Saturday, 4 September 2010

Featured Excerpt: Amber Bennett

In the life of a Naturalista

Where do you live? 
Sacramento, Ca

Why did you decide to go natural?
I had my first relaxer when I was a little girl (like a lot of us did) when my mother used to style my hair. I had never dealt with my natural hair myself. Plus, it had been so long since I had seen my natural texture that I didn't even remember what it looked like. I decided to change that. It started off with me stretching my relaxer. But I just kept on stretching...and stretching...and stretching.

Were your friends and family supportive of your decision? If not, how were you able to move forward?
Well, my friends weren't really on board with the whole thing. Actually, some of them thought it was a "cool idea" until they saw the rough points of the transition. Then I would get comments like, "Girl, just give up and get a relaxer!" It was hard, but I continued on my journey because I realized that this is MY hair. I was going to be the one to deal with it everyday. Besides, no one (not even me) had seen the completion of the transition yet. If after all was said and done I didn't like my hair, I always had the option to change it. But not before I saw how God originally created me to be.

How long have you been natural for?
My last relaxer was in March 2007, but I never did a BC. I trimmed my relaxed ends away until December 2008. Therefore, I say that I have been natural since I trimmed off the remainder of my relaxed ends in December 2008. 

What’s your regimen?
I can't really say that I have a set regimen. All this time, and I have YET to get into a routine. I give my hair what I think it needs at the time. That's about the only regimen I follow. 

What mistakes have you made with your hair that you’ve learned from?
I would say that the BIGGEST mistake I have made was ignoring my hair and listening to everyone else. I used to have chronically dry hair. No matter WHAT I did, it was the same result. People kept telling me moisture, Moisture, MOISTURE! But I realized that my hair LOVES protein, and would not hold moisture without it. I wish I would have spent more time listening to my hair instead of not trusting what worked. 

What has been your favourite product?
I LOVE VO5 Strawberries N' Cream Moisture Milks Conditioner!

What is your ‘SIGNATURE’ style?
The TWIST-OUT is the BID-NISS!!! 

What has been your biggest challenge during your hair journey? And how did you overcome this challenge in your journey?
My biggest challenge during this hair journey has been the people. These are the people who want to discourage you for not wanting to fall in line with "society" and what is "proper." These people see you going through growing pains (with your hair and in life) and wanna kick you when you are down instead of giving a word of encouragement. I overcame them by loving myself and realizing what would make ME happy. Loving yourself makes it a whole lot easier to shake the haters off.
What is your ultimate hair goal? What steps are you taking to achieve that?
I used to have a length goal, but I realized that I just want healthy hair...PERIOD. I have opted to listen to my hair instead of what others have to say about it. One major step in achieving my hair goal is to take care of my hair MYSELF. Too many times my hair has been abused at the hand of someone who won't have to deal with it after I get up out of their chair. No more!

Are there any words of encouragement/advice you would like to offer to those that are considering going natural?
Make sure you are doing it for the right reasons and definitely not because you saw this cute style that you liked, or because it's a trend. That won't keep you when your hair is matted to your head and you can't even get your own fingers through it. Understand that your hair might not look like the next person's. So, put some serious thought into your decision. And if you decide to transition, also love your hair no matter what! This is the way God made YOU so be proud of His creation! If you don't love your hair, no one else will.
What does 'good' hair means to you?
I honestly believe that good hair is healthy hair. It seems like everyone wants to have all this long, flowing hair just so others can say, "Look at that girl with the long hair! It's so beautiful!" I think beauty comes in all lengths, textures, and shades... but unhealthy hair is NEVER beautiful. 


  1. Awesome story...never be afraid to be "different" you come from a long line of pioneers who had to make the best out of being "different" during a time when the easiest and safest thing to do was conform. Your hair is beautiful as you are-good work.

  2. i love the bold flowers in her hair! nothing better than hair candy in lovely natural hair!

  3. Well Ms. Lady with 2 T's I am a male, that loves a woman that has healthy hair, short, long, curly, I love it all, except track, weave and unhealthy hair. Nothing is more attractive then natural strong black womans hair that is kept healthy and clean oh and that gorgeous smile below it lol... So with that being said, please keep it up and don't change for anyone, or anywhere (hint) lol. Nice meeting you.

    1. LOL. Thank you! Just discovered this after many years. LOL. I appreciate the love. 7 years strong and still loving the journey! :-)