What is your name, where are you from, and what do you do?
Jamila Kesi, from The Lou bwaha. I have a degree in Biomedical Engineering and don’t want to have anything to do with it. Alas, I’m preparing to go to grad school in a year for Prosthetics/Orthotics and just working and studying in the meantime! I’m more interested in the myriad of hobbies I have: knitting, sewing, drawing, writing, endless Tumblr scrolling, etc..
How long have you been natural?
Hmm, about 6 years now? No idea actually, haha.
What made you go natural?
My hair was thinning so badly! My hair is super fine and the relaxers made the situation much worse. It looked horrible. I decreased the frequency of relaxers from once a month to once every 3 months. I finally let them go freshman year of college simply because I couldn’t keep up with the two separate textures in Columbia, Missouri’s humidity.
How did your friends/family react to you going natural?
It wasn’t a big deal. My mom encouraged me to stop relaxing my hair but still expected me to keep my hair straight. She was slightly jarred with the puffy twistouts and passive aggressively let me know this by buying products and showing me more “sleek” natural styles. Friends thought my hair was cool and now that I have it figured out for the most part, they come to me for help with their natural hair.
What is your hair regimen? Favorite hair products?
Uhh regimen, right, I totally have one of those *insert emoji eyes*...Well the simpler, the better. In the summer, I do a lot of wash and go’s. I wear it down or pin it up in one of the two styles I know how to do. In the winter I mostly wear twistouts.
So, I’ll attempt to break it down:
Wash with Tresemme shampoo once a month – clarify with ACV any other time my hair has product build up
Deep condition once a week (Aussie Deeeeeep Conditioner)
Co-wash ehh anytime I feel like, usually when I want a fresh style; on average 3-4 times a week (Tresemme Naturals Conditioner or Trader Joe’s Tingle Tea Tree Conditioner)
To style, I do the LCO (Liquid, Cream, Oil) method with water, whatever cream I have handy and either coconut or grapeseed oil. (LOC method makes no sense to me; the oil seals out the cream)
Gosh I hope that wasn’t confusing.
How does your hair affect your career/lifestyle?
It doesn’t, and I won’t let it!
What is your favorite hairstyle, or protective style?
I loved my wash and go’s when I didn’t have heat damage! Wahhh. But I will always enjoy a nice twist-and-curl (flat twist with perm rods on the ends). I don’t do many protective styles (I know, I know :/ ) but buns are a good go-to for me.
How do you manage to retain length? Moisture?
I retain length by not manipulating my hair too much. For me, that means laying off of heat tools and finger detangling when I can. If I do use combs, I make sure to not pull my hair out.
To retain moisture, I make sure to apply a water-based product on my hair at least once a day and seal that in with one of my fave oils.
What advice can you give to those who are thinking about going natural?
Just go for it! Wearing your natural hair can be uncomfortable at first but is very rewarding when you stick with it. And if you find that you don’t like it after you try your best, you can always change it back. That’s the beauty of curly hair! You can be uniquely, beautifully, and unapologetically “you”.
Would you like to add anything else?
I love all queens! Hay Queen! <3
Are you on social media? If so, what are your handles?