I decided to stop relaxing my hair last year. I have been a curly head all of my life and have often gone long stretches without relaxing but last year, I just decided no more. My last relaxer was in October of 2010.
NL: Did you transition over time or do a big chop?
At At this point I am not going to do a big chop. My hair is almost top of armpit length. When straightened and I have about 5 inches of new growth. I plan to keep growing it out and trimming out the straightened parts gradually.
NL: What are some of your favorite products and styles?
I have a lot of favorite products. When doing research on the internet and youtube, I came across people who were using castor oil, rosemary shampoo and organic coconut oil for growth. I regularly shampoo my hair with Rosemary shampoo and condition with Matrix Biolage with rosemary and Suave Humectant conditioner. I also use Garnier Fructis leave in Conditioner along with Hawaiian Silky. Other favorites that I use are Sally’s Silk leave in, Ojon Restorative conditioner and Eco Styler with Argan oil.
NL: Describe your expectations and feelings before you made the leap to natural. How did you feel post-transition?
My expectations before going curly was that it would be more difficult to style and take care of hair. While it has not been the same and I have to put in more work into my hair, I feel it is much healthier. I can see a big difference between the diameter of my hair shaft before and after relaxing. The relaxed hair diameter is much smaller than the new growth. I feel my curly hair growing in is much stronger than the relaxed portion.
NL: What have been the reactions of family, friends, etc to the newly natural you?
The reactions that I have gotten have been pretty positive. The best one was last week when my 20 year old daughter touched my hair and said, “Mommy I love your curls.”
NL: Describe what it was like to return to work after going natural.
The reaction I have received have been fine. I substitute teach at different schools and wear my hair both curly and straight.
NL: Overall, what has been your greatest discovery about being natural?
My greatest discovery about going natural is that, I love my hair, and it’s versatility and it has the ability to grow long when taken care of properly.
NL: What advice would you give to another 40+ woman who is considering going natural?
My advice to women who are over 40 and want to go natural is to “Go For It”! It’s a great journey of discovery and love. You learn to love and accept yourself for who God created you to be-Unique and wonderful. Curly heads have the benefit of wearing their hair in so many styles and can switch up whenever they want too. It’s a great journey!