Adrienne emailed me about her story and I just had to interview her right away. She is a prime example of what faith can do. Learning her story gave me the ability to remember to keep faith and remain hopeful. She has an amazing story to tell. So read on!!

Name: Adrienne M (ManeAngels)
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Location: Raleigh/Durham, NC

How long have you been natural? I’ve been natural since 2006.

Did you transition or do the Big Chop? Neither, I did the other BC (breast cancer)! I was diagnosed in 2006 with Stage 3A BC. After chemo, radiation treatments & reconstructive surgery, I decided not to put chemicals back in my hair. This year is a milestone year for me – 5 years breast cancer FREE!

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Why did you choose that route?

There are many products that have carcinogenic properties in them. I decided to do my best to use organic products to put in and on my body since I was diagnosed with cancer to give me a fighting chance. 🙂

What has kept you motivated to remain natural?

When my hair started to grow back, it was curly/wavy. As it grew longer, the texture changed. I didn’t know how to style it, so I went back to what my mother did…press and curl. I did that for 5 years. When I started a new position at another banking institution, I continued to straighten my hair because I didn’t think corporate America accepted women of color in their “natural state”. Then, I saw a co-worker wearing her hair natural! It was beautiful! I asked her so many questions that she probably thought I was a pest, but she was patient and encouraging. She became my mane angel! I decided to stop fearing what people thought and tried it. In Psalm 139:14 it says, “I praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.” God makes no mistakes! So, I decided to wear the hair that He gave me! That keeps me motivated!
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What are two(2) natural hair products that you just can’t live without?

I can’t live without Kinky Curly’s Knot Today and coconut oil. Why? Knot Today is a leave-in conditioner that has wonderful slip and is a GREAT detangler! For those who struggle with tangles, it’s fantastic! I love coconut oil because it’s natural, light and penetrates the hair shaft to seal in moisture. In addition, it’s great for sealing in the moisture on your skin.

What is your favorite way to wear your hair?

My favorite way to wear my hair is chunky twist/braid outs! You can do so many things with those styles including great protective styles.

What do you love about your natural hair?

The thing I love about my natural hair is the freedom I fell wearing it. I don’t have to apologize or feel ashamed of what God gave me.

What do you dislike about it?

The only thing I dislike is the prep time. Gone are the days of pulling my hair back in ponytails, last minute curling/touching up with flatirons, etc. But it causes me to be a little more organized with my day-to-day, which I guess isn’t a negative at all.

What tip(s) would you recommend to someone who wants to become natural, is transitioning, or needs advice about natural hair?

The advice I would give someone who wants to become natural, is transitioning or needs advice about natural hair is to be patient. This journey isn’t for the faint of heart. Don’t get me wrong, IT CAN BE DONE by anyone! But you have to have patience! Research, research, research! There’s a ton of information on the internet regarding natural hair. Know that everything is not for you! EVERY head of hair is different and unique. You have to figure out what works best for you. Know that beautiful/healthy hair begins on the inside – what you put in your body. Love your hair and it will love you back.

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You can find me on the internet at http://www.youtube.com/ManeAngels, http://www.twitter.com/ManeAngels, http://www.facebook.com/ManeAngels, http://www.meetup.com/ManeAngels. I will be starting a blog very soon!

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