1. How long have you been Natural?
1.5 years (I'm 42 this year).
2. Why did you become Natural?
I was tired of relaxing my hair and I went through many periods of my hair looking fabulous and then getting it damaged by some stylist. Or when the new growth came in I like it better than the straight thin mess I often had. I did find a very great stylist eventually but I was still spending a crazy amount of money and spending a lot of time. I always knew I'd go natural again. (I went natural when I was 29, then relaxed again)
3. Was it a hard transition? How did you transition?
I chose to transition with sew in weaves. I cut my hair short in a cute style and only the top was relaxed but it got in that "in between stage" so I weaved it up. The only word of caution about sew in weave transitioning is make sure the weave IS NOT TOO TIGHT. I have spot at the top of my head where my hair is shorter due to damage from being pulled as well as my edges. I must say the day I took it out and went to my corporate job the next day, NOBODY blinked, I think because I was always wearing my hair different they didn't know what to say LOL, but it felt good. I didn't experience any negativity and my boyfriend was all for me going natural and he loves it.
4. Did your age aid in your decision to go Natural?
Not really, but being over 35 really let me just be me and not be too concerned about what other people would think.
5. Does your age make it easier or harder to be Natural?
I don't know, but I wish I had done it when I was younger because my hair seemed thicker and stronger back then, but I feel like since I stopped the 'creamy crack' my hair is getting back to being thick and strong. So not easier or harder...it's like when you start working out your like wow I could have felt this good 10 or 20 years ago!
6. Do you see many Older Naturals in your area? If so, what styles are they sporting?
Well not sure if they are over 35 but it seems there are many ladies at my church that are natural. Twist outs, dreads, sisterlocks, natural curls, curly fros... I see quite a bit of styles that inspire me to try new styles.
7. How do you primarily wear your Natural hair?
Twist out all over or partial twists and the back out. My front is shorter as I just cut a lot of damaged and relaxed ends since I was wearing the front of my hair out when I had the sew in weave. Towards the end I wore my hair out in the front (crimped) to match the curly weave (can you say heat damage!!)
8. Favorite products and/or product line?
Shea butter mixed with essential and carrier oils for my twist out (got the main idea from Naptural 85 on YouTube), Kinky Curly Knot Today, Desert Essence Grape and Coconut they smell soooooo good! Haven't tried too many products as of yet since my hair is still growing. I read the labels and look at ingredients alot now.
9. Any words of wisdom or encouragement for other Older Naturals already Natural or thinking about it?
As I'm getting older I feel like the Lord is telling me to be wiser and that means taking better care of myself. For me that also means thinking about my head of hair. I'm careful about what I use on my skin and I think I should be the same about my hair. Many may feel they aren't young or bold enough to be natural but it's not a fad, its a choice of how you want to wear your hair. I think being natural is just a choice to make when you're ready. Once you do, try new things, pay attention to how your hair reacts and have fun! It's just hair :)
I appreciate Teca sharing with us and am very happy to have another Natural from the National Natural Hair Meetup Day in Denver to be featured on my blog! I love having Naturals in Denver, but it feels even better when they are in my age range. Her hair is gorgeous and I love how she shared her story of heat damage. So many of us have been there! Her smile is infectious and it looks so good with her hair.
Don't forget I'm always looking for women thirty and over to share their Natural hair story with us.
Take care Naturals,