*Prepared for BGLH by Meosha Tall of 1MeNaturally
B: Heyyyyyy! I’m Brittany from Amityville, New York, residing between Amityville and Brooklyn depending on the day and what’s going on :)
Why did you make the decision to go natural?
B: The summer of 2006 I decided that when I started college I no longer wanted to get relaxers anymore because I didn’t need to, sort of a rites of passage decision. I was getting them once every 3–6 months, so why bother right? I started letting my relaxer grow out and would trim and cut more and more off every few weeks. During the second semester of my freshman year of undergrad, March 2007, I remember being in my best friend’s dorm room and getting frustrated with my hair and life in general and ended up cutting off the remains of my relaxed ends, just like that.
Of course I went to class the next morning with a hood over my head thinking, what the heck did I just do to my hair? But once it’s gone, what can I say. It’s gone and it’s been nothing but joy and peace ever since. I went through the typical “finding myself” phase in college and during that time I was uncomfortable with having an inch of hair on my head and fell in love with sew-ins instead. I ended up always straightening any of my natural hair that was left out of the weave, which in turn ended with the entire crown of my hair and edges (front, back, and sides) severely heat damaged. It’s actually hilarious to look at pictures of my hair during that time, now. I re-big chopped my hair in January of 2010 and it has been growing like a weed ever since. What a fairytale ending :)
How would you describe your texture?
B: My hair is all over the place. The front of my hair is a good 3C/4A mix, while the rest of my hair is a mix between 4A/4B. The front of my hair’s curl pattern has always had looser, wavy curls and the rest of my hair has tight, spirally looking curls. Nonetheless, I love and embrace each curl all the same, YAY!
Describe your styling regimen over the course of the month.
B: Over the course of any given month my styling regimen varies. I am a fan of protective styles so over one month I may crochet bohemian looking curls in or my most recent favorite style, Marley braids. During a regular month I will go through my washing/conditioning cycle and should I choose to blow dry my hair before styling, I keep my hair in sections and apply Jane Carter Solution Hair Nourishing Cream and virgin coconut oil from Trader Joe’s or wherever, to protect my hair from heat and seal in its moisture. I then two strand twist my hair or Bantu knot it up and put a bonnet on. In the morning, depending on my mood, I’ll either leave the twists in or wear the Bantu knots out. Usually I leave the twists in and pin them up in some quick style because I can get a little lazy :)
What does wash day look like for you?
B: My wash days are few and far between (about every 2–3 months) because my hair doesn’t require much washing. My aunt tells me not to tell people that I don’t wash my hair a lot, but oh well, the secret is out :) I start off by wetting my hair, then sectioning it in 6–8 sections. I apply Jane Carter Solution Moisture Nourishing Shampoo and after rinsing apply Giovanni Tea Tree Triple Treat Invigorating Conditioner (that was a mouthful) and use a Denman brush to detangle each section.
Describe your favorite go-to hairstyle for days when you don’t have a lot of time to style.
B: I work and am in graduate school, so most days I don’t have time for a real spiffy style. My go to hairstyle is up in this messy “ponytail” situation that I typically do. I put Shea Moisture Curl & Style Milk throughout my hair just to re-moisturize it (and it smells delicious as an added bonus!) I take a loose headband and bring my hair up with the band and put about 6 bobby pins to hold the band in place and fluff out my hair so it’s big and poofy, just like I like it. Takes between 5–7 minutes to do and it’s easy on my edges, which are sensitive when they want to be. I like wearing my hair like this because it allows me to have a clean, professional look while at work during the day, but still a more relaxed look while I’m riding the subway or sitting in class that same evening. Oh, and this style is great when I finish my day at the gym because my hair is out of my face already. PERFECT!
How do you combat shrinkage?
B: I don’t mind shrinkage. It is what it is. I typically don’t blow dry my hair after washing/conditioning. I either braid it, two strand twist it or flexi-rod set it, and over the course of a few days my hair ends up stretching itself out anyway. Take that, shrinkage.
What are some of your problem areas (if any) that require special care and attention?
B: My problem area is the back row of my hair mainly because it is extremely sensitive to heat. The rest of my hair hardly ever has an issue bouncing back after blow drying/straightening, which I only do about 2–3 times a year, if that. However, the back row is easily upset by even the slightest bit of heat, or the material of my coat, scarf or something rubbing against it.
What are 2 do’s for your texture?
B: DO your research. Know how to take care of YOUR hair and do what works for you because everyone’s hair is different! Read the ingredients of what you’re putting in your hair. A natural hair lifestyle is a commitment and I believe that the more you know going into making the decision to become natural, the more fulfilling your natural hair journey will be. DO try to avoid manipulating your hair too often. My hair responds much better when I leave it alone as opposed to playing in it all the time. Protective, lasting styles are awesome!
What are 2 don’ts for your texture?
B: DO NOT try to detangle, style or manipulate your hair when it’s dry! I think this goes for all textures. You’ll regret it when you have a brush or comb full of unnecessary hair lying there. Unless that’s something you like :). DO NOT forget to keep your hair moisturized, always. Your hair will thank you, for sure.
Is there a blog/webpage where we can find you?
B: Oh sure, follow me on Instagram: theN0toriousBCS :)