Today’s feature is our sorority sister Tiffany. Her beautiful hair is almost waist length. As hard as it is to believe her inner beauty actually outshines the outward! Catch up with the gorgeous Tiffany below:
When did you decide to go natural and why?
I went natural in 2004. Initially it was because I was a college student and didn’t have time or money to get relaxers. I had about 2 inches of new growth and didn’t have any issues straightening it. This was a little before the days of it being an “I am woman, hear me roar” movement to go natural. I just wanted the most minimal approach to doing my hair. I thought to myself, “why get them if I don’t need them?” That was the end of that!
Describe your hair.
I think that I have all of the curl types: waves, swaves, loose coils, curls – you name it and I’ve got it. More importantly, there’s a lot of it! It’s all over the place! It’s taken me a long time to accept that fact because it makes styling a challenge. What I’ve learned is that I have to just be patient with my hair and accept the styles that work well for me. Usually, those are styles that require very little manipulation to my curls – they just want to be left alone – and I can’t blame them!
Do you have a hair routine?
I’m a fairly free spirit, so I can’t say that I would call what I do a routine. I literally wash it and t-shirt dry with leave in conditioner. I might defuse if I have time and I might use a denman style brush to create more structured curls. Those might depend on the time I have in the morning. My hair gets product build up really easily, so I have to wash it more often than most so I don’t even bother shooting for 3 and 4 days hair styles. Also, I am getting better about making sure that I use my silk bonnet at night to protect my ends.
Your hair is so long and beautiful, what methods help you retain length?
My hair growth rate can be attributed to my Mom & Dad. They both have hair that grows much faster than mine! When I was little it was down my back. I wanted to change things up and started to keep it at a nice and boring length around my shoulder blades.
My hair stayed this length for most of college and then I got bold! I decided to cut my hair into a bob- by far my favorite cut (and I have played with the idea of bringing it back). This was back in Fall 2008 and my hair has kept growing since then until I had my first large cut of about 5 inches a few weeks ago.
Over the course of 5 years, my hair reached lower waste length (while straight). The key to this for me was simple: Don’t be afraid of a cut! I trust my ‘back home’ stylist with my life. Most would consider her scissor happy, but she does what’s best for your hair. I had about 2 inches of damage and I let her cut it to whatever length she felt would be healthy and well styled. I was really sad to see all of that long weave worthy hair go, but it’s exceptionally healthy. Anytime I need a cut, I let my stylist have at it. Split ends are like weeds – they only multiply and make everything around them look messy.
The second thing that I’ve done over the last 3 years in which I’ve seen the most growth has been to wear it curly more than straight. From middle school to the time I graduated, I wore my hair mostly straight, without appreciation for the potential in my curls. Now, I wear my wild curls without shame and keep them nourished & in protective styles!
What do you do on days that you become frustrated with your hair?
Bun it! I’m trying to find more ‘adult’ ways of dealing with my frustrated fuzz, but this is the ultimate quickie. Alternatively, I’ll create this little bee hive pin up if my curls can go without a lot of holding product. If my curls in the back are tamed and the front is a bit disheveled, I will twist the front sides back and pin the down.
What is the greatest lesson that you have learned through your hair journey?
Being a product junkie doesn’t always mean having great hair. By now, most of us have a go-to shampoo and conditioner. I don’t think that there’s anything wrong with just sticking or going back to the basics. I’ll try new products, of course. After all, who isn’t looking for the most perfect curls or at home blow out? Overall, my favorite products are Garnier. I can always count on them and they keep my hair shiny and sleek, just as the name suggests. In addition to this, I’ve added Moroccan oil & Deva Curl One Condition (for Color Treated Hair). Other products can come and go, but these are my staples and I don’t disturb my hair with a million trials of new products.
Some new naturals may be slightly intimidated about rocking and trying new styles. What’s your advice to them?
“You have to know your truth.” Great curls don’t happen overnight. You may have several months of waves and buns! That’s perfectly acceptable. Eventually, you’ll find a rhythm and styles that work for you! Don’t be afraid to cut your hair into a cute style. Believe it or not, this will make styling much easier! I’m in this process now since I’ve cut my hair, I’ll need to find a cut that works for my hair being shorter, now that I can’t rest on it just being long swavy curls.
PS: Natural doesn’t mean that you have to be curly – a blow-out every now and then will make you feel like a new woman. I say go for it!
Any upcoming events or anything else you would like to add:
I’m an aspiring personal chef & culinary enthusiast! Be on the lookout for news about 1801 Cookery, my personal chef business that I began 2 years ago and put on the shelf while I was consulting (read: traveling 100%)
How can people contact you?
We’re just tryin to be like you Tiff! lol And We love love love 1801 cookery! Thanks so much for sharing your story with us! If you have a hair story you would like to share shoot us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Greene Gals