R: 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?
R: 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?
R: 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?
R: 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?
R: 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?
R: 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?
R: 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?
R: 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?
R: 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 youtube.com/reshon30/.