K: My name is Kristel Eavis. I was born in Paramaribo, Suriname which is a country in South America. When I was six years old I moved with my parents and little sister to The Netherlands in Europe. For a year I lived in Amsterdam and then we moved to a city near Amsterdam called Almere, where I´m still living.
Why did you make the decision to go natural?
K: I have been natural since 2004. I was in my final year of studies in Design for Virtual Theatre & Games. In 2003 I stopped using chemical relaxers in my hair. I used curl sets to transition and in 2004 I did the big chop. I went natural because I never liked the burning chemicals and long sits under the hairdryer. I always had big, long hair, so everything takes super long: straightening, drying, washing. I never liked the load of work and I was getting tired of it. Then I saw Lauryn Hill with her small afro and I thought she was gorgeous, strong and confident. Then she started to wear short locks that became longer and meanwhile I saw other naturals appear on MTV like Jill Scott and India Arie. To see these beautiful women with their natural hair was a big inspiration.
How would you describe your texture?
K: My hair is a mix of 4B and 4C texture. The front, top and sides are 4B. The back is definitely 4C. My strands are dense. The back is definitely the most coarse part on my head.
Describe your styling regimen over the course of the month.
K: I wash my hair at least once every 2 weeks and let it air dry in big 2 strand twists. When I part the twists I can wear it loose for about a week. I sleep with my hair in big 2 strand twists and sometimes a scarf. For products I use Organic Root Stimulator Creamy Aloe Shampoo, Organic Root Stimulator Incredibly Rich Oil Moisturizing Hair Lotion and Organic Root Stimulator Glossing Polisher. The second week I wear more protective styles like high puffs, buns or milkmaid braids. I will use the Organic Root Stimulator Nourishing Sheen Spray after I have styled my hair.
What does wash day look like for you?
K: If I am lazy (which I am most of the time) it goes like this: I wash my hair and comb it under the shower (takes 1 to 2 hours). Then I moisturize it, put oil on it to seal it, and part it in about 15 to 20 two strand twists (takes 2 to 3 hours). It takes at least 24 hours to air dry my hair. Sometimes I try different products like the Professional Motions line, but the Organic Root Stimulator line of products always work fine as long as the moisturizers are rich and creamy. I have a lot of hair so I go for products that don´t cost too much and come in big bottles.
Describe your favorite go-to hairstyle for days when you don’t have a lot of time to style.
K: The pineapple. Just bundle your hair together on top of your head. If my hair is too dry I just tug the ends under the elastic band and then the pineapple turns into a big bun.
How do you combat shrinkage?
K: I don’t. With shrinkage comes volume. I just do twist-outs sometimes in my second week. I spray my hair with water and redo the twist-out. Because the hair isn’t totally wet, it gets a more stretched look. If I want a sleek look I use a styling comb.
What are some of your problem areas (if any) that require special care and attention?
K: The back. It is the thickest, most coarse and dry part of my hair. It also shrinks most in comparison with the rest of my hair.
What are 2 do’s for your texture?
K: Moisturize a lot and seal hair with oil. Never comb hair when it is dry.
What are 2 don’ts for your texture?
K: Wash and Go´s. (I haven’t see one that looks good on 4B/C hair, and if it takes 3 hours I don’t think you can call it a wash and go) Maybe I´m doing it wrong, but defining my hair with Eco Styler Gel makes my hair go flaky.