*Prepared for BGLH by Meosha Tall of 1MeNaturally

Introduce yourself!
N:
My name is Nneka (everyone calls me Nika). I was born in Jamaica, and I am currently living in White Plains, NY hoping to make my move into the big city in a few years.

Why did you make the decision to go natural?
N:
One day I realized, hey you wear weaves every day, minute and second. Since my hair was always hidden, it was silly to waste money relaxing it every month. Who knew then, that I would end up on this fantastic journey. Natural hair has changed the way I see many things like beauty, health, and even patience. Before going natural, patience wasn’t my strong suit. However, between waiting on my hair to grow, or the long detangling and wash sessions, I have now found patience I didn’t know I had! Natural hair has even changed my own perceptions of beauty. I’m not proud to say my views were skewed. Now I see beauty in people that don’t fit the mass media’s perception of acceptable.

I’ve been natural close to three years now. One and a half of that time I wasted doing all the wrong things. How I wish I could have a sort of do over, knowing all the things I do now. In the beginning of my journey, I focused my whole world around natural hair. Take my word and don’t over do it, because I was surely obsessed! After a while the newness wears off and then you will figure out if you are on this journey for the long run. I’m glad to say I am!

How would you describe your texture?
N:
I am 4c all the way, but only recently proud of it! From very early on my hair was characterized as “difficult”. Throughout my childhood many combs, barrettes, and blow dryer attachments have broken in my strands. I rinsed my hair in vain twice, and never saw any sign of a color deposit. I’ve always had the “pleasure”, of having the Super strength perm used in my hair, most of my life. If you didn’t know they made super, then you may not feel my pain.

Describe your styling regimen over the course of the month.
N:
I make a conscience effort to keep my hair in a protective style at least six months out of the year. I do various styles of box braids, yarn braids, and twists. The other six months I do low manipulation styles Mon – Fri, then on the weekends I do a twist out of some kind.

What does wash day look like for you?
N:
I wish I knew in the beginning that more didn’t necessarily mean better. I used to spend all of Saturday mixing concoctions, detangling and twisting. Now a days I can be finished under two hours, sometimes even less. I wash my hair in plaits. I keep my hair in plaits while I do the whole routine. I install the plaits, pre poo (the plaits), wash (the plaits), rinse (the plaits), and then deep condition (the plaits). Next I rinse again, spray my I Love My Fro black tea leave in, and then use a creamy moisturizer to seal it in. Once a month I clarify my hair. When I do that, my hair is not in plaits. I clarify with my Nothing But shampoo, or a bentonite clay mix.

Regular Shampoo: Neutrogena Triple Moisture
Clarifying Shampoo: Nothing But Clarifying Shampoo
Deep Conditioner: I use all of them, just add some honey and olive oil to it.
Moisturizing Spray: Natural Roxx
Leave in Conditioner: I Love My Fro Black Tea or Giovanni Direct
Moisturizer: I Love My Fro Shea Butter Whip

Describe your favorite go-to hairstyle for days when you don’t have a lot of time to style.
N:
My go-to hairstyle is an updo. I just grab my Natural Roxx moisturizing spray, a hand full of hair pins, and then tuck, roll and pin.

How do you combat shrinkage?
N:
I don’t really try to combat shrinkage anymore; I embrace it. If I tried to combat it, I imagine that would be a never ending battle. At this stage of my journey I allow my hair to do what it wants.

What are some of your problem areas (if any) that require special care and attention?
N:
Right now I am paying close attention to my nape area, and edges. Neither of these areas retain much length. A while back I did a five month Jamaican Black Castor oil challenge, but had no success. Now I’m on to another possible solution.

What are 2 do’s for your texture?
N:
Do keep your hands out of your hair as much as you possibly can. Our hair type suffers when manipulated too often. Also know that conditioners of all kinds (deep, leave in, and rinse out) are your best friends.

What are 2 don’ts for your texture?
N:
Don’t go to sleep without protecting your hair. Also don’t be afraid to step out the box. You don’t have to follow every natural hair rule/tip. For more than a year I followed the “rule” of detangling my hair with conditioner, oil, and a wide tooth comb. Imagine my surprise when I realized (by accident), I lose less hair when I detangle my hair bone dry, with oils and just my fingers.

Is there a blog/webpage where we can find you?
N:
I can always be found at www.darkerthanbrown.com, where I document my personal hair journey/struggle.

Meosha

Just another lover of natural hair and expression.
- Style Icon Coordinator for BGLH

Leave a Reply

51 Comments on "Nneka // 4C Natural Hair Style Icon"

Notify of
avatar
Neisha

I love your blog. I hate my 4c hair, I have done all the wrong things in the past 3 years I went natural. so far I only have up to 6 inches and it makes me sad. I tried the braids all this time and I decided that I was going to embrace my hair and learn more about it. So thank you for sharing.
[imgcomment image[/img]

TRACY

I do believe that 4c hair can grow as long as possible, you just need to know how to take care of it.

Nnena

Love your hair routine! I am using similar process and am finally finding a routine I am getting more comfortable with.

cacey

i love nnekas hair. i don’t know what kind of problems she be having with it, but it sure looks great to me!

Ololly

I’m 4c and not yet proud, I am on the verge of texlaxing, i do not have the time to manage this hair, but i love it, and wish i could leave it out more often- protective styles get boring and itchy in this harsh west african climate. Feel free to encourage me.. 🙁

Michelle
I remember Super relaxer and crying, so much crying even when my hair was short, felt like my scalp was on FIRE!!! My scalp was really sensitive so it never stayed in long enough to ‘break down’ the strands and the hairdresser would always complain that I don’t have the patience to be beautiful – WOW!!! Then I apparently forgot what that was like in 2011 and started getting my hair texturised, on the bright side the hairdresser was only using regular BUT my hair did the same thing it did when it was relaxed – grow to neck-length and… Read more »
trackback

[…] that I was featured on the popular hair website Black Girl Long Hair (BGLH). You can check it out HERE. Please keep in mind I have changed my hair regimen dramatically since being […]

trackback

[…] Nneka!! First, sorry it took me a month to get this up lady!! Second, I saw your Natural Hair Style Icon story on BGLH a little while ago!!! Awesome!! You looked gorgeous! Third, I just checked out the recent […]

Tee

Hi my name is Wanda from newark Nj and my hair break off a lot in clogs. Alsoi can’t get my edges to grow but I have a good lenght of hair on my head but my biggest problem is breakage. Real bad I don’t know what to use for my hair. My hair is course and thick. Do u have any tips for me I keep braids in and kinky twist I want to wear my natural hair but it look bad any suggestion

Efa

Omg ur close to me!!!! Montclair nj! But do you deep condition? And use a leave in? My best friend has dense defined 4c hair and she loves Aussie moist and herbal essence hello hydration . She also uses the cantu naturals hair lotion it’s really good and coconut oil and Shea butter to seal also check out Giovanni’s direct leave in its really good!!!! Hope this helps

Chic Noir

Gorgeous thick healthy hair.

Mrs.Martin

Love, love, love…your hair! Its so big and cushiony : )

Mocha

Big up Jamaica…lol….ur hair is beautiful

Sheree

big ups nneka! i follow ur blog cos we’re hair twins and becos ur blog is #thetruth 🙂 i’m really happy to see you featured on bglh you’re hair inspiring 😀

Caramelcurls

Gorgeous, lush hair–love it!

Creatividual

Yay Nneka! Great feature. 😀

merry

pretty.

Kanin

Pretty, thick head of hair! I’ve broken a comb or two and sent a dryer comb attachment flying to the floor. It just “be’s that way sometimes.” Lol.

willow

I love seeing fellow 4C peeps being featured! gorgeous hair

Keshia

Great hair!! I’m happy to see more diversity on the site

shelikes

I am skinny like you and have had just as much criticism about my size as about my thick, nappy, hair. Took forever for me to figure out how to love both. Love the example you set.

eve-audrey

wow!

Marcia

Beautiful hair and lady!!

anastasia

Nneka,so happy you’ve been chosen as a style icon! I adore your blog, your honesty, and I think you and your hair are absolutely gorgeous!

Aly

Another 4C girl here too! I definitely laughed when I read about your hair breaking all those tools and clips. Many blowdryer combs and regular combs have fallen victim to my hair as well!

Yayer
I have horrible memories of people saying ‘your hair is too tough’ as they dragged those smaller toothed combs through my hair and the teeth would relent and snap off. I also had those circular clips with the teeth on them and whenever I would go to school with them in, they would strain under the pressure and pop open like a fat man loosening his belt and all of my hair would come undone. They used to end up with broken teeth too. Banana clips could not hold my hair either and my Wahl blowdryer comb attachment is just… Read more »
sonia

Some truly flattering updos on this icon.

Jacky

Lovely head of hair

Monisola
Thank the lord for a true 4c on this site! I swear, it can be down right discouraging to see people who say they have been natural for less time than me but with longer hair/hair that hangs more. It has caused me a lot of stress. I keep thinking I am doing something wrong/have weak/bad hair. But this woman has lovely hair and has been natural for about the same time as me and her hair is about the same length. You know BGLH, i think this site was started to showcase images of natural sisters so all natural… Read more »
EG

Urbanbushbabes (Cipriana), blackizbeautiful, Sera2544 are just a few beautiful type 4 sisters who come to mind. The natural hair journey is not always easy, but it will remain hard if you don’t learn to enjoy it every step of the way. Hang in there, you are not alone.

Yayer
Monisola, you need to balance your natural hair viewing and slowly tip the scale to looking at more people who share your hair type. Watching 4as and 3cs will not help you with ideas for your own hair and it sounds like you are placing unrealistic expectations on your hair too. No one should be suffering stress over comparing their hair to someone else’s. I also think I started to understand my hair much more by trying to solve my problems I.e dryness= oil rinsing, styling = learning to do pin ups and flat twists. While Anne’s comment was a… Read more »
anastasia

+100

You will get there Monisola, you will!!! =)

Anne

It is no one else’s job to make you feel better about yourself. Stop waiting for people to cater to you and cater to yourself.

Venus

AMEN!! +1,000! I enjoy seeing ALL types of hair types including those that aren’t like mine… Ive only seen someone w my hair type maybe twice in the almost 3 years I’ve been natural. The fact that it causes you stress I think is an indication of a much deeper issue. Stop comparing yourself to others and find beauty within yourself and it won’t matter how many 4c’s you see. It’s starts from the inside. Not hair blogs

A. Jane

Her hair is absolutely gorgeous and her SKIN!!! Her skin looks smooth enough to swim in! What do you use on it?

Yayer

Yay a 4C – lovely hair, more please!

Penelope

Your blog is one of my bookmarked pages! I check it every day along with BGLH 😛

herlucidsKy

What a head full of beautiful hair. It looks so lush and full of life.

Steppa

Lovely hair, but more importantly, what do you use on your skin, face and body. It is gorgeous and glowy!

JENNID

I’ve been following her blog lately. What a surprise to see her featured here! Lol at her tip to just add honey and olive oil to all conditioners. I discovered that like 5 years ago and went nuts. Its true any conditioner can be made better with those two ingredients.

Ballerina Girl

Stunning hair! It’s so good to see a 4c through and through featured on this page.
I’m still transitioning and have about 4inches of natural hair and 4 inches of Brazilian blow dry at the ends of my hair.
I cant believe how thick and spongy and awesome my natural hair is! I love it! I can’t wait till mine gets longer.
Thanks for the pictures, they are inspirational, I gonna try a few of those styles soon.

Tia

I discoverd her blog a few weeks ago and I love it. I’m also in awe with her hair.

Ashley

Love the blog Darker than Brown. Glad to see Nneka featured on BGLH!

Anne

Nneka is so pretty with gorgeous hair. I need a tutorial on how she did pic #13. I am style challenged, but really into updos at the moment.

DreamGirl

Woooohoooo my hair twin is being featured. Girl I love your hair,its fierce,love the blog too-very honest. Keep up the good work,quick question how do you get your hair shiny?

Purpleone

Thanks Nneka for being a hair icon and for being honest. It’s nice when people have just always loved but I had similar experiences with you (being blamed for destroying attachments and combs).

My baby sister has 4c hair and I’m trying to show her how wonderful her natural hair is, but my mom keeps threatening to relax it. 🙁

CherishBomb

That’s what my parents (mostly my dad) did with my younger sisters. now their hair is breaking, particularly my youngest sister, all because they didn’t want to, nor knew how to deal with their thick, long hair and trust the stylists blindly.

StarNonymous

Gorgeous hair, gorgeous skin, gorgeous girl! It’s nice to see more coarse curlies being featured.

Beth

I agree! It’s very encouraging. Although it appears to me that her hair is fine, not coarse…with tight curls? Someone correct me if I’m wrong. Only reason I’m saying this is because I swear I have the same density and my strands look similar, except I don’t have the same curl pattern. Anyway, I love her updos! They’re so elegant.

anastasia

Amen!

cb

+1
I tried getting to your blog, but having difficulties, are you changing the outlook of it? or the webpage itself?

wpDiscuz