Naptural Beauty of the Month

Name: Diana Sambula
Natural Since: 2011
Last Relaxer: September 2011

Introduce yourself: 
My name is Diana and I'm a senior majoring in Community Health at SUNY Potsdam! While my family is from Honduras,  I was born in Manhattan, NY and raised in the Bronx, NY. I have been natural for about two years.
What made you decide to go natural?
Well, I've always wanted to go natural. I was never into weaves and adding hair that wasn't my own. If I ever did, it was on rare occasions or when I thought I should give my hair a break. I LOVE feeling my hair.
Did you Big Chop or did you Transition?
I definitely Big Chopped!. I think that look is beautiful, whether a woman is trying to go natural or just trying a new hairstyle. It's a challenge!
What were some of your fears/concerns going into going natural?
I wasn't fearful by the time I big chopped, but prior to my decision to embrace my roots (lol), I was afraid that I wasn't going to be loved the same. I was in a 'toxic' relationship. I dated someone who did not know anything about black women or our hair and who did not understand how important going natural was for me. I always said I wanted to do a big chop but I was quickly discouraged when he would say that he wouldn't walk down the street with me unless I had a hat (which he declared, he would purchase for me). However, I was lucky that I got out of that relationship and I outgrew that fear. I've always been about self love and appreciation and, may I add, I found a 'brotha' who loves a natural sista (giggles).
Name some reasons why you are happy about your decision to go natural.
I am extremely happy that I decided to go natural because I was forced to embrace my features. There wasn't much to work with when I big chopped but I would smile more often when I looked in the mirror. I loved my smile, my eyebrows, my nose. I loved it all! I also became more confident in myself and I even started thinking seriously about following my dreams and not living in fear. I even started doing spoken word.

What are some of your favorite hair products?
I LOVE ME SOME TALIAH WAAJID !! Her product line is just awesome!! I love her Great Detangler and Hydrating Shampoo and just about everything else. The shampoo does not make my hair feel dry at all. It smells super yummy and I think that's the only product line I'll remain loyal to for awhile. I've tried Shea Moisture products, but don't really like them. I tried Cantu but my hair feels like it has too much heaviness. I also started using Jamaican Castor Oil and at first I thought the smell was unpleasant, but I've embraced it.
Current hair regimen?
I've used Organic Root Stimulator Curls Unleashed No Sulfate Shampoo and No Boundaries Leave In ConditionerI was just testing out this product, but I don't like it as much as Taliah Waajid products. t makes my hair feel like a Brillo pad! I only use it when I run out of my other products. Sometimes I use the Cantu Shea Butter Coconut Curling Cream. I use Olive Oil when untwisting my twists, and JBCO to avoid dry scalp and for hair growth. 
What do you enjoy the most about being natural?
What I enjoy the most about being natural, is noticing how much I've grown as a woman. I am more interested in politics for some reason and I am more confident.
What advice would you give to someone who is considering going natural or a newly natural?
I would say, don't give up so easily. Don't kill yourself over being natural but don't give up so easily. It's easy to look at videos and pictures of women with longer, natural hair, but it is important to understand that it is not a competition. This is YOUR journey so embrace it and make the best out of it!
Thank you Diana for sharing your story! You are truly an inspiration for women who are thinking about going natural and those who are considering Big Chopping. Your story truly inspires women to embrace who they are and their natural hair and to love who they are naturally. 

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