In this week’s natural hair story, we are shining the spotlight on a woman who balances motherhood and blogging full time, all while rocking her glorious afro! Let’s get started…
What is your name and where are you from?
My name is Olena Brackett, and I’m from Portland, Oregon
How long have you been natural?
I’ve been fully Natural since December 14, 2014
What motivated you to go natural?
I just couldn’t stand any more scalp burns from relaxers. I was a loc’d natural from about 2008 – 2010 then mistakenly went back to relaxers. I’ve done every style imaginable to hair but finally, I got fed up with chemicals and decided to transition in 2013 for a year before the big chop in 2014.
What are your favorite products to use?
I love using olive oil. Also Crème of Nature and Lotta body Products. I am also a fan of Chocolate Kinks and Koils
What products (if any) would you never try again?
Some may disagree, but I have to deal with my hair, and they don’t. With that said, Maui Moisture Curl Quench Collection did not provide enough moisture in my opinion. Also, Long Aid Naturals Manuka Honey & Bergamot Collection. The Bergamot smell was way too strong for me.
What is your go-to natural hairstyle?
An Afro. Whether it’s defined or undefined, it doesn’t matter to me.
Have you ever felt any insecurities when it comes to your hair?
Yes, my edges are horrible! My edges are hereditarily thin. Also, previous neglect caused scalp burns and traction alopecia made it no better. Now that I know how to properly take care of my hair, daily medicine won’t let my edges be great either ! LOL
Do you feel that you have ever been treated differently (in the workplace, amongst family or your peers) because of your hair?
Yes, people seem to love me just for my hair, but forget that there is a person with a brain behind the hair. Also, I used to do hair, but the second I stopped I got side-eyes from friends and family. They thought if I could do mine then I should be doing theirs too.
What has been the hardest part of your hair journey?
The hardest part has been battling single-strand knots. Also with almost 3 years in and I can’t point to one product line and stay it’s my staple products.
What advice would you offer to those who are looking to start a natural hair journey?
Don’t compare yourself to other naturals. Your hair may look the same someone else, but that doesn’t mean the products used on one natural will work on another. No curl, coil, or wave is better than another. Learn to embrace your frizz. Finally, take your time and enjoy the natural hair journey. There is a lot to learn along the way.
Where can we find you on social media?
My Blog – olenarosanne.com
YouTube Channel – https://www.youtube.com/c/OlenaRosanne
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/OlenaRosanne/
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/olenarosanne/