*Prepared for BGLH by Meosha Tall of 1MeNaturally
Laila was featured on December 06, 2010 when she was 17 months into her transition to natural hair. I caught up with her to get an update on her regimen and find out how life is treating her now that she’s au naturale.
L: My name is Laila and I’m from across the pond…London to be exact :) I’m currently a Public Relations and Business Law Student. I’m also an entertainment contributor for a small urban magazine and I dibble dabble in some freelance PR, events and communications.
When and how did you transition into natural hair?
L: I started transitioning 2 years ago and I only BC’d 3 months ago, so I took the long route. I wanted to master my hair in that time so I spent 99% of my transition styling and caring for my hair on a weekly basis. I kept all my hairstyles in line with my personal style and taste! I believe this is what kept me going for so long. I always felt like myself. I never felt uncomfortable with the way my hair looked.
How did you decide when it was time to complete your transition?
L: Being such an anal-retentive person, I set my BC date the day I decided to transition and I stuck to it. It was hard sometimes and ever so often temptation would come my way, but I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t let myself down. In August of 2009 I said I would BC on July 7th 2011 and that’s what I did…and it made me really happy lol
Any major changes you’ve noticed since cutting off your relaxed ends?
L: Since cutting my ends off I’ve noticed a definite difFerence in my texture(s). It’s not necessarily changing, but it’s more pronounced. I have a few different curl/coil sizes in different sections on my head and each section seems to be coming into its self. I’m not sure if that even makes sense lol
As for my personal experience towards being natural I can well and true say I’ve never been happier with my hair! I just love it! I feel like the definition of beautiful when I wear my hair out in all its glory. Having my hair in its natural state hasn’t hindered my personal style at all. While transitioning I had a lot of people telling me all I could do with natural hair was wear a puff, an afro or kinky twists. These are styles I like, but I love updos. I love my hair up and being natural just gives my styles that extra something.
How would you describe your hair?
L: I believe my hair to be kinky/curly with a combination of all the 4′s (a, b and c) My strands are medium to fine with high density. I think I have normal porosity, but I could be wrong.
What’s your current regimen?
L: I shampoo my hair weekly with Schwarzkopf Gliss Oil Nutritive Shampoo. I deep condition after every shampoo and it’s usually a combination of any conditioner I have with full fat natural yogurt, coconut milk, honey and any oil that’s close to hand. I moisturize and seal as needed with water and my whipped shea butter mix.
Tell us about your hair color?
L: Oh yes my colour :) I did it myself. I know your not meant to, but I was naughty. I used Dark and Lovely Color ‘Red Hot Rhythm’. I believe my weekly deep conditioning has really helped in moisture retention and keeping breakage at bay. If my hair is dehydrated (dry and extra frizzy) the coloured section gives it away, so it really forces me to stay on top of moisturizing. I haven’t experienced a texture change, but that part of my hair sheds the most and I’m pretty sure it’s colour related.
What mistakes have you made with your hair that you’ve learned from?
L: Fortunately for me, since my BC I’m yet to make any detrimental mistakes, but it’s only been 3 months. I’m hoping I can keep it that way for as long as possible. I’m sure my lengthy transition has helped, although the two are completely different, the basics of hair care are the same.
What’s the best/most effective thing you do for your hair?
L: It has to be protective/low maintenance styles hands down! 99% of the time my ends are tucked away. It’s also a personal preference to wear my hair up and away. That’s how I kept it even when I was relaxed, so it’s not really a chore for me.
Is there a blog/webpage where we can find you?
L: Oh yes…I’m a social network whore lol…but here are the basics.
My Tumblr: http://neffyfrofro.tumblr.com/
Do you have any parting advice for transitioners?
L: It’s your journey! Long or short it’s up to you, no one else…so enjoy it and at the end you’ll be greeted with greater joy.