The more I do these interviews the more I realize how many curly friends I have! Alaia and I network in the same Facebook groups and then I joined her At the Helm Facebook group. Come to find out we have over 40 FB friends in common!

How long have you been natural? 

It's probably been about 10 years since I had a relaxer, but the way I look at it, I went natural in 2011, when I stopped getting my hair pressed and flat ironed. For me, that was when I consciously went natural.



What made you decide to go natural? 



I've always felt like a bit of a failure when it came to my hair - like I never really knew what to do with it. When it wasn't in braids or done by someone at a salon, I'd throw it back in a ponytail and call it a day. And there were even days where I felt like I couldn't get a ponytail right! I'd seen friends of mine talking about natural hair workshops on Facebook. I saw that Felicia Leatherwood had one coming up. I signed up and learned a TON of stuff I just had NO CLUE about. That was the night I decided to go natural.

Did you big chop or transition? 

I guess you could call it transition. I hadn't been to a salon in ages because it was costing me a small fortune. The day after the workshop, I tried out some products Felicia mentioned and hopped on YouTube to learn how to do Bantu knots.

What was your families’ / friend’s reaction to you going natural? 

Most people thought it was pretty cool. Several of my black friends were already natural. And I'd already spent most of my life with my hair as a topic of discussion among non-black friends, so this didn't feel different. I did have a few non-black friends directly say that they thought it was really cool that I was embracing my natural hair.



What have you discovered about yourself or your hair since you’ve gone natural? Anything surprise you? 

Being natural is actually MORE work. I spend more time on my hair now than I ever did before. Braids are obviously low maintenance. When my hair was relaxed or pressed (always by others), I'd just wake up in the morning, run a brush through it and go. In the last four years, the washing, twisting, knotting, and fluffing...it all takes more time and care. I'm also a little more paranoid. I wear a fro now, so I'm always checking to make sure I haven't flattened it on one side or that its fluffed as much as it can be. 



But it hasn't been all bad. I've also learned a lot more about my hair because of this process. I'm still learning and my twisting skills could *definitely* improve, but I have no regrets about the change.

Please tell us about your business. 




I do a couple of things. In my primary business, I help business owners get organized and get the right systems and processes in place. I am a systems geek and love to help people connect the dots in their businesses. I'm also a community builder. I've run a networking group for almost nine years and I also launched a women's business conference and community called At the Helm in 2011.

There is an incorrect theory that natural hair is unprofessional. How do you find people in business react to your natural hair? 

I guess I mostly deal with awesome people because, as far as I know, it hasn't caused any problems. I had a job when I went natural and though you can see on people's faces the initial shock (which happens when anyone changes a look), everyone seemed fine and most people at the small company actually made a comment - and every comment was positive. As for my business, I work with clients one-on-one for the most part. If they haven't met me in person, most have seen me on my website or online, so its not a surprise what I look like. So, I figure anyone that's bothered by it just won't bother reaching out to me - and that's perfectly fine. A client that's bothered by my natural hair is probably not a client I should be working with.

I do live in a large, progressive and liberal city (at least compared to others). We've got every kind of person looking every kind of way here in Los Angeles. I think that helps.

Where can we connect with you online? 



The best place to go is www.alaiawilliams.com - it will link you to all my work, podcasts and social media accounts. My favorite platforms are Twitter - http://twitter.com/alaiawilliams and Periscope - http://periscope.tv/alaiawilliams


This week's curlfriend is Kamika King of Inspired Beauty, a tea based natural hair care line that was developed after her own experience with hair loss. The last time I saw Kamika at an event everyone was raving about her Babassu Bliss Daily Moisture Cream so I definitely have to add that to my must try list!



Let me start off by saying there have not been many desserts that I did not like. From French macarons to creme brûlée to chocolate mousse I have on many of occasions satisfied my sweet tooth. When it comes to desserts I've developed a taste for quality well-made sweets over store bought, processed junk food so when I heard about the Indulge Los Angeles Chocolate Festival and Pastry Show I knew I had to be there!



Today's interview is with Jaime who is a long time naturalista and the maker of beautiful crochet clothing and accessories. Jaime and I have several friends in common and I love her crochet earrings so I thought she would be a great person to share her natural hair journey.


affordable fashion jewelry


Last year was a hard year after the closing of my first direct sales company, Lia Sophia. I had grown to love the jewelry so it was devastating when they with little more than a month's notice decided to end their direct sales division after 30 years. It took a few months but I soon discovered another company that I wanted to join.

I decided to stick with jewelry because fashion is one of my passions and jewelry is fun! I discovered Chloe + Isabel through a direct sales Facebook group. What caught my eye was the amazing vintage design of some of their pieces. I have fond memories of frequenting the 1928 jewelry counter at Broadway (now Macy's) and the pieces reminded me of that. I was soon to discover what makes Chloe + Isabel unique.

cute natural hair
Tanisha Lyons-Porter of Natural Born Organizers

Tanisha and I met through LA Curly Curls, a local natural hair group in Los Angeles. She was the first one I asked to interview as a part of my Naturals in Business series after I learned about her professional organizing business. 

How long have you been natural? 

I have been natural in the sense of wearing my natural curls since 2011...but I haven't had a relaxer for much longer since about 2007.

deep condition natural hair


*This product was given to me for review but the opinions are my own


One of my passions is healthy hair, that's why I originally started this blog. I am often asked questions about hair such as why is my hair so dry? When I hear this my first question for them is how often do they deep condition. Most times I'm met with a blank stare...

Hair takes regular abuse from daily styling, heat tools, chemicals, and sun exposure. Regularly deep conditioning your hair not only prevents damage but strengthens the hair. It is a great preventative measure to maintain healthy hair.

naturals in business interview
Jennifer Kennedy of Teach Good Stuff

Jennifer and I met through a local women's entrepreneurial Meetup group and once we connected on Facebook we realized we were connected through several other groups and knew some of the same people. It really is a small world. Jennifer is a natural entrepreneur that is working to take her passion for teaching to the next level. She recently quit her job to pursue her passion full-time.



Life in 2015 is no joke! It's more complicated and busy than every before, and it feels as if there is always something to do be done. I was taught that to do lists are the perfect way to keep track of what needs to be accomplished on a daily basis. I even used to work for productivity giant, Franklin Covey. As part of my employment I was sent to one of their time management seminars. I loved the program so much that I stayed a yearly Franklin Covey planner customer for years.

As I transitioned into married life, and from my twenties to my thirties I found it less and less enjoyable to keep up with what needed to be done. It felt like a burden to daily makes lists, mark them in order of importance, and to constantly move items to the next day that were not completed.

natural hair interview













I'm bringing back my interview series but this time I'm concentrating on natural haired women business owners. Be inspired as these women tell us how they rock their natural hair while running things in business!



My first interviewee, Cherish Richardson is a curlfriend I met through LA Curly Girls. She is a total sweetheart and makes wonderful, beautiful smelling lotions under her brand Cherish Me Beautiful. Enjoy her natural hair journey!



instagram challenge


I embarked on another no repeat challenge in which I document my journey of not repeating the same outfit in the month of June. It had been exactly a year since my last challenge so I thought it would be fun to do it again!

I like this challenge because I get to showcase some of my favorite outfits, share the challenge with my Facebook and Instagram followers, and I get to practice my picture taking skills. This time around I had the benefit of my iPhone and a remote which made my life sooooo much easier! The majority of the pictures I took myself and you can't event tell. Another benefit of being your own photographer is that you're not worried about looking silly, you just pose and snap. If you don't like the picture you can always press delete. Surprisingly, I found some of the best locations right in my own neighborhood, right on my block. Several of the back drops are my neighbors front lawn. Shhhh don't tell them... Lol



Your teens and early twenties are happy, confusing, exciting, and exhilarating all at the same time as you learn about life, yourself, and others. Those years are full of extremes - one day is the best day of your life and the next is the worst. You are definitely on a emotional rollercoaster.

Once you have exited the bloom of youth you often look back only to wish you knew then what you know now. You truly begin to appreciate the saying, "youth is wasted on the young" because while the advantage of youth is vitality you are missing the wisdom to use your vitality wisely. 




Your first question may be what is a lifestyle blogger? Well, where as a beauty or fashion blogger will typically cover only the topics in their niche, a lifestyle blogger will usually cover a range of topics that pertain to their personal lifestyle. For instance, I started out only writing about natural hair and now that I have transitioned into lifestyle I cover a variety of topics from my point of view.

protective style



My routine every summer is to get braids. Even when I was relaxed summertime was the time to give my hair a rest and to make dealing with summer humidity bearable. I'm all about that no fuss life. 


Well, I totally skipped last summer and at this point I'm tired of my hair! I'm not going to cut it but I can't say I have not been tempted a few times. I just need a vacation from my hair so I've decided to embark on a protective style challenge with my blogger friend, Becc over at Becc Smith

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