Naturals To Know: Shai
1 How long have you been natural? Did you transition? And if so, how?
I’ve been natural for about 3 years now. Prior to starting my locs, I was accustomed to perms and having relaxed hair. Consequently, the perms had affected the health of my naturally long hair. Then in March 2008, I’d decided to do the big chop and cut all of the split ends, the breakage, and any traces of the perm off of my head. As a result, I was left with a Michael Jackson afro lol.
Initally, my intention was to cut my hair so that it could regrow and stay healthy. However, I had my heart set on getting locs, which I wanted since high school. Therefore, on June 16, 2008, I started my locs and haven’t looked back since!
2 Describe your hair in three words.
There are many words to describe my locs…but the ones I can think of at the moment are:
-Endless flow of length
3 How are you currently wearing your hair? What is your hair routine? What products do you use?
Currently, my hair is in locs. I’ve had my locs for about 2 years 6 months. I don’t have a set routine. I pretty much maintain my locs whenever I feel the need to. For the most part, I just semi-freeform. However, when I do take the initiative to maintain my locs, I do either the retwist method or the interlocking method.
The products I use to retwist my locs are either the Ecostyler gel or the Twist ‘n Locs locking formula gel. Also, I use a water/oil mixture as my daily regimen which consists of tea tree oil and olive oil.
4 Name one thing that you learned about your hair after becoming a natural.
Since locking my hair in 2008, the one thing I’ve learned to embrace my hair in it’s natural form. For years, my perception of natural beauty was manipulated by the “beauty ideals” portrayed in society and the media. As I’ve mentioned previously, I’dwanted locs since I was in high school. But what was holding me back was the fact that my hair is not kinky like many black people (which made it hard for my hair to lock), and how other people would perceive me with locs.
Now when I look at myself and my locs, I feel as though I have made the right decision. Also, I have proven that people with softer hair textures can lock their hair too. I am very content with having my locs!
5 Where else can we find you online?
6 A final word of advice for new naturals?
If you’re thinking about transitioning, go for it! It’s a beautiful thing! You learn so much about yourself and learn to feel comfortable in your own skin. You start to perceive things differently than you ever did before.
When I started my locs, it became a life-altering experience. It allowed me to dig beneath the surface and see purity beyond the fabrication of manufactured beauty. Don’t become an imitation of societies’ standards of beauty…become your own individual!
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