The last time I relaxed my hair, from what I recall, was more than 10 years ago. I base this on the ages of my sons in a picture taken the summer of 2000.
2.Did you transtion? If so how long and why?
I did not transition. I knew nothing about transitioning. I just decided one day to no longer relax my hair. It was not until August 2009 that I found YouTube and a host of great resources on how to care for my curly hair.
3.Did you have any support going natural? or negative experiences when going natural?
No, I had no support. I did not hear anything negative. This could be because I would wear my hair in ponytails and straightened for many years.
4.What is your regimen?
This is a complex question for me. Why? I always change things up. The main things I do are as follows. Cleanse one to two times a week. Moisturize daily sometimes two to three times a day. Clarify before using a new product or before applying henna. Deep condition weekly. Do a protein treatment as needed (typically once a week).
I always, always seal in my moisture. I use either oils or butter-based products.
5.What is your nightly routine?
Depending on my style, I put on a silk scarf then bonnet and sleep on a satin pillowcase. This is probably OCD since my bonnet and scarf do not come off while I sleep, LOL. I do pineapple if I am trying to preserve my WnG or other “out” style.
6.What is your go to style?
Hmmmm, I don’t have one. I change up my styles often. There is no one style I depend on or seen wearing more often than not.
7. What is the best thing about being natural?
OMGoodness, the ability to be a chameleon. My hair is my accessory. I can take a funky look and transform it into a more conservative look in a few moments. I love the water so getting my hair wet is fun to me.
What or who inspired you to start a workout routine?
Diabetes, high blood pressure and cancer are prevalent on my maternal side. While diabetes has ravished many on my paternal side. Exercising and eating properly are things I can do to help lessen my risk of acquiring one of these diseases.
What does your routine consist of?
I workout Monday through Friday burning 3,000 calories a week.
Monday and Wednesday - 10 minutes on cardio before full body strength training on machines during my lunch hour; 45 minutes of spinning then 15 minutes of stretching (instructor led)
Tuesday and Thursday – 30 minute of cardio on the treadmill (15% incline at 2.7 mph) during my lunch hour
Thursday – 35 minutes of cardio on elliptical; 15 minutes of ab work and one hour Zumba class (both instructor led)
Friday - 10 minutes on cardio before full body strength training on machines during my lunch hour
What goal are your trying to achieve (with working out)?
I plan to get down to a healthy weight. I started out needing to lose 78 pounds. I have lost 25 pounds as of June 28—woo hoo!
On those days when you dont feel like working out, What do you do to get motivated?
I think about how I felt after a good workout. Remembering why I workout—get and remain healthy—also helps.
What do you do to your hair to prepare for a workout?
I wear a scarf and will sometimes moisturize and seal before putting it on. If my hair is braided or twisted, I put on a wave cap before putting on the scarf to keep hair flat to my head.
What is your routine after a workout?
After working out, I take off my scarf and shake if wearing a WnG or other out style. Otherwise, I just take off the headwraps and go back to work—simple as that :o).
Recently, I cam into contact with a straightened natural told me that she wears her hair straight because
natural hair is not professional.
What is your opinion of that statement?
Everyone is entitled to their opinion. As long as a person’s hair is cleansed and well kempt it is professional, IMO.
Do you notice that you sytle your hair differently for work? (please submit a work style)
Yes and no, I love sporting a frohawk at times. I will not wear it to work. Any other style is fair game. Styles I have worn to work include twists, braids, twist outs, braid outs, buns and ponytails.
What is your co-workers reaction to your various styles? Do you let that affect you?
I work for a engineering consulting firm. My supervisors and other workers are mostly white males. They will say things like you have a new ‘do but nothing negative.
Are there any natural styles that you feel are professional?
All of them as long as they are neat and not too out there if you work in a professional office. If my hair was shorter, I would even rock a frohawk.
What advice do you have for an aspiring natural/transitioner?
Learn your hair. Your hair will not react to products like someone else’s even if their hair looks like yours.
Do your own research. There is nothing like finding out information for yourself. Do not depend on others for the answers.
Check out livecurlylivefree.com and the Curl Whisperer posts on CurlyNikki.com. Tiffany Anderson’s advice was my saving grace. She breaks down the properties of hair like no other person I have come across and believe me I have researched A LOT.
Is there anything that you would like to add?
Being natural and dating, did not pose any problems for me. I always let the men I dated know I did not relax my hair. I actually met a man when my hair was in a ponytail and air dried, can we say huge and out of control. This is what actually attracted him to me, go figure. Another guy liked how I changed up my styles. You know men, they like variety so I guess it made him think he was with a different woman.
I met my husband in 2006. My hair was straightened. I told him I did not relax my hair. He said he had no problem with it. We married in August 2009. I had my hair blow-dried, straightened, braided in the front and a high bun with pincurls in the back.
Have fun with your hair. Try new styles and products (coming from a true PJ) ;oD! Check out YouTube for style ideas.
My fotki (public.fotki.com/ChrsLvsBks) contains a lot of photos showing my journey including many different styles from the summer of 2009 to April 2010.