Intro­duce your­self.
I live in Colum­bus GA, but was born in Ft. Huachu­ca, AZ. I am rep­pin for all the nat­u­rals of GA lol. I am a stay-at-home mom to 3 beau­ti­ful chil­dren that are my pride and joys! I am also the wife to a won­der­ful and hard work­ing man who has stood beside my deci­sion to go nat­u­ral. I just got back into doing some mod­el­ing, but noth­ing major.

Why did you go nat­u­ral?
I made the deci­sion to go nat­u­ral a lit­tle over 4 years ago. I’d start­ed my fam­i­ly eat­ing organ­ic and liv­ing a “green” lifestyle before it had become the trendy thing to do. I was upset to learn about the things that we were eat­ing and just about every­thing we were doing, so I made a vow to change our ways of doing things and just become as healthy as we could be. It only made sense to stop apply­ing chem­i­cals to my hair as well. I also want­ed to teach my daugh­ter that her hair was beau­ti­ful and felt I couldn’t do that if I held on to straight strands. My kids are all nat­u­ral! I also thought nat­u­ral hair was amaz­ing­ly beau­ti­ful and had been think­ing about it for a long time, just nev­er thought I could do it, lol.

How did you tran­si­tion into nat­u­ral hair?
I was Queen of relax­ers and would get one every time I saw a wave! I had no idea just how much I would come to adore my waves, curls and kinks!! My only regret is not going nat­u­ral soon­er. I TRIED to tran­si­tion, but that did not last long. Two days to be exact! I went to a braid shop and ask for micros, but end­ed up agree­ing on twists, but the braider gave me micros any­way. Hours lat­er, I had a mas­sive amount of hair on my head and I went home say­ing I would leave them in until I had enough new growth to cut the relax­er off. I had got­ten a relax­er pri­or to the braids so I real­ly didn’t have any­thing to work with at that point.

For two days I had a headache, my edges were pulled so tight I had to take some­thing for it and when that failed, I just told my hus­band and aunt to help me get them out!! It seemed to take forever and a day to do it and towards the end, my hus­band said to me “Why don’t you just cut it off? You want to go nat­u­ral any­way.” So I let him get the clip­pers and I stood in our bath­room in front of the mir­ror and let him give me my “big chop”! It was cer­tain­ly a big chop because after­wards I only had 1/2 an inch of hair! I was in shock (lol), but what oth­er nat­u­rals have said was true for me also; I real­ly did feel “free”.

I have not looked back or missed my relaxed days. Going nat­u­ral for me was a per­son­al deci­sion, but I did won­der how oth­ers would view me and my hair. In the begin­ning I could tell my moth­er didn’t under­stand and real­ly, some of my friends. They ask me “Why would you cut off all that pret­ty hair??” I just told them that I didn’t want the chem­i­cals any­more. My kids were even in shock too, but they told me I was always pret­ty (lol). As my hair grew, I think peo­ple start­ed to accept it more.

In what ways (if any) has going nat­u­ral affect­ed you?
For me, it made me feel unique. I felt dif­fer­ent and it made me feel good to know I didn’t look like every­body else. For once in my life I was being who God cre­at­ed me to be! It felt great to have oth­ers come up to me and tell me my hair was beau­ti­ful and ask ques­tions. I was approached by peo­ple of many dif­fer­ent races! I found out a lot of females want­ed to go nat­u­ral too, but didn’t know what to do or I would hear “My hair won’t look like yours!”. I told them that they didn’t know what their hair would look like until they let go and tried. Going nat­u­ral also made me look at my cloth­ing dif­fer­ent­ly, lol. I know that may sound strange, but it kin­da opened me up to dif­fer­ent styles.

How would you describe your hair?
I would describe my hair as super duper thick! I don’t real­ly know my “hair type” and hon­est­ly I don’t real­ly get into all of that because we are all dif­fer­ent and all have very dif­fer­ent tex­tures and I hap­pen to have a few. My hair is very wavy, coily, kinky and curly all at the same time! It has its own moods and I nev­er know from day to day how it is going to act! Some days she is cool, calm and col­lect­ed and oth­er days she is WILD, stub­born and crazy! I LOVE, LOVE big hair and I try to get mine to stand up and out as high as it can go. Some days I like my curls to show and some days I don’t care about curls. The ver­sa­til­i­ty is end­less!

What is your reg­i­men?
To be hon­est, I don’t know if I can say I tru­ly have a reg­i­men, but I have exper­i­ment­ed (“pro­duct junkie”) and have recent­ly nar­rowed it down to a few things I don’t think my hair can live with­out! I am a huge fan of good ole fash­ion Cas­tor Oil. I use it as a sealant and some­times it is the only thing I use after a co-wash. My hair is always super soft and shiny, BUT a lit­tle does go a long way so I have to use may­be half a fin­ger­tip per sec­tion when I am twist­ing.

I am also in love with a pro­duct called “Nat­ty But­ter” by a com­pa­ny called All Things O’ Nat­u­ral! The own­er is Dominique Goos­by Har­ris and she is awe­some!! I use the but­ter on my hair when it is damp, twist then seal with my cas­tor oil. I am try­ing out a Mud wash right now, but usu­al­ly I co-wash with Knot Today leave in con­di­tion­er by the Kinky Curly line. I also use their Curly Cus­tard or home made flaxseed gel for slick­ing my hair into puffs. Both enhance my waves nice­ly! To clar­i­fy my hair, I usu­al­ly use ACV from a spray bot­tle, mas­sage it in and leave on until I fin­ish show­er­ing then I rin­se out and fol­low with my co-wash.

What mis­takes have you made with your hair that you’ve learned from?
Oh my gosh there have been sooo many!! I can say my biggest mis­take was going to peo­ple just because they told me they knew about nat­u­ral hair! I end­ed up get­ting 3 major cuts that were sup­posed to be trims. That led to me not get­ting trims for a long time because I was afraid of “scis­sor hap­py” beau­ti­cians! I was recent­ly a final­ist in a Nat­u­ral Mod­el com­pe­ti­tion and it forced me to see a styl­ist for a chal­lenge and I got a trim. I lost inch­es, but my hair thanked me for it!!

What’s the best/most effec­tive thing you do for your hair?
Besides using all-nat­u­ral prod­ucts, the best thing I do for my hair is keep it twist­ed at night and cov­ered. I wear a sat­in scarf and a bon­net. If my hair is left loose (which I am not going to lie, some nights I am exhaust­ed from hav­ing a 10 mon­th old, 8 year old and 13 year old), I wake up with a tan­gled bird’s nest! So it is impor­tant for me to main­tain it so I keep down the sin­gle strand knots as well.

Is there a blog/webpage where we can find you?
I have a chan­nel on Youtube that I start­ed years ago after chop­ping off all my hair and i have pret­ty much doc­u­ment­ed my expe­ri­ences. You can see where i start­ed off and where i am now! I want­ed to help oth­ers in the way oth­ers helped me. It is hard some­times when you don’t have the encour­age­ment or sup­port. You can find me at

Black Girl With Long Hair

Leila Noel­lis­te, founder of Black Girl with Long Hair (April 2008). Social media, pop cul­ture and black beau­ty enthu­si­ast. bell hooks’ hair twin…

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38 Comments on "Reshonda // Natural Hair Style Icon"

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Just want­ed to say that I love that your hus­band was so sup­port­ive of your tran­si­tion and that he was instru­men­tal in your improm­tu deci­sion to do the BC. That speaks vol­umes to me and is oh so roman­ti­co. Tell him that I am so ultra proud of him.
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ah! your hair is absolute­ly beau­ti­ful.
i am cur­rent­ly 3 months into tran­si­tion­ing, &although this isn’t your area of exper­tise ;), do you have any pro­duct sug­ges­tions for slick­ing down &tam­ing hair edges?


Hey Jalene! Thank you so much :)! Con­grats on your tran­si­tion and for my edges i use either Kinky Curly Cus­tard or Sat­in Roots which is sim­i­lar. You can also go the cheap­er route and make some easy flaxseed gel which i find defines my curls amaz­ing­ly well! I just nev­er have the time to make it lol. You can find many video tuto­ri­als on YouTube for mak­ing it. And i use a tooth­brush, so get one that you use just for the lit­tle baby hairs :). Hope that helps some! God Bless

lillian mae

Absolute­ly beau­ti­ful!
Though I have stuck with tran­si­tion­ing for the last 21 months, I com­mend all who take the plunge and do the BC!
Like you, I do not use sham­poo. Once a mon­th I cleanse my strands and scalp with Aztec Indi­an Clay, and I too use ACV on my scalp dur­ing the oth­er weeks dur­ing the mon­th!

Great inspi­ra­tion for your daugh­ters, as well as oth­er nat­u­ral wom­en.


Thank you so much Lil­lian Mae! You have to do it when you are ready. Had i not had the bad expe­ri­ence with the micros, i may have tran­si­tioned, but i real­ly feel all things hap­pen for a rea­son :). I have nev­er tried the Aztec Indi­an Clay in my hair. I did buy this clay cleanser though, but i have not used it much. I appre­ci­ate the awe­some com­pli­ment, thank you :)


Nice Styles and You Look like michelle Obhama woooo…X


Thank you and thanks lol, that is the first time i have been told that!


Your hair is beautiful…Why do you co-wash opposed to sim­ply wash­ing your hair? What do you con­sid­er the ben­e­fits?

Hi Iris­es­till! Well, when i first went nat­u­ral, i was sham­poo­ing my hair and because it was so short i real­ly didn’t notice a dif­fer­ence until it start­ed to grow out and get longer. I noticed that the sham­poo was mak­ing it feel dry, brit­tle and sim­i­lar to a bril­lo pad (for real!!). I ask a few of my nat­u­ral YouTube friends what i should do and they all told me to try co-wash­ing. I couldn’t under­stand how elim­i­nat­ing sham­poo would help at all and in my opin­ion it didn’t sound clean (lol). But i tried it and my hair… Read more »
Ms. D

You and your hair are gor­geous!!! Such an inspi­ra­tion!!!


I appre­ci­ate that Ms. D, thank you so much :)


Your hair is love­ly!


I real­ly appre­ci­ate that , thank you!


Beau­ti­ful lady and beau­ti­ful hair !! I like the first and third pic­tures from the gallery.


Thank you so very much :)!!

Dominique Harris

ReShon­da you look absolute­ly (O)mazing, as usu­al. Thank you so much for your sup­port and for shar­ing with us your sto­ry. You ROCK!!!


Thank you soooo much Dominique!!!! I appre­ci­ate your sup­port as well my friend :)!

Amanda Rambo

Reshon­da is beau­ti­ful, and I was hop­ing she win the “America’s Next Nat­u­ral Mod­el” con­test on I think she is a won­der­ful per­son with fierce hair.


Thank you so much Aman­da!!! I real­ly appre­ci­ate that a lot! It was hard work and amaz­ing com­pe­ti­tion and i feel blessed to have been a final­ist. The site had many issues which caused some major prob­lems with the votes so they decid­ed to choose a win­ner them­selves. It is ok, i am blessed for the expo­sure :). When it is MY time, i know God will lead me! God Bless !!



You have to find what works for you, and being African has nothong to do with it.You just need a good non strip­ping sham­pooo or some peo­ple just wash with reg­u­lar conditioner,a leave in and some oils,and pro­tec­tive styles(braids,twists,buns)until you get the hang of it.go on youtube-rus­tic beauty,Sera-are too African ladies with beau­ti­ful hair.Also
kimmaytube,Naptural 85 and so many oth­ers on youtube.Good luck.


Awe­some advice Lindy!!!! I loved those wom­en on Youtube and they are all a part of who i am today! It is because of the nat­u­ral wom­en of Youtube that i didn’t give up! Trust me, it has noth­ing to do with being African, mixed race, black or what­ev­er :). Our hair comes in as many tex­tures as there are col­ors in a cray­on box. Think out­side the box :)


i love to see black peo­ple embrac­ing envi­ron­men­tal and health issues…

and, her hair is great.


I appre­ci­ate you Mer­ry! I want­ed every­one to know that nat­u­ral hair for me was not a trend, but a reflec­tion of who i tru­ly am as a per­son. :)


You are fierce!!


Why thank you Anas­tasia :)! Bless­ings to you sis!


Love­ly hair,but what can an African like me use? My hair is coarse and does­nt grow out like the ones i see on this site. And clear­ly there are some sis­ters here who a pro­duct of mixed races. Help!

You don’t have to have a cer­tain hair type to grow your hair long :). Just take care of it, con­di­tion it, pro­tect it when you are sleep­ing, pay it atten­tion (trims when need­ed, no to low heat styling…), do what makes your hair feel and look its best. I am not of a mixed race at all and even some that are, our tex­tures range from wavy, curly , coily and kinky! I have seen peo­ple of mixed races that had the kinki­est hair :). All in all, every hair tex­ture should be appre­ci­at­ed and looked at as being… Read more »

And if you run search­es on this site for frag­ile hair, or indi­vid­u­al african coun­tries, you might find more of the kind of info you’re after.

why are you think­ing that you have to be mixed race to have long, healthy hair? I’m african too and I had hair longer than hers by the time I was 9! And this was while I was liv­ing in africa! Don’t hold on to that lie that your hair is some­what infe­ri­or because it’s not a cer­tain tex­ture or because you are from africa. You are just devalu­ing your­self and where you are from. It takes know­ing what works for your hair and learn­ing how to take care of it. EVERYONE that wants to grow long hair has to… Read more »
I do agree with you df, it does take lnow­ing what will work for YOU. Long hair to me is beau­ti­ful, but i don’t wor­ry about length, healthy hair is beau­ti­ful :). My hair was down my back near my rear when i was 5 and up until i was 13. At the age of 13 i want­ed to be like my peers and talked my mom into a relax­er (big mis­take!). Ny hair was still beau­ti­ful, but noth­ing com­pares to that nat­u­ral lol! I think when you focus on what you are doing right/wrong , your hair will grow.… Read more »
Lucumi Lady

Thanx for your sto­ry Reshon­da. Glad to know my young sis­ters (read daugh­ters) aren’t the only nat­u­rals around.


Very wel­come, it was my plea­sure to share it!! I real­ly love nat­u­ral hair and want to tell every­one i can about it :). For so long it has been looked at neg­a­tive­ly and i want peo­ple to see just how beau­ti­ful it real­ly is! Our hair can do any­thing!!


Gor­geous Hair!!!!!


Thank you African­Beau­ty :)

Anne Hill

I love you hair


Thanks so much!!

Annie L.

Gor­geous hair and styles!


Hi Annie! Thanks so much :). Bless­ings!