Hello, #BellaStylistas! We are excited to bring back our hit series BN Fro Friday! Every month on www.bellanaijastyle.com, we will be celebrating the beauty and diversity of our African hair in all its glory by putting the spotlight on some of our favourite Naturalistas who share their hair story and journey with us. If you’d like to be featured, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
I like that my hair now opens up a new world of hairstyles and possibilities. I think of hair as art, and I feel like I just got a new canvas to work with says, beauty vlogger Seun Okimi.
Nigerian social media content creator and beauty YouTuber Seun Okimi has always been fascinated by her hair as far as she can remember, so it was a no brainer when she gravitated towards making content about her hair journey.
From growing her relaxed hair to waist length to the ultimate “big chop”, Seun talks with BellaNaija Style for #BNFroFriday about her decision to go natural.
BNS: Tell us about your hair
SO: I have gorgeous 4c natural hair, but I only just recently went natural. Before, then I always had relaxed hair!
BNS: Why did you decide to go natural?
SO: I have had my hair relaxed for the most part of my life, and I knew at some point I would want to go natural because I didn’t think I could go my whole life without ever experiencing my natural texture, so it was just a matter of when? Once I felt like I had done everything I wanted to do with my relaxed hair, I was ready to move on and try something new.
BNS: How did you make the change?
SO: I transitioned for around two years and then did the big chop. For me, I change my hair a lot, so it just felt like a new hairstyle. I was ready and excited to try something new. However, since my relaxed hair was very long, a lot of people were shocked that I cut it. Some people were upset, but others were just as excited as I was about this new journey. I think other people are still getting used to it, but it will settle in eventually, haha. No specific person influenced my transition natural, but shout out to all of the other beautiful women who rock their 4c hair so beautifully who I hope to be able to live up to.
BNS: Are you ever tempted to go back to relaxers?
SO: I am not tempted to go back to relaxers. I experienced relaxers for 20 years of my life, lol. It was fun, but I like switching things up, especially when it comes to my look and my hair, so I am excited to be able to style myself in different ways now!
BNS: Did you ever hide your natural hair?
SO: I haven’t hidden my natural hair. I went natural to be able to wear my natural hair! I will always still do things like protective styling as I did with my relaxed hair because it’s great for avoiding over-manipulation and I love being able to switch up my look at any time even more, but I see that more as an extension of my hair and all of the things I can do with it, rather than a tool to try and “hide” or cover it up.
BNS: How long have you kept your natural hair?
SO: I have only been natural for a few months now, so I have yet to cut or trim it again since I did the big chop!
BNS: How does the climate where you live affect your hair?
SO: The climate where I currently stay in America is very hot and DRY. I am sure this has a negative on my hair, but I haven’t experienced my hair enough yet to really decipher.
BNS: Do you have any other hair problems?
SO: I am currently suffering from hygral fatigue/moisture overload with my natural hair, unfortunately. Who would have thought water could do so much harm?? I talk about this struggle a bit on my YouTube channel. It has caused more breakage and is a setback in my natural hair journey, but I hope to be able to recover my hair soon!
BNS: What’s your stance on natural vs chemical products?
SO: Everything in the world is a chemical! Even water is actually a chemical! But for me, I am ok with anything, so far as it works for my hair and doesn’t cause any bad reactions. I recently found out that some products trigger an allergic reaction for me, so I have to be more careful with what I choose to use on my hair, especially when it comes to products with harsh fragrances!
BNS: What’s your daily, weekly and/or monthly hair routine?
SO: Since I am newly natural I do not have too much of a routine set in place yet, but my routine will likely end up being very similar to what worked with my relaxed hair, where everything was based on LOW MANIPULATION, and the idea that less is more.
BNS: What advice would you give to people thinking of going natural?
SO: I would say do it and don’t overthink it. You’ll find what works best for you along the way. You may mess up or feel frustrated at some point, but it’s a fun process and it’s cool being able to see your hair in a different way.
BNS: What do you like best about your hair and being natural?
SO: I like that my hair now opens up a new world of hairstyles and possibilities. I think of hair as art, and I feel like I just got a new canvas to work with.
BNS: What are your favourite styles to rock?
SO: I haven’t tried too much with my hair yet, but I enjoy simply just wearing it in its natural state! I’ll start to add things in as time goes on!
BNS: Do you have any hair crushes?
SO: As far as hair crushes, I have no one specific. All black queens really! (:
BNS: Are you particular about sleek edges?
SO: I have actually never been one to be too particular about sleek edges!
BNS: What hair accessories can you NOT live without?
SO: The hair accessory I could not live without would probably have to be bobby pins. You’ll never know you’ll need them, lol. They can be crucial in holding almost any style together.
Thanks for sharing your story with us Seun!