Hair Diary: Sharaia

10:15 AM

About me...Hi. I am currently a Fashion Merchandising student starting my second year at Philadelphia University in Philadelphia, Pa. I am really involved with the ministries at my church and hoping that God will lead me to the best career ever, lol. I am hoping to one day intern at Seventeen Magazine, and eventually end up in the fashion department at Essence Magazine. There are more things I want to do with my life, but I could spend all day listing those them.

Where do you live? How is the natural hair community there?
I live in Wilmington, Delaware. The natural hair community is visual at times, but it is not as big. People mainly wear the straight styles. However in Philly, where I attend school there are many more naturals, especially in the Center City area.

When and why did you decide to go natural?
My choice to go natural was not really conscious, it really stemmed from frustration with my hair. In the summer of 2008 I was asked to be in a fashion show for my brother at his old high school. I needed my hair done for the show so I asked my aunt to give me a touch up. Well my hair came out nice and straight, but I felt it was too close to my scalp, to thin and it had absolutely no volume, and I love voluminous thick hair. So after being dissatisfied with my hair I decided to grow the perm out. Another fact is I always had admired one of my best friend's hair because it was so curly and pretty. I did not know I could have that type of hair too, I ignorantly thought you had to be mixed to have it. I have been natural for two years and 2 months, but I big chopped July 3rd this year in pure spite.

Were your friends and family supportive? If not, how were you able to move forward?
I never had a problem with support when I transitioned because I always would wear my hair straight. However, after I BC and really start wearing my hair curly, I could tell that my parents did not take it well at first. My mom was not phased by me wearing my hair curly, it was the cutting of my hair that bothered her for a while. That shouldn't of bothered her because I am always cutting my hair. My dad does not care for the natural look, but he loves me enough to accept it and let me be me. On the other hand, my siblings have been very supportive. My sister and my friend have now started to want to go natural. Plus I have a couple cousins who also are going natural so its great that I have this special bond to share with them. I really did not care who approved or disapproved but it was nice to have that support.

What is your current hair routine?
Oh boy. Well every week I deep condition with Herbal Essences Hydralicious Conditioner. Throughout the week I now wash my hair every 3-4 days. I try to wear my hair in protective styles from Monday to Saturday but I love touching my hair so much I wear my hair in at least 2 different styles per week. I know its bad to be in your hair all the time, but there are times where I don't like a particular protective style and decide I need to switch it up. On Sundays I mainly where my hair out in a braid out, twist out, or bantu-knot out (which are my favorites).

Everyday I moisturize my hair with Cantu Shea Butter, B&B Oil Moisturizer with Castor Oil and Aloe Vera, and from time to time I use ECO Styler Gel depending on the style. I was using African Essentials Carrot Oil to seal, but I ran out of it, lol so I am looking for something else. For the in-between the week co-washes I use Herbal Essences Hello Hydration Conditioner. I really love the Herbal Essences Conditioners but I am ready to start trying some others.

Do you have any hair goals? What steps are you taking to achieve them?
My hair goals is to have mid-back length hair when stretched but to have APL hair while naturally curly in the next two years. I am going to try to wear my hair in more protective styles, especially in the winter time since I can't wash n' go anymore. I am also going to try to keep my hands out of my hair lol.

What is your fav go-to style for your natural hair? Tell us how you achieve it?
The Bantu-knot out and the braid out (or plat out as I would say) because the braid out really stretches my hair where I can see great length.

Curly girls have more fun because...our hair is a symbol of our strength, our faith and perseverance...and also because we don't have to worry about getting our scalps scorched anymore lol.

Thanks for sharing Sharaia :)

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