I received a message from a college friend asking me about the going natural thing and whether or not she had to do the big chop. I told her that transitioning was an option. She did her research and let me know that she had scheduled her big chop! Working with two textures was not on her list of priorities. Off to the salon she want and this new look...I am LOVING it!
Let's meet our most recent Queen of the Week - Keisha!
Who does your hair?
My stylist is Greg Butler of Another Level Salon in Alexandria, VA.
Have you ever attempted to go natural before?Why now?
I have never attempted to go natural before. I made the decision to go natural after having my daughter who is now 16 months old. She has a head full of beautiful, thick curly hair. I started researching natural hair in caring for her hair and that's what prompted my interest about my own hair. To my surprise, my daughter's hair isn't nappy. I figured since her hair isn't nappy and she has about 50% of my genes then my hair may not be nappy either.
Tell us about your decision to big chop versus transitioning?
I did tinker with the idea of transitioning because my hair was long and I wasn't sure how I'd feel about not having my hair anymore. I also didn't know what my head looked like and was a little nervous about how people would view me. I've always had long hair and that's usually what people associated me with. What changed my mind about transitioning was that I didn't want to deal with learning my new texture and dealing with my old texture at that same time. I read that some of the products that I used on relaxed hair may not be able to be used on natural hair. I just thought that was too much. Plus I'm not a patient person and I really wanted to see what my texture looked like so I made an appointment with my stylist and chopped it all off.
What do you love most about your new 'do?
I love that it's low maintenance. I wake up in the morning spray some water or mist spray on it, rub in some gel, and some oil and go about my business.
What are your hair goals?
My goal is to grow my hair back long without any chemicals. I learned to corn row and twist doing my daughter's hair. So I'm excited about one day getting to try braid outs and twist outs. I think I'm most excited about the versatility of my hair.
Have you identified any favorite products?
I really like Kinky Curly's products. The Kinky Curly Curling Custard is my favorite product at the moment. I also like their shampoo and the knot today conditioner. Although, I can't use the conditioner because my dermatitis flares up when I leave it in and I get the same result when I use it and then wash it out. So for now I have to stay away from it. I do use it on my daughter's hair and I absolutely love it. It defines her curls really well. I also like a deep conditioner called Fixative. It's made by Straight Request. Coconut oil and Kera Care's Essential Oils for the scalp are my favorite oils. Both do a good job of sealing my hair without the scalp buildup.
Note: This image is 5 weeks after the big chop. Lovely curls!
A new product I'm trying out is Wave Nouveau misting spray and humectant. Softsheen Carson makes these products. I really like the misting spray. I use the humectant in moderation since it has petroleum and mineral oil in it. Kinky Curly Curling Custard doesn't play well with the humectant so I only use it when I'm using the Eco Styler Olive Oil gel which is also another favorite of mine.
What advice would you offer to women considering a natural hair journey?
My advice to women considering a natural hair journey would be to be prepared by researching and making sure you are ready to embrace the hair that you are given. Also I'd tell them to not go into this expecting your hair to be like someone else's or expecting it to be a certain way because you may be in for an awakening. I thought my hair would curl right up and be super curly once I chopped it off but I found that was not the case. My hair grows straight from the scalp not curly. It does more of a wave than curl especially in the front. I have lose curls in the middle and back of my head and I really like that. I was a bit disappointed about not having the tight curls. But once I accepted that this is what my hair is going to do, I got over the disappointment of not having the tight curls. I like my hair and I think it looks good.