My name is Whitney Rochette and I was born in Curacao (a very small island somewhere in the Caribbean). I am half Dominican and half Antillean. My hair is a beautiful struggle and my mother noticed this when I was little Whitney. Whenever she announced that she was going to wash my hair, I immediately ran to the garden and tried to hide myself between some animals. At some point my mother got tired of this routine and decided to relax my beautiful curls. Twelve years later, at the age of 18 years old, I decided to start transitioning…best choice ever!
2. How long have you been natural? Have you always embraced your curls?
I am officially natural since 2013, so almost two years. I started transitioning in 2011, but I made a huge mistake…I used a texturizer. My hairdresser explained me that a texturizer is similar to a relaxer. At that point, I decided to cut my hair.
3. What motivated you to transition? Were you a transitioner or a Big Chopper& why?
I was both, sounds a bit odd, but it is possible. I transitioned my hair until my jawbone and thereafter I went for the big chop. Personally I do not think that a very, very short haircut will look good on me and therefore I decided to wait until my hair reached a certain length before cutting. On the other hand, I lost patience…
4. How would you describe your hair?
My hair is a beautiful struggle: It keeps surprising me with her personality and PMS moods. In the beginning we were in a continuous battle, I was trying to manage my curls and my hair was resisting. I hated everything about my hair and the more I was hating, the bitchier my hair became haha. But then I decided to sit down, relax and to analyze. I had to accept my hair in order to be happy and ever since I accepted my hair, we have been fierce together.
5. What do you love most about your hair?
It is so fluffy, big and special to me!
6. What has been the most memorable part of your journey?Has it been easy or difficult or both?!
The moments I have been battling with the values which my environment taught me. I will be honest with you, I cried a lot. I was very insecure and it was difficult for me to accept my hair texture. But then I realized that these difficulties were caused by the fact that my hair was relaxed when I was six. As a child I developed the thought that my natural hair is not beautiful…Guess what? Currently, I love my hair and I do not want it to be different!
7. What are (or were) some of your favorite transitioning hairstyles?
During the transitioning process, I did not really have a hairdo. I always kept my hair in a bun. Currently, I mostly wear my hair down.
8. What have your experiences been as a ‘natural?’ Any memorable reactions from family or others?
My family did not really like it. Some tried to convince me that relaxing my hair would me much better and less damaging (seriously?) to my hair. I just decided to prove them wrong. It is difficult to convince people who do not want to be convinced.
9. How did you experience dating while natural?
Sometimes I laughed my but off; Sometimes I felt awkward; but most of the times I felt really special. My first boyfriend tried to convince me to go natural, but I was not ready.
At the beginning (A couple of year later) of the transitioning process, my second lover told me that he wants me to have type 3 hair. This made me more insecure about my hair texture. Luckily, we found out that things would not work out together.
Thereafter, I had some dates which were hilarious. The guys were looking at my hair, instead of my face. I was like: “Hello, my face is down here you know?”
9. What is your hair regimen (including fav products)?
The night before washing my hair I pre-poo using Amla-Mint-Rosemary-Castor oil. Why? Because my hair loves it! It becomes soft, bouncy and less frizzy. For some reason the night before washing my hair I have the best hair day of the week, haha! I was my hair with sulfate-free shampoo thereafter I deep condition my hair for at least an hour. Lastly, I finger detangle my hair and rinse.
My favorite leave-in conditioner is from the coconut-hibiscus line of Sheamoisture. Besides, sometimes I use the green ecostyler. But I mostly use the Amla-mint-rosemary-castor oil, which I have created myself.
10. What are some of your favorite natural hair websites,YouTuber’s, or blogs?’
Whitney from Naptural85, she is so awesome!
11. Anything you want the readers to know? Inspirational words?
Yes, I noticed that there are many people who question their hair texture. I have said this many times, but I will say it again: “The beauty of your hair is not defined by your hair texture, but its health does”
12. Do you feel sexy with your fro?
Of course I do! The bigger the fro, the better!
13. Where can people find you for more information?