*Prepared for BGLH by Meosha Tall of 1MeNaturally
A: My name is Alicia James! I am a wife, mother of 2, and a sucker for love and natural hair! Oh Yeah…I sing a little…LOL! I was raised in Philadelphia, MS, but I am currently living in Houston, TX
Why did you make the decision to go natural?
A: When I transitioned to natural hair, I had no idea I was transitioning to natural hair. I didn’t know anyone who was natural and I didn’t know anything about it. I just decided one day to stop getting relaxers because my hair was literally falling out of my head. I transitioned wearing sew in weaves, braids, and kinky twists. I turned four years in September 2012. I transitioned for about 7–8 months and started my journey with about 3–4 inches of hair.
How would you describe your texture?
A: I guess my hair would be considered 4a/4b, fine strands and normal to thick density.
Describe your styling regimen over the course of the month.
A: I blow dry my hair once a month. I use Cantu Leave In Conditioner to moisturize the hair and it can also be used as a heat protectant. Once I turned two years natural, I decided to add heat into my regimen. The longer my hair has gotten the more I use it. I would never use it more than once a month. Now that I am currently at waist length, it seems to be easier to maintain my blown out hair. It is a lot easier to manage all of this hair when it is blown out, easier to detangle on wash days, less knots and tangles and I can style with ease.
My go to hairstyle lately has been a low sock bun with a side part. I work from home, so I don’t see the need to be too fancy. It is a great protective hairstyle, and you can dress it up or down when needed.
I also use Cantu Leave In Conditioner to achieve my twist outs, braid outs and bantu knot outs that I wear sometimes throughout the week. After bunning for a few days or even weeks, I like to let my hair down and have a little fun. I usually go for a small twist out, which usually lasts about a week.
What does wash day look like for you?
A: I wash every 2–4 weeks. Most of my journey it was once a week, but after my hair got longer I decreased wash days so that I would put less stress on my hair. I start off lightly finger detangling my dry hair. Then I shampoo my hair using my Herbal Essences Hello Hydration. I add a little conditioner and then detangle in the shower. I normally use my fingers and then comb through after the hair is fully detangled. After my shampoo and detangling I do my deep conditioning/hot oil treatment. I mix my regular rinse out conditioner Herbal Essences Hello Hydration with my extra virgin olive oil. I sit under the dryer for 15–30 minutes. (My hair is covered with a plastic cap/bag) Next I rinse out the oil and conditioner thoroughly. I add my Cantu Leave In Conditioner to my hair, then I style as desired.
How do you combat shrinkage?
A: Shrinkage is a hard thing to beat, so I try not to battle it too much! I usually keep my hair stretched out using the bunning method, twist outs, or blow outs.
What are some of your problem areas (if any) that require special care and attention?
A: I have to be very careful with my edges. They tend to thin very easily if my hair is being pulled too tight or I am doing styles that require too much manipulation. To manage this, I consistently massage my edges with oil, and I stick to low manipulation styling.
What are 2 do’s for your texture?
A: Deep conditioning/hot oil treatments and protective styling.
What are 2 don’ts for your texture?
A: Combing dry hair and excessive heat.
Is there a blog/webpage where we can find you?