Hello everyone my name is Cristina also known as Barbie Conga. I was born and raised in New Jersey (Woot Woot) lol. I am currently a social worker for kids and youth with mental health needs. I really enjoy anything having to do with fitness especially lifting heavy weights (I am all about that girl power).
How long have you been natural?
Technically, I have never had a perm in my hair. However, I colored and flat ironed my hair excessively to the point I had no more curls. My hair looked permed without me ever having a perm. But since 2010 I have not colored or flat ironed my hair.
What motivated you to transition? Were you a transitioner or a Big Chopper& why?
One day I woke up and decided I would rock my curly hair for the day. Oops! I was immediately slapped in the face with the reality that my curly hair was non existent. I immediately felt really bad inside and wanted my curly hair back. This alone was my motivation to get my healthy curly hair back. I transitioned for a couple of month but became annoyed with the straight ends and curly roots so I Big Chopped after a couple months.
How would you describe your hair?
My hair has a mind of its own. One day it listens to me another day it has an attitude and does what it wants (he he). But my hair is a mix of 3a and 3b curls.
What do you love most about your hair?
One of the things I love most about my hair is that whenever I take a look at it in the mirror it reminds me who I am. It reminds me of my parents, my roots, my culture and my self confidence.
What has been the most memorable part of your journey? Has it been easy or difficult or both?!
The most memorable part of my journal is the transformation I went through from the inside out. My hair represents the self confidence I have gained and continue to gain through out this journey. This journey has its ups and downs like any journey. There were days I felt discouraged because I didn’t feel my hair was growing fast enough or my hair was not cooperating with me. Also learning how to take care and deal with your natural hair can also be a battle. However, all the struggles are well worth it in the end.
What are some of your favorite hairstyles?
I am a wash and go type of girl. However, recently I have been loving flexi rod sets on my hair. I really recommend this to all the ladies that do not want to big chop and need some assistance with those straight ends.
What have your experiences been as a ‘natural?’ Any memorable reactions from family or others?
My mother was my biggest supporter when transitioning. She was extremely happy when I finally decided to accept my natural hair. I usually get many complements from others. I also get the “Is that your real hair?” or “What kind of hair do you have on?” I just laugh and take it as a compliment.
What is your hair regimen (including fav products)?
I cleanse my hair with shampoo once a month and cowash my hair once a week. My hair loves the Shea moisture shampoo and conditioner and the Cantu cowash and conditioner. I use the Shea moisture deep treatment once a week and when my hair needs a little more TLC I whip up my own deep treatment (recipes on my instagram). Again, I am a wash and go type of girl. Right now (and I say right now because my products constantly change) to style my hair I use the Mixed Chicks leave in conditioner, Camille Rose curl love moisture milk and the Shea Moisture curling gel soufflé (for a little added hold).
What are some of your favorite natural hair websites,YouTuber’s, or blogs?
AHHH! I have so many favorite youtuber’s and blogs. But I have to mention Taren916 she held me down when I first transitioned and knew nothing about taking care of my hair.<br/>11. Anything you want the readers to know? Inspirational words? I encourage all of the beautiful ladies that have started or plan to start their natural hair journey not to look at this as just a physical change but also a positive change within. During this journey enjoy each stage and learn to love your hair as well as yourself.
Where can people find you for more information?
Stay in touch with me on instagram @barbie_conga I have some really exciting things coming up for the beautiful ladies.