Skip to main content

Aja // Natural Hair Style Icon

Avatar • Jan 6, 2011

Where do you live?
A:
I currently live in Milwaukee, WI (get it, Midwest!) and work as a freelance makeup artist for POPbeauty cosmetics in the Milwaukee and Chicago area.

Why did you go natural?
A:
There are a number of different reasons why I decided to go natural. One of the biggest reasons simply was that flat ironing my grown out locks felt like punishment. I dreaded washing and combing it all out, the hours I’d have to let it air dry before I flat ironed it, and exhausting my arms for two hours to make it straight. I started going longer and longer between washes and then began wearing it straight only when I had extra money laying around for a wash & style at the salon. Lastly, I got tons of positive feedback any time I sported a natural style, which began to make me feel a lot more confident in my God given kinks and coils. My parents have always encouraged me to wear my hair curly, but when friends, my boyfriend, and even complete strangers got excited about my wild mane, I knew it was time to fully accept and love my hair for what it was; AWESOME.

How did you transition?
A:
I was never big on chemical straightening to begin with and have only had a handful of relaxers throughout the duration of my life. I haven’t chemically straightened my hair in ages (real time: about nine years), but I was stuck like glue to my right hand man, the love of my life…my flat iron. I was inexplicably attached to my straight hair. Although no one in my life had ever personally pushed me to wear it straight, I felt like I needed to have sleek and glossy strands of hair, not wild, seemingly untameable masses of “nappy” thick curls. My hair and its styles were my pride and joy, and I had always received a lot of compliments on the 50s and 60s inspired hairstyles I rocked.

I was never apt to wear my hair natural mostly because I was unhappy with the inconsistency of the curls; some pieces were perfect ringlets, some were zig zags, some ends were straight, and some strands protested and stuck up every which way. It was a lifelong battle between me and my hair, the score was something like Aja: 3, Hair: 3 million, I was easily frustrated when styles wouldn’t turn out, and I was sick of working so hard to make my hair something it was not. It wasn’t until I purchased DevaCurl’s Set It Free styling product that I realized I may be able to eliminate straightening all together.

So far it has been a 100% positive change in my life. Instead of letting my hair rule my life, I rule my hair. I no longer run screaming at the first sight of rain, I don’t avoid swimming or sigh in defeat in the midst of humidity, I simply love my hair (and it shows)!

How would you describe your hair?
A:
Using the word thick to describe my hair is a complete understatement, it’s like I have four heads of hair on my one head. It definitely leans toward coarse as far as texture goes, and as I mentioned, the pattern is pretty inconsistent. Many locks of my hair are more of a zig-zag pattern than an actual coil, and some pieces aren’t even curly at all, they’re much more wavy than anything. Since I had spent so much time straightening my hair, I had plenty of damage to take care of. My hair was large, shapeless, and apparently where split ends went to die, so I cut off a fair amount to get a healthier start on my new style.

What’s your regimen?
A:
Since I’m still pretty new to the curly haired world, I haven’t got a super solid regimen, nor am I married to any one product or line just yet. I’ve been alternating between two different LUSH shampoos that I adore, Cynthia Sylvia Stout and Curly Whirly. Curly Whirly contains coconut oil, vanilla, and avocado butter, it’s insanely moisturizing and smells like Heaven. After rinsing, I apply Kinky Curly’s Knot Today and brush through my wet hair with a paddle brush. After I rinse most of the conditioner out, I tilt my head toward the ground, stick my fingers in toward the roots of my hair, and shake it all out so all of the curly pieces separate, then I wrap my hair in a towel for only a few minutes.

For styling I work in about a dime size of LUSH’s R&B creme on my towel dried hair to add moisture, then I follow that with a small amount of Kinky Curly’s Curling custard and scrunch. I only use a blow dryer when it’s freezing cold outside so I don’t catch my death in this weather, but I will almost always let my hair air dry. In between shampooing I mist DevaCurl Set It Free on dry curls and use my fingers to redefine frizzed out locks.

What mistakes have you made with your hair that you’ve learned from?
A:
BLEACH! One word: YIKES. I too often have played kitchen beautician and have had more hair mishaps involving color than I’d care to remember.

What’s the best/most effective thing you do for your hair?
A:
Probably wrapping my hair before I sleep and adding as much moisture as I can (heck, I could even stand some more moisture).

Is there a blog/webpage where we can find you?
A:
Of course! www.facebook.com/ajaforpresident

Anything else you want to add?
A:
I think embracing what you have is one of the keys to happiness. Whether you have long or short, thick or fine, kinky, straight, wavy, curly, unruly, or frizzy hair…make it work! Each trait we posses is working FOR us, to make us unique and lovely in our own ways, fighting against it is a terrible waste of time and energy. Love yourself and you will exude an unmatchable amount of confidence that is admirable and sexy.

Subscribe
Notify of
guest
0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Milika
Milika
9 years ago

Alright now Milw-town represent!!!!! Your hair is fierce (finger wag). Way to show that the Midwest has style too.

serenissima
9 years ago

omg! she is beaaauuuttiiiffuuuulllll

http://sartorialme.blogspot.com

shezzie
shezzie
9 years ago

oh my gooodness
she is gorgeous

katia
katia
9 years ago

you, your hair, and your style are so on point im speechless. You are beautiful keep doin what you do! 😀

Robby
Robby
9 years ago

Love yourself and you will exude an unmatchable amount of confidence that is admirable and sexy.”

YES!

luvmylocs
luvmylocs
9 years ago

aja i love your brows and your comment about accepting yourself and happiness!!

mzchocolate
mzchocolate
9 years ago

So beautiful!.….luv your hair color in the first and third pic Aja!! How did you get it that way?

Tiffany
9 years ago

OMG, her hair is freakin great. Love the 50’s look.

Peace, Love and Chocolate
Tiffany

CurlyC
CurlyC
9 years ago

Omg Aja I love your hair! Your curls are poppin! and I loooovvveeeee LUSH’s Stout shampoo, but the curly wurly… not so much. the little bits of coconut get stuck in my hair and just don’t get out. 🙁 but anyways congrats on going natural 🙂

Aja
Aja
9 years ago

Wow, thank you so much for all of your wonderful feedback! In truth, my hair color was a complete accident. Last summer I bleached it all out and colored it auburn. I LOVEDDD it, but, true to form, the red faded quickly and became brassy. I chose a deep, chocolate brown to color over it which started dark, but faded to the reddish brown color it is in most of these pictures. And CurlyC, I’d have to agree about the coconut bits, that’s the only thing I don’t particularly care for with that shampoo. But holy man, how great is… Read more »

Kenesha
Kenesha
9 years ago
Reply to  Aja

Hey Aja! Your hair is PPPRRREEETTTYYYYY!!! I am also from Milwaukee…the northwest side. I don’t know or see too many women in Milwaukee rocking their natural hair. I am a newbie to Natural hair, just BC’d on March 8, 2011. I would love to connect to learn from your natural hair journey…email me 😉

You know Milwaukee is having a Natural Hair Conference in June right?

-Kenesha

Amma Mama
Amma Mama
9 years ago

So pretty!
I LOVE LOVE LOVE the hair style in the last pic! So 1950s/ Happy Days, love it!

Nikki
Nikki
9 years ago

I loved your hair last week, and this week love your personality! The color and curls are gorgeous. I’ve never tried Lush’s hair products but I might give em a try. I def want to try that Deva Curl Set it Free I’ve heard good things about it.

aiden
aiden
9 years ago

OMG, she is so cute. Love that rockabilly look!

CurlyChronicles
9 years ago

LOVE the retro hair and her natural hair.. you can do retro natural 🙂 just takes a lil creativity lol

Kenesha
Kenesha
9 years ago

Hi!!! I know this is an old post but hopefully Aja you’ll find this. I am also from Milwaukee…Northwest side. There is not too many people I know or see that has Natural hair. I am a neewbie, just BC’d on March 8, 2011. I would like to connect just so that I can learn from your journey. Email me 😉

df
df
9 years ago

Aja Aja fighting!

Candis
Candis
9 years ago

Love this Icon.. she just ooozzes STYLE, and looks like a “stand out in a crowd” type of chick ( reminds me of myself ) .. Rock On Aja!

Cathey Poindexter Taylor
Cathey Poindexter Taylor
8 years ago

Whew Whoooo! Go Midwest! Love your hair and style as well!

0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x

Shopping Cart