N: Hey dolls. My name is Natasha Lee. I’m from Jamaica.
What is your style philosophy?
N: Be you. Be comfortable. Have Fun. Be Confident. Try something new. Be inspired and make it your OWN. I think at one point or another, we’ve been inspired by something seen on blogs, Instagram, in magazines or just someone on the street. I for one love looking for inspiration from others, and sometimes it revolves around taking that inspiration and making it my own. A little ‘inspo’ can’t hurt, as long as you aren’t strutting around looking like an exact replica of the runway model, or that blogger who you adore.
How would you describe your sense of style?
N: I don’t have a defined sense of style and I actually find my style to be rather eclectic and very dependent on my mood; from girly to tomboy or glam and chic to edgy and cool. I’ll pick and choose various pieces from thrift, designer, to everyone’s go to store Forever 21, while interpreting them in my own personal way. I do believe however in starting any wardrobe out with classic, basic and versatile pieces, because these essentials will lay a foundation for putting together every single outfit. By essentials I mean thin, slouchy, cotton tees, a chambray or plaid blouse for layering, and classic blue denim pants.
Once you have basic pieces it will be much easier for the not too fashion savvy to put together a fierce, yet effortless outfit. So I for one like taking one bold piece (whether it be a neon yellow handbag, studded denim high waist shorts, or an embellished blouse) and pair it with basic pieces that are so versatile they can be easily dressed up or dressed down (a white or black tee, classic denim pants). I am also an advocate for recycling items in my closet. Like using the same oversized T‑shirt I wore to class because of its simplicity and comfort, and turning it into something chic and girly for a night out on the town. Oh, and I should mention my obsession with neutrals, black and white and wearing an entire outfit from the same color palette from head to toe, Yes! I too am a monochromatic lover.
What is the process of deciding what to wear in the morning?
N: ‘Style is how we express our inner being outwardly.’ Wearing a large floppy hat with a bright maxi dress projects a different image than a snap back hat and Converse. An outfit can speak volumes about someone without having them speak. Everything on the outside is merely a reflection of what’s on the inside. With that being said, what I wear in the mornings depends on my mood. Depending on how my inner self is feeling will determine what my outer look will convey. It all depends on how I feel I suppose. I think my style is very intrinsic to my mood.
What are the three favorite things in your closet?
N: I’d have to go with a white tee/blouse since I think it is a fundamental piece to any woman’s closet and can be bought just about anywhere for little to nothing. My flannel or chambray shirt, because I think it’s hands down one of the best layering pieces out there. They can add a rugged or grungy effect to just about any type of outfit. Think of a girly skater dress, and then picture throwing a flannel on top. It totally tones down the look completely, giving it some edge and some “UMPH” and crazily enough it still looks fashionable and hot. And I can’t leave without my eye-candy: mirrored aviators that I snagged in a gas station, or my Marilyn Monroe retro inspired shades from Nastygal.com. Not only do sunglasses protect my eyes from the sun, but they also serve the purpose of fooling people into thinking I put effort into my entire look, when really it’s because I was too tired to wear makeup and the sunnies are hiding the bags under my eyes from the lack of sleep 😉
What are some of your favorite shops/websites for clothes, shoes and accessories?
N: Reasonable Prices: Gojane.com and Forever21 (always have trendy items for a steal) Unique Pieces: Zara.com and Nastygal.com Shoes: Heels.com
How long have you been natural?
N: I’ve been fully natural now for 3 months, but I transitioned for a year and 2 months before my big chop in June 2013.
How and why did you transition into natural hair?
N: My hair was first relaxed at the age of 9 because my mom didn’t take the time to learn what products and techniques would help her best manage my hair. I must admit I was also pushing back then for a relaxer, because everyone else I knew had straight hair and also because I was a tender headed child. My thick, tightly coiled hair was too difficult to manage and bare the pain of styling daily. I was so satisfied with the relaxer because finally a comb or brush could run freely through my hair, and my hair was no longer shrunken up. I suddenly had mid-back length, straight hair. I was so young when I got my first relaxer I was never able to discover the beauty of naturally coily, kinky hair.
About three years ago I started getting curious about my natural hair, and encountered many failed attempts at transitioning. I once transitioned for 11 months and then decided to relax it, all because I got lost in comparing my hair to others, and impatience. I had always used my hair as a way of defining who I was, so at the time I wasn’t giving myself the option to “big chop” at all. I could not imagine myself without long hair, but I made a commitment to myself to transition until my natural hair would be long enough to my liking. I found my transition time consuming, dealing with different textures, and after a year of my third attempt at transitioning, I once again was contemplating relaxing it. My transition made me mentally and emotionally drained. I knew my hair was nowhere even close to where I would be satisfied to cut it, and so I held on to my long hair as long as I could. I convinced myself into thinking that I could only rock long hair, and a big chop was not an option.
Crazily enough I found myself up late one night, hair stalking on random natural hair blogs and I stumbled on a quote saying “A girl who cuts her hair is about to change her life” and right below was a clip of India Arie’s song “I Am Not My Hair” along with the lyrics. I listened to a song that I clearly knew, but never paid attention to. I felt like the song was speaking directly to me, because I’m a gal who has always hidden behind her long, straight hair; a gal too afraid to big chop and go natural because of fear of judgment and criticism. That night I made the decision to redefine myself by focusing on inner beauty rather than outer. I put the song on repeat, grabbed my scissors, and that night I just “LET GO”.
What is your signature hairstyle?
N: I’m not the type of gal to spend hours on a hairstyle, that’s why I love wash and go’s. You can catch me rocking the infamous fro all the time.
Describe your styling regimen over the course of the month.
N: I pre-poo with coconut oil the night before shampoo day and I shampoo my hair once every two weeks with either Giovanni Tea Tree Triple Treat Shampoo or Organic Root Stimulator Creamy Aloe Shampoo. I deep condition my hair every two weeks (usually on my shampoo days) with Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Deep Treatment Masque, or Beautiful Textures Rapid Repair Deep Conditioner. I co-wash once, sometimes twice a week with Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Restorative Conditioner or Aussie Moist Conditioner. I moisturize when needed with African Pride Olive Miracle Leave-In Conditioner or Giovanni Direct Leave-In Weightless Moisture Conditioner and I always seal with coconut oil.
Is there a blog/webpage where we can find you?
N: I’m currently working on getting a blog together, but til’ then you can find me on Instagram: @natasha_lee_d.