Describe yourself in 20 words or less.
I’m Lakisha, affectionately called Kish-Kish by my loved-ones. I’m fun, outgoing and a hoot to be around!!
How long have you been natural and why did you chose to go natural?
I’ve been natural since 2002. Well, at least, that’s when I stopped subscribing to the creamy crack club. My last relaxer was May 2002 and I decided that it was time to give it up. My hair was over-processed and I would require touch-ups every 3 weeks, at least, that’s what I thought. See, I had this thing with super straight edges, if there was a wave, I was searching for my relaxer brush!
Did you transition or big chop?
I transitioned. I really don’t remember the transition process too much because, in the summer, I always wear my hair in mini twists or braids. So, the early days of my transition are really a blur. Plus, I hadn’t embraced my natural curl yet. I was still getting pressed out religiously. Every two weeks, there was a standing appointment with my stylist. It wasn’t until the summer of 2007 that I first wore my natural, non-pressed, non-braided/twisted hair out. And, as I reflect, I treated my hair HORRIBLE. I would comb it dry, have all kinds of breakage and shedding, grease my scalp, etc.
What is/was your biggest hair challenge/obstacle? How did you overcome it or what are you doing now to try to address the problem?
I think that my biggest hair challenge is trying to style my own hair. I just began to embrace my curly self, so to speak. Meaning, using products that are sulfate-free/organic, not using heat (or at least, not as much), not over-shampooing, etc. I’m one of those women that only touched my hair to pin it up or finger comb it out. Lol. So all this ‘hands-on’ styling and moisturizing is new. Add the fact that I’m addicted to YouTube videos and blogs and want to try EVERY style I see, and it poses yet another obstacle. But, I’m coping well as of late. I’ve stuck to setting my hair in a TnC and styling it however the wind blows … a headband one day, a pin-up another day and, if all else fails, my puff never lets me down. I’ll continue to be patient with myself and try different styles and see what works for me! I’m up for the challenge.
What do you love most about your natural hair and/or about being natural?
Wash and Go’s! And, the versatility that comes with being natural. I must admit, I’m not fully natural. I mean, I still color my hair (not sold on Henna yet). And I’m not against getting my hair pressed. I do that for special occasions and when I get my hair trimmed. I can’t wait until it gets cooler though, so I can try Bantu knot outs and roller set ponytails. They may replace my presses altogether.
What is your current regimen? Has it changed in any major way since you first went natural?
I shampoo my hair once a week and do a DC. I then massage my scalp with jojoba oil. The next steps depend on what style I’m going for. I still have yet to find the right sealer for my hair. I’m using the Shea Moisture hair mist currently.
What are your Holy Grail and staple products?
Shea Moisture Curl and Style Milk and Eco Styler Olive Oil gel! I like the SM Smoothie as well, but no matter when I use it, I get that flake issue that I haven’t been able to resolve. I think that once it’s gone, I won’t be replacing it. I would like to try some different products, but I haven’t gotten up the nerve yet.
What is your “go to” style?
My “go to” style is my wash and go. My motto is, “the bigger the better.” My wash and go never fails me. I just started protective styles. I only use them because I was watching my product wash down the drain every morning because of a failed style or a style that didn’t come out how I thought it should. So now, I do the TnC and use the pineapple method at night. It lasts me about a week, depending on how much messing in my hair I’ve done.
How often do you cut/trim your hair? How do you cut it (salon, DIY, straight, curly, in twists)?
I let my stylist tell me when I need a trim and I let her trim it. I’m nervous when it comes to scissors.
Has going natural impacted other areas of your life (i.e. health & fitness, style, environmental consciousness, etc.?) If so, how and in what ways has it affected your lifestyle?
I’m undertaking a full transformation: mind, body and spirit. The process has just begun.
Do you have a “hair crush?” If so, who?
Jill Scott. I know that most of her styles are wigs but the way her hair fits her face is fabulous. She’s my all around girl crush.
Who do you follow online?
I watch at least one YouTube video per day on hair. Lol! And, I have “liked” tons of people on Facebook whose hair stories I find interesting. I also follow a few blogs. I think my favorites are Curly Nikki and Hairscapades.
Where can we find you online?
I haven’t started my blog yet, but I am on Twitter. You can follow me @kishkish09.
What advice would you give someone who is contemplating going natural and/or becoming discouraged with their natural journey?
Research Research Research!!!! And be sure that you have the time and patience to devote to this life altering change.
Anything else that you’d like to add?
I’m thankful for the opportunity to share!
Have a HairStory that you’d like to share? Check out this page, select an interview category and send your story and pics to firstname.lastname@example.org!