1. What's your name and where are you from?
My name is Nika Ruffin. I am from Monroe, Louisiana. I currently live in Shreveport, Louisiana.
2. What is your hair type?
My hair type is 3c in the front, and 4a at the top and in the back. I also have low porosity hair.
3. When did you go natural and what made you do it?
I started out natural until the age of 10 yrs old. I got my first relaxer at the age of 11. I choose to return back to my natural tresses on September 24, 2011. I didn't like my relaxed hair because it was very, very thin. It never held a curl, and it would literally be stuck to my head from chemical burns. I hated that.
4. What was the most challenging thing about going natural?
The most challenging thing for me was finding the right products for my hair type. It seemed like everything I tried made my hair dry. I had to learn which ingredients my hair likes and doesn't like. I had to learn to not weigh my hair down with a lot of product because I have fine low porosity hair. It has been a challenge learning my hair, but I have enjoyed the journey of getting to know what works for my hair.
5. What is your weekly regimen?
My hair regimen consists of me doing a hot oil/deep conditioning treatment every week on Sunday using Shea Moisture Black Soap Purification Masque mixed with Olive Oil, Peppermint oil, and Tea Tree Oil followed by a clarifying cowash using VO5 Kiwi Lime Clarifying Conditioner. After I co-wash I use a leave-in conditioner by Giovanni Smooth as Silk Deeper Moisture conditioner or Kinky Curly Leave in conditioner. I use Eco Styler argan oil gel to lay my edges down. I always flat twist or regular two strand twist. I don't do wash n go's often because my curls get really tangled, and I get fairy knots. I choose to twist my hair in order to keep my hair stretched. Shrinkage is real!
6. What is your daily morning regimen?
Every morning I take my satin scarf off and I untwist my hair. I always add a little bit of almond oil for shine and then I fluff my hair and that's it. If my hair is in a low bun I take it down and fluff. I keep my regimen very simple.
7. What is your daily night time regimen?
At night I spritz my hair with water then I add a little bit of Kinky Curly leave in conditioner and I retwist my hair nightly. On the nights I don't feel like twisting I always put my hair in a low bun. I sleep in satin scarf.
8. Do you use heat on your hair at all?
Yes I flat iron my hair every 6 months to do a trim. I also sit under my hooded dryer for 30 mins whenever I do my hot oil deep treatment. You can find my Youtube video showing how I do my hot oil deep treatment here:
9. Do you braid your hair? If so, how often do you do so in a year?
I do braid-outs every now and then to give my curl pattern a different look. I like doing braid-outs once or twice a month.
10. Wide-tooth comb or Denman brush?
Neither. I prefer to finger detangle my hair because combs and brushes pull my hair out. I don't lose as much hair when I finger detangle.
11. Is your hair normally loose or in a protective-do?
I've never had a protective style. I normally wear my hair loose or in a high bun. I love to wear high buns whenever I feel I need a break from my hair.
12. Have you ever had a hair tragedy? What was it? How did you recover from it?
My low porosity texture didn’t take when I tried to lift my jet black hair to a lighter color. It did not lift at all. Only my roots turned a bright orange color, and the rest of my hair was still black. It was a total disaster. So I just dyed it back to black. I later learned that the only way to get rid of permanent jet black dye is to use bleach or let the black hair dye grow off then cut it.
13. What's your biggest tip for maintaining healthy or long hair?
My best hair tip is use a sulfate-free shampoo or just co-wash (conditioner only washing), don’t use a lot of heat, keep your hair trimmed when needed, keep your hair moisturized, keep your scalp clean, and your hair will grow.
My best hair advice to anyone who is considering going natural is to not let the negative opinions from others stop you. You will have people that don’t like your hair, but just let them know that you like it and that’s all that matters. When I did my big chop I had coworkers tell me they hated my hair, and now those same people are telling me they love my hair. People will always have negative opinions whether you are relaxed or natural. I pay them no mind. So if you are thinking about going natural go for it, and you won’t regret it.
14. Where can we find you online? (blog, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube etc).
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