How long have you been natural?
I’ve pretty much always been natural. My mom relaxed my hair in the 5th grade after years of me begging to have my hair look silky and straight like all of the other girls in my school (I grew up within a high population of Hispanics). By the 6th grade I was natural again.
What made you decide to go natural?
I used to go to the islands every summer to visit my Granny and aunts. After going to the beach all summer, not knowing how to take care of my newly relaxed hair and having an Aunt who gave me her version of a relaxer touch-up, I returned to my mom with a head of eaten off, patchy, straight, sun streaked hair. She tried her best to get it back to where it used to be, but it was a lost cause. Before I knew it, I was natural again. At the time I didn’t realize I was transitioning. She made me wear braids for a good while as she cut off my relaxed ends every time I took out the braids.
While natural, what is the one biggest regret /mistake you made?
I colored my hair BOZO red in high school. I bleached my hair blond and used Manic Panic to tint it red. ‘Til this day I can’t believe my mom let me do it, but when I consider the fact that she was a cosmetology student at the time….she was just using me as a subject. lol. I really had no clue on how to take care of colored hair. My hair pretty much appeared to be that same length for like 2 years while my roots grew and grew.
What is the craziest hairstyle or treatment you have done with your hair?
Letting someone else put their hands in my hair! Never again would I do such a thing. It was the worst braid job I had ever seen. It looked a complete HOT & STEAMY MESS! I went back and asked for a refund after I went home and could not salvage the damage. I should have known better. All the signs were there that the results wouldn’t be right, but I ignored my gut. Never again.
What is your current relationship with your hair?
We are in love. I am gentle with her and she responds by retaining length. I use products she loves and she responds by being soft to the touch. With the way things are going now, I can predict this is going to be a long, beautiful, chemical-free relationship 🙂
What is the one trick or technique are you most thankful for finding out about?
MOISTURE, MOISTURE, MOISTURE! Your hair takes a lot of abuse and you sometimes don’t realize it. Increasing moisture so that you hair can bounce back like a rubber band, and not break-off because its dry, is the number one key! Seems so basic, but since learning that tidbit, things have taken a turn for the better.
What specific products can you not live without?
Silk Elements Megasilk Moisturizing Treatment – For Regular Deep Conditioning (1+ years of use)
Coconut Oil – To add to my deep conditioners to give it a kick!
What advice would you give to someone considering going natural?
You WILL have moments of being completely lost with your hair and maybe wanting to relax, but stick with it! Take a break from your hair. Get a weave, braids or simply just find a way to hide your hair so you don’t have to deal with it. After some time, you might find that you’ve missed your curls and kinks. Loving your natural texture is not immediate; at least it wasn’t for me. It’s truly another part of you that you have to get to know and [usually] eventually love.
Where can we find out more info about you and/or your hair?
Youtube Tutorials – wwestndnbeautyy
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