guys,

I’m back with Part II, answering all your questions. So let’s get right into it, shall we?

What oils do you use?

For the most part the oils that constantly circulate in my regimen are: Jamaican Black Castor Oil (JBCO), regular Castor OIl, Jojoba Oil, Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO), Extra Virgin Coconut Oil, Argan Oil, I also use Naptural85’s oil mix for hair & body which contains some of the oils mentioned above in addition to Sweet Almond Oil, Avocado Oil and Vitamin E oil. 

 

What tools do you use?

  • Q-Redew Steamer
  • Conair Ion Shine 1875 Watt Styler 
  • Remington Pearl Pro Ceramic
  • Tangle Teezer (that’s on its last days)
  • Denman brush that I’ve removed half the bristles
  • Wide-tooth combs (I have several)

What’s your regimen?

I think I mentioned before but here we go again:

Weekly-Pre-poo> co-wash/deep condition> detangle > air dry> style

Every 4-6 weeks clarify> deep condition> detangle > air dry > style

I do braid outs/twists outs in the beginning of the week, by week’s end I do some time of bun or pouf. I usually protective style with mini twists or buns. Winter months I do wigs or Marley twists if I’m stateside.

Will you relax again?

At this stage of the game, no, but never say never. I feel I have more flexibility with my hair currently than I did when it was relaxed. My hair has always been pretty healthy and had good length but the way that natural game got me that new level of BAH-DEE…I won’t change that for the world.

Are you mixed?

With the blood of my ancestors yes I sure am! I did recently take a DNA test thru Ancestry.com, and my results are 90% of African descent and 10% European.

What’s your hair type?

I am Type 4, a mixture of 4a, 4b, and 4c, nape is 4a, temple sand perimeter area 4a/4b, and crown mostly 4b/4c.

Protective styles- Weaves vs. Wigs?

I’ve used both as a protective style and for the most part I think it’s a matter of preference. I think the most important thing is to remember that you DO still have to maintain your own hair. Often times I notice women who plop on a wig or sew in a weave and they are not caring for their hair underneath, which leads to tons of problems including traction alopecia, dandruff, breakage, permanent hair loss and other damage. PROTECT YOUR EDGES BOO! I understand it’s easy to set it and forget it but you have to still take time to protect what’s rightfully yours. I love weaves, but I prefer wigs because I can switch it up often, and I have direct access to my hair.

I want my hair to look like yours!

I hear this from women a lot. Some have said they can never go natural because they got that ‘tough, nigg*r hair, that I’ve got ‘breed’ because my hair look so soft and they’ve got that ‘back to Africa brillo head’ these are all derogatory statements I’ve heard time and time again. And they are all FALSE! Look Imma be real with you, your hair will never look like mine, you know why? Because we don’t share the same DNA, and even my siblings and I don’t have the same hair texture. What’s on my head is literally my own unique genetic configuration and that’s fine. Yours will be different and that’s FINE. So no our hair textures may never sync up exactly but what you CAN do is nurture and love yourself and your hair and embrace YOUR texture. Good Hair is HEALTHY hair so focus on that. And don’t get caught up in hair type envy wishing your hair could do this or that. You want ringlets or corkscrews? Girl so a bomb ass braid out, twist out, blow out, threading or whatever you need to do to get that style. It’s possible with practice.

Jouelzy has a video that talks more in-depth about texture envy and setting realistic expectations for 4c hair. You don’t have to be 4c to get the message though. So I urge you to take a look.

Do you take supplements?

I do. I take a daily women’s multi-vitamin and hair, skin, and nail vitamin.

Other supplements I take from time to time are: garlic pills and a probiotic, right now I’m currently out so it’s time to restock.

 

That’s it for Part II and stay tuned for Part III. Until then tell me what your hair story? Let me know in the comments!

 

 

Follow:

*Singing*‘Talking ‘bout good and bad hair, whether you’re dark or you’re fair, go on and swear see if I care, good and bad haaaiiir!

If  you don’t know where that song is from PLEASE stop what you’re doing and add School Daze to your viewing playlist right now.

We all have good days and bad hair days especially in this natural hair journey  (Is it a journey really or a return to our roots? Our essence? Hmm..something to think about) I did a post a few months ago on my natural-versary (LINK to post_ and my natural journey thus far. I get tons of questions from friends, family and strangers about my journey all the time and I figure that the easiest way would be to answer your posts here. So here we go:

  1. How long have you been natural?

My last relaxer was Good Friday 2012, and I transitioned until August 2013, when I big chopped.  I am a second wave natural (I totally just made that term up), which means I went thru transitioning/big chop/TWA phase once before.

  1. What inspired you to go natural?

As I said before I’m a second wave natural. I went natural when I started junior college and had NO IDEA what I was doing. I made a private and personal decision to grow my hair out after I graduated high school. My last relaxer was the day before my graduation and on New Year’s Eve of that year, right before the clock struck 12. I cut all my hair off. I was rocking a TWA after that and felt bare, vulnerable. This was back in the early 00’s and there was slim pickings on the natural hair care product scene. I’m talking…all there was was some Stay Sof Fro, Blue Magic Grease and African Pride grease with the herbs in it. THAT.WAS.IT.   I didn’t know about techniques like LOC, Greenhouse, Inversion. It was me and this TWA that I had no idea what to do with it because all my life I’d been a member of the Long Hair Don’t Care Committee, nobody told me how to do this, and the committee doesn’t offer a guide for the this journey. I wore that TWA out. I had never had a protective style in my life and was apprehensive about braids, weaves and wigs, so I just looked dusty while my hair grew out and I learned what to do with it.

Fast forward 4 years and I got my regimen on routine on lock. I was comfortable in my journey and my hair thrived. I always received tons compliments about  my hair being super thick and healthy. Then one day while watching Glen Lewis ‘Don’t You Forget It’ video  on BET I saw her…and I wanted her HAIR, it was sleek, straight, and I wanted it NOW!  I am referring to the object of Lewis’ affection in the video which was Kent Masters King, her hair was so straight and it literally made me want to straighten my hair ASAP. I thought it over and then one day I walked into the salon down the street from my apartment and relaxed my hair, just like that. Didn’t tell a soul. Just showed up at home with my hair blowing in the breeze, Pocahontas style. I remained relaxed until 2013. I toyed with the idea on and off of transitioning again but never went for it. Then in January 2011 I got a bad perm, my hair was weak and limp and my edges have never looked the same.  With a lot of TLC my hair slowly made a comeback but I decided that I was going to seriously think about crossing the burning sands back to the land of juicy fros and braidouts. I moved overseas for grad school and decided my journey would start there. My last relaxer was Good Friday 2012 and I big chopped August 2013. The rest is history. I mainly made the decision to go back natural because I felt I’d put my hair thru enough with the relaxers and I wanted a change.

  1. What’s your regimen?

My regimen is pretty standard, but the products I use are all over the place. It really just depends on where I am, the weather, and the time of year.

And it goes like this:

Wash weekly alternating between a sulfate free shampoo or a co-wash (if I co-wash I don’t DC) and DC with honey, air dry, moisturize using LCO method and I usually wear the following styles: braid out or a twist out, or a slicked back bun where the ends are twisted and pinned in. I wear that for a week to a week and a half, re-moisturizing with water every other day.

I try to deep condition after every wash, it doesn’t always happen but I do it about 2-3/x a month. I clarify once every 6-8 weeks.

If I’m stateside I usually try to protective style from late Fall to late Spring, alternating between wigs and Marley twists. And I follow the same regimen.

  1. What products do you use?

Regulars

Shampoo– Camille Rose Sweet Ginger Cleansing Rinse

Clarifying Shampoo– Suave Clarifying Shampoo

CoWash Conditioner– Suave Deep Moisture Humectant Conditioner, Suave Almond + Shea Butter Moisturizing Conditioner

Deep Conditioner– Camille Rose Algae Deep Renew Conditioner, Neutrogena Triple Moisture

Conditioner: ORS Replenishing Conditioner, Aussie Moist 3 Minute Miracle, Camille Rose Coconut Water Pentrating Hair Treatment

Detanglers– KinkyCurly Knot Today, Camille Rose Coconut Water Leave In Treatment

Butters– Camille Rose Almond Jai Twisting Butter, Camille Rose Curlaide Moisture Butter, Cultured Naturals Moringa Butter

Oils/Balms– Jojoba Oil, Jamaican Black Castor Oil, Camille Rose Ajani Growth and Shine Balm

*I don’t use ALL of these products every time I wash/style my hair. And I don’t consider myself a product junkie (yeah, yeah I know), I’ve actually streamlined and lessened the products I use, but a mixed 4A/4B/4C girl can NEVER have enough conditioners, balms, butters and deep conditioning treatments. LOL. For the most part I use the Camille Rose line and when I run out I supplement with the other products listed.

  1. Are you a straight natural?

Until recently (about two months ago) I’ve done most of my journey with little to no heat even to deep condition. No blow-drying, no flat-ironing, only using my Q-redew when my hair felt crazy parched.. The way the humidity in the Caribbean is set up and the fact that I sweat profusely in my hair, I didn’t even bother to try.  I stretched my hair by doing braids outs and banding with ribbons. Earlier this year I attempted to blowdry and flat iron once and it looked good and sleek for about 8 hours then it was a massive afro, which was fine.

I have realized that using heat has actually lessened some of my tangle issues so I am not opposed to it. Since I’m back stateside for the Fall, I’ve been using heat, air drying on LOW and using a flat iron on 385 degrees. I love it! I doesn’t make my hair dead straight. It gives me the length I’m always chasing, a bit of that shine I’ve been missing and just big, wild hair. It’s easier to comb thru and work with and I l can’t tell you how much I love it.

  1. How do you feel about coloring? Using heat?

Personally I have and will most likely always be conservative when it comes to my hair color. My hair is mostly 1b and that’s the lane I like to stay in, but think its cool that other naturals color and highlight their hair. It’s not my thing, no disrespect to them. When it comes to my hair color I’m as basic as they come. LOL. I’m getting a few grays so I’m currently looking into henna-ing my hair. Maybe I’ll try that in the New Year to cover these silver lightning bolts trying to Rogue me. I already answered the heat question. I will say as for using heat and or coloring hair, do what makes you happy but PROTECT yourself! Make sure to pre-treat, do your due diligence with making sure your hair retains moisture when doing chemical processes and always use heat protectant.

  1. How long does it take you to do your hair?

It all depends on the end game.

Regular styling- from wash to finished protective style 2-4 hours split

Heat styling- from wash to finish- 5-6

*I usually split this over two days because I air-dry and then style the following day

  1. How long did it take you to grow your hair?

At my current length it’s been about 3 years, 3 months. However I’ve cut about 6-8 inches in the past year.

I’ll be back in a few days with Part II. Until then let me know your hair story in the comments!

Follow:

Do you know what today is? It’s my anniversary, my anniversary. I couldn’t help myself. I love that song (it’s the 90s girl in me, what can I say?)

 

Three years ago on August 13, 2013 I finally big chopped after transitioning for over 16 months. The reason I finally decided to big chop was that I was in the process of getting a consultation to get a weave and the stylist requested photos of my hair and my hair line including the perimeter. Once I finally saw the pictures I realize that I had way more natural here then relaxed here basically my relaxed ends were about an inch to 2 inches long compared to the 4 inches of new growth that I had.

 

Transition

 

That’s when I decided it was best to just let it go let the ends go and finally start my second journey into the natural hair care movement.  I am not a big fan of short hair TWA’s do not work for me so I got my hair braided up my hair literally two days after I got the big chop done.
The big chop itself was exhilarating I finally felt free of having to fight with two different textures and I was excited about the upcoming in the new adventures of possibilities and things that I could do with my natural hair and I finally got to see the real textures throughout my hair. The journey so far has been an eye opening experience, educational and a ton fun.  Big Chop Mornings (1)

 

I’ve suffered some setbacks I’ve learned what works for me and what doesn’t work I’ve gone through product junkie phases and regimens that weren’t quite suited for me particularly. At this phase I found something that works for me and I’ve been sticking to my regimen thus far but I am excited for the future.

 

Au Natural Year 2-3

 

So without further ado I have to wish myself a happy third natural-versary. Here’s to many more years of juicy two strand twists, beautiful braid and twist outs and healthy hair care!

 

3 year anniversary

Are you natural? What prompted you to start your journey?

 

Follow: