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Intro­duce your­self!
Z:
Hel­lo! My name is Zeba. I’m from Accra, Ghana and I live in Jer­sey City. I’m a writer and film crit­ic.

Why did you make the deci­sion to go nat­u­ral?
Z:
I ini­tial­ly didn’t set out to be nat­u­ral — I didn’t even real­ly know about the con­cept of being “nat­u­ral” when I cut my hair. Through­out high school I relaxed my hair, it grew to about APL then just became real­ly thin and dry. I’ve always had thick hair, so this kind of freaked me out. Dur­ing the year when I was liv­ing back in Ghana I impul­sive­ly cut my hair because I was just real­ly annoyed with how unhealthy it was. After the cut I imme­di­ate­ly got braids. It was only a cou­ple months after that when it grew out a bit that it occurred to me to may­be not start relax­ing again! I’ve been nat­u­ral for six years since. I did my (first) big chop in 2009!

How would you describe your tex­ture?
Z:
If I had to guess I’d say I’m like a 4b/4c mix. My hair is dense and coarse, and my curls are more defined at the crown of my head, but usu­al­ly only if I apply mad pro­duct to them (which I rarely do).

Describe your styling reg­i­men over the course of the mon­th.
Z:
Since I expe­ri­ence major shrink­age, which leads to tan­gling, my hair is always in a stretched state. I lose about 60% of my length when my hair is in a shrunk­en state. I go through phas­es with my styling reg­i­men, so some­times I will pro­tec­tive style by bun­ning, wear­ing puffs, loose twists, twist and box braid exten­sions, wigs, or scarves. I love big hair and I love to wear my hair out, so I will gen­er­al­ly wear a twist out fro for a few weeks at a time. I some­times use Tal­i­ah Waajid’s Curly Curl Cream for my twist outs then cov­er my hair for a few weeks at a time, and repeat. At night I’ll spritz my hair with a mix­ture of a cheap con­di­tion­er and coconut oil. If I’m feel­ing lazy I’ll pineap­ple it, but I usu­al­ly always braid or twist my hair at night to keep it stretched. I expe­ri­ence a lot of dry­ness, but ever since dis­cov­er­ing the LOC method I haven’t had to mois­tur­ize every sin­gle day, which has been amaz­ing.

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What does wash day look like for you?
Z:
Wash day is a whole sit­u­a­tion. I real­ly dread it and I’m real­ly bad at reg­u­lat­ing my reg­i­men, so some­times I might wash my hair once a week, and oth­er times I might go a mon­th in between wash­es because I’m just feel­ing lazy. The night before I wash my hair, I light­ly detan­gle and pre-poo with coconut oil. The next day I fin­ger detan­gle my hair again and put it into four twists. I’ll then go in the show­er and wash my hair with Trader Joe’s Tea Tree Tin­gle Sham­poo, then con­di­tion with their Tea Tree Tin­gle Con­di­tion­er, which I just start­ed using recent­ly and I LOVE. My hair tan­gles a lot so much of my wash day process revolves around doing lots of detan­gling from root to tip under the run­ning water with a wide-tooth comb. I try to be as thor­ough as pos­si­ble and not rush through even though I’m over it by the sec­ond sec­tion lol. Once I’m out of the show­er I let my hair air dry a lit­tle bit then I go about mois­tur­iz­ing. My go-to mois­tur­iz­ers are usu­al­ly shea but­ter, coconut oil, and cas­tor oil as a sealant.

Describe your favorite go-to hair­style for days when you don’t have a lot of time to style.
Z:
If I don’t have a lot of time my go to is always to tie a scarf around my head and wear my hair in a high bun/puff, but I gen­er­al­ly make time for my hair. If I feel like I’m com­ing up on a busy mon­th or some­thing I just get braids or twists.

How do you com­bat shrink­age?
Z:
I have been fight­ing shrink­age ever since I went nat­u­ral and I’m actu­al­ly try­ing to let go of it. Like, there have been times when I’ve wok­en up in the morn­ing and I see it’s rain­ing and it’s lit­er­al­ly ruined my day because I feel like I can’t wear my hair out. I’m try­ing to be more com­fort­able with how my hair looks when it’s a lit­tle shrunk­en — of course I gen­er­al­ly keep it stretched just to ensure it doesn’t tan­gle, but I’m also try­ing to under­stand the dif­fer­ence between want­i­ng to pre­vent tan­gling and being length-obsessed. It’s a process!

What are some of your prob­lem areas (if any) that require spe­cial care and atten­tion?
Z:
I dyed my hair a honey-brown/reddish col­or a cou­ple years ago, and since then even though I went back to black I’ve def­i­nite­ly noticed the dam­age that did to my ends, in terms of them just being weak­er and hav­ing a lot of splits. My ends are very del­i­cate, so I make sure to lav­ish a lot of atten­tion and mois­ture on them when­ev­er pos­si­ble!

What are 2 do’s for your tex­ture?
Z:
Mois­tur­ize, mois­tur­ize, mois­tur­ize. I real­ly used to think that mois­ture wasn’t a fac­tor in my hair’s health, but it wasn’t until I start­ed pay­ing more atten­tion that my hair began to flour­ish. Also, I’ve seen that drink­ing lots of water (and I mean lots), exer­cis­ing, and tak­ing my vit­a­mins has been a big help as well.

What are 2 don’ts for your tex­ture?
Z:
Too much manip­u­la­tion, which I def­i­nite­ly am guilty of. I need to just leave my hair alone and stop doing the most. Not doing my research — I recent­ly did a cho­les­terol treat­ment with­out look­ing up the pro­duct and it almost ruined my hair. Also, keep­ing braids in for too long. I used to keep braids in for months (I won’t say how long, but you can guess — such a mess), and I would take them out and be all shocked when most of my ends broke off. Like, girl.

Is there a blog/webpage where we can find you?
Z:
Yes!
Insta­gram: http://instagram.com/zebablay
Twit­ter: https://twitter.com/zblay
My Pop Cul­ture Pod­cast: twobrowngirls.co

Meosha

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

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24 Comments on "Zeba // 4B/C Natural Hair Style Icon"

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Maryanne

I love your pod­cast (two brown girls) and your amaz­ing hair, keep it up!!!

Antoinette Stewart

Great eyes, hair and skin!
Love the Twistout fro look on you!!

Monica

OMGGG your hair is amaz­ing ! I have 4b/4c hair as well and you give me hope lol

Adeola @ TheManeCaptain

beau­ti­ful hair. i love the BIG hair. but how did she man­age to car­ry such long braids? i’ve nev­er seen braids that long before. she must have a very strong scalp and hair.
thumbs up for fea­tur­ing an African
http://www.themanecaptain.blogspot.ca

Barbara

Your hair is love­ly and I’m always hap­py to see a fel­low Ghana­ian being fea­tured. :)

Youngin girl

I’m in awe. She made this site turn all around. I could stare all day. I love her locs and Afros. I’m hap­py to see more updates and fea­tures. Ghana­ian women>3

Amma Mama

Ghana whoop whoop!
I love her hair and style. I am going to check out her pod­cast and the Huff­in­g­ton Post arti­cle men­tioned in the pre­vi­ous com­ment.

Caramelcurls

Beau­ti­ful healthy look­ing hair—LOVE!!

BeUtifullyhuman

I love it! Your hair is beau­ti­ful and looks strong.

Elodie

Your hair is…there is no word for it. So full! So dense! So nice! LOL. My hair wants to be like yours when he grows up. And by the way, you are gor­geous :-)

Loving My Natural Hair
Loving My Natural Hair

Beau­ti­ful girl and beau­ti­ful hair… Werk!

rama

Hel­lo !
What is the LOC method ? Is it a method for type 4b/4c

Hope
Hey Rama, The LOC method is for all types afro tex­tured hair that is usu­al­ly dry. The L is liq­uid which is water with aloe Vera juice mixed in a spray bot­tle if you like, the O is oil of your choice-if you have thick­er afro tex­tured hair use thick­er oils such as Shea but­ter, man­go but­ter, cas­tor oil, etc.…if you have thin­ner or fin­er strands use grape­seed, almond oil, jojoba oil etc.… instead. The C is cream for Creamy con­di­tion­er usu­al­ly a leave in. My favorite is Tea Tree tin­gle con­di­tion­er from Trader Joe’s. I use prefer­ably this method… Read more »
Chandra

Love­ly hair and inter­view. I real­ly liked read­ing it. Fel­low Gha­ni­an here as well! :)

Primmest Plum

Cool! I went to school with Zeba. Not only is her hair won­der­ful but she’s absolute­ly won­der­ful as well. So great to see her flour­ish. :)

Vivi35

What a coin­ci­dence! Just read one of her arti­cles on huffingtonpost.com titled: “I Am A Black Wom­an With Kinky Hair, Full Lips And Very Dark Skin, And I Do Not Have A Com­plex About It”. In addi­tion to being BEAUTIFUL with gor­geous hair, she’s a very good writer too.

Stace

Oooh I have to go look up this arti­cle. I don’t have a com­plex either and I’m so annoyed by the media’s insis­tence and per­pet­u­a­tion that all dark skinned black wom­en have a com­plex about their com­plex­ion and hair. Nev­er had nev­er will.

thelady

beau­ti­ful hair and great sense of fash­ion

Effua

Hel­looo my fel­low Ghana­ian sis­ta! Lov­ing your pro­file! Great to know that the nat­u­ral hair move­ment is show­ing up in Ghana too! #proud2bghana­ian!

Kay

Aaah it’s Zeba from Two­Brown­Girls :) Great hair and awe­some pod­cast girl!

MissDaniMac

As a 3c/4a nat­u­ral i’m often com­pli­ment­ed on the def­i­n­i­tion of my curls, but you 4b/4c ladies have the MOST BEAUTIFUL den­si­ty EVER. I love your hair, and i hap­pen to think it looks absolute­ly amaz­ing in its shrunk­en state (pho­tos 9,10, and 13 are bomb! MY 4b/c hair envy is real lol)
Keep rock­ing out!

By Madiba

Thanks for that! I’m 4b\4c and got mad envy for 3c hair. Good to know we’re all wom­en, in the same boat, and still lov­ing each oth­er thru it all

Redseouls

Pret­ty lady with gor­geous, thick hair!! Love it!

April

Love your hair!

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