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3 Black Women Share When They Started Loving Their Natural Hair

Every woman should honor her hair as sacred, but this especially applies to women of color. For many years, black women were told to hate their curly, kinky texture and to constantly heat style in order to live up to an outdated, European standard of beauty.

I’m thrilled to report that time is coming to an end. Women of color everywhere are fully embracing their natural hair. There are even brands out there that now completely champion texture and frizz (hi Bread Beauty Supply🙋🏽‍♀️). To keep the momentum going on this beautiful shift, I asked three real (and incredible) women of color to share when they started truly loving their natural hair. Read on below for what they had to share about their story, wash day routine and more.

(via Unsplash)

Jasmin Moses A.K.A. Slim Reshae

Jasmin Moses is an ambitious content creator you can catch on Instagram under the pseudonym Slim Reshae or on her podcast Uncut Gems With Slim. Her brand is built on the idea of fostering positivity through creative outlets and social media platforms. The goal behind the majority of her content is to take the complications out of beauty and lifestyle.

Mane Addicts: When was the moment you started truly loving your natural texture? 

Jasmin Moses: I started catering to my natural hair when I discovered hair tutorials on YouTube my freshman year of college. I remember when I achieved my first, popping Bantu knot out. I was in love and wanted to keep trying different hairstyles to enhance my natural hair. During college, I finally moved away from coloring my curls and straightening my hair which helped my natural hair flourish. Later in college, I hopped on the shaved head trend and shaved the sides of my head. Although it was super cute, my senior year I grew it out and my curls have been thriving ever since.

MA: What are your holy grail products when it comes to styling your natural hair?

JM: Hands-down, my go-to hair gel for wash and go styles is the Wetline Xtreme Gel. Every time I use it, my results are amazing. My most recent favorite brands are NeoCurly, Curl Daze Hair Care, Bumble and bumble, and Bread Beauty Supply. It’s always good to have a nice detangling brush and shampoo that gets out knots as well.

MA: Tell us a bit about your wash day routine.

JM: Lately, I’ve been going in with a moisturizing shampoo to clean my scalp. After shampooing, I deep condition and detangle. Detangling with conditioner in my hair has become the easiest way for me. Moving forward, after rinsing the deep conditioner out, I follow up with a leave-in and gel to style my wash and go. At this point, we are about halfway done. Drying my natural hair is what takes the longest during wash day. My favorite method is to sit under a hooded dryer and then stretch my hair with a blow dryer afterward. Last but not least, I’ll break my gel cast with hair oil, and then we’re done.

Leal Alexander

Leal Alexander is a curly-haired creative based in the U.K. who went natural in 2016 after almost a decade of relaxing, bleaching and straightening. She now happily embraces her natural coils and is a product junkie who’s passionate about helping others find their way to natural.

MA: When was the moment you started truly loving your natural texture? 

Leal Alexander: When I first went natural in April 2016 was when the love affair with my curls started. It’s a long journey and my feelings grew and grew as I became more familiar with my natural hair and how to care for it. I’ve never loved my hair more than I do now.

MA: What are your holy grail products when it comes to styling your natural hair? 

LA: I like to use Bumble and bumble’s Sunday Shampoo as my clarifying cleanser, it helps reset my curls when they’re feeling a bit built up. Use this sparingly, though, as it can be drying and curly hair doesn’t like that (I recommend once or twice a month). For detangling in the shower, I also use the Biolage HydraSource Conditioning Balm. It has great slip and I can be super heavy-handed since I have a big old tub of it.

My styling products change often as I’m always trying something new, but currently the combination I’m loving is the CURLS Blueberry Bliss Leave-in with their Curl Jelly. I also recommend a satin pillowcase and satin scarf for protecting your hair at night—it’s the key to preventing moisture loss and maintaining your wash and go style.

MA: Tell us a bit about your wash day routine! 

LA: My wash day routine is like a self-care ritual. It’s something I get to do by myself, for myself, at least once a week so I like to take my time and enjoy the process. The steps I follow are: cleanse (focusing on the scalp mainly), condition (whilst finger detangling) or deep condition, style (I like to finger rake my styling products with my hair in sections) and dry. 

If I have time I’ll deep condition my hair for an hour before styling, this helps strengthen my hair and add an extra boost of moisture. I usually deep condition every other week. On warm days, I’ll air-dry otherwise I’ll blow-dry/diffuse my curls. It’s quicker and I find I get more volume this way!

Lesley Buckle

Lesley Buckle is a beauty and fashion content creator and model with a passion for hair care. She initially started a blog about caring for relaxed and afro hair that later morphed into working on content for brands like ASOS, Estée Lauder and L’Oréal on a regular basis.

MA: When was the moment you started truly loving your natural texture?

Lesley Buckle: It took me a very long time to get to this place as chemicals were used on my hair from a very young age. Growing up, I didn’t ever see anyone that looked like me and if I did, they usually wore their hair straight or had loose, textured hair so that just seemed like the norm.

It wasn’t until I started a blog about my hair in its relaxed state that I started to wonder what it would be like if I left it naturally curly. It took about 18 months to transition and for the first year, I found it really difficult to adjust to my texture. Gradually, I grew more confident with it and started to love my natural hair.

MA: What are your holy grail products when it comes to styling your natural hair?

LB: Brands I know I can always rely on are Bouclème, Aveda, Dizziak and Design Essentials. For conditioning, I love the Bouclème Conditioner and Intensive Moisture Treatment, Aveda’s Nutriplenish Intense Conditioner and Dizziak’s Deep Conditioner. For styling, I love Design Essentials’ Honey Curl Forming Custard and Curls’ Passion Fruit Curl Control Paste. Basically, my hair loves anything that’s hydrating—preferably without silicones or too much oil.

MA: Tell us a bit about your wash day routine! 

LB: I keep it really simple most of the time by shampooing and deep conditioning. My hair needs a lot of moisture so I rarely just put conditioner in and rinse straight away—I give it time to sit and work. If my hair needs more, I might use a hot oil treatment before shampooing which makes my hair feel so smooth. After washing, I usually use a leave-in and then something to give my hair a little hold before diffusing with a blowdryer.

Curious about the history of the box braid? Look no further! We’ve got you covered HERE.

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