Hi I’m Tina, a late 20-something born and raised in Cameroon, West Africa and now living in NYC.
How long have you been natural?
I’ve been natural since March 26, 2010 so a little over 4years.
What motivated you to transition? Were you a transitioner or a Big Chopper& why?
My transition started with prompting from my hairdresser at time who asked me to do a Youtube search on “natural hair”. Back then, I was looking for a change and it ended up being the best discovery for me at that time. I started transitioning with my hairdresser’s help but 7 months into it I became impatient managing the two textures between my relaxed hair and my natural hair. I chopped it all off randomly one early morning – March 26th, 2010.
How would you describe your hair?
She has her own rhythm and does whatever she very well pleases. I’ve come to the realization that sometimes no matter how I set and try and tame it, it will do what it wants. She coils, she curls and she kinks in different areas.
What do you love most about your hair?
The versatility – I can be wild and big one day, elegant in an updo another or sleek and straight the very next day! Plus it compliments my lifestyle and sense of fashion perfectly.
What has been the most memorable part of your journey? Has it been easy or difficult or both
I think the most memorable part has been my big chop – those first couple of months challenged the bulk of what I knew and my self-confidence. I refocused on my inner beauty, my drive, and myself and found an amazing self-will that continues to steer my life today.
What are some of your favorite hairstyles?
I live for two strand twists and finger coil sets that ultimately become fabulous twist-outs and finger coil-outs.
What have your experiences been as a ‘natural?’ Any memorable reactions from family or others?
Over the years I’ve had varying experiences though mostly positive. One of the most remarkable ones however has been my sister showing up to my bridal shower with a curly rod set. She has been inspired to go natural and is now transitioning. Made me realize that even when you don’t notice, you are a role model inspiring people around you to challenge themselves.
What is your hair regimen (including fav products)?
My regimen has remained consistent through my 4years being natural which I believe played a big role in my length retention. I cowash with Herbal Essence Hello Hydration (though I’m looking for a new conditioner). Prior to cowashing, I spritz my hair with diluted apple cider vinegar, which acts as a pretty good cleanser. Once a month I cleanse my hair with my mud wash. With every wash I deep condition with a mix of Aussie Moist 3 minute miracle, honey, coconut oil and tea tree essential oil. I rinse and style into twists or a fingercoil set using Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie or my whipped shea butter. 1-2 weeks later, I wash and start the process over again.
What are some of your favorite natural hair websites,YouTuber’s, or blogs?
For natural hair education I love CurlyNikki.com, Naptural85 and Kimmaytube both on Youtube and for inspiration Cynthia of Addicted2etsy.
Anything you want the readers to know? Inspirational words?
Make your journey personal such that it is an extension of your self-expression. Find your purpose and motivation and do it for you. In the beginning, some days will be tough but ultimately rock your mane with confidence and let your inner glow shine through. You’ll be amazed by how many people are inspired by your beauty and self-confidence.
Where can people find you for more information?
Youtube – www.youtube.com/misst1806
Instagram – Misst1806
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