And for those of you who are experiencing the Winter Blues like I am, know that your hair can still be uber-cute! Check out these wraps that keep your hair protected and your style FRESH!
So I know it’s been a while, but I need to take a moment and have a little hair rant. So, as you may or may not know, my natural curl pattern would probably fall in the 4c/4d/5a range and it does NOT like the single-digit weather of Northern Illinois! So I’ve been on the hunt for anything and everything that will moisturize my parched tresses! I’ve tried shea butter, castor oil, leave in conditioner….all at the same time. While these things definitely do work, I feel like my hair just slurps it all up, to the point where it’s super dry within a day or so. But, as I was doing some much needed conditioner shopping, I came across this Conditioner from the Alba product line called Natural Hawaiian Conditioner. The “Drink it Up Coconut Milk (Mega Moisture)” subtitle had me at hello, so I promptly made the purchase!
Though I’ve only used this product a couple times, I do believe it has been one of my favorite conditioning experiences I’ve had since I’ve been natural! I really did feel the softness and moisture in my hair, and I even noticed a difference from my once dry texture. I’ve posted a picture of the product below, as well as the link to the website. I don’t have any pictures of my hair with the conditioner, because you can’t really see anything significant, but I thought that I’d recommend this product, especially for those of you who are feeling the wrath of cold climates! I know that everyone’s hair responds differently to different products, but I figured that I’d share with you my newfound favorite conditioner! Let us know what you think! And as always, suggestions are welcome!
unitedstatesofsage, you. better. WERK.
INTERVIEW: Camielle Taylor
I have the pleasure of sharing an interview with a transitioning natural, Camielle Taylor. Camielle is a Senior here at Northwestern who has put a different spin on what it means to transition. She has found a way to work her transition to make it easy for her as a college student, and because I SUPPORT trying the method that makes you the most happy naturally, I decided to share! Read on to hear how Camielle’s working to embrace her natural texture!
How long have you been natural?
Almost a year! (Blogger Note: Applause, ladies and gents!) My last relaxer was 9 months ago as of December.
So what made you decide to go natural?
Well, a couple things: 1. Curiosity – I have not been natural since I was 10 or 11, and I was curious to see what my natural hair looks like. 2. I was the only person who got relaxers regularly in my family - all my cousins and siblings have really nice hair. I like the texture and I figured “if they have it I should too.” 3. I always wanted to do it, and now seemed like the most opportune time.
Haha, that’s pretty awesome. If you please, describe your hair journey thus far.
Well, it’s been pretty easy: the first 3 months (Mar – Jun) was the normal relaxer grow-out phase, nothing different, really. Over the summer, when things would have gotten harder, I was studying abroad in the Dominican Republic. I was kind of worried about that, but I was able to get my hair done every week because it was $2.50, so I would just go in. (BN: How can you ARGUE with that price!! Someone take me to the DR, please!) I never had the “I need to get a relaxer” moments because I went to get my hair done. When I came back in August I was wearing it in a gelled/funky way for a month, then I started a treatment with my hairstylist in September. I haven’t had a “plight” because there wasn’t one. I have had no reason to go back to a relaxer.
Interesting! It’s amazing that the movement has gotten to a place where professional help is now able to help you get through the work and struggle. Since you get your hair worked professionally, do you have any go-to products?
Well, my go-to product is this treatment, because I don’t have to do anything. It’s really nice in that, with this treatment, I don’t have to change my products at all – my old products are still the same, and the treatment is still the same. There is a special shampoo/conditioner that comes with it, so I use those. Everything else is exactly the same. I haven’t changed them as of yet!
Word? That’s pretty neat! Can you describe your hair for us?
So I have 5 different textures [laughs], but I really do! The front is more loose waves…yeah…loose waves are in the front half, and the other half [is full of] loose curls. The center is more like a puff – it just grows…the center has a mind of its own! I don’t understand it at all [laughs]. The back half is a combination of accordion waves, and then accordion curls. Like I said, 5 different textures! I didn’t believe my hairdresser when she told me, but it’s the truth.
Haha, that’s pretty cool! Do you have any favorite bloggers/vloggers/naturalistas?
Not really – I haven’t done too much research about going natural. I just go to my hairdresser and she tells me what to do. I haven’t researched too much on internet yet, but will do more research as my hair becomes more natural. (BN: She’s working to grow out alllll of her relaxer – transitioning and cutting it slowly until it’s all natural, with no permed hair on her head.)
Alright, I feel that. Your method of going natural is interesting – it’s not the average journey, to say the least! Why did you choose to transition this way?
Well, a couple of reasons: first, it just seemed so much easier for me. I am not the type of person who necessarily likes to do her own hair, and even though I did, I just never liked it. I knew transitioning would be harder for me because I’d have two different textures [relaxed and natural] and would have to figure out how to work with those two – or six. Doing it this way would be a lot easier for me because when I did it before I would get to that point in 4-5 months where my hair would break and shed and I’d run to my hairdresser and ask for a relaxer. (BN: I know a lot of people who’ve been there. I had a couple of those thoughts myself!) This way I blow dry it and I’m done, and I don’t have the same stress. Second is my hairdresser. I trust her with the life of my hair, and when I told her I wanted to transition she said “here’s the easiest way for you and for your hair”. Third, I didn’t want to do the big chop. I didn’t want to cut my hair at all. Here’s a way to look like I have a relaxer even though I don’t have one at all, and the treatment can also be used by people who are done transitioning because it’s an easy way to care for your hair, but it’s specifically for people who are transitioning because it’s the easiest [way I’ve seen].
(BN: I plan on presenting my thoughts about the different ways to transition & wear non-relaxed hair soon. I may not use these types of processes, but they ARE an alternative that quite a few people choose!)
Okay, that makes a lot of sense, especially as a college student with a million and one other things to worry about. In that case, will you start doing it on your own someday? How will you handle that?
Um, I’ll probably start wearing it out in a couple months, probably around graduation time – so like June. I’ll start wearing it natural when the length that I have it now straight will match [when I start wearing it] curly. We’re cutting the relaxer off [as it grows] so that it’s all natural. I should be done transitioning around June, so that’s when I’ll start wearing it natural. Dealing with the different textures – relaxed and natural – is just too much [for me], so when I have a full head of natural hair, I’ll start figuring things out.
Alright, word! It’ll definitely be a new and interesting turn in your natural journey. So from your experiences, what is one tip/insight you’d like to share with others?
I think something that’s really important is to talk to a hairdresser who knows your hair really well. If you’ve gone to the same person for a while talk to them and see what would be best for your transitioning process. (BN: I actually don’t think this is a bad idea.) There are lots of ways to do it other than mine, and mine is costlier than most (BN: I lay out her treatment process, the stylist, and the prices for her services in the next feature!). I wouldn’t have known how to do it if I hadn’t talked to my stylist. It’s important to get professional consultation because they might know of a product that will help ease the process more and make it less frustrating.
A super huge shout-out to Camielle for sharing her unique hair journey with us! Naturals, I know this isn’t the normal way of transitioning, but I do support anything that will help women achieve healthy, natural hair. To find out more about Camielle’s treatment, CLICK HERE for my feature on her stylist, Melvina Cox!
Your thoughts, Kats? Do share! Have you heard of treatments like Camielle’s? Do you use them or like them? What reactions, reviews, or similar experiences have you come across?
Camielle’s hairstylist was gracious enough to share a bit of information about herself, her skills, and the services she offers (and Camielle gave her a nice review to boot!). She’s a veteran in the game (an almost 40-year hairstyling vet, to be exact!) and has a passion for helping each of her clients achieve their healthiest hair yet. Read on to find out about Melvina Cox, a Chicago Hair and Beauty Expert who wants to help each of us have our fullest, longest, and healthiest tresses!
Melvina Cox, Hair Haven Beauty Spa – 2600 S. Michigan Ave, Chicago
38 Year beauty vet, expertise in all types of hair
Haircare Educator, Cosmetology Instructor
Certified Hair Loss Specialist (Trichology is her focus)
Her Moniker: “Less heat, more health!!”
(also, a Namaste pro for 14 years – check out her LinkedIn!)
Why She Loves Her Job: “I love the aspect of having control of my hair and doing what I can to keep it healthy.”
Camielle Says: “Everyone calls her ‘The Hair Doctor’. She knows how to deal with every type of hair, knows how to make it grow and condition it in order for it to be truly healthy hair. I’ve been going to her since my sophomore year of high school (so 6-7 years), and at the time I had chemically damaged hair – all but two inches from my roots was damaged! I went to her twice a month and her treatment helped grow back all my hair in a little over a year.”
SERVICES & $$:
Private Consultations: $25 for 30 minutes
Scalp Treatment: $25 as of 2/21/13, $45 value
DC & Strengthening Treatment (Camille’s): $185 for students, $300 value
What is it?: A strengthening system that utilizes sulfates and amino acids to help soften and stretch the hair. It’s similar to Keratin, but unlike that procedure you can shampoo this one right out! Comes in two different treatment strengths and can be flexed to whatever you desire for your hair.
Other Services: Curler Rods & Flexi-Rod Styling, Sulfur Wraps, Extensions, or Custom Styles
BN: Sulfates can sometimes be a buzzword as a bad substance for the hair, but it is only bad if you OVERUSE IT (in accordance with your curl type). Check out what CurlyNikki & Black Girl With Long Hair found out about sulfates and our natural curls! (Click the Links!)
Camielle Says: “I don’t mind paying her prices because I know that she knows what she’s doing. You’re able to build a rapport with her – she knows your hair, and can tell you things you don’t know about yourself.”
A BIT MORE:
“She takes her job very seriously. Lots of hairdressers wouldn’t take the time to know you and your hair, but she does. There are different treatments that she does for your hair that she may not do for the next person. It’s a case by case basis in how she handles [her clients’] hair. For example, she uses an extra special conditioner for my hair because I have a dry scalp.” –Camielle
As you can see KittyKats, with almost 40 years in the game and one (of many, I’m sure) happy clients in tow, Ms. Mel (as she’s affectionately called) is a pro in the game. I understand that on a college student’s budget some of her services might be out of reach, but for the naturalista who wants an expert eye on their strands, she’s definitely a good way to go. You’ll get your money’s worth, guaranteed (and that’s huge for me to say when I’m “allergic” to beauticians!).
Check her out, and when you do, give NK a shoutout, and do tell me how it goes!
What do you think, Naturals? Will you or have you gone to Ms. Mel? What are your feelings about stylists/beauticians and natural hair?
This is my favorite! Cuter than cute itself!
@cymoneregine’s Protective style 👍💛 #luvyourmane #blackgirlsrock #blackisbeautiful #naturalhair #naturalistas #naturalhairrocks #naturalhairsistas #naturalhairstyles
Sister Sister #fashion#montreal#african#sisters#photoshoot#natural
Natural queen with a style so MEAN!