The Natural Hair Diary continues here on Afrobella.com – don’t forget, you can send in submissions to my e mail, or nominate yourself in the comments below! I plan to continue the natural hair inspiration here as long as you want me to keep it coming!
This week’s Natural Hair Diary comes from a friend of mine here in the city of Chicago. By day Venita Griffin is a digital marketing expert who is AMAZING at what she does, and rocks her natural hair in the corporate office environment. By night she’s a fiercely funny blogger at GirlGetaLife.com.
Venita knows all about transforming her big natural hair into a workplace-friendly toned down look.
Here are her tips on transitioning, favorite products, and best gems of natural hair care advice based on her journey!
Natural Woman: Venita E. Griffin
City: Chicago, IL
Occupation: digital marketing expert, travel writer, blogger at Girlgetalife.com
Hair Journey: Venita isn’t exactly sure, but she thinks she got her first relaxer at around age 13, right before high school began. “I didn’t ask for a relaxer – my mom, who has a slightly straighter hair texture than I do, just found this to be the easiest way to manage my hair.” Even in her early days of chemically straightened hair, Venita found herself liking the look…just not on herself.
“In high school, I would spend hours crimping my hair to get a big curly look. So, I was never in love with a flat, straight look. It wasn’t until I looked back on baby pics of myself that I realized I could achieve this big haired look with my natural hair.”
Unlike many other natural haired women, Venita’s eventual transition and return to Team Natural wasn’t as a result of damage, or trauma, or making a statement. It was because of Tevin Campbell.
“I got my last relaxer at 16, for my senior prom. During my freshman year of college, I grew tired of the asymmetrical hair cut I was sporting. After watching Tevin Campbell’s “Can We Talk” video, and admiring the short cut on the girl in the video, I decided to cut my hair myself, down to about 2 or 3 inches, and I love the way it curled. I haven’t relaxed since. That was 1993.”
Now Venita loves her natural hair, despite its many textures, and she’s embraced the versatility that natural hair allows. “Over the years, I have worn my hair short, grew it out, loc’d it, cut it again and regrew it. I like taking my hair in new, different directions. I do get a professional blow out and flat iron a couple of times a year to change things up and to get a proper trim. Lately I have been, thanks to CurlyNikki and Autumn’s videos on YouTube, experimenting with twists and roller sets. After all these years, I am still learning new things about my hair.”
Favorite Products: Glycerine, Herbal Essence’s Hello Hydration, Garnier conditioning leave in cream, Neutrogena’s deep conditioning mask every week. Also she adds, “Coconut oil is the truth.” Amen!
Hair Icons: As a young girl, one of my biggest style and beauty – not just hair – icons was Diana Ross. Still is! Cree Summer has always been a hair role model. Lisa Bonet was an inspiration when I was loc’d. Victoria Rowell and Gloria Reuben both have lovely hair.
Advice to Aspiring Naturals: The choice to go natural wasn’t really a conscious one. I just wanted to see what my hair looked like under the relaxer. Once I saw it, I loved it and I couldn’t go back. Don’t take it all so seriously! It’s hair…you can be natural and have fun and be glamorous, too.
If you’d like to submit your own natural hair diary, leave a comment below or shoot me an e mail!