Featured Natural // Monique

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What is your name, where are you from, and what is the natural hair scene there like?

Monique Sloan, I am originally from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, but now I call the DMV area my home. The natural scene is growing, but I have not really noticed any natural hair vloggers or bloggers. This is such a rich and diverse urban area, so I was really surprised that the natural hair scene is not much bigger.

Why did you decide to go natural and how?

My natural hair journey was in fact a journey. I had been toying with the idea of being natural for a while, but I was very apprehensive because of fear of the unknown. I had recently had a baby and I was feeling a bit overwhelmed. I had gained weight and I had two quarter sized bald spots due to post partem shedding. I was wearing weaves to cover up my bald spots. One day, I was so tired of the glue, tracks, and the fake hair so I freed myself. It was the best decision of my life. I chopped of most of my hair to 1 inch. As I lost my dry and damaged hair, I also lost my ideals of European forms of beauty, my insecurities, and my pre-conceived notions about women of color and our beautiful, versatile hair.

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Did you encounter any obstacles in your journey?

My husband… enough said… LOL. Yes, the day after I big chopped, I failed to put enough conditioner in my hair. My hair was as dry as a bone and looked like steel wool. My husband joked me for about 15 minutes. I cried, watched YouTube (Kimmaytube) and committed myself to this journey. I saturated my hair with Herbal Essence’s Hello Hydration, had a glass of wine, and never looked back.

How would you describe your hair texture?

4a/b

What is your styling regimen?

Sunday is my wash day. I utilize Terressentials mud wash or Shea Moisture’s shampoo (any). I deep condition with Shea Moisture Yucca and Baobab Deep Conditioner, I utilize Giovanni’s Direct Leave-In, I moisturize with Shea Moisture’s Curl Milk or Curls Coconut Colada, and seal with a mix of grape seed, jojoba, and olive oil. I usually do twist- or braid-out using Shea Moistures Curl Enhancing Smoothie and SoufflĂ© or flaxseed gel. Lately, I have been wearing lots of protective styles to keep my ends tucked away from the harsh winter winds. If I choose to do a braid- or twist-out, I re-braid at night using water and one of my moisturizers.

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What is a typical wash day like for you?

LOOOONGGG!!! I love washing my hair. I truly feel like I am pampering myself and I my hair truly thanks me for it! I really love using Terressentials mud wash. It is pricey, but soooooooo worth it! I never pre-poo when I use it. I only pre-poo when I am using Shea Moistures raw shea butter shampoo.

What things do you do for your hair that benefit it the most?

Moisturizing it with water daily. My hair loves water! I also use great products on my hair that do not contain harsh sulfates or silicones. My hair is truly thriving!

What are some things/practices you steer clear of when it comes to your hair?

Heat. It has been 11 months since I have big chopped. I have only straightened my hair once. I also do not use harsh products on my hair. I fell in love with Herbal Essence’s Hello Hydration and Cantu Shea Butter’s leave in conditioner. Then to my horror, I found out that the products contain sulfates and/or silicones. Sadly, I dumped the products. I have committed myself to staying away from the sulfates and the cones. Did I say I LOVED the aforementioned products? RIP

Do you have a website/blog/vlog where we can locate you?

I have a YouTube channel Dashawnlaslo.

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