Friday, August 12, 2011

Meet Natural Beauty: LaQuisha

Why Did I Decide to Go Natural?
After returning from a trip in Switzerland I cut my own perm off being eager to see my own natural hair. Some of my natural friends encouraged me to "just do it" and embrace it. I will always appreciate them for that.

How Long Have I Been Natural?
I just celebrated my one year anniversary! I did my own Big Chop on August 3, 2010.

Did I Do A Big Chop or Transition?
I did a combination of both. While my hair was in a protective style (corn rows) underneath a weave, it grew out for about 3-4 months before I finally got the courage to cut off my perm. I cut off my own perm then got it shaped up at the hair dressers. My very first style was comb twists. 

What Has Been My Greatest Struggle Since Becoming Natural?
Maintenance. I sometimes worry if my hair is healthy and growing as it should. While it is great that I do not go to the hair dresser every two weeks anymore, now I don't have that professional eye on my strands. Also, I have to watch YouTubers for every little thing I do because of my lack of knowledge on natural hair. I am learning quickly, but of course I am not a professional. 

What Are the three Most Important Steps in My Routine?
1. Co-Wash
2. Condition & Moisturize
3. Leave it alone!

My current hair routine is to co-wash at least once a week and twist it while it is wet. I have only washed my hair with shampoo twice since going natural in 2010  long storyI love the look of my hair "curly" after twisting it. I like it even more a few days afterwards when the twist out turns into an afro look. It’s also important to moisturize your hair using conditioners, cremes, and oils. Our hair growth depends on it! Finally, because I love my hair so much, it's hard to resist the urge to want to pluck and play in it all day. It is good to leave it alone. Let it grow without constant manipulation. Also, at night, I either use a silk bonnet or a scarf to wrap my hair.

What is One of My Favorite Products and Why?
Some of my current favorite products and the ones that I currently use regularly are: 
Herbal Essences Hello Hydration Conditioner (co-washing) 
Sofn'Free Gro Healthy Milk Protein & Olive Oil Leave-In Treatment (leave in conditioning) 
Sofn'Free Gro Healthy Milk Protein & Olive Oil Strengthening Creme (daily maintenance and styling) 
Olive Oil mixed with water (daily maintenance and styling)
My favorite is the Herbal Essences Hello Hydration Conditioner. It smells like a sea of flowers and truly detangles my tightly coiled, 4c hair. It is also inexpensive and easy to find in stores. 

Did I Have the Support of My Family and Friends?

I asked my husband many times what he would think of my look with natural hair. My husband supports every thing that I do and was very supportive of this. When he came home to me standing over the sink with only 20% of my hair left, he was even more thrilled. I later posted photos on Facebook to find that my friends were very supportive as well. I was thrilled, but to be honest it did not matter--I made the decision for me, not them. To be honest, I decided to go natural after being tired of trying to make it to the hair dressers for a perm (I definitely was not putting a perm in my own head!). I am also excited about recently finding an online natural hair community, Baltimore's Natural Hair Club, which will provide me with more support. I will be attending my first meet up before this month ends at the Super-Spectacular Product Swap.

What Would Be My Advice to Someone Who is Thinking About Going Natural?
1. Set a hair goal and know how to achieve it. 
My hair goal is to grow an afro as large as Esperanza Spalding's afro. In order to achieve this goal, I do not use heat often, finger comb my delicate hair while it is wet and drink water. 

2. Wear your favorite style frequently for increased self-esteem. 
My favorite go-to style is my two-strand twist out. I achieve this by washing or co-washing my hair then using a leave-in conditioner. I then spray and olive oil and water mixture on my hair, finger comb and then use moisturizing creme to twist the hair. I stretch the twist by pinning them to the opposite side of my head

3. You Grow Gurl!

You may not realize it, but you stop onlookers in their tracks! We can rock exotic, awesome accessories ( that other hair types may not even figure out how to put on. I get so much attention when I go out with my natural hair and I love it! We are also feel free and unique, with a hint of creativity because of what we learn about ourselves and our hair simultaneously when trying out new styles. We can embrace our versatility  ( in ways others can't understand. I am a part of, not a verbally spoken community, but a visually spoken community and I intend to "grow" with and within it!


Thank you for taking the time to comment. Blessings!


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