Naturals To Know: Ya-Akua
1 How long have you been natural? Did you transition? And if so, how?
I have been natural for approximately 10 years. When I became pregnant with my first child in 2000, I decided that I would no longer put chemicals onto my head. Based upon research, I was afraid that the chemicals would affect my unborn child. So, during the nine months of my pregnancy, I would simply wash my hair and set it using sponge rollers. Once I gave birth, I cut off all relaxed ends. That began my natural journey.
2 Describe your hair in three words.
The three words that I believe best describe my natural hair are beautiful, unbound and free. My natural hair texture is beautiful simply because this is what I have been blessed with. I describe it as unbound and free because I no longer place restrictions upon my hair. As long as it remains natural, I’m open to whatever styling I see fit at that particular moment in my life. This may be locs, braids, an afro, or completely shaved off. I am happy for my hair to just “Be”!
3 How are you currently wearing your hair? What is your hair routine? What products do you use?
Currently, I am wearing my hair in a very low brush cut. Some people would call the style a “ceasar.” My current hair routine includes washing my hair several times a week using warm vanilla sugar shampoo and conditioner. I lightly rub a small amount of Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO) onto my hair after a wash. Throughout the week, I may use ORS carrot creme to moisturize. I brush my hair in the morning and at night, sleeping while wearing a satin scarf. I clipper cut and trim my own hair once a week.
4 Name one thing that you learned about your hair after becoming a natural.
After becoming natural I learned how beautiful I am and how gorgeous my hair is in its natural state. Before I became natural, I was always concerned that I wouldn’t “look right” without the chemicals. I was scared that people would not accept me within my community and family with natural hair. Now I know that what’s most important is that I accept and love myself for who I truly am. Once I did that, others things fell in line.
5 Where else can we find you online?
Folks can find photos of my hair journey in my Fotki album.
6 A final word of advice for new naturals?
Learn your hair. Explore it. Sit down in front of a mirror and play in your hair. Figure out its likes and dislikes. Your natural journey is so much more fulfilling when your not afraid to try new things and be creative in the process. Most importantly, stay true to your natural self. Blessings!
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