Living No Lye - Courtney (curlsandcouture)
Q: What were your reasons for going natural?
A: Going natural was almost an “accident”. I didn’t wake up one day and decide that I wanted to go natural, although in college I had always wanted to. The transition began after colored my hair. I was scared the bleach and relaxer would cause my hair to break and I wanted to see how long I could go without relaxing it. Before I knew it, I was six months in and realized there was no need for me to relax my hair. I relaxer had grown almost half way out and that’s when I decided I would no longer relax my hair. My hair had always been long and thick even with a relaxer but I knew all the chemicals were unhealthy not only for my hair but my body as well. That was a primary factor in my decision.
Q: How did you transition (or did you BC)?
A: I transitioned using wigs and weaves. The first few months of my transition were fairly easy, I was just getting blowouts regularly. I had a sew in installed for my birthday for a few months and immediately after I made the conscious decision to never relax my hair again.
Q: What emotional struggles, if any, have you faced since going natural?
A: My emotional struggles were focused around acceptance. I was not sure if I would like or accept my natural texture. I had a relaxer ever since I was 10 years old and could barely remember what my natural curl pattern looked like. Once I accepted that being natural does not have a certain look, I was content with my decision. Regardless of if I wore my hair curly or straight- my hair did not NEED a relaxer nor was it healthy for my hair. Once I cleared that hurdle for myself, I had to get over the criticism from my family. My mom and aunt would tell me I wouldn’t like it, that natural hair didn’t reflect my personality and that I will probably end up relaxing it before I fully transition. Funny thing is now my mom is natural and my aunt is asking for advice.
Q: What's your go-to style?
A: My go to style is definitely a two strand twist out. I remember when I first started my journey twisting my hair took me almost two hours. I twist my hair so often now it takes me no time. Although, I have noticed as my hair has gotten longer and thicker it does take a little longer. I normally just do 16-20 two strand twists. They are so quick and easy to do and the results are always great even if my hair isn’t completely dry. The second day hair is even better!
Q: What’s your favorite product and why?
A: My favorite product is actually the very first product I ever tried; Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie. Although, I typically mix it with other products to achieve whatever look I am going for, it is also the only product I can use in my hair alone. It is moisturizing, gives my hair some definition and smells amazing! I literally use it for every single style.
Q:What piece of advice would you share with someone who is just starting out?
A: Don’t let anyone deter you. There is not right or wrong reason to go natural nor is there a standard look for being natural. Natural hair has so much versatility and that is the beauty of it. Your hair is your crown and you should wear it proudly. Seek advice and encouragement. It is definitely a journey but well worth it in the end.
Q: How can our readers follow you on your journey?
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By Sumetra Reed