Saturday, September 12, 2015

Introduce yourself! what's your name? where are you from? 
My name is Melissa and I live in Houston, TX by way of NYC and Atlanta, GA.

How would you describe your hair? What's your hair type? 
My hair is very thick but soft, and type 3.

When did you start your relaxed hair journey? What is your hair regimen? Share a few of your "go-to" hair products. 
I started my hair journey in December 2012 after a visit to the salon for a trim turned into a choppy cut.

I try to keep my regimen pretty simple: Firstly, I relax twice a year...I wash my hair once a week starting with a prepoo, followed by a DC, finished off with a cold water rinse and application of my leave-ins. I follow a strict moisture/protein balance alternating between moisture prepoo/light-to-hard protein DC’s and medium protein prepoo/moisture DC’s (using my hair steamer). I moisturize and seal nightly being sure to always wear a satin scarf or bonnet to bed. I use Design Essentials Natural Daily Moisturizing Lotion and seal with an oil mix I made of Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Jojoba Oil, Sweet Almond Oil, Avocado Oil, and Vitamin E Oil.

A few of my “go-to” hair products are ORS hair mayo as my medium protein that I use as a prepoo. This conditioner yields great results every time leaving my hair moisturized and strengthened. Nexxus Emergencee is another staple of mine. Over the course of 10 years, this hard protein treatment has always brought my hair back to life after every setback. Lastly, cold pressed 100% pure macadamia oil has been getting me through the humidity in Houston. I apply it to my hair as the last leave-in on wash day, and it prevents frizz, keeps my hair moisturized, but most of all it cuts my drying time in half.

What #1 hair tip you would pass on to other relaxed haired ladies who are starting their hair journey? 
Low manipulation hairstyles are key! Style your hair once a week on wash day in a style that requires little to no daily combing/brushing. This prevents breakage, excessive shedding, and just gives your hair a chance to flourish. Once I started keeping hair tools out of my daily regimen, I really noticed a difference in the health of my hair.

Nowadays it's becoming more uncommon to see relaxed hair or products geared towards relaxed hair. Do you feel the pressure to go natural? Why or why not? What are your thoughts on the natural hair movement?
I don’t feel the pressure to go natural per say, because I know what works for my hair in terms of my lifestyle. However, I do find that I am defending my decision to remain relaxed more often than I would like to. The majority of products I use now are geared towards natural hair, but as long as my hair likes it, I am unbothered by the marketing tactics.

I honestly feel like the natural hair movement is great from the standpoint of getting African-American women to invest more in caring for their own hair rather than spending hundreds of dollars on weave bundles. I’ve always loved to see women in my community strutting their stuff with hair they took the time to grow and care for themselves. Whether natural or relaxed, it’s all about maintaining the health of your hair. Natural hair doesn’t automatically equate to healthy hair.

Why do you choose to remain relaxed while many are transitioning back to their natural hair? 
I have A LOT of hair! My natural texture gets really dried out and frizzes up easily. Being relaxed offers me the ability to keep my thickness tamed making my hair more manageable for me. I exercise a few times a week i.e. run on trails, and I could not see myself washing my hair multiple times a week which would be required for my natural texture. If I were to transition back to natural, I would probably be addicted to direct heat styling tools, and my curl pattern would still be altered as with a relaxer. So, I choose to remain relaxed and limit direct heat usage, and it’s been working out quite well for me and my hair!

What do you absolutely love about your relaxed tresses? And why?
I absolutely love the versatility and manageability of my relaxed hair. I can rock any style I want depending on my mood because it doesn’t take much time to prep and style. From bone straight, to straight with body, curly to wavy, to just a smooth blow out look, the options are endless.

Let's Be Friends!!
Instagram: @Hairbymnm

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  1. Really good article. Her hair is beautiful.

  2. I absolutely LOVE @hairbymnm I follow her on IG and love her hair and haircare tips. She is one of my many hair inspirations. I'd love to see her create videos on YouTube one day.

    1. Thank you so much for the continued support...I would like to start a YT channel eventually, but I plan to start off with some quick vids on IG very soon.

  3. Replies
    1. Thanks for asking, but at the moment I do not. If you have an Instagram account, you can follow me @hairbymnm where I chronicle my hair journey.