The hair tips, advice and recommendations given on this blog are given based on the experiences of the authors. These tips may not work for everyone and every hair type and it is important to acknowledge this since we are neither hair specialists nor trichologists.

Also many pictures on this blog belong to the authors but there are others that we do not have ownership for and thus we do not claim ownership of the ones that do not belong to us.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

"I am totally in charge of my hair" - Interview with African Naturalista

African Naturalista is one of the Nigerian natural hair Bloggers we met on Saturday at the natural hair meet-up. We are featuring her today in this interview. She is straight forward, stylish and generous with her experience and knowledg of natural hair. Enjoy!

Name? Atilola Moronfolu.

Where are you from and where do you live? I am from Osun state but was born, bred, buttered and still live in Lagos.

What do you do? I am a consultant, a writer and an editor.

Where can we find you online? My main blog is, this is where I do all my talking, writing, humour posts, etc. My natural hair blog is, where I blog about natural hair and its care.
My twitter handle is @hattylolla

How long have you been natural? I have been natural for almost four years. I used to have dreadlocks and cut it all off last year and rocked the fro.

You write a blog on natural hair. What made you decide to do this? I started my blog on natural hair because I kept looking for natural hair blogs that had to do with the kind of hair Nigerians have, but I never found any. I never found Natural Nigerian and Screwy hair before then. If I had found them then, I probably wouldn't have started mine, due to laziness. All the blogs I found were by African Americans, and as we know, their hair type is different from ours in most cases. After I searched for some more months, I just decided to take the bull by the horn and start it, so I could help other Nigerians and Africans. That is why the blog title is African Naturalistas.

From your perspective, what is the natural hair scene like in Lagos / Nigeria? The natural hair scene in Nigeria is growing, but it is still not large enough. Most people don't think they can successfully manage their hair and there is so much misconception about natural hair in Nigeria. Also importantly, it is not totally accepted in the workplace, as one’s colleagues will see one as strange.

At one time you had your hair relaxed. Tell us why you decided to go natural and how you did it. Did you transition or did you do the big chop? Did anyone help you or encourage you? I have had  a very low cut almost all my life. When I got into university, my goal was to make sure my hair grew long so I started growing and relaxing it. Not long after, I realized that I did not like relaxers. But I did not have the courage to stop relaxing because I did not think there was any way out and my hair had grown so long so fast. In fact, I was a ‘hair role model’ for a lot of people.

Not long after I graduated from university, I became tired of the whole hair making thing, so I finally got the courage to cut my hair and had a low cut. Later on, I decided to lock it, intending to go back to relaxers about 5 years later. About 6 months after I had locks, I knew I would forever "dread" going back to relaxers. When I saw the possibility of being natural, I knew that a solution had come for me. No one helped or encouraged me. How could they when I did not know the direction which I was going with my hair?!

Do you have a “hair mentor” or “hair crush”? I don’t have a mentor or crush but I love so many people’s hair. I am looking out for Natmane’s hair length in the mean time.

Natmane of deepbrown & kinks blog

What’s your hair regimen? I spray my hair with a mix of water and olive oil every morning and night. I use Shea butter mix to seal every morning and use Castor oil to seal at night. I wash every 2 weeks, because that’s when I take out my twists. I have been twisting my hair for the past 3 months and I intend to continue till I get Natmane's length and then I might change from twists to other styles. I use my prepoo mix before washing and then wash with castille soap and conditioner. I then use the ACV on my hair and wash it over and over with Tea Bag extract water.

Products you would wait in line for? Liquid Castille soap.

How do people react to your natural hair? Positive, or negative or just odd? Actually, I get a mixture of the three reactions.

If you get negative comments about your natural hair who are they from and how do you deal with them? The negative comments are few and I honestly cannot be bothered. My own duty is to make my hair as neat as possible and your duty is to mind your business.

Comment about natural hair in your place of work. Do you feel awkward about wearing your natural hair to work? I don’t feel awkward. I was the first lady to ever carry dreadlocks to work, defying the policy. I wore wigs for a while until I could put my locks in a bun and I just pretended to myself that my hair was braided. I guess I escaped a lot of sanctions because I am a client servicing staff and I move from site to site.

What hairstyles do you usually wear? Why? Recently, I have been wearing twists. This is because my hair is too "wild" for a afro right now and I can't leave it messy because of work. My braids don’t last for a long time and I don’t want a hairstylist to mess up my hair. So I just twist every two weeks. Next year, I’ll think of something else.

What do you like best about being natural? The fact that I am totally in charge of my hair.

What do you hate most about being natural? Nothing.

Have you ever had an “Ooops!” or “OMG!” moment with your hair? Tell us about it and how you resolved it. Yes I have. I mistakenly mishandled my hair, resulting in hair loss. I scolded myself and learnt from my lesson. Some Saturdays, when my hair chooses to be too disobedient to pack up, I just cover it with a beanie and leave the house.

Why are you still keeping your hair natural? Because I love it that way.

What do you say to people like you about going natural? It requires discipline, commitment and dedication, and it is definitely worth it.

What's next for you on your natural hair journey? To keep on reading and keep on learning. I want to know how to weave my hair, so that’s my next goal.

Going to the beach or going to the Movies? Going to the movies because I love watching movies, lol.

Keep it natural!



Africa Naturalista said...

Awww, this is s cool. Thanks for featuring me.
Yay, she will make my hair, lol.

Still having issues following. Its a google account conflict on my system

Natmane said...

Girl you can do it. Remember that practice makes perfect. Look in the mirror in your free time and You'll be a braid guru in no time. As ever I love how straight forward she is. Love the interview.

aloted said...

loving interview.

AN is one of the naturals that inspire me..