|Violette's big afro (photo courtesy of Violette L. Meier)
Last week, I was blessed with the opportunity to interview author, poet, and folk artist (untrained) Violette L. Meier. Her books include Angel Crush, The First Chronicle of Zayashariya: OUT OF NIGHT, and This Sickness We Call Love: Poems of Love, Lust & Lamentation. The Atlanta, Georgia native's most recent work includes Tales of a Numinous Nature: A Short Story Collection which was released in January of this year. Not only is Meier an author, poet, and artist, but she is also naturalista!
1BN: How long have you been natural?
VLM: 2 Years.
1BN: What made you want to go natural?
VLM: I've always had something in my hair since I was a little kid. I've had everything from Jheri Curls to perms when I was little. I tried to be natural around 2007, and it was hard for me. I didn't know what to do with it [natural hair], so I went back to relaxed. I think it was actually 2011 when I tried it again. I got so tired of my hair breaking off all the time, I went into a Great Clips [salon] and said, "Cut it all off." I started from scratch and it [my hair] has really flourished. It has grown so much, and it's healthier than I've ever seen in my whole life.
1BN: What are your favorite natural hair products to use?
VLM: Believe it or not, I am very simple. I just use Coconut Oil. I've tried all the hair products and I find that they do not cure anything, but taking money out of our pockets. You just do simple natural oils and good conditioner. Right now, my favorite conditioner is called DNA. I love it! It makes my hair so soft. Because I have very thick hair, it's a detangler. So, it's easy to comb through after I wash it. Other than that, I just oil it with Coconut Oil and I'm good!
|Violette with permed hair (photo courtesy of Violette L. Meier)
1BN: What's your daily regimen like?
VLM: It's according to how I want my hair to look. When I want it really stretched out, I put in plaits all over my head and tie it up. The next day, I just un-plait it and let it go wild. When I want it to have more texture, I'll sleep on it [my hair] and it'll give it a (more) kinkier texture. Sometimes, I do little twisties if I want it to look more curly or crinkly. If I want a real tight Don Cornelius Afro, I'll just wet it! I do ponytails, mohawks, and bobby pins. It's pretty easy. For me, natural hair hasn't been as hard as people led me to believe. You just have to know what works for your hair.
1BN: What does wash day look like for you?
VLM: I'm a simple girl! Shampoo and conditioner! (laughs) I just plait it while it's [my hair] wet and let it air dry. I'll just wear a wrap for that day until it dries. The next day, it will be stretched out (big) when I take it out.
|after Violette's big chop (photo courtesy of Violette L. Meier)
1BN: What advice do you have for someone who wants to go natural?
VLM: First of all , you have to be comfortable with the look, because you have to know that you can't do certain things. I guess it's according to how long your natural hair is... If you started from scratch, it's going to be short. You have to be comfortable with having a short afro. I think sometimes women don't feel as feminine when their afro is that short. I just wore a lot red lipstick and big earrings until it grew out. Just be comfortable in your own skin because, natural hair (to me) is a source of true beauty.
When you get comfortable with your own hair, you just look radiant. Believe it or not, I probably get more compliments on my natural hair than I've ever gotten. At first, people would be like, "Why would you do that?" I used to have a sister that would be like, "Why would you voluntarily have your hair nappy?" Now, people are like, "Oh my god, it is so beautiful! How do you do that? It's so thick and wild! How do you do that?" I was like, "You can do it too, if you stop putting chemicals in it."
That's why natural hair is great. If I ever want to wear my hair straight, I can always get a straightening comb or have it ironed out. So, it's more versatile. You can wear an afro one day and you can still wear it straight if you want "straight." You can still do braids and a lot of funky styles. I think it's [natural hair] way more versatile.
|Violette rocking a fro hawk, natural hairstyle (photo courtesy of Violette L. Meier)
You can find information about Violette L. Meier's upcoming book signings, trivia contest, new books, projects and more at www.VioletteMeier.com . Her books are available wherever books are sold. You can also find her on most social networking sites, including Facebook. Google Plus, etc. She is currently having a trivia contest where she is giving away gift cards the first of every month. Be sure to check her website for details on how to enter!
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|The 1BlessedNatural t-shirts have arrived!