W: My name is Whitney Madueke. I am from Anambra state but I live in Lagos state, Nigeria.
Why did you make the decision to go natural?
W: I have been fully natural for less than a year. It will be a year on the 13th of March, 2013, the day I did my big chop. I transitioned for almost a year, my last relaxer was the 20th of June, 2012. I simply got tired of relaxed hair and as a lover of change, I was continuously inspired by natural heads on social networks, especially Tumblr. It just seemed so beautiful and worth it in all its diversity. I could not resist.
How would you describe your texture?
W: My short afro is of a 4c hair type. It can be so hard to maintain with sudden times of dryness and then a bearer of good news when it is soft and easy to style. I have super tight curls with shrinkage as its best friend. It‘s a lover of water which eases up the tangles.
Describe your styling regimen over the course of the month.
W: My styling regimen usually fluctuates between weaves, braids and my afro being out. When my afro is out, I usually wash and go every two days. I wash with V05 conditioner and wrap my hair with an old t‑shirt since towels are bad. The t‑shirt stays on while I get dressed just to take out any excess water. Afterward, I use my LOC method where I apply Castor Oil, then Indian Hemp and my Shea Butter Leave-in Conditioner on damp hair. I then leave it to air dry. I may use an Apple Cider Vinegar rinse at times. It depends on if I feel I have product build up, dandruff or an itchy scalp. What helps me make my styling decisions is the weather, any special occasion, my hair’s needs and time. The aim is always to look good, but not at the expense of my hair’s health.
What does wash day look like for you?
W: A wash day can be anything from relaxing, exciting, pleasing to stressful. It ranges from homemade recipes like apple cider vinegar rinses and my deep conditioner (which you can find on my YouTube) to using a shampoo and/or a conditioner. Wash day always depends on my hair’s needs, how I feel about my hair, and the time I have to spare. It usually involves just these products: V05 Conditioner and/or Shampoo, Castor Oil, Indian Hemp and my Shea Butter Leave-in Conditioner. I use the Shea Moisture Deep Treatment Masque more during harsh weather. Also, I use a mix of oils and hair creams.
Describe your favorite go-to hairstyle for days when you don’t have a lot of time to style.
W: Wash and go is my motto. It is simple and easy to do. If I want something different I go for scarves and hats to top it off. I wash, apply cream and go, or if I don’t wash and only condition it, then I just tie on a scarf or put on a hat — always helpful on busy university mornings.
How do you combat shrinkage?
W: Shrinkage does not really bother me. I am not in a rush to leave my ‘short hair’ stage so I am pretty cool with it. I guess as my hair grows longer and I have hairstyles I am desperate to try, I will find ways to deal with it.
What are some of your problem areas (if any) that require special care and attention?
W: Dryness is always a problem. It is a feature of 4c hair, as it is tightly coiled. Trying to keep my hair moisturized throughout the day, especially in harsh weather can be so tasking and frustrating, but I am getting to know what works and what does not. It is part of the journey.
What are 2 don’ts for your texture?
W: Do not ignore labels, read before you buy. Do not jump into products all at once, test one at a time and see how your hair loves or hates the product. You save a lot of time and money.
Is there a blog/webpage where we can find you?
W: I have a personal blog: http://desourire.tumblr.com. I also recently started Leazz Way, my blog and vlog on my natural hair, beauty and style: http://leazzway.tumblr.com. Feel free to support me with your likes, comments, subscriptions, etc. and ask questions on any of the networks you can find me on:
Google+: Leazz Way