66FEE2CC-9907-4CF9-BF12-01261A40C2EB

Image: @thecurlybella

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

Growing up in Puerto Rico, long straight hair was the norm. I don't have any memory of me wearing my natural hair out as a kid; I absolutely hated my hair. It wasn't until 2017 that I decided to transition into being natural.

What made you decide to embrace your naturally curly hair?

My mom always wanted me to embrace my curly hair, but I wanted to fit in. It wasn't until one day, I really missed her and needed to feel connected to her, that I heard her voice telling me to leave it curly and I finally listened. My mom passed when I was young so this is definitely for her.

What has been the most empowering moment of your natural hair journey so far?

My first "because of you" DM. I don't see myself as an "influencer" . My goal was to always show girls that they are beautiful and they didn't have to go through what I went through as a kid. When I read that DM saying "you inspired me to start my curly hair journey"... it all clicked.

Image: @thecurlybella

How do you protect your curls at night?

I have a silk pillowcase and I sleep with my hair in a pineapple. I tried scarves and bonnets, but I take them off while I sleep... I guess they bother me at night.

Who is your curl crush?

So many I can't pick! I do love a tighter curl. It's so much easier to achieve volume, and it looks amazing.

What's your curly girl essential you can't live without?

Deep conditioners, my diffuser and my Felicia Leatherwood brush.

Image: @thecurlybella

What is your current hair regimen? Any favorite products you’d like to share?

During quarantine my hair is extra dry because I'm inside with radiator heat 24/7. So definitely doing a lot of Olaplex No.3 and deep conditioning treatments. Rizos Curls refresh spray has become my go to to keep my hair moisturized.

What has been the most challenging moment of your natural hair journey so far?

Growing my damaged hair out. I didn't do a big chop, and I had parts of my hair that were so damaged that my hair wasn't proportioned at all.

Image: @thecurlybella

Are there any techniques or methods that have made a huge impact on your hair health?

Consistency and patience! Consistently using deep conditioners and cutting my hair every 3-5 months. And being patient, not going back to heat until my hair was healthy enough to take it, patiently detangling my hair to avoid more breakage. I think also listening to my hair, knowing what it likes and doesn't like because everyone's hair is different.

What's your advice to women who are still struggling with loving their natural texture?

Going natural isn't a trend. If you're not ready to make the commitment, don't do it. It's a long process that requires a lot of love and patience. Now, if this is something that you want to do because in your soul you wants to, do it. You will learn so much about yourself, not only will your hair grow healthy, but so will you.