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Introduce yourself!
J:
Hello! My name is Joy and I live in Jamaica.

Why did you make the decision to go natural?
J:
I have been natural for 3 years and almost six months. I decided to grow my relaxer out because I got tired of having to struggle with trying to keep my hair looking healthy. I coped with split ends by getting a haircut every 6 months or so. I would just have my stylist cut off as much of my frayed ends as possible. Things really started to go downhill after I got permanent color and highlights in 2005. It was evident with the dryness and the breakage that my hair needed a break, but every three months I would religiously go into the salon with almost two inches of gorgeous, springy, healthy new growth and get that relaxer. My last relaxer however was in early 2009 and by March of that same year I was ready to take the plunge. I cut my hair myself, right down to about half an inch and got it braided the next day. The braids only lasted me two months and my TWA made its glorious debut shortly after. I’ve never looked back since!

How would you describe your texture?
J:
My texture (from what I’ve read) seems to predominantly be 4a with a little bit of 3c in the back and on the sides. My strands are very fine but densely packed so I have a LOT of hair. My hair is prone to frizz and my strands tend to curl up into themselves which makes knots and shrinkage commonplace, so detangling for me can be a challenge.

Describe your styling regimen over the course of the month.
J:
My styling regimen is ever evolving. As a new natural I would shampoo every seven days or so, but that was when I had shorter hair. Now that my hair has grown out my detangling sessions can be brutal, so I now only wash when my scalp starts to itch! Yes. Please don’t judge me. Lol. I wear protective styles quite often, something I started doing even before I knew what protective styling was. This past month I wore box plaits for about three weeks during which I made sure to moisturize with water, add my leave-in conditioner, and seal with an oil every three days or so. My staple products include Kinky Curly Knot Today Leave-In Conditioner, Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soap, Tresemme Naturals Conditioner and Low Sulphate Shampoo, extra virgin olive oil, extra virgin coconut oil, castor oil, shea butter (I particularly love and use the Hair Butter by Kumea’s Hair Perspective).

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What does wash day look like for you?
J:
Wow! Wash day. So I start off by detangling with water and coconut oil and put my hair in giant twists. I drench my hair with more coconut oil and leave it on (covering with a plastic cap) overnight as a pre shampoo treatment. The following day I wash (leaving giant twists in) using Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soap or watered down shampoo (Tresemme Naturals Low Sulphate Shampoo) or Elucence Moisture Benefits Shampoo, which is currently my favorite. I condition with any conditioner on hand, which is most often Tresemme Naturals Conditioner. I then do my deep conditioning (for me this is a staple part of my regimen). I alternate between Giovanni’s Nutrafix Hair Reconstructor and Curl Junkie’s Curl Rehab for a good balance of protein and moisture. Castor oil or EVOO mixed in with conditioner is another favorite for deep conditioning. I follow up with my leave-in conditioner, Kinky Curly Knot Today, seal with shea butter and an oil, and style for the next couple of weeks.

Describe your favorite go-to hairstyle for days when you don’t have a lot of time to style.
J:
For those days when styling has to be quick, I’ll do some kind of roll and tuck style, especially for work. For more laid back and casual occasions my go to style is an afro (of course!). What’s quicker than shaking out the fro? Most often I already have my hair in twists, so I just do a quick cute updo or just wear them as they are.

How do you combat shrinkage?
J:
Ha! I don’t try to combat shrinkage. I’d drive myself crazy. I’ve found lately though that keeping my hair stretched helps with detangling, so I’ll stretch my hair (by bunning at night) for that purpose only. For certain styles, like loose two strand twists or plaits, I’ll use a little heat, but for the most part I’m ok with shrinkage.

What are some of your problem areas (if any) that require special care and attention?
J:
As I mentioned earlier my hair SHRINKS, shrinks to about half its length and that means knots, knots and more knots. I try to be extra patient with my hair, (that means saying lots of ‘woosahs’ during my detangling sessions), but I’ve found that detangling with coconut oil and water before shampooing makes a huge difference and cuts down on how long the detangling process takes.

What are 2 do’s for your texture?
J:
Detangling before shampooing and… did I mention detangling before shampooing? Listen, I can’t tell you how much my life has changed after figuring out shampoo mats my hair. If I have knots before I wash you can bet those knots are going to be more stubborn after shampooing. Even with tons of conditioner on my hair it still takes me hours to detangle, so I make it a point to attack those knots BEFORE I apply shampoo. Also, applying a leave-in conditioner and sealing in moisture makes my hair feel divine!

What are 2 don’ts for your texture?
J:
Two don’ts for me are excessive heat and manipulating my hair while it is dry. I’ve found that my ends get really rough and brittle whenever I use heat, so I try to use as little as possible. With my fine strands and tight curls, manipulating my hair bone dry is a definite no-no. When styling/combing my loose hair I always have my spray bottle with water at hand.

Is there a blog/webpage where we can find you?
J:
No I don’t have a blog. There are already tons of natural hair blogs that cover almost everything I would possibly want to share, but I am on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/joywillie where I’ve posted photos of my hair journey.

Meosha

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

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30 Comments on "Joy // 4A Natural Hair Style Icon"

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Dae

Side view
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Dae

This is with a perm & when it was cut not to long ago

Dae

Ok im 14years old i want to go natural because im tired of perms&all it does its cause my hair to fall&break off…im to scared for the “big chop” so im transitioning it..im managing it with braids for my 9th grade year..&wen taken down every 2months i will not get a perm but start to naturally manage it..well yea 🙂
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Jacky

Beautiful lady with gorgeous hair,i love her curls

Saye

Beautiful hair.

cindy

I found my hair twin.

Desiree

Your hair is beauuutiful! Its been 7 months since I’ve done my B.C. and can’t wait til I can feel my hair on my neck… My hair is 4A in the front areas and 4B in the top and back of my hair (I think, lol). I love being natural!
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Joy Williams

Thanks everyone and thanks BGLH for choosing me as an icon. I’m happy to be an inspiration to anyone in anyway. Natural hair is GORGEOUS! An’ JA curlies yuh done know!!! Haffi represent everytime!

Michelle

Serious hair envy!!!

Samantha

Love your hair! I felt like you were describing my hair. I also have high-shrinkage, fine hair. I walked away from this with some helpful tips and a vision of the (possible)future of my hair…..oh, and as always, big up to JA!

Colalover

Hair is great! Thanks for the inspiration

Caramelcurls

Beautiful, healthy looking hair—and those twists are just LUSH! love it!

keisha

beautiful woman and gorgeous hair!

Trini

Fab hair, shine and smile! Your finger coils are giving me some ideas.

Adrienne

I used to have Dr. Bonner Castile but it has high ph! I still love and miss his shampoo because it is the only natural /pure shampoo I know . Too bad, it has high ph so I stopped. Any idea where i can get alternative to Dr.Bonner Castile (I don’t care which, all are organic) so it would not be too high in ph?

Kaila P

if it was working for your hair why did you stop using it? just cuz people say something doesn’t work for them or is “bad” it doesn’t mean you must give it up base things on your personal experience and not on other’s

Adrienne
I had to stop using it because it had high ph balance back then and my hair was porous and they suggested for me to eliminated anything with high ph. Also test it with ph strips. Which I did , when I get to Dr. Bronner it was really high . When I only eliminate one thing like Dr. Bronner. My hair came back like that! I think it probably was from Dr. Bronner being too high in ph. But I really love his shampoo. My hair is kinda in 4 type so it is tended to be dryness .… Read more »
Joy Williams

Adrienne Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soap IS high in pH but please note that it’s not THE ONLY shampoo that I use. I use it intermittently with my other two. I still use it occasionally and haven’t really noticed any dryness or problems with my hair. I’m not sure but I think if your water is really hard, using something with a high pH might cause dullness and dryness. I put a filter on my shower head to soften my water.

Stace

Yes I feel people overlook the impact water hardness has on hair. I speculate that hard water is the culprit in many peoples struggle with dryness and stiffness, and an inability to absorb oils and moisture. Sometimes the product works great but the water masks its true effects.

Adrienne

Thanks Joy, I might revisit Dr.Bronner next month to see what really cause dryness because I have filter this time. I am not sure I had last time. You really got me think abt it. Keep up great job in natural journey! 🙂

jungfrau1010

Jamaican big up! Your hair looks absolutely beautiful & every one of your pic look stunning. Loving your radiant skin.

D.K.

Wow, your hair is amazing! It’s so long and shiny and healthy and everything! Absolutely beautiful. It’s gorgeous.

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Sheree

Big up!!! Rep for JA girl. Also, rep for the fine haired naturals. My hair is also fine and 4 b? c? i dunno anymore to be honest but your hair reminds me of mine but thicker. I’m glad you’ve got so much healthy growth! See you around maybe lol

jjac401

You have gorgeous hair!

treece12

Her hair pretty een?

Camillia

Absolutely beautiful!

Mocha Dier

OMG from before I started reading, I could tell u were from JAMAICA, i dunno i could feel it…. lol…big up JAmrock> i loveeeee your hair, u r my new hair evny!

natalia

big up jamaica yay born n raised

Bridget J

Your hair is gorgeous!

Alisa

She has beautiful curls and a beautiful smile!

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