The Naturalista: On Protective Styling

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This week, I’m excited to feature my friend Wendy! She is one of my sister’s closest friends, and has had natural hair for close to 2 years now. She talked to me about how she maintains her braids and keeps them looking fresh, while keeping my hair underneath healthy.

Name: Wendy Lydwina

Dream Job: Be SELF EMPLOYED

Fave spots In Kampala: Mythos, Bistro, Dilish (they have amazing ice-cream). Am basically a foodie

Passionate about: Family, Friends and Music

Currently listening to: Michael Jackson (all his albums), Lauryn Hill

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Where it all begun…

My hair is soft and a bit curly (I never had problems combing it when it was younger). What I didn’t like about it was the fact that it’s naturally off-black (and I got teased a lot about it; the kids at school would say I had kwashiorkor!) Lol! I also didn’t like the hair shrinkage and the first chance I got, I had it permanently straightened.

In 2014 (don’t remember what month exactly), I un-braided my hair; it had so much growth. I compared my natural hair texture to that of my retouched hair and my natural hair was thicker healthier and felt more real. And that’s when a very good friend of mine (read your sister) and I-after several deliberations, decided to go natural. She along the way abandoned our natural hair journey and went back to straight hair. Ha ha ha! But she’ll be back!

I however haven’t looked back. I love my natural hair because I can do so many things with it and it’s now that I realise my hair colour REALLY matches my skin tone. Plus I don’t have to tint it -how cool is that!! 🙂

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About Protective Styling and how she maintains her braids…

BRAIDS – BIG BRAIDS

I like that whatever length, you can style and accessorize big braids anyway you like. When they get old, they still look so good. Plus big braids don’t cause any hair breakage whatsoever especially at the hair line.

To keep my hair healthy I stopped oiling it (my friends told me your scalp should be able to create its own oils as long as you keep it clean. And no oiling has actually taken away my dandruff).

Also ensure that you wash and condition your hair even when it is braided.

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Natural Oils she loves…

Pure Shea butter- makes your hair thicker

Pure Olive Oil- will make your hair shiny, remove impurities and makes it stronger

Pure Coconut oil- makes your hair softer and curlier

Products She’s Currently Using…

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Kera care, Mizani

Curls Unleashed, Shea Moisture

On whether there’re any moments of doubt about her natural beauty…

No, not anymore… Not after I learnt that I did not have kwashiorkor. LOL!

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Her top 5 favourite things about protective styling

  1. When am late to work, I can go as it is and style it when I get to work
  2. It looks good on just about every outfit (this is key)
  3. I save up a lot when it’s braided
  4. It has helped tremendously with thickening my hair
  5. Most importantly, I look good with braids (my selfies are testament to this; otherwise I would not have braids. Lol!)

The comments from her family, friends and colleagues…

Well most people don’t get it. They ask questions and make comments like;

“Why is your hair so shabby?”

“Do you think that’s a professional look?”

“I can’t have my hair that way, it’s so hard to manage.”

There have been some good reactions as well. People will tell you how good you look with your hair and will even ask for tips because they too want to go natural.

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Her hair goals…

I want my hair to grow really really long. I look forward to getting more volume… I want that mane.

Lessons from her natural hair journey…

Patience is key. And when you really want something, go for it despite what people might say, as long as it doesn’t affect you or them negatively; do you and be happy.

I hope you enjoyed this. What is your fave way to wear braids? How do you care for them? If you have any questions for the lovey Wendy, leave a comment below.

*Hugs

Karen

 

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