Brooke 700 1

How would you best describe your hair?

Naturally Curly

What is your hair type?

3b

What was it like for you growing up with textured hair?

Growing up with very curly hair was a little complicated for me. My mom is white and my dad is black, but I grew up with just my mom. Most of my family and friends growing up were white, so I felt a little like the odd man out physically. I was brown, curvy and curly headed while everyone else was white, slender and straight haired. I began to feel like that was what was considered beautiful, and what I was could only imitate. I basically only wore my hair up and a slicked back with grease because my mom (bless her heart) put every *ethnic* product she could find in it! HOT. MESS. So naturally when I was old enough I began to get my hair relaxed and flat ironed it religiously. I didn’t fully love who I was...and didn’t fully know who I was.

What made you decide to embrace your naturally curly/coily/wavy hair?

When I was in college I read “Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass” and it changed me forever. I, for the first time, saw myself not only represented in literature but in history...and what a painful history it was. Out of that narrative came a drive to embrace who I am without alterations, with all my contradictions, kinks and curls. I began to let my curls show and to take care of them. My confidence began to grow, not just because I liked my hair, but because I liked who I was and where I came from.

How have your family, friends and co-workers reacted? What was your response to them?

They love it! They noticed not only my curls, but my positive attitude about them. Many have even inquired what I am doing so that they can practice healthly hair too! My husband always loved my curls (even though I would RARELY show them) even before we were married. Now that I wear them proudly, HE is proud of how I embrace all of me.

How did you transition to wearing your natural texture?

Well, I relaxed my hair in high school but that stuff is EXPENSIVE. So I basically couldn’t afford it so I just quit doing it. I did a big chop to help the transition but I still kept flat ironing it (why God??). When I was about 23 I had my first run in with the Curly Girl method and I loved it, but didn’t commit. Now, at 31, I am an avid Curly Girl Method believer and my hair has NEVER looked better!

Brooke 700 2

What is your current hair regimen?

I wash my hair with a no sulfate shampoo once a week and co-wash once in between those times. I use the Blueberry Bliss Leave-In and then my old faithful LA Looks Extreme Sport Gel, and using products with no silicones or drying alcohols!

Are there any techniques or methods that have made a big impact on the way your hair looks?

My hair doesn’t seem to love heavy oils so backing off of those on refresh days really helps. Also, I do much better with gels than with cream or mousse and that knowledge is a life saver!

Any advice you’d like to give other women who may be in the transition phase or need some encouragement in their hair journey?

Stick with it, honey! It’s so worth it to take care of the hair God gave you! Just like anything, we sometimes have to fight for the good things in life. So, if you feel like you’re “fighting” with your hair, remember that you are worth it and that God doesn’t make mistakes:)

What's your hair story? Share your story with us here to be featured in our Texture Tales series.