Curly Q of the week presents Kalea Lucas, a business major at the University of Cincinnati. Lucas has been a naturally curly girl all of her life. Growing up with a mother who rocked her natural hair on a daily basis, she never saw fit to chemically relax or alter her daughter’s curl pattern. That is not to say it was easy growing up curly. Lucas remembers countless times of struggle when she would have to deal with the thicker and curlier pattern her mom was not used to handling. When asked what her favorite products to use were, Lucas says, “I really like Shea Moisture to maintain my curls. Their Coconut and Hibiscus Curl Enhancing Smoothie is my favorite. I also like to use Jamaican castor oil on my scalp. When I do a wash-n-go, I use Shea Moisture’s Strengthen, Grow, and Restore Leave-In Conditioner.” Lucas mostly likes to style her hair in a twist out. In the colder, winter months though she says,”I try not to do a lot of wash-n-gos. I mostly leave my hair up in a bun.” Lucas’ piece of advice for all curly haired girls is, “I love my hair now but when I was younger I was so obsessed with perfecting it. I also wanted my curls to look a specific way, and when they didn’t I would get really upset. So, I would just say that no matter what your curl pattern is, or how you rock your hair, just love what you’ve got!”
Tis the holiday season! You might have last minute shopping to do and have absolutely no idea what to get your naturalista. Here’s my gift to you, a gift guide to minimize the holiday stress when it comes to gifting your curly haired friend or family member.
1. Decorative bobby pins or clips
You cannot go wrong with a beautiful hair accessory like these from Elle’s line at Ulta. These make for the perfect touch to almost any hairstyle whether it’s a wash and go or a twist-out.
2. Kinky Curly Gift Set
This Kinky Curly gift set from Curlmart is perfect for winter. This time of the year, hair can become dry and brittle without proper care. Curlmart’s gift set is the perfect winter concoction; it was designed to lock in moisture while the tempetures are cold.
Headwraps are the perfect protective style for the winter. The Wrap Life provides a wide range of wraps coming in many different patterns and colors. There’s also an array of video tutorials on the website, as t the many different ways you can tie up your scarf. Wraps not only will protect a naturalista’s hair, but it’ll also keep her head warm during the winter!
4. Satin Pillowcase
A natural hair must! A satin pillowcase will protect any naturalista’s hair throughout the night. Natural Hair Shop has a nice selection of colors to choose from that any naturalista will appreciate.
5. Naturalista T-shirt
Dearnaturalista has the perfect t-shirts for naturalista’s. The t-shirts boast phrases such as “DON’T TOUCH THE HAIR” or “BIG HAIR BIG DREAMS.”. This gift will be great for any naturalista; you simply cannot go wrong with a t-shirt.
Once again, winter is approaching and that means that hair is at risk for becoming dry. Why not buy conditioner? Whether you know your naturalista’s favorite conditioner or not Target has an abundant supply or hair products made specifically for African American hair. Find the African American hair aisle and have a ball!
7. Oils, Oils and more oils!
Coconut, lavender, chamomile, rosemary, tea tree, and many more oil options! I’m sure any naturalista would appreciate some oil for their hair. Just be sure to look into the benefits of the oils before you gift this gift. You would not want to buy your naturalista myrrh oil if he has extremely oily hair.
Hair Flair’s Curlformers are a good way to achieve curls without heat. The Curlformers come in an array of sizes and types of curls.
9. Bobby pins
Naturalistas go through a lot of bobby pins, so why not buy them more? You can never have too many bobby pins! Sally’s beauty supply is a good place to go for some quality level bobby pins.
Curly Q of the month is the name of a new monthly feature of a curly haired gal or guy on the University of Cincinnati’s campus. We’ll look into all types of curl patterns, learn individual’s tips and tricks, possibly find some new style inspiration! If you’d like to be featured, please email the Editor-In-Chief of UC Curly in College, Niyah Jackson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Diamond Benford, who also happens to be one of my close friends, is an 18-year-old, first year student at the University of Cincinnati, majoring in Psychology.
Diamond has been rocking her natural curls for a while now, and uses Cantu products to keep her hair nice and healthy.
“I especially love the Cantu shampoo, conditioner, moisturizer, heat protectant, and curling cream,” Diamond exclaims. “It gives my hair a soft texture, and a natural shine.”
“I love how low maintenance my hair is. For example, I don’t have to do anything to it for a few days, and one day be able to wake up, put some moisturizer in it, and it looks great!” Diamond also states that there’s some struggles to having such luscious curls. “I think the hardest part of maintaining my curly hair is how thick it is, and how easily it gets tangled.”
A couple of Diamond’s go to hairstyles are flat twists to curl her hair, or simply rocking two puff balls. “Curls are life!,” Diamond declares with a flip of her hair.
Name, College, Graduation Year
Hi! My name is Ivie Enoma and I am a proud Marketing major at Temple University set to graduate in Spring 2016!
When did you go natural? Did you big chop or transition?
This is actually my second time going natural! The first time, I transitioned for 8 months before big chopping. That was in the summer of 2009. I was natural up until September 2013. I got a relaxer and transitioned once again for about 11 months. I big chopped in August 2014 and here I am again 1 year and 4 months post relaxer!
What was the one deciding factor that made you go natural?
The first time I went natural, I wanted to do something different with my hair. I am pretty tender-headed so I was experiencing a lot of burns and sores from relaxers and I was fed up with it. I hated everything about the relaxing process and did not want to continue my discomfort. The second time I went natural, I wanted to start all over again. After experiencing with a lot of color, heat and just not properly caring for my hair, my hair health had fallen greatly. My curls were limp and frizzy and I hated it. So I got a relaxer to transition and go natural once again. This time I would keep my hair healthy and I am successfully doing so!
How has your perception about yourself, and others, changed since you’ve been natural?
Now that I have short hair again, I definitely look a lot older than I actually am and that occasionally gets to me from time to time but my perception of others has not and will never be affected by a choice that I make for myself regarding how I choose to look.
Have people approached or treated you differently with natural hair?
Not really. I just have this one sorority sister who loves my hair texture. She always plays with my curls whenever I do my hair and I love it. Other than that,I have noticed that I get a lot more compliments when my hair is straight which is ironic to me because I’m not a big fan of straight hair.
What is your favorite part of your hair routine?
I love washing my hair to bits! It’s the most relaxing part of my routine and I look forward to it throughout the week. Call me weird but I love it!
What are your top 3 must have hair products?
Definitely a conditioner with tons of slip to make dentangling a breeze, a great leave-in-conditioner and some type of sealant. I like to use Herbal Essence’s Hello Hydration, Oyin Handmade’s Hair Dew and raw shea butter.
What are your top 3 favorite hair tools?
Other than my basic comb and soft bristle brush, I have the Hair Therapy Cordless Turban that I like to warm up and use for deep conditioning.
Who is your current #MCM and #WCW?
My Man Crush Mondays are constant and cannot be limited to one man! I will forever and always fall head over heels for Idris Elba, Seung-Hyun Choi (T.O.P) and Charles Michael Davis. I have a ton of other side baes but those 3 will always be my top #MCM. My #WCW changes constantly but right now I am totally in love with NaYeon (@Naye0na on IG) because her makeup skills are incredibly enchanting!
My name is Chekaylah Bradley. I attend Troy University and plan to graduate in 2018. I went natural in 2009, but unlike the decision of most people to do the big chop, I transitioned. I decided to go natural because my hair was breaking off from the perm that I had at the time. Although I only had the perm for two years, it did more harm than good to my hair.
Since I have been natural, I have naturally built a lot of self-confidence within myself. I was used to having longer straight hair before I went natural, so I had to get used to the shorter kinky textured hair. The perception I have of myself has changed as a result of my increased self confidence. This, in turn, has helped me support others more.
My confidence has allowed me to shake off all of the negativity that has come my way. I have not had the experience of being treated differently because of my natural hair, but I have experienced the negative opinions of those who do not care for natural hair. The negativity does not just come from people who are complete strangers to me, but also from those who are close to me.
Maintaining natural hair is not an easy task. It it takes time and patience. However, I really enjoy styling my hair because it gives me the opportunity to experiment with different styles and find out what works best for me. In my hair regimen I must have the Tresemme Naturals Nourishing Moisture Conditioner, Shea Moisture Curling Gel Souffle, and Olive Oil. Although I do not use combs and brushes often, I like to use flexi rods, CurlFormers, and a lot of bobby pins.
My current Man Crush Monday is Troy Polamalu and my Woman Crush Wednesday is MahoganyCurls. They both have beautiful natural hair.