*Prepared for BGLH by Meosha Tall of 1MeNaturally
E: Hi All!!!! My name is Eden. I was born in Jamaica, but I currently reside in Connecticut in route to the West Coast lol.
Why did you make the decision to go natural?
E: The cost. I was a sophomore in college and I moved to an area where relaxers were twice as expensive than they were back home. I wasn’t able to afford it any longer, so going to the salon became sporadic and it took a toll on the health of my hair. It started to break off, thin, split and I had a serious case of dandruff (the cornflake size).
It was extremely frustrating because I went to college with thick healthy bra-strap length hair and ended up with almost neck length hair by the time I decided to stop getting relaxers. If I had not moved far from home I’m pretty sure I would still be relaxed. Not because I was obsessed, but I really had a great hairdresser. Even still, I’m soooo happy I’m a natural head now! I have been natural for 3 years as of October 21, 2012.
How would you describe your texture?
E: My texture is 4a all over. I have a mixture of mostly normal and fine strands with a section of coarse strands behind my left ear—weird lol. I have a lot of hair, which can be tiring when she’s all out in all her glory. Most people when they see my hair when I was relaxed and natural say “OMG IT’S SO THICK!” This is mainly because my hair is dense mostly from the crown back. From the crown forward it’s not as densely packed.
Describe your styling regimen over the course of the month.
E: I think a lot of natural veterans (not that I am one) can relate to the fact that at the beginning of your journey you try EVERYTHING (styles, products, routines, bandwagons, etc.). I experimented a lot in the early part of my journey, but now, time and my nerves only permit me to wear two strand twists 90% of the time. I will do the occasional braid or twist out when I have the chance, but for the most part my hair is up and out of my way for 1–2 weeks at a time. I don’t use “styling products” because neither my hair nor my budget needs it. I realized my hair grew the most when I was too busy to play in it every other day. I left it alone and then woke up one day and was like DANG GIRL your hair is long again.
What does wash day look like for you?
E: I follow a modified Curly Girl regimen.
1. Pre-poo (Tresemme Naturals Vibrantly Smooth Conditioner or whatever is on hand)
2. Detangle and Twist Prep (Using Goody Brush with pre-poo still in hair)
3. Water Rinse
Optional (Shampoo and Protein Treatment)
4. Co-Wash (Tresemme Naturals Vibrantly Smooth Conditioner)
5. Plop (Tshirt or Hair Turban)
6. Moisturize (Giovanni Direct Leave In or whatever I’m experimenting with)
7. Seal (Castor Oil)
**Moisturize and seal as needed
**Protein treatments once a month (Ion Effective Care Treatment)
**I will shampoo once a month (Burt’s Bees More Moisture Raspberry & Brazil Nut) usually before I do a protein treatment.
**Trim every 8–10 weeks or as needed.
Describe your favorite go-to hairstyle for days when you don’t have a lot of time to style.
E: Two strand twists are my safe havens. When I’ve finished twisting I either gather and pin them down in random places or I wear my infamous two strand twist bun. I luurrve me some buns. Does that sound weird? Lol, but seriously it’s my go to style since I can’t put my loose hair in a bun—way too thick.
How do you combat shrinkage?
E: Shrinkage isn’t a big deal to me. I wear my hair up anyway. But, when I do care I can just style on dry hair if that’s what I want to do. Still, I’m too low maintenance to wait for my hair to take a day to dry just to do an elongated style.
What are some of your problem areas (if any) that require special care and attention?
E: Retaining moisture and my ends. It might be a surprise, but up until last month I struggled ridiculously with retaining moisture. I know natural hair is inertly dry, but my dryness was severe. I’ve spent who knows how much money on trying to find “it”. Well, last month I recently revisited a leave in I shelved years ago and it turned out to really work well for me. I had such an epiphany.
As far as my ends go, my hair loves to form those dreaded single strand knots and gymnastic splits all over the place so I constantly have to keep that in check with frequent search and destroy sessions and oil. I’m planning on straightening my hair at the end of November and doing a 1–2 inch trim to get rid of them and start fresh.
What are 2 do’s for your texture?
E: Leave it alone, lol. Keeping it in two strand twists.
What are 2 don’ts for your texture?
E: Wash n go’s. Ooooh chile! I love them and wore them when I had a twa, but wash n go’s now are ssk city for me.
Is there a blog/webpage where we can find you?
E: If you’re interested in my hair journey you can visit my Fotki page: http://tinyurl.com/edenfotki. I started it when I decided to transition, and have every month, product, and style I’ve done since then documented. You can also follow me on Instagram: @iameden_