*Prepared for BGLH by Meosha Tall of 1MeNaturally
C: My name is Cenithia, but everyone calls me Cee. I’m from New Jersey, but I currently live in New York City for college.
Why did you make the decision to go natural?
C: I’ve been natural my whole life. My mom didn’t want to do anything to my hair without my permission, so I had a fro until I was five and then I asked to get locs. I had locs for seven years by the time I was twelve and I got really tired of them. So I impulsively chopped my locs off and switched to loose natural hair. Sadly I had no idea what I was doing and I picked my hair out far too much. Any length that I acquired wasn’t retained and my hair was breaking. So even though I’ve technically been loose natural for five years, I’ve only been knowledgeable and paying attention to my hair for three years.
How would you describe your texture?
C: My hair is about five different textures, so I don’t identify with one. But it does range from 3c to 4c. It also has a lot of single strand knots and fairy knots and shedding. I have normal strands with high density hair, but at the crown the strands are finer.
Describe your styling regimen over the course of the month.
C: I use Giovanni Direct Leave-In and Naptural85’s oil mixture for all of my styles. I only do twist outs once a month because my hair gets tangled more in twists than in braids. Braid outs are my go to style just because they keep my hair detangled, stretched, and big. I wash my hair once a week and detangle my hair twice a week. Once when I wash and once when I re-moisturize.
What does wash day look like for you?
C: My wash day routine is very long and annoying and I just discovered I have a heat cap so that should save me a bit of time. The night before wash day I finger detangle my hair so it’ll be easier to handle in the morning. Then the next day, I load up my hair with my deep conditioning mixture. I do a moisturizing dc one week and a protein treatment the next week. For my moisturizing dc I use Organix Conditioner Nourishing Coconut Milk and unrefined coconut oil. For the protein treatment I use VO5 Shea Cashmere Conditioner and Cantu Hair Lotion. I dc my hair for 30–40 minutes and then I rinse. My scalp gets really dry and I get some buildup so I wash my hair with tea tree oil castile soap. I let my hair dry a bit and then I style. My routine usually takes around 3 or 4 hours.
Describe your favorite go-to hairstyle for days when you don’t have a lot of time to style.
C: If my hair is still in braids or twists, then I’ll just use a scarf to create a head-wrap style. If my hair is already styled from the day before (i.e. a braid out or twist out) then I wear it big. I’m not really about that tuck and pin life.
How do you combat shrinkage?
C: My hair shrinks a lot (maybe 50–75% shrinkage?). I fight shrinkage two ways. First, whenever I freshly twist or braid my hair, I always pin the sections to opposite sides of my head to stretch them. Second, when I’m dealing with 2nd day or 3rd day hair, I like to pull my hair back into a ponytail and do the banding method over night. I’m kind of obsessed with fighting shrinkage so I like my hair to be stretched at all times.
What are some of your problem areas (if any) that require special care and attention?
C: I would say that my whole head is a bit of a problem area, but more specifically my crown and my ends need a little extra attention. My crown tends to be the loosest curl pattern and the finer strands, so I have to be more gentle with that area. My ends dry out very quickly and knot very easily, so I always make sure they’re detangled and moisturized.
What are 2 do’s for your texture?
C: My hair can get awfully dry so deep conditioning weekly is a must. And leave-in conditioner makes my hair really soft and easy to detangle.
What are 2 don’ts for your texture?
C: My hair knots very easily so protective styles and gels are my worst enemy.
Is there a blog/webpage where we can find you?
C: Yeah! My instagram is cecefro and my tumblr url is whitegirlfreshhh (ironically of course).