*Prepared for BGLH by Meosha Tall of 1MeNaturally
P: My name is Pédrhina. I was born and raised in the oh so infamous city of Miami, Florida (Dade County Baby ;o) Moved to Boston about 12 years ago and about a little over 3 years ago I took the plunge and decided to pursue my passion of writing, acting and supporting the love of my life (My Hubby) and moved to Sunny Southern California…San Diego to be exact.
Why did you make the decision to go natural?
P: I made a conscious decision to go natural around late 2005 to early 2006, but I wasn’t secure enough in myself to stick with it…although I couldn’t own up to it that at the time. I can openly admit to that now because after much reflection I recognized that I would literally go to a natural hair salon, pay my money, spend no less than a few hours there and would seriously have a wig in my bag to plunk on before I walked out the door. Looking back on it now, I can laugh out loud but that was pure foolishness I tell you. I was embracing what I loved about myself, but in the same breath I was so consumed with what I thought society, my family, my peer group, and my professional counterparts would think of me. So much so, that I completely ignored/rejected being authentically Me. Before the end of 2006 I was back on the creamy addiction…a relaxer.
Fast forward a few years, 2009 was a life-altering year for me. After moving to California I really got clear about who I am and what I stand for. So I made myself a promise to be true to me no matter how hard I thought it was going to be. A few relaxers later, over lapped with amateur color services, also paired with bad hair care habits left me with heavy breakage on the left side of my head. And after about 4 months (February 2010) of slicking down my longer hairs over that troubled spot, I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror one night while mixing up a batch of store bought relaxer and thought, “What’s wrong with you being you, your basically harming/damaging your hair for the sake of what? You talk a good game, but you’re not living up to it Pédrhina…you can’t say that you love yourself, but yet you’re afraid to see the real you.”
At my core, my idea/perception of beauty is diverse, but at the time I was conforming myself to only one view/perception of beauty. I didn’t like who I saw in the mirror that night; someone who wasn’t being authentic…doing one thing and saying another. And without even a second thought I grabbed a pair of scissors and my husband’s clippers, cut off what I could and buzzed the rest of it all off. I stepped out of my comfort and decided to fully embrace the natural me…pairing what I believed on the inside with representing what that meant on the outside.
How would you describe your texture?
P: I have a little bit of everything going on in this unruly mane of mine. Overall, it’s really cottony and completely ambushed by frizzies with a mix of curls, really tightly wound coils, kinks and waves. My individual strands are just as diverse. My bangs, crown and nape are fairly thin and everywhere else is densely thick and coarse.
Describe your styling regimen over the course of the month.
P: I’ve learned to really pay attention to how my hair feels and that determines how I manage it from week to week and typically that varies from month to month. So my style choices are based on whether I’m focusing more on moisture or protein balance. Here’s what I mean. I find that in the weeks that my hair needs more moisture balanced attention, usually during the dryer Fall and Winter months it retains better moisture when I follow a strict CG (curly girl) method; and for me that means NO shampoo at all, staying away from ALL silicone based products, co-washing every 3 to 4 days with VO5 Tea Therapy, TRESemmé Naturals Line or Organix Coconut Conditioner. Followed by a really thick and creamy leave-in. My hair loves Kinky Curly Knot Today, and Giovanni Smooth As Silk (it’s a conditioner buts works great as a leave in).
Following that I seal my leave in with some coconut oil and I’ll either twist or braid my hair with a really thick creamy or buttery styler. I love Shea Moisture’s Curl Enhancing Smoothie and CURLS Whipped Cream Curl Cream. In the weeks/months that my hair needs more attention towards protein balance, I usually shampoo once a week with a homemade Aloe and African Black Soap/essential oils shampoo…See my blog for deets: (www.jesuispedrhine.com) and following that I’ll deep condition with either a concoction of coconut milk, Mega Tek Rebuilder, honey, castor, coconut and olive oils or Aphogee Keratin 2 Minute Reconstructor. And since the protein treatment makes my hair super strong I tend to play around with styles alternating between flexi rod sets, a cute puff with a twisty pompadour or mini suicide roll and fancy updos.
What does wash day look like for you?
P: My hair absolutely loves protein (I attribute that to the protein structure loss from coloring) so when I’m preparing to wash with a shampoo I’ll mix up a quick little treatment I found on a Natural Hair Care app. It consists of mixing an egg or 2 (for thicker/longer hair…I only use the whites of one egg, those whites pack a heavy protein punch) apple cider vinegar, a couple of tablespoons of castor and olive oil whipped up for about 15 minutes. I apply the mixture to my hair focusing on my scalp and ends, then plop my hair up into a conditioning cap. After about an hour or 2 I’ll hop in the shower, section my hair off into 6 sections with banana clips and then proceed to rinse out the egg mixture with lukewarm water, and follow that up with my homemade Aloe and African Black Soap Shampoo.
Describe your favorite go-to hairstyle for days when you don’t have a lot of time to style?
P: I loved, loved, loved twist outs, but after recently giving birth the 10 to 15 minutes it used to take to unravel and fluff my twists now seems like hours. So, a high puff and a little edgy pompadour or pomparoo (my version of a pompadour), and I’m fiercely ready for my day ;o)
How do you combat shrinkage?
P: I’ve recently discovered a little something called the Flexi Rod…lol. Life changing I tell you ladies…ABOSLUTELY life changing for my mixed textured mane. Following a wash, I set my hair with a little LottaBody Setting Lotion (foam), Kinky Curly Styling Spritz and a little added aloe vera gel. Once completely dry I can get up to 5 to 6 day hair with zero shrinkage. You can’t beat that in my book, especially since my hair can revert back to a TWA in what seems like under 2.2 seconds :o)
Tell us about your hair color?
P: Hmm, first things first ladies, don’t be scared or steered away by all the false info out there about hair color. I’ve been color treated since literally day 2 of my big chop and this past February 2012 was my 2nd Natural Hair Anniversary. So it is possible to not only grow your hair out while color treating it, but it is also possible to have healthy color treated hair. Just like achieving anything else in life. It takes a healthy dose of discipline with a bit of added care in how you manage it, i.e. daily and regular/weekly Deep Conditioning (DC) treatments. With that said, that doesn’t mean that you won’t have some hiccups and hit a few learning curves, but if you’re patient and stick with it it’s feasible.
So, as I mentioned I started off my journey with colored tresses and I actually color it myself. I use a combination of two professional grade semi-permanent colors called Golden Honey Bronze and Honey Blonde. Both purchased at Sally’s and mixed with a level 30 developer (sometimes a 20 for touch ups). I attribute my length retention to my weekly DC steaming sessions. Be that with a protein heavy or moisture heavy conditioner, if there’s a treatment on my tresses I’m sitting under that steamer, plain and simple. I have a Huetiful Hair Steamer now, but during my beginning stages I used the towel and shower cap method. You can Google hair steaming methods for the deets.
The color treating process alone hasn’t changed my texture, but the product junkie (pj) turned mad scientist that lives inside of me (and a careless mistake) on the other hand has :o) A few months back I was in one of my ‘need to buy’ withdrawals so I purchased a product (no mention of brand) that claimed to remove brassy tones from hair. My inner pj got curious and decided to test it out on my bangs. After the application I noticed that the product actually made my hair appear brassy and left my tresses feeling uber mushy with a thinner/finer texture in that section.
What are some of your problem areas (if any) that require extra care and attention?
P: My ends…Having hair like mine that loves to intertwine with itself I have to pay extra close attention to those bad boys and seal, seal, seal. Oh and my crown. I’m not sure if it has something to do with post partum hair shedding, but my crown has decided it wants a TWA and is suffering heavily these days.
What are 2 do’s for your texture?
P: Co-wash and weekly deep treatments WITH STEAM, you’ll love it.
What are 2 don’ts for your texture?
P: Detangle dry un-moisturized hair. Seriously if you want any hair strands on your head, don’t do it! :o) I’m not sure if my second tip is strictly just for those with mixed textures like mine, but more so for all naturals in general. Don’t just run with a regimen based on your hair’s classification 3a,b,c,…d,e,f,g…k…z, okay maybe not D thru Z, but in all seriousness…Get to know YOUR hair. Truth is MOST of us have more than one texture growing in some section of our head, so you’re going to have to do some fine tuning to get any regimen to work just right for you.
Is there a blog/webpage where we can find you?
P: Oh yes, of course!! I’ve got a blog and webpage that are in the beginning stages. You can find me there at www.jesuispedrhine.com. Twitter: @JeSuisPedrhina and Instagram: JeSuisPedrine
I’m always up for chatting with and getting to know other naturals. Be Beautifully Blessed Loves and thanks BGLH…xoxo