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What is your hair type?

3a

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

Growing up, my hair was always pretty straight, whether that was because it was straight or whether it because I brushed it every day, I’m not sure! When I hit 14 my hair went BAM and suddenly I had a head of thick, curly hair that I had no idea what to do with. I quickly became known as “that girl with the big hair” wherever I went, and I was so envious of those girls who could put their hair into a sleek ponytail with zero effort.

What made you decide to embrace your naturally curly hair?

I discovered the Instagram account of @sydnieslittleworld and was amazed at the condition of her curls - I didn’t realize normal people could have hair that looked that good! I quickly became hooked on natural hair care and watched all the YouTube videos I could find, followed every curly Insta under the sun and spent a lot of money on hair products!

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

My family was fairly supportive. During the transition phase I wasn’t looking my best all of the time so I think they were a little confused about what I was doing! My sister actually said to me the other day, “Remember when your hair looked greasy and bad all the time when you were transitioning? I’m SO glad it doesn’t look like that now!” Thankfully it's improved! During this time I was always trying new things - including making my own disastrous hair masques, prompting a co-worker to ask me if I'd forgotten to rinse out my conditioner!

How did you transition to wearing your natural texture?

When I started the Curly Girl Method I began to wash it a lot less. I went from washing my hair three or four times a week to washing it once or twice a week. It was a really slow process and I ended up wearing it in a bun a lot. I got a big chop, too, and started doing a lot of hair masques. However, I was still dying my hair and using some heat. It wasn’t until I really started listening to my hair and cut out the dye, all heat and started learning about porosity and protein when my hair began to look good!

What is your current hair regimen?

Once a week I do a hair masque with a heated cap, which I try to leave on for an hour, and I follow up in the shower using curly friendly shampoo, which I massage into my scalp using a shampoo brush. Then I rinse, and then apply conditioner, which I rinse out with lukewarm water. Then once I’m out of the shower I tip my hair upside down and rake curl cream through my hair, section by section. I then scrunch out some of the excess water and then apply a gel, scrunch out some more water and then wrap it up in a microfiber towel for about 30 minutes. Then I air dry my hair, and after an hour or so it’s ready to scrunch and that’s it! A couple of times a week I might do a little refresh by applying the same styling products to wet hair.

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

For me air drying was such a game changer! One of the first things I did when starting the CG method was buy a new hairdryer and diffuser; however, I found that my curl pattern became looser and didn’t look as good when I used it. I’m also fairly impatient, and could never be bothered to sit with it on cold so I would use it on the hot setting in the hope of speeding things up. After six months my hairdryer broke and thank God it did! When I air dry, my curls form so much better, and follow a more ringlety pattern - plus it’s so much better for my hair health to be using less heat.

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

If you’re struggling with not getting the results you want, take a look at aspects of your routine and tweak them to suit your own hair. No one's hair is the same and what works for one person may not necessarily work for you, so try to develop your own routine. Also don’t be afraid to go back to products or techniques — some of the products I hated when I started I absolutely love now!

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