OR: Where are you from?
Nicole: Hailing from Columbia, SC
OR: Random fun fact about yourself?
Nicole: There were only 3 students in my high school senior graduating class.
OR: What inspired you to go natural?
Nicole: I was tired of the breakage. I had an almost-balding spot right behind my right ear, yet silly me kept relaxing it, thinking that it would fix itself. One day I woke up (after researching the transition method for a few weeks) and was just tired of it. I wanted healthy hair. I didn't care about length, I just wanted to get back to a healthy hair state.
OR: How long did you transition/Describe your transitioning experience.
Nicole: I transitioned for 11 months. My original plan was a year but after looking at all the beautiful TWAs on youtube and nappturality, I began having TWA envy. My transition process was really easy, surprisingly. I did a lot of protective styles, so I didn't have to fight too much with the two textures. I did cornrows (with extensions), kinky twists, and a curly sew-in.
OR: What do you love about your natural hair?
Nicole: Versatility, hands down. If I want to wear a big puff one day, an afro the next, my curly shrunken wash 'n go fro one day, twists, twist outs, braids, or braid outs... there are so many options. I love that I can sweat as much as I want to, swim as long as I want, and ride with my windows all the way down and not worry for even a second about my hair.
OR: What's one natural hair myth you wish would die?
Nicole: For me, when I'm out I usually get one of two questions. A) Are you from the islands? B) Are you vegan/vegetarian? LOL. Americans seems to have these pre-conceived ideologies about natural hair and lifestyle.
OR: Has your natural hair changed how you view yourself?
Nicole: It's motivated me to keep other aspects of my life healthy. I exercise more, I watch what I eat, and I don't let toxic and negative people become a part of my life. My confidence has soared, I walk with my head a little higher for some reason and I love it.
OR: Name your top three hair products and what you like about them.
Jason's Natural Lavender Conditioner - Perfect cream consistency and really leaves me hair soft and smelling good (I also love the curl defining one).
Jason's Aloe Vera Gel - I use to define my curls but also to slick my edges back for a puff (Wonder Curl's Get Slick Hair Smoothie is now a close second though).
Giovanni 50/50 Calming Conditioner - I use it as my leave-in and daily moisturizer.
OR: What advice do you have for those thinking about transitioning?
Nicole: Research is huge. There are so many online forums and blogs with a lot of helpful information concerning transition. Transition for as long as you feel comfortable, don't feel the need to go out and buy new expensive products, cut back on your use of heat, and enjoy it!
OR: Where can people find you online?