She is one of my all time favorite naturals….Meet Shake

How long have you been natural and when did you BC?

I have been natural most of my life. I relaxed my hair for few years in high school and hated the result after a few months. Several inches of my hair had broken off resulting in jagged, uneven, damaged tresses. I went from thick healthy hair swinging down my back to just passed shoulder length hair. I stopped relaxing sometime between 10th and 11th grade and started to educate myself on how to take proper care of my hair, and babied it back to health. By the end of my senior yr my hair had grown back significantly and in my freshman yr of college it was long thick and healthy again. However I had little knowledge in how to care for my hair in its natural state.

I never really big-chopped. I had long hair all of my life and wanted a change. So, during my sophomore year in high school I got it chopped into a short, super cute bob, but stopped wearing my hair straight shortly after, defeating the purpose of the cut. But by default I had cut off the rest of the relaxer which was a plus! I found and began to research proper care of curly hair. There is an abundance of sites out there dedicated to natural hair. Help is always there.

What are your staple products and hairstyles?

Shampoo: hmm still trying out shampoos. I was in love with Cream of Nature shampoo for dry brittle hair (yellow cap, green label) but I think it has been discontinued (or at least I can’t find it anywhere). It was very gentle and non stripping- no sulfates. Lately it’s been Giovanni 50/50.

To detangle:  I love Suave Humecant and Suave vanilla. I comb it through in sections with a wide tooth shower comb

Conditioners: I use Herbal Essence Hello Hydration to smooth in sections with a paddle brush in the shower and rarely rinse it out. For deep treatments I love the Aubry Organics Honey Suckle Rose and Carol’s Daughter Tui hair smoothie together.

Leave ins/stylers: I use any combo of the following: raw shea butter (white or yellow. I don’t discriminate), natural oils (extra virgin coconut oil, Vatika oil, grapeseed, olive, almond, avocado. It’s all usually in my house), aloe gel, cantu leave in, and/or fantasia ic hair gel.

I love all sorts of styles! I do every little thing I can imagine to my hair! I stay changing my hairstyle. Most frequently it’s braid outs, or wash and go’s I guess. I also braid it in different styles and pin it up different ways. I always see styles I like a try to replicate them.

What are your natural hair goals?

Honestly just to maintain the health of my hair. I just want to continue to learn more about natural hair care, and continue to work toward my perfect regimen. I just hope to inspire other women to embrace their natural diva and rock their natural hair with great confidence. I also hope to be equipped with enough knowledge about proper hair care to be able to assist anyone with questions.

How do you keep your hair intact overnight?

I scrunch in and smooth on a bit of Herbal Essence Hydralicious Reconditioning conditioner, and/or a small amount of shea butter and oil. I sleep on a satin pillow case no matter what but a little over half of the time I also tie my hair back with a large satin scarf, leaving my hair loose underneath.

How do you maintain length?

I am sure to take great care of my ends by moisturizing every day and handling with care. I get trims as needed. Usually about 2-3 times a yr, if that. I also do single strand search-and-destroys and snip as I see jagged ends.

Name 1 reason you went natural and why you love being natural.

Hmmm…just one? That’s a tuffy. I went natural because relaxers were killing my hair and I knew natural hair offered more variety. I went natural for the same reasons I tell anyone I know to stay natural when they are thinking of going back to perming.

Like I told my cousin (via facebook lol) about a month ago when she almost resorted to perming

(an excerpt. I went on and on…lol)

Me: “Don’t taint the mane, Lioness! Do NOT resort to a perm. You have waaaaay to much good energy from the past year trapped in your super charged, super energized, electric coils! Electricity and energy function on wave patterns and coils only. The more curly/coiled your hair (or any other fiber for that matter) the more energy it has. Straight hair has little to no energy at all. Lifeless if you will, even if it is “healthy.” You’ve worked too hard over the past yr to store up good energy in your hair! Don’t become another beautiful girl walking around with a head full of lifeless hair! Beauty and lifelessness do not belong together. They’d void each other out. Stay on the wild side. Let your hair stand on your head trying to reach the heavens! And flow every which way she chooses! Let her be free to curl or be flat ironed if she chooses. not permed! Let her speak volumes to the world before you even have to utter a word!”

Natural hair is just much more fun and commands a lot of attention. People know it takes a certain level of confidence to embrace your natural self. And I love this quote by by Naima Ozier for

“First thing you must remember is that God (or The Universe, or whatever you believe in) didn’t make any mistake while creating the beauty that is you. Every kink and curl was placed and arranged on your head without fault so that you could rock it to its fullest potential. 

Secondly, know that you will get attention for that kinky, coily, curly crown that sits on top of you, queen. Some will ask questions, and even ask for advice. Some give off negative vibes. Keep that smile bright, either way, and always turn any energy into positive energy. And remember, they can throw rocks at the throne, but they will never hit the queen! WORK!”

Good luck on your journey naturals. Continue to walk the streets like the diva you are. Serve!

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