1) What’s your name and where are you from?
Eleanor, but most of my friends call me El. I am a Ugandan-Kenyan currently living in Switzerland.
2) Describe your hair a little (eg. hair porosity, hair type, hair texture, hair density, personality, etc).
I have 4C type hair with medium density and low porosity. I am still building a relationship with my hair.
3) How long have you been natural?
7 years on and off. I gave up for 6 months and got my hair relaxed. Regretted it, cut it and started all over again.
4) Why did you decide to go natural?
Initially, it was because I was going to study for my masters and didn’t want the hassle of looking for a salon to relax and treat my hair. I have never been sentimental about hair and always experiment on it. The second time I did the chop was because I loved how flexible I could wear my natural hair. That was 4 years ago and I have never looked back.
5) What was the hardest thing about returning natural?
No matter how many YouTube videos I watch, I just feel like my hands do not cooperate with my hair. So my styles are limited to the top bun and having twist outs.
7 years in, I am still learning which products are best for my hair. I will eventually learn. I hope it will not be on my 25th hairversary…LOL
6) What does your hair regimen comprise of?
At the moment, it is protective styles. So braids or if I do not have braids, I have twist outs and wrap it. I usually oil my scalp every other day using Jamaican mango and Lime Black castor oil.
On wash days, I usually start with my hair in 4 sections and a pre-poo using coconut oil, followed by the Cantu shampoo and conditioner. Every other wash day I will also include a mask using the Kentaro AvoGhee Hydrating Deep Conditioner
Once my hair is washed and damp, I proceed to do twist outs with the LOC method using water, castor oil and Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie.
I have tried to use different products along the way but feel that these are the best for my hair.
7) What do you love most about your hair?
The fact that I do not have to spend hours or days thinking about it. If I don’t like the look, I simply have to wash and start over with a new look. Also, I am not really limited to one look. Although my styling is limited, I love how I can do many different looks with twist outs alone.
8) What do you dislike most about your hair?
I wouldn’t say dislike, but I wish it didn’t shrink much. If I have my hair out and get home late, I have to plait it before bed to avoid the boyish look and the tangled-up hair I will have to deal with in the morning.
9) Which 3 products do you swear by?
Cantu shampoo and conditioner and the Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie. Apart from the amazing smell of these products, they do the job of getting the hair clean and detangled without much stress.
10) What are your top 3 hair tips?
I. Hair grows back, have as much fun with it when you can. Bleach, color and dye it as you wish. I believe the way you carry your hair is an expression of your personality.
II. Hydrate. Not just your hair during your regimen but also drink plenty of water. We have heard time and time again the benefits of drinking water and it’s for a reason. Water is life.
III. Find what works for you. There are so many informative blogs and videos out there. You learn best about your hair by constantly pushing and trying to do it yourself.
11) Any encouragement for rookie naturals?
Once you go natural, you never go back. I haven’t met anyone that transitioned from relaxed to natural hair and decided that relaxed hair was better. Will you have doubts? Damn right you will. But at the end of the day, remember why you started the journey & look at the versatility of natural hair, the things it can do that relaxed hair will never do. Keep learning and trying. At the end of the day, once you have done your best, I know you will have beautiful hair to show for it.
12) Where can people find you online (Instagram/YouTube/Facebook, etc.)?
IG – @aboutseptember