I'm Tori and I was born and raised in New Orleans, LA (NOLA), but I currently reside in Memphis, Tennessee.
2. What is your hair type?
The Andre Walker hair typing system can be so interpretive; just when I think I've got my hair type figured out, it turns out to be something different. I may be 3B/3C, majority 3C, according to the link provided, however.
I was natural until 4th grade when I begged my mother for a perm so I could be more grown up. Since high school when I realized my relaxer combined with my lack of healthy hair practices was severely breaking and thinning my hair, I had a yearning to go natural so my hair would be healthy and super long again, but felt like I couldn't. I felt as if I wasn't allowed to (by society, I suppose). Well, one day several years later, I met up with an old friend who locked her hair and I expressed how much I liked it and how I wished I could do that with mine. She simply responded, "You can." Her answer stuck with me until a few months later in 2008 when I had an epiphany, "She's right! I can!" After that, I decided to transition, which I did for about 18 months, until I BC'd on Oct. 6, 2009.
4. What was the most challenging thing about going natural?
While transitioning, dealing with the two textures. I chose to blend my relaxed hair with my new growth by using braids, twists, and bantu knots so when it got humid - and for some inexplicable reason it was superhero humid that year - one texture would shrink up and poof while the other would look wet and fall limp. I looked like Mother Willow.
5. What is your weekly regimen?
I wash bi-weekly, alternating between a rhassoul & bentonite clay wash and co-washing with one of my favorite Suave Naturals conditioners.
I DC with either coconut milk, SN conditioner, or a mixture of greek yogurt, honey, & ACV bi-weekly as well.
I moisturize with either my Elixir (a combo of water, SN conditioner, and oils) or an herbal infusion (fresh rosemary, sage, and parsley with honey, coconut oil, and soybean oil) and seal with a whipped shea butter pomade I mix. Then, I braid or twist (whichever one my hair isn't rejecting) my hair for the night and style the next day.
6. What is your daily morning regimen?
I pretty much just remove my scarf, take a hot shower so the steam hits it, style my hair (if it isn't already in a style), and go. If I'm not going anywhere, I will sit there looking like Ms. Celie all day.
7. What is your daily night time regimen?
I tie my hair with a scarf. If necessary, I may spritz lightly and throw on a plastic bag for 20 minutes to replenish moisture beforehand. If my hair was in an out style, I pineapple loosely or put my hair in a loose bun.
8. Do you use heat on your hair at all?
Not really. Recently, I have tried using a hot wet cloth while deep conditioning, but I prefer just slapping a plastic bag on and letting it sit for a while.
I'm guessing we're talking about extensions. I used to do it whenever I felt like being bothered with them, but after noticing a pattern of split ends, I stopped. If we're talking about natural braids or twists, again, whenever I feel like taking the time to put them in so maybe, like, three times a year... ?
10. Wide-tooth comb or Denman brush?
I actually finger comb. Only every once in a blue moon will I break out the wide-tooth, but when I really need to go to work on some knots and tangles I pull out my Goody brand Denman knockoff ($3 on Amazon). I LOVE how quickly the tangles melt away, but I believe using my fingers on a regular basis is much gentler.
11. Is your hair normally loose or in a protective-do?
Nowadays, it's always in a protective style, save the first two days after I wash my hair or when I go out with friends.
12. Have you ever had a hair tragedy? What was it? How did you recover from it?
Yes, yarn braids! Smh. I LOVE them, but I seemed to always to end up having to cut 2 - 3 inches of incomplete splits after taking them out. I had to come to grips with the fact that they were causing more harm than good, cut the damage, and suck it up. The last time I had breakage from yarn twists, I decided to stay away from extensions altogether and go into intensive protective styling mode.
13. What's your biggest tip for maintaining healthy or long hair?
Eat a healthy, balanced diet, drink lots of water, and leave your hair alone by tucking it away for a while.
14. Where can we find you online? (blog, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube etc)
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