January 26, 2011

NaturalViews with Kia

Meet Kia

When did your natural journey begin? 

The seeds were planted September 26, 2008!  I was getting ready to get on the road with a friend of mine – Jewelee - to go to Nashville, but she wanted to get her hair done right before the trip, so we made a little detour to Synergi Salon.  She told me that she started going to see Karen Gary a few months earlier and she also shared Karen’s philosophy about encouraging her customers to wear their hair natural, but it just didn’t interest me.  It’s not like I was in love with my relaxed hair or anything – it’s just what I knew (Plus, I was super loyal to my current stylist; I’d been going to her since I was 12!).  While at Synergi, Karen talked to me a little bit about my hair – I had just had a touch up a few days earlier – but there was no sales pitch or pressure; just a conversation.  When we got to Nashville, we stayed with a friend of mine and I pumped her for information about the city because I have a serious desire to move there.  Of course the subject of hair came up and she said that she was so glad that she found someone who could really knew how to do her hair, “…because, you know, I don’t wear a relaxer.”  Well, no!  I didn’t know that!  It actually turns out that in all the years I’d known her, she’d never worn a relaxer.  I have no idea why that blew my mind, but it did; I mean, it’s not like I’d always worn a relaxer either.  We were all 5th graders at one point J  Her offhanded comment stuck with me through the Nashville trip, through the rest of the fall and into the winter.  Jewelee told me that Karen was going to hold a workshop to show you how to maintain your hair while working out some time in the near future, but I had already quietly made my decision to go natural.  I mean, why not, right?  I got my last relaxer December 30, 2008 and I can honestly say that I’ve never thought about returning.
What/Who inspired you to go the natural route?

My mom has always been natural, so I’ve had that example around for all of my life.  When I went to Karen’s workshop, I was encouraged by the 365 hair journey that she talked about, but after having to meticulously flat iron my hair for months to make the new growth blend in with the relaxed hair, I was so done.  I am lower than no maintenance; I’m no maintenance!  I shared my frustrations with a friend of mine who was also attempting to go natural using the 365 hair journey and to my surprise, she told me that she cut all of the relaxed hair out a few weeks earlier.  What?!  You can do that?!  When I followed in her footsteps and did the big chop, I feel like that’s when I was officially inspired to be natural.  I work backwards sometimes ;-)
How do you rock your natural?  (Curly, straight, locked, etc.) 

Curly.  I think I’ve worn my hair straight 4 times in the last year and a half.  In fact, I kind of hate wearing it straight because you get the inevitable “Oh, your hair is so pretty like that” or “You should wear it like that more often.”  As if the way I wear my hair normally isn’t already pretty!  Boo.  I like big, curly, in your face hair.  I think that it’s beyond amazing.  No one else has hair like we do and I want to flaunt it.  Style idols = Esperanza Spalding and Autumn (aka CurlyChronicles) on YouTube!

What is your current routine?  Do you change your routine according to the season? 

Hmm…right now, I’m alternating between braids/twist outs and Karen’s finger curl method with each wash.  I wash my hair about every 4 days with Shea Moisture’s Yucca & Baobab Thickening Shampoo and then I use Giovanni’s Direct Leave In Conditioner.  If I do the braid/twist out, I’ll use Miss Jessie’s Quick Curls (Sidebar: I really, REALLY do not like Miss Jessie’s products, but that one is a keeper) or I’ll use Shea Moisture’s Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Style Conditioning Milk along with Fantasia IC Hair Polisher Olive Styling Gel.  If I do Karen’s finger curl method, then I’ll use her mousse.  I don’t change my routine with the season, but I do change it according to my current length.  Pretty much, the longer and thicker it gets, the bigger twists and/or braids I use for styling.

Is there one product line that you have had great success with? 

What’s that saying?  “Everytime someone uses Giovanni’s Direct Leave In Conditioner, an angel gets its wings.”  That’s it, right?  Also, pure shea butter is the BUSINESS!  I don’t quite know how to use it without over saturating my hair yet, but it always feels, well, like buttah, when I happen to use it right.
What is the one thing you love about your hair? 

When I wore my hair relaxed, my favorite style was to roll it on perm rods when it was wet to get the tight, spiral look.  When I went natural, I found out that my curl pattern was very similar to that style.  That’s crazy!  I love that my hair is an adventure.

1 comment:

kaydensmum said...

You're hair is gorgeous!