A: Hello everyone! My name is Andrea and I’m from Houston, Texas. One of the most humid places, so you can imagine how my hair reacts.
Why did you make the decision to go natural?
A: I’ve been natural for two years and two months exactly. I chose to go natural because I was tired of getting relaxers every six weeks and having to sit with it in the chair while my scalp burned. I actually didn’t know I could go natural. I was raised by mother whom is Mexican and she started to relax my hair when I was seven. She tried her best with braiding and putting my hair in puffs, but having a relaxer made my hair more manageable for her to do. I looked into how to style hair without relaxers and found this whole world of being natural and transitioners on YouTube and immediately started to transition.
How would you describe your texture?
A: I’ve been struggling with this question since I went natural, but I would have to say I have a mixture like most naturals. My hair resembles a looser curl in the front, and a tight spiral curl in the back. So I would have to say 4a/4b. I’ve asked all the stylists I’ve been to and they usually just tell me I have a tight curl in the back and looser curls everywhere else. My hair doesn’t curl up that much until I apply products or use a Denman brush.
Describe your styling regimen over the course of the month.
A: I do twist outs each week on freshly washed hair. But I do enjoy blowing my hair out and then doing a twist out. My hair is SO big when I do it that way. The products I use change and I’ll mix them up with others.
Right now I’m using these products (not all together, but for the past months):
-Giovanni Direct Leave-In Weightless Moisture Conditioner
-Jojoba oil and Coconut oil
-Shea Moisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Style Milk
-Tresemme Flawless Curls Mousse
-Carol’s Daughter Tui Moisturizing Hair Sheen
‑Qhemet Biologics Amla & Olive Heavy Cream
-Eco Styler Gel
-Deva Curl Shampoo and Conditioner
-Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Moisture Retention Shampoo and Conditioner
-Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Deep Conditioner
What does wash day look like for you?
A: My wash day is usually the whole day committed to washing and styling my hair. It depends on which day I have off from work, but I try to do it on either a Sunday or Monday so I’m prepped and ready for the week. I wash with Deva Curl Shampoo and Conditioner. I like to detangle a little while my conditioner is still in so I use a Tangle Teezer, which is AMAZING. My hair is coarse, but the brush glides through without pulling my hair or snapping off the ends. Then I’ll wash out the conditioner and put Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Deep Conditioner on with a plastic cap before I get out of the shower. I just started deep conditioning under a hooded dryer, so I’ll sit under it for thirty minutes and then wash it out under the sink with cold water.
I like to let my hair air dry for almost an hour before I add my leave in. Then I’ll detangle small sections and add in the Qhemet Biologics Heavy Cream making sure it all gets absorbed into my hair. Then I’ll start twisting. I always like to seal my ends with coconut oil right after I’m done with the twist and then twirl the ends around my finger to make the curl really stay. Once I’m done twisting my hair I’ll put on a satin bonnet or make sure I sleep on my satin pillowcase. The next morning I’ll unravel each twist twice and then go back over and unravel them until it looks the way I want. I then use a plastic pick and stretch out my roots. That’s my secret tool. I love big hair so a good pick is necessary.
Describe your favorite go-to hairstyle for days when you don’t have a lot of time to style.
A: Honestly the only style I wear is twist outs. I’ve done three wash and go’s since being natural but I like the big hair twist outs give me so I stick to that. I have recently gotten into braid outs but they take forever to take down so I’ll only do that if I know I’ll have time the next morning to take them out and style it.
How do you combat shrinkage?
A: The only way I can combat shrinkage is to do my twist outs and pick my hair like crazy. Only at the roots though, that way I keep definition in my curls.
What are some of your problem areas (if any) that require special care and attention?
A: The left side of my hair is a little thinner, and that shows when I do more defined styles so I have to make sure I either pick that side out more or leave the right side alone so that both sides match.
What are 2 do’s for your texture?
A: Moisturize everyday for softness and shine. Keep hair protected at night so the ends don’t get caught or pulled.
What are 2 don’ts for your texture?
A: Using combs or tools that have bristles that can snag my curls. Putting in a lot of products, especially thick ones. I only use a small amount when using a heavy cream or creamy product so that my hair doesn’t get sticky or have product residue.