Rocco’s Still Going Strong

Finally, today I gave Rocco the attention he’d been missing for the past two weeks. Sundays are my wash days but last week was my boyfriend’s birthday and I didn’t leave enough time to get Rocco washed so I put him up in a high bun and there he stayed… for the next week.

Today I gave him a steam, did some major detangling, got rid of plenty of shed hair, and gave him a good scrub. He’s now moisturized and up in twists. I haven’t been blow drying my hair after washing it lately. I think it’s probably been a good 8 weeks since I’ve last blow dried my hair. It makes for longer twists, and fluffier twist outs but I don’t mind not using heat on my hair for a while and skipping the blow drying saves me quite a bit of time as well.

I really don’t think about Rocco and my hair that much anymore. It’s sort of been absorbed into my life. It’s no longer ‘new’. It’s definitely fun, but it’ now has its place in my life and I know how to make my hair shine and dance and it’s great. Actually, I realized I’ll be 3 years natural in two months. I’m smiling now that I think about it because I can see my face now sitting in that chair. I remember how I felt, I remember the uncertainty and anxiety of my hair falling to the floor and the buzz of the razor. I also remember loving the little curls as they sprouted from my scalp. I remember the ease of wash days and the way I checked my length at certain points, always surprised by its progress.

My hair is now well past my chin and past my collar bone. I know it’s time for a trim with the number of fairy knots I encounter but… at the same time… I’m so happy by how comfortable I am with my hair. With myself. I’ve come quite a ways from my days of buying hair relaxer at London Drugs, putting on my gloves and getting to it. I dreaded each occasion but was happy once it was done. But it never lasted. I’d be right back there 10 weeks later, my scalp burning, my hands covered to protect them from the chemicals and I know I’m in a better place now. I know my hair and scalp are thanking me and I know this is me. Unashamed, free, me.

Cheers Rocco!

Kinky TRESSES: Meet Ndeshi

I’ve been featured on Black Zulu. Just wanted to say thanks to Nekisha for this great piece!

Black Zulu

As promised, this week’s Kinky TRESSES: takes us across the globe to meet fellow natural hair blogger – Ndeshi, who currently resides in Canada. She is a Zambian-born natural beauty who started her hair (re)discovery journey in early 2012.

Tell us a bit about yourself and the life of your hair before going natural.

I grew up in a small town in northern British Columbia, Canada. As a kid my mom would do my hair. I spent hours at her feet, head bent this way and that way as she hot combed, braided, twisted and cared for my hair. After my first relaxer at around 9 years old, I would relax my hair infrequently. Having a small black population they didn’t have very much available for our hair so when my dad went out of town we would get him to bring us hair products. When I moved away at…

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Two Years Natural

HAPPY BIRTHDAY ROCCO!

I just want to take a moment to say.. TWO YEARS?! Holy wow. It doesn’t seem that long ago that I was getting my hair buzzed off. I wasn’t sad to see my fragile, broken strands swept away but I was sad I didn’t have a scarf to keep the cold air off my newly exposed neck.

There are going to be so many photos in this gig. I need to one-up my one year anniversary post. Plus there’s going to be some cameos from my Big Chop buddy! My momma!

Rocco: The Early Years

I think my hair had better things to do than grow when I was younger. Legit. My hair follicles were unproductive. I rocked a mean TWA until I was like 4… and then I rocked a fluffy ‘fro. My hair took its sweet time to make an appearance and I wasn’t wearing cornrows or braids until I was about 5 or 6. No biggie. My hair had other things to do, I get it.

Throughout school I wore my hair in braids, corn rows, we hot combed my hair *cringe*, I got my hands on a curling iron and I rocked rolled out bangs like nobody’s business. Around 9 I got my first relaxer. One lady in town relaxed my hair, but it was pricey so I didn’t go very often and they didn’t sell boxed relaxers where I lived. In between I mostly flat ironed it and occasionally wore box braids.

When I moved away for college I was loving that I had access to more hair products so I relaxed my hair and then got it cut at salons. I’ve only ever had maybe two good hair cuts and one of them was at a salon in the mall. Michael only charged me $7 as a ‘bangs cut’. I tipped him well. But when I went back for another cut he was gone. *sob*

After a couple of years I realized this life was no longer for me. Now I know I wasn’t taking the best care of it. I didn’t deep condition it and I flat ironed it like crazy. After straightening it I would have a collection of matchstick strands surrounding me. Rocco was not in good shape.

I had a wise idea of trying to get it sorted out at a local hair salon. My hair dresser had no idea what he was doing and decided to wing it (and I foolishly let him). You can bet I wore my hood up leaving that salon. A couple of weeks later I lopped it all off. Two years later, here I am.

Natural Days

I still stand by the fact that my TWA was the most freeing period in all of my hair history. Washing was easy, drying was easy, moisturizing was easy. There was no detangling, no combing, no SSKs, no major bed prep. There was no blow drying, no teasing and no straightening. I barely had to do jack shit. I slept with a satin cap, and for my 6 am runs I whipped it off, suited up and was out the door. It was sooooo eeeeeasy!!! #sospoiled

Why Am I Still Natural?

This hair of mine is versatile. Sure, there are days when my hair is dry, tangled, uncooperative and makes me wanna just put a hat on. This tuft up there is so unique it makes me happy. When someone says, your hair would be so long if you straightened it. Sure, I could straighten it but then what would I do with it? It would just sit there. I feel as though my natural hair allows me to be creative and get funky and have fun with it. I find my hair matching my mood and it gives me that extra kick of funky charm 😉

Not to mention the community. The online support, suggestions, finding your hair twin, making your own hair products, tweet chats, finding a product your hair loves, this is all gold people. The encouragement, the helpful suggestions, the conversation surrounding natural hair can be so positive and so uplifting and so inspiring. You’re never alone on your journey and you’re always learning.

Rocco’s 2 Year Length Check

I find myself forgetting to do length checks. But that’s because this is just my hair now. It’s less of an experiment in hair growing and more, this is my hair. But since it has been a while I’m excited to see how Rocco’s been doing length wise.

Front:

I’m looking at about 8 inches all round. I’m not mad at that. My ends could use some dusting this spring but otherwise. Thanks for reading!! Have a great Friday!

Rocco’s Previous Milestones:

9 months natural
8 months
6 months
My natural hair story

Two Years Tomorrow! Just Saying Hi

Things are happening!

I so wanted to have a video up for you by now but I have great news — I went for an interview yesterday and was offered a job! A full-time job! It pays really well but there’s a commute and it starts tomorrow! Well, orientation is tomorrow, but my job starts on Monday! So I’m really jumping feet first into the whole scheduling, lunches, meals, appropriate bedtime for a good nights sleep, hair styling that quick, easy and gentle on my hair. I would love to throw up a video right now… but I have to write my notice for my foundation job, do some housekeeping for them and get to the store for lunch/snack supplies. But I did manage to fit in a run today and dropped off a caramel macchiato for a friend at her work.

Ok so here it is! My video!

I Wanna Chat With You!

Hey everyone,

My natural hair anniversary is sneaking up on me and I’m going to put out a little vid fun. So I wanted to put out an offer, if you have any questions about my natural hair journey or about your natural hair journey or you’re my hair twin and want to know what I do with my hair or what I use… send me an email, tweet, or just say hi! That’s cool too. I would actually love to hear from you all. I’ve been blogging since May 2012 so that anniversary is coming up as well but in general… yeah I just want to hear from you. If I can answer your questions, cool, or I’d love to just discuss some topics. I’ll leave that to you 🙂

email: curlypotential@gmail.com

twitter: @CurlyPotential

Q 1 – From Isle of Azure: Do you do twists? If yes, how do you daily maintain them? What do you love about being natural?

I loooove twists. I like to put my hair in mini twists on wash days and wear them for two weeks. At some point during the two weeks I’ll take the twists out and wear a mini-twist-out. I like that I can style my hair as though its loose, but that my hair is still together which allows for less tangles/knots.

To maintain them I first prep them by running some curl enhancing smoothie in them before I twist them up. On the ends I’ll use shea butter. Throughout the week if I feel they need some moisture, I can spritz the ends with water, or steam the ends, and rub some coconut oil throughout and seal with shea butter.

I love that natural hair is my own. My most recent adventure with extensions made me realize that I actually just prefer my own hair. Natural hair is so so so so versatile. You can have 50 naturals in a room and they can all have different styles. It’s amazing!

Q 2 – From An Afrikan Butterfly: Length retention. What’s your approach? Like what part of your regimen/ hair life do you think helps you retain length the most?

If I can keep my hair low on knots and breakage, I can trim my hair less. If I can style my hair in a way that I can leave it for a couple of weeks, I can let it do its thing. I don’t see split ends in my hair. I do see single strand knots however and those tend to get caught on each other resulting in tangles and frustration. To curb that, every once in a while, as needed, I will dust my ends. I think I did that twice last year.

As far as length retention, I try and keep my regimen and products simple and while I do use a comb and brush, I try and be gentle and I don’t force either tools through my hair. If I’m at the point where I’m using a brush or comb then that means I’ve already detangled. But in general, I like to set my hair up with low manipulation styles that I can keep in for a while.

Also, I don’t know if this adds to it, but the only heat I use is blow drying twice a month and not very much. I don’t aim to get my hair pin straight when blowdrying, more just stretched before putting in my twists. I’m curious about flat-ironing it but I’m also terrified of heat damage!

My New Route For Protective Styling

I like protective styles. They save me time on styling and prep. But I have to say I don’t think I’ll be doing protective styles with extensions in the near future (if at all).

Growing up I used to love getting box braids. Used to love swinging my hair around like a boss. Used to have fun with styles and ponytails and buns and all that good stuff.

I bought extensions over a year ago so I could put my hair away and let it rest while wearing some length. I wore twists for a month last March and I recently put them in mid-February.

I lasted two weeks.

It wasn’t that I missed my hair. I just wasn’t a fan of the extra weight. I only wore it in a bun on the top of my head to get it out of the way. I tried to wear it in a bun at ponytail level but it just pulled on my hair and gave me an instant headache. Not cool. My shower caps were plastic bags and hats were no longer an option.

As impromptu as I had put my twists in, after 45 minutes they were out again. It’s never fun to see the shed hair that’s lost but I made sure my hair was well taken care of after that. I steamed my strands, coconut oil pre-poo’d, washed, deep conditioned, lightly blow dried and put in mini twists and I am much happier.

I love that the length I looked for from extensions I’m slowly making my way towards with my own hair. My hair in twists now touches my back. I can swing it around the way I loved to and I can pin it up and style it. I think my protective styles from here will really be just with my own hair. It’s capable of a lot and that makes me happy because you know what? That’s all because of me! I’m the one to thank for my hair’s health and in the nearly 2 years since I’ve gone natural Rocco has come a long way and so have I.

HNB MEETS: NDESHI

Thought I would take a sec to share my feature here on Hey Natural Beauties from a couple of weeks ago 🙂

A Beauty Cultivated

This week on HNB MEETS: we speak to natural beauty Ndeshi who shares her pictures and parts of her hair regimen with us, she also talks to us about going natural.

T

1.Tell us a bit about yourself and the life of your hair before going natural.

I grew up in a small town in northern British Columbia, Canada. As a kid my mom would do my hair. I spent hours at her feet, head bent this way and that way as she hot combed, braided, twisted and cared for my hair. After my first relaxer at around 9 years old, I would relax my hair infrequently. Having a small black population they didn’t have very much available for our hair so when my dad went out of town we would get him to bring us hair products. When I moved away at 20 I had access to all sorts of…

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