Today we have a feature on a lady and blogger who has just gone natural. She went natural 2 months ago and is so enthusiastic about the whole process and seems smitten with her hair. Her name is Susan (MJ fans, see what I did there lol) and she blogs at http://curly-natural-me.blogspot.com/.
1. Why and when did you first relax your hair? What is your hair story BEFORE your BC?
I had natural hair when I was younger till age 11 when my mum transferred us to a school in shagz (rural area) that required everyone, girls included, to keep short natural hair=( Before then, my mum had always personally plaited my hair and my sister’s at home, she was pretty talented and our salon visits were not often. When I joined high school at 14yrs, I saw majority of the girls had relaxed hair; I couldn’t wait for mid term! I begged my mum to let me get a relaxer & with my sister’s help we got a ‘straight kit’! It was amazing and I’d cake it with layers of gel every morning, you should have seen my school shirt collars! I have been relaxing my hair ever since. When I started working I graduated to weaves and I have been a weave-queen rocking them in all lengths, colours and styles! Occasionally I’d wear my hair but after 3 weeks I’d get growth and get bored, so I’d get a hair cut or put some crazy colour after relaxing!
2. What made you decide to finally do the Big Chop? What were your feelings and thoughts when you did it?
In November last year, I cut my hair in a bob and coloured it red and blonde* crazy, huh!* By Dec, it was already breaking coz of hot-curling it twice a week. I’ve never really been attached to my hair, I’d chop it and colour it coz I figured I could always weave if it didn’t grow. Anyhoo, I decided to let it get a month’s growth then chop off the relaxed ends! I was feeling the ‘shaggy’ look that girls in town were rocking and that’s what made me Big Chop! I however had to prepare my hubby first & he was okay with it. I finally BCd one Saturday morning in my bathroom! I had no intentions of remaining natural though; the BC according to me was just a seasonal hairstyle. I knew nothing about natural hair care and my ‘steel wool’ hair was unmanageable according to my then uninformed opinion.
3. What reactions have you received since doing the BC from your friends and family?
Waist-length healthy hair! I want to rock it in every style possible! My hair has never grown past my shoulders and I want to prove to myself and onlookers that Natural Black/African hair can grow! I’m a happy and willing self-appointed guinea pig! I can already see my twa growing and I love every second of it.
5. How long have you been natural?
2 months now, since mid Feb this year (2011)
6. What inspired you to be natural?
It was your blog! I came across it at the fashion notebook blog and I was home! Like I’d earlier mentioned, my BC was just another hairstyle that I thought I’d outgrow in a few weeks! After I read through your posts and some of the natural hair blogs from your blog roll, I saw the light and I was so glad I had already BCd; if I hadn’t maybe I’d have choosen to transition then get discourage after a while coz I’m a tad impatient! Before then I had been mistreating my twa for a month, I didn’t know any better! After realizing what I can do with my natural hair, I decided then and there that I’d be a natural to the grave. I went home and tried co-washing and moisturizing and it worked wonders for my otherwise really course hair (4a, I think) and I was soo converted!
I always rock a wash n go. I co-wash twice a week with Lory’s Chocolate Mouse, its meant for DC but my hair loves it so much. So far, nothing softens my hair like it does so I’m sticking to it until I find a conditioner that works for me. I then moisturise with a leave-in, rub some curl activator gel for curl definition then seal it with natural oils and I’m good to go. I deep condition every Saturday or Sunday; I alternate DC treatments with Henna treatment, hot oil treatment (using the natural oils mildly warmed in the microwave) and protein treatment. I also spritz my hair 2 or 3 times during the day coz it gets very dry with a mixture of EVOO, leave-in conditioner and tap water shaken together; I have a spray bottle that I keep in the office.
8. What products are in your arsenal?
Don’t even get me startedJ *insert Total PJ here* for washing, I have Vatika Moisture Shampoo which I’ve only used once to remove build-up, I’d rather co-wash with Lory’s Chocolate Mouse or Juicy Green Apple Conditioners. For Moisturisers, I use Africa’s Best Organic Shea Butter & Tee Tree, Africa’s Best Organic Hair Mayo leave-in or Oliive’s Olive Oil Leave-in. For sealing, I have Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Coconut Oil, Castor Oil or Glycerin. I also use Eco Styler gel for curly enhancement or Zoe curl activator gel. For DC, I have Africa’s Best Organic Hair Mayonnaise & Africa’s Best Organics Root Stimulator Replenishing pak. I also have Henna and Placenta for protein treatment. I warned you, the full Pj! I’ve now slowed down on the shopping thoughJ
9. What do you like most about being all natural?
Oh the freedom! And my kinks and curls are soo lovely! As my hair grows, It looks different everyday. I’m uniquely and fiercely me!
Thank you Susan and Happy Hair Growing!