I interviewed NaturallyCurly Editor Lauren Murray on her natural hair journey.

What made you decide to go natural?

I went natural partially because I thought it was in style, but mostly because I was a broke college student who couldn’t afford to get my hair done as often I liked. Haha. My freshman year of college, I chopped my hair into a pixie cut thinking that that didn’t require much upkeep. Unfortunately and fortunately, it required  a  TON of upkeep, leading me to consider transitioning. I transitioned for about 3 months or so and then did my big chop with about 1.5 inches of natural hair. It was a for real big chop!!

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

Initial reactions were negative and took a bit of me standing my ground, educating my family, and growing some thick skin. Since my hair was so short, I was new to taking care of my new curls, and my family had never seen my hair before in this state, there was definitely some side-eyes going around. But thankfully, since I was away at school and experimenting with my style, I found a bit of solace there, because my friends were going natural also. Over time, when my fro started to grow out more and natural hair acceptance became more visible, the reactions from my family changed. Now, they are my biggest advocates!

What has been the most memorable moment of your hair journey?

Honestly, the most memorable part was having my mom do my big chop. She was so nervous, and I was all like “Girl, go for it! I feel free!” Hahaha. In Southern Black culture though, and I’m quite sure in others, there is so much value placed on the length and style of your hair, and for me to have my mom (with long, straight, permed hair), be cutting off my hair into the tiniest of TWAs was a really positive experience for me. There was definitely a shift in our dynamic that day.

What hairstyle(s) made you feel the most confident?

Hands down, my favorite style is a braid out that is freshly frizzed from shower steam. Y'all, you can’t tell me nothing. My fro is fluffed to perfection. I still have good definition, and it is huge and glorious, and magical, and the perfect “Hello!” before I even speak.

My hair says that I am not afraid to be unapologetically me. It is an extension of the energy that radiates from my core
Lauren Murray

My hair says that I am not afraid to be unapologetically me. It is an extension of the energy that radiates from my core, and it is the perfect accessory on my journey to continued dopeness. My hair grows upwards for a reason, and as it continues to reach new heights, I am elevated in my love for myself and all that I am offering to the world by the power of the fro.

What was your transitioning hair regimen?

So I had no idea how to take care of my hair at this time, and I bleached and fried my hair a lot. I wish I could say I had a solid regimen, but by it being in the pixie cut I was forced to keep it straight. Most times, I washed and conditioned it, and then flat-ironed her.

What is your current hair regimen?

  1. Shampoo: DevaCurl Decadence Shampoo
  2. Conditione: AG Cleansing Conditioner ( I use this for every wash day, and only shampoo my hair once a month, or whenever I have just used a ton of products for a particular style).
  3. Detangle: Aunt Jackie’s Knot On My Watch - Holy Grail right here!
  4. Style: Mielle Organics Babassu Curl Cream
  5. Refresh: Aunt Jackie’s Hair Milk mixed with a little bit of alkaline water in a spray bottle
  6. Pick: A super cheap one I picked up from Sally’s that I have lost countless times, yet it always finds it way back to me.

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

The biggest piece of advice I could give for your hair journey would be to let go of all comparisons as early as possible. When embarking into new territory, it is very easy to compare ourselves to what someone else has or how they style their hair. And then when our unfair expectations aren’t met, we can sink into a spiral of negative self-talk. Your curls are uniquely yours, and they will manifest beautifully as long as you treat them with respect, care, and lots of love. <3

How do you remain confident along your natural hair journey? Share your thoughts below!

Want more from Lauren? Follow her on Instagram @whatsuplauren_

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