Monday, 28 October 2013

Entrepreneur AND Fitness Feature!: Tayo Badejo of FADD!


How are things? I am super excited about this feature-this feature is about many things: It's about fitness, it's about perseverance, it's about  setting goals and achieving them, it's about entrepreneurship, and it's about my former colleague and friend, Tayo!

Many of you know how I value fitness and being healthy. If you need inspiration to lose weight or stay healthy, then you need to read Tayo's story. I knew Tayo when she was still way bigger in size. I witnessed (on facebook) her weight loss efforts and results. Today, Tayo is a role model when it comes to fitness; she has already carved a niche for herself in Nigeria and has influenced so many young people who have been having issues with their weight and keeping fit.

-Please introduce yourself and tell us about FADD.

My name is Tayo Badejo-Agbaje a Computer Science graduate from the University of Lagos, an Accountant and a Fitness Enthusiast to the core. My passion for fitness came about in 2012 when I took over my life and health and lost a total of 26kg in 7months through hard work and dedication. I started a fitness support system with some friends in May 2012 with the sole aim of helping each other achieve our weight loss goals.

In November 2012, I came out of the support system to start my wellness company known as FADD (Fitness Addict) with a vision to preach the ‘fitness gospel’ to every household - Fitness is not a chore, fitness can be fun. We create a support system for individuals who want to live a healthy life based on the prototype of what I did- Eating healthy + Exercise. We run fitness programs where individuals can sign up for the fitness mentoring programs for a period of time to help them kickstart the lifestyle and also stay accountable. We organize fitness events, bootcamps etc to encourage people and let them know that fitness can be fun and it doesn’t have to so rigid after all. New in our portfolio is the 'Healthy snack club' which we are launching next month. From feedback gotten already, it looks like it's going be big. It would eventually spill to a 'Healthy snack and treats club' as we are looking at incorporating other healthy stuff besides nuts. Finally, we offer in our FADD Shop fitness equipment and accessories that make it all make a difference at affordable prices with payment plans too.

I currently write a blog where I share my real life experiences on ‘losing and maintaining weight in a crazy Nigerian city’.

-How did you get started? How did you know this is what you wanted to do?

During the Occupy Nigeria Strike earlier this year- 9th to 16th January 2012, I took a decision that would change my life forever and for good. Little did I know that my unilateral decision would not only affect me physically but would affect the other aspects of my life, that of my family and my friends, acquaintances and yet to be acquaintances.

I took charge of my life and decided to subscribe to a healthy life. I enrolled into a gym and in the midst of all the ‘Prudency’ that am known for…LOL..I engaged the services of a Personal Trainer. He showed me the ropes and taught me everything I needed to know about strength training, cardio etc. and most especially, taught me how to run….Yes he did bring the running monster out of me. 6 weeks after- in March to be precise- I had lost 5kg and was super excited. Told the whole world about it… at least those who cared to listen. At this point I observed this was getting serious. I was seeing my body change right in front of my own eyes. I then embarked on a lifestyle sustainable overhaul.

I got drafted into the best support group for weight loss on Facebook by Ohalie in March, this was where I got ideas of how to cook our usual local foods in the healthy way to lose weight with the help of my weight loss mentors.

I learnt my diet was 80% of the weight loss process. I learnt how to make oil free rice. oil free moinmoin (bean cakes), oil free beans, steamed ugwu (spinach)

Now with a cleaned up diet plus a minimum of 1 hour of exercise daily, I was ready to take up this ‘Weight loss Challenge’ against all odds.

By the end of April, I had lost 17kg and always looking forward to showing off my new body. I loved the new me. Really loved the way my adrenaline pumped whenever I was exercising- sincerely, it was a feeling of getting high and I loved it. By May, I felt like it was time to tell the whole world about my experience.

I started to write my blog while my friend Jumi and I started our own weight loss support group on blackberry called ‘Watch us Shrink’ WUS – The group aka ‘The Shrinkers’ has become the talk of the fitness community these past months both in Nigeria and abroad.

We have several success stories. Since early September I have succeeded in maintaining an ideal weight for me after losing a total of 24kg in all. WHAT IS FADD?

FADD – Fitness Addict is a Wellness Consultancy company situated in Lagos, Nigeria
Our business is based on one simple fact: Fitness should be imbibed as a lifestyle for all.

• We have many success stories
• We work with your individual fitness goals
• We have a flexible plan that accommodates your busy life schedules.
• We have succeeded in localizing a diet plan which makes it much more sustainable
• You have a safe and confidential service guarantee

• Nutritionists
• Fitness Trainers
• Physiotherapist
• FOCUS IMS- Wellness and Preventive Care for Women
• Fusion Fitness Centre
• WEW- Women Encouraging Women to Eat Healthy- Weight loss support Group
• Fitness Assessment
• Personalized Meal Plans
• Personalized Workout Plans
• Weight loss Mentoring Program
• Peer to Peer weight-loss gathering/ fitness parties
• Wellness Referral Services
• Retail of Sports Accessories and Equipment
• Occasional neighborhood fitness events

You can contact me directly on iamafadd@gmail for more questions about FADD. Let us help you achieve your fitness goals because Fitness Rocks! coming soon.

-Are you still a 9 to 5 worker and how have you been able to combine working with FADD?

I still have an 8-5 job presently. Coping with this and FADD, I have had to keep late nights and use every opportunity I have to catch up on some work. Also, starting my own business has ensured that my brain does not go to sleep at any time. I am constantly thinking up ideas and putting them down on a writing pad I always keep in my bag.

-How did you fund your business in the beginning?

Last year November, it was my birthday. I took and extracted points from my business plan and created a power-point presentation on my business and then shared this with very close family. Because they were very proud of what I had accomplished with myself through fitness and knowing the type of person I was, they did not hesitate to help. Meanwhile, I initially started with what I had. Business plan was put together by a former colleague of mine who resigned to start up her own company. I promised to pay her in trenches through at various pay days and she agreed. I took advantage of all favors that came my way.

-What do you enjoy the most about owning your own business?

Coming up with plans and strategies and seeing it come to light is a fantastic experience.

-What do you enjoy the least about owning your own business?

Sometimes when I look at the financials and nothing is moving- if you know what I mean. Or when you take up clients who do not end up being success stories after all- very depressing.

-Was there ever a point when you wanted to give up?

Yes- many times. I cannot begin to explain.

-How have you gotten the word out about FADD? How did you establish your social media presence?

In May 2012, I started blogging. I actually started this blog Nov 2011- but was not really writing about anything. Just created the blog after I read a friends’ blog. So March 2012, an online magazine featured my story After this I got feedback from loads of people on how my story can inspire others so I started. Post after post, the feedback pushed me to write even more. It was amazing. I am not a great writer but people did not care because they were only after the substance. The blog brought me to the lime light a lot as I shared it on facebook and twitter anytime I had a new post. Then it caught the attention of another popular online magazine who published another story about me in Jan 2013. That was a major hit

I responded to emails for 2 months after then. Then I got on facebook and created a page which I believe would be more interactive and I also went further to Instagram. I love pictures a lot so getting on social media was a lot easy for me. People see them as distractions; I see them as fantastic tools for business.

-What's a typical day like for you?

I wake up at 5am. Struggle to get up for 15mins. Get into my work out clothes and either hit the road for a jog or do a 20-30mins workout with one of my DVDs. I then take a bath. Pack some cereal, snacks and lunch in my food bag and head out to work. I am there most times till 7 as once work stops at 5, I now dwell into my own world- the FADD world.

-What's been the most amazing moment for FADD thus far?

Many amazing moments. I love when I see my clients-turn-friends achieve their fitness goals. The transformation is always amazing. And when they talk to others, they talk with a great understanding of wellness, healthy living and fitness in general.

-What advice do you have for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Start small, start with what you have. Have a plan, talk to people who have done it. Take advantage of business advice and help that come from people who have done it. Don’t be shy to ask for favors. Take advantage of the big trend- THE SOCIAL MEDIA. Remember the rule of start-up capital; Start with money saved by you, meet family and friends to share in your vision. The bank should be your last resort. Ensure you have a very good business plan.

So there you go! Did I also mention that Tayo has cute daughter! She's a true role model and definitely an inspiration. Through this interview I have been able to motivate myself to take fitness more seriously and also to take my business plans more seriously!


Thursday, 24 October 2013

How to keep your natural nails long and strong

Photo courtesy: @kandiyamz instagram

Great nail art wouldn't you say?
I love long nails-particularly when it's all natural. It's hard to find a great nail studio that has mastered the art of using false nails that look real. I have never had false nails before-I just grow mine nice and long and get them painted. I had my nails wrapped one time before going on a trip, but that stuff made my nails SO brittle afterwards! I said "no more" and that was the last time. I really need to take my nail art more seriously-I know of a few reputable nail studios but they are not located very close to where I live unfortunately. Need to start doing my research! And whenever I can, I WILL lay my hands on my own nail kit to start trying out these awesome designs myself.
But what I wanna write about today is keeping your own natural nails. I think it's sexy when you can grow your own nails long and strong and rock some cool nail polish and nail art. Many people think its near-impossible to grow your nails long, but that's a myth. If you follow these tips I will share with you, you can have nails that will not break off (hmm this is just like hair length retention haha) and in 4 months you can have long nails.

I do not have many pics at the moment of my nails when painted-can't find them-but here's what my nails look like now. They get longer than this by the way. Sometimes they crack or chip, but I manage the situation, file the nail and carry on.

The middle finger nail chipped when a can drink toppled over from the fridge and landed on the nail. Hence it's looking short compared to the others. Whenever I paint my nails only my friends/family know they are not falsies. I've had ladies ask me where I got my acrylics fixed and I had to tell them my nails were all mine. Now this is not a show-off post, I just wanna show you HOW to keep your nails from breaking off or chipping. 

1. Stop biting them: Let's be honest with ourselves. This is probably the major culprit. Maybe many of you should even stop reading at this point. If you keep biting them, how would you rock long nails?
 2. Apply an oil like olive oil to the bare nail and cuticle twice a day and massage it in. Keep your hands and nails moisturized VERY often. Cuticles are a big part of nail growth, and olive oil may be what you need to keep your nails growing strong. Soak your nails in warm water and push back your cuticles. Pat dry well and add the oil. Massage each nail for about a minute.

3.  Reduce the number of times you get acrylic nails-they weaken your natural nails. If you get them because your nails are weak, they're just going to make them weaker.

4. To keep your nails strong, paint the inside tip of your nail with a clear polish once every five days.

5. Massage your nail beds. (Not the cuticle, but the actual nail.) It increases blood flow to your nails, which stimulates nail growth and keeps them healthier. 

6. Treat your nails as if you have wet nail polish on them. Never use your nails to peel or scratch anything off, or your nails may chip and weaken over time.

7. When you're polishing your nails, do it one direction with the fewest layers possible.
8. Use gloves when washing dishes to keep the chemicals in the soap from damaging your nails.
9. If you want to keep growing out your nails make sure before you apply polish that you use a strengthener/basecoat that will give your nails more strength and and stop the polish from dying your nails. Look for a base coat that is infused with calcium. OPI, Orly and Sally Hansen have great base coats.

10. If you have damaged nails; they split, crack, NEVER grow, and DESPERATELY need help, this may be due to a health problem. See a pharmacist. A product like "Curanail" also works wonders.
11. Supplements also help: "Perfectil", "Well woman" etc definitely help with nail, hair and skin health over time.
I practice all these tips except for wearing gloves while doing dishes and Point 4. I practice Point 9 sometimes. What I do is that I keep my hands and nails moisturized as often as possible. So after washing anything, I massage some oil or hand cream on my hands and massage properly. Of course I have a tube of hand cream in my bag.
So next time someone tells you that having long nails is all about luck, or heredity, don't listen. Try these tips first at least!


Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Liebster Award 2013-11 Interesting Facts about Me!


I got the Liebster award nomination from a very lovely blogger I know-Nerline Germain. Thanks Nerline! xoxoxo.  She owns the fashion and style blog: Chic from hair to toe.
The Liebster Award is for bloggers, gives people the opportunity to discover new blogs and helps people know about the blogger in question. I got these facts from Nerline's blog to help you understand more about this award:

-The Award exists only on the internet. It is given to bloggers by bloggers.
-Liebster is a German word which means dearest, kindest, beloved, endearing.
-It should be passed forward like a chain of letter.
-The blogs you nominate should have less than 200 followers.

So I am supposed to write 11 interesting facts about me, and then answer Nerline's own questions, and also nominate 5 bloggers. If I nominate you, you have to write 11 interesting facts about yourself, and then answer my questions and also nominate 5 other bloggers.Please don't break the chain!

11 Interesting Facts About Me
OK first, I am Fola-Sade, a Nigerian living in Lagos.

1. Contrary to what many people think, I am not very out-going (trying to improve on this) and I can very much spend hours on end by myself.

2. I LOVE music. A lot. I sometimes fantasize about being a singer.

3. I'm somewhat a geek. I love reading fiction. Reading is my number one hobby.

4. I hate cockroaches.

5. I laugh a whole lot. Hence, people tend to take advantage of me cos they think I can take a lot of crap.

6. I love piercings. I have two on my upper left ear, and I would have gotten many more piercings but for the fact that my skin is sensitive and prone to keloids. When I find a safe place, I'm getting more!

7. I can swim well, but I can't dive! How dumb is that?!

8. 80% of my friends are male.

9. I have no biological brothers. I have 3 sisters.

10. I cannot for the life of me snap my fingers! I read there's a small community of people like us on the planet. I get the motions right, but no clicking sound. I can't whistle either. Even my blood genotype is relatively rare. I'm not AA, or AS, or SS. I'm AC!

11. I only started cooking my own meals less than 2 years ago.

Answers to Nerline's Questions
1- Why did you start blogging?
I started in February. I had quit my job earlier and had some free time. I started the blog initially as a way of enlightening ladies on relaxed hair care (I was relaxed then, now I am natural), fitness, nutrition and style. The blog has evolved so much since then. Now blogging is something I LOVE so much.

2- How do you balance blogging with your regular job? Or family?
I guess when it is something you love to do, you would always make out time for it. Blogging is now a way of de-stressing myself. I blog whenever I have free time to do so.

3- Do you have a targeted audience in mind when you write your posts?
The nature of my posts makes my audience comprised of more of women than men! 

4- How many times do you read/edit your posts before they go live?

5- How do you feel about advertisements on your blog?
As long as it's legal, I am cool with it.

6-Would you buy an expensive garment even if you don't feel comfortable in it?
Absolutely not.

7- Are there times when you think about quitting blogging altogether?
Nope, never experienced that.

8- How often do you post articles on your blog?
I try to post articles every 2 days on the average.

9-What's your favorite social network to publish your blog on?
Google plus!

10- How many times have you changed your blog's name or template?
Never changed my blog's name or template -yet! Might do that soon.

11- How do you reward your readers/commenters?
Now Nerline it's interesting that you should ask me this cos I was very recently thinking of starting giveaways for my readers! I intend to work out something very soon and I am looking forward to my first giveaway.

My Nominees!
1. Hausa Nigerian
2. Vieve Butterfly
3. Beauty In Lagos
4. Wura Secret Hair
5. Dressed to the nines

The Rules
1. Link back to the blogger who presented the award to you-in this case, Fola's Oasis-Fola.
2.  Paste the award on your blog.
3. Choose 5 blogs to pass this award to (they must have fewer than 200 followers).
4. Let the recipients know about their nomination by leaving a comment on their blogs. or contacting them.
5. Write 11 interesting facts about you.
6. Answer my own questions.

My Questions
1. What inspired you to start blogging?
2. How long have you been blogging for?
3. Who is your target audience?
4. What do you love to write about the most?
5. Have you ever had writer's block and wondered about to write about?
6. List some of your favourite bloggers.
7. Asides blogging, what's your hobby?

This was fun! :-)


DIY: African print (ankara or aso oke) iphone cases!


Like that iphone case? Well I do and I am gonna show you how to make one! I am a sucker for pretty things that are unique and stylish. I am gonna purchase a custom iphone case soon but today I decided to make my own iphone case-I even made two!

Here are the deets:

What you need:

Scissors, fabric, felt beneath.
You need your print fabric (of course). Use whatever fabric you choose to use. A pair of scissors, and some glue. Felt-I used felt because it's stronger than cotton wool. I had felt from last year when I did some supply shopping at the market. You may purchase felt at any craft store. Lastly, and this is optional, you need an embellishment. Use whatever you like: brooches, bows, but I decided to make mine, so I used some black net fabric. Other tools are a pencil/pen and a ruler.

Get started!

1. Cut out the felt: Use your phone as a measurement guide. You want a square of felt that would wrap around your fone with a cm of overlap. You also want to use the length of your fone or just a teeny-bit shorter than the length so that the top of your fone juts out a little bit. Also, make it a snug fit. You don't want your phone slipping out of your case!

2. Cut out the fabric: Place the felt square over the fabric and measure out 1-inch extensions around the square, then cut this out.

3. Cut out an EXACT size of fabric again, so that you have two squares of fabric. The plan is to have the felt between the two pieces of print fabric.

4. Place the felt square in the exact middle of the first piece of fabric. Make sure the wrong side of the fabric is facing up. Then apply glue to the edges of the felt and the middle.

5. Place the second piece of fabric on top of the felt and align the fabric well so it's flush with the one under the felt. Press firmly!

6. Flip the felt with the fabric now attached over, apply glue to the side facing up, place the second piece of fabric and press. Now you will have a felt sandwich. The felt in the middle and 2 pieces of fabric glued to both sides. Just ensure you align the fabric well.

7. Now place your phone in the middle of the pad you have made. Fold the pad over so it overlaps like it did when you were measuring. You will have some extra fabric jutting, so fold this under so it looks like this:

Do you see the idea? There's an overlap of felt. The fabric that extends is TUCKED under. Press to form a crease. 

8. Next you have to apply glue. Where you apply the glue is important. Lift up the flap, apply glue under as well as where the flap will rest on. Then press again firmly. In other words, you will create the same effect as shown in the image above but this time you are using glue to make it stay that way.

So press firmly so you have this:

9. Next, we create the base of the phone case. There will be about an inch of material jutting out of either side right? Pick the side you want to make your base. Apply glue on the OUTSIDE of the jutting part of the fabric....

Looking at the pic above, the glue should be applied from the edge to where the felt ends.

10. Tuck the jutting fabric with the glue around it inwards. You'll get your fingers sticky though! Tuck it in all around so it looks like this...

In the pic, I had not applied glue yet, but really there should be glue all over that inner flap you just tucked under. 

11. Now press both sides firmly to close it up! You will get this:

Now you have the base for your phone. Next is to finish up the other side-the open end where the phone enters.

12. The other end also has jutting fabric right? Apply glue, but this time on the INSIDE of the jutting fabric!

Here, I applied the glue around the inside part-just the jutting bit.

13. Tuck this under and press firmly and neatly. So that it looks like this:

This is the open end of the case. You are basically done! The next step is the embellishment part, which is optional.

14. Embellishment. I just cut a long strip of netting, folded it over and tied a bow around the case:

I folded the ends and stuck them in place with glue. Finally I found a gem-looking stone to use as a centre-piece and stuck that in place too:

Finished! Not bad huh? Here are some more views for you: back view, side view.....

I immediately made another case using the same method but using a different, thicker fabric. I did not fold under the open end because the edge was already neat-I cut the fabric making sure I took advantage of this neat end. The other end was not neat but I did not fold it in either to make the closed end of the case because the fabric was very thick. I just applied glue on the inside of the jutting fabric and pressed it together. 
Here it is:

I used no embellishment for this one because the fabric is already quite colourful. My sis loved this one so much! :-) 

Tips: I realized that glue holds much better if you wait for some seconds after applying, before pressing the pieces together. Also when pressing, do it firmly and hold it in place for a while. If the fabric is thick or layered due to folding, hold for longer, be very firm and maybe place a heavy object to hold it in place for some minutes.
For patterned fabric, take some moments to align the prints nicely before cutting. Also when glueing don't be absent-minded! Only apply glue to the wrong side of fabric! Trust me people make these mistakes lol.

So that's how I made two lovely phone cases today!

Try it out !


Friday, 18 October 2013

Get rid of chest acne and bacne with these tips!!!



Some months ago I was looking at myself in the mirror and noticed some little zits and spots on my chest. I went "aaargh!" because I had always prided myself in the past for not having any chest acne. But I've grown older and I have noticed that my skin is changing a bit too. How many of you have noticed that spots don't clear off your skin like they used to, or have you noticed how your skin just has this resistant and stubborn attitude to it now? Unlike when you were a teenager? 

Well fortunately for me I was able to get rid of the chest acne and keep the acne off, through a combat and prevent method. I did some research and decided to share this post so you can know what I did and also know some other tips that I did not try, but would definitely help. There's nothing as irritating as wearing a low-cut top or dress and sporting some acne along the side!

But one thing you should know is this: chest acne and bacne (back acne) is WAAAY easier to treat, compared to facial acne. This is because the skin on the chest is way thinner than facial skin-also facial skin just has more complexities, many of which are due to the things we put ON the skin such as makeup. 

So here's what you need to know, some tips (tips I actually tried are in orange) and afterwards what "I" did to take keep off the chest acne. I must say it was only a mild form of acne I had but I took action fast! In 4days I saw an improvement. In 2 weeks it was totally gone.

That's what happens when the acne monster decides to inflict us. Here are the tips below:

1. Wash your body with an oil-free medicated body wash: I bought Tetmosol bar soap and I did not even use it all over, just on my chest. I rubbed it on after wetting it and left it on for some minutes while scrubbing the rest of my body.

2. Exfoliate using an abrasive sponge or a loofah.

I used my sponge-just like the lily sponge above- to exfoliate or scrub my chest gently. I just wet it and rubbed it on my chest-remember I had rubbed Tetmosol some minutes earlier. I do this for a minute or less and rinse off.

3.  Spot treat with an acne medication lotion: I used Neo Medrol after drying my chest. I really love this product and I use it even now to spot treat acne on my face. I have been using it for years. A little goes a very long way, and do not forget to shake the bottle before use. Look for products with salicylic acid, benzyl peroxide or sulphur. You may use a moisturizing lotion on top of these treatments to moisturize your skin, as long as the lotion is non-comedogenic.

4. Try retinol and BHAs or AHAs: Use products like Retin A to help. These products are exfoliators and gently slough of dead skin. Just rub it on after a shower.

5. Try zinc supplements: It is said that zinc is acne's enemy. Take no more than 50mg zinc supplements daily or look for a product with 1.2% zinc and 4% erythromycin. You could also puncture zinc gel capsules and rub the fluid directly on your chest or back with a clean finger or Q-tip. I also know that garlic supplements help to clear impurities in the body.

6. PH Balance: Sometimes our water is too hard for the skin, or the chlorine content could dry out the skin and cause issues. Try mixing apple cider water with distilled bottle water in the ratio 50:50 in a spray bottle, and spray it on your skin after a shower. Allow it dry.

7. Scrubs: I use my body scrub as a preventive measure against break outs. I don't remember to do this often though. Get a good scrub with crushed granules in it like the one I use shown below, or make your own by mixing some tablespoons of granulated sugar with some olive oil. 

Lifestyle changes: Very Important!

1. Wear clean bras as much as you can! No need to say why, but this tip is very golden I tell you. Just the way changing pillow cases every 4days is a golden rule! 

Also make sure your bra straps are tight enough so they don't rub against acne because this irritates the acne and aggravates the problem. Better still, wear strapless bras more often if you can.

2. Wear loose clothes: Now this would work when you can, and also when you are home. I'm generally a semi-nudist when I'm home anyway so this is easy for me! 

3. Shower after sweating when you can.
This is obvious isn't it? :-)

4. Be careful when conditioning your hair: Another golden rule particularly for my sisters who wash their hair often! Wash your torso last, after rinsing out conditioner. Also use cold water when rinsing because this keeps the skin's pores closed and protected from the conditioner. Lastly use leave-ins after showering, with a towel on your back.

What I have been doing to keep the chest acne off:
1. Exfoliating with a loofah
2. Scrubbing with my body scrub once in a while
3. Using the toner (Body Shop Tea Tree Skin Clearing toner) on my chest after using it on my face.
4. Rubbing Neo Medrol on my chest every 4 days or so.
5. Trying my best to shower after sweating, wearing loose clothes and clean bras.

I should show you a pic for you to see what I mean but I don't wanna give y'all a boob shot! *wink*



Thursday, 17 October 2013

Hair crush features: Tamsy

Hey peeps!
This is feature-month wouldn't you say?! Well as you might have noticed, one of my goals when I decided to start this blog is to be a source of inspiration to other women when it comes to looking good and feeling good. So my hair crush features is just my way of showing you all that even if you decide to skip relaxers, you can still look beautiful. My style crush features shows us how to dress with style, combine colours, patterns and layers, even on a tight budget, and the feature is also good for those who just like to stare a pretty things lol. I plan to share more features sooner or later-next in line is the creative/artist cruch features and then entrepreneur feature.

So my special feature today is Tamsy, a Nigerian-American who I could tell has such a vivacious personality just by looking at her pics  :-)

- Please introduce yourself! What do you do?

Hey!! My name is Tamsy Kambi. I’m 22 years old and currently a nursing student at LSU-HSC School of Nursing. I love my natural hair and the natural community, you all are so BEAUTIFUL. I have been natural for over 3 years and loving it. I can’t wait to see where this journey will continue to take me.

- Why did u decide to go or stay natural, and how long have you been natural for?

I decided to go natural because I constantly had a lot of breakage when I had permed hair. Don’t get me wrong, I loved my hair when it was permed, it had A LOT of body and it looked healthy but I had problems with my ends, I wanted a change, something new. So I decided to stop getting perms in June/July 2009 and cut the rest of my perm off in June/July 2010. I didn’t know much a lot about natural hair; I would stay on Youtube for hours to days just watching a million and one videos about natural hairstyle, products, and maintenance. I got a lot of information as if I was doing a project on the “new me” to come. When I first went natural I did a lot of wash-n-gos and bantu knots and when I look back at those pics I look a mess lol. But I have learned what to do with my hair and the products that make it look its best.

I decided to stay natural because I began to love by natural curls in its natural state; it was just so pretty and beautiful. I love my hair more now than when I had a perm. Natural hair to me is so much more versatile, my curls last longer, it retains moisture and it’s so BIG (which I love). The way that I’m feeling about my curls is that I will never go back to the creamy crack. I’ve found the new me and I’m loving it. I’ve been natural for 3+ years now.

- What’s your hair type, your regimen and staple hair products?

I’m not to sure about my specific hair type but I thinks its around 3c and 4a, I have different curl types in my head lol. My normal regimen for my hair is shampooing and conditioning my hair with Organix Coconut Milk (found at Walmart, Target and most drug stores), then I use Opro Leave-in-conditioner (found at Tjmaxx or Marshalls), and the moisturizer - Camille Rose Naturals Curlaide Moisture Butter (found at Target); it smells soooo delicious. I seal it with African Best Herbal Oils. I use all these products to do my weekly twist out and it always comes out FABULOUS. All of these products are my staple products that I use on a weekly basis. I have recently been introduced to Camille Rose and I love it, it’s around $16 but it last me 2+ months so it’s worth it.

- Please share a few tips and tricks for retaining length?

I’m not the type of person that really cares for length; the most important part to me is retaining healthy hair. What I normally do is to trim my hair every 6-8weeks when I start to see brittle ends. Also, making sure your hair is ALWAYS moisturized and detangled helps prevent breakage. Super dry hair is a NO, NO, and equals tons of breakage, and no one wants that. Bleaching your hair can also lead to breakage because the color is sucking out all the moisture from the hair which is why it is important to seal your ends with an oil to lock in moisture to prevent dryness. I guess all these tips can be useful for both maintaining healthy hair as well as retaining length.

- What reactions did u get when u first went natural and/or what reactions do u get now?

When I first went natural I did not do the big chop, I was too scared, so I decided to just trim my hair till I had no more perm left. I transitioned for about a year till I finally cut the last bit of perm off my hair. It was a new beginning for me. The reactions I received when I first went natural was pretty positive, I had a big support system and even encouraged others to become natural as well. I received a few comments such as “You’re brave, I could never do that”, “Why did you go natural, you straight hair was so cute”, and “WHYYY did you cut your hair” but I didn’t worry about what others thought about my hair the only person’s thoughts that mattered were my own.

The reactions I get now since I have been natural for years now are all positive. Everyone loves my hair and always asking me for tips on what to do. I get a lot of compliments on my curls, color and hairstyles. Since I have been natural for a while I know what works and what don’t works with my hair. I’m loving the natural community, its like one bring curly family.

- How do you wear your hair to work or formal occasions?

For me, I only really have two main hairstyles lol (I’m lazy, and don’t know how to braid lol). My two and only hairstyles are either wearing my hair in a curly wild bush or a high puff. I love wearing my hair wild and free most of the time and once it gets old I tie it into a high puff. I feel like the high puff is best for work because it’s tamed lol. I wear the high puff a lot when I go out because it makes me feel fierce (I don’t know why but it just does lol), it has a sexy sophisticated look to it.

- What’s the best thing about going natural and what advice do you have for other wanna-be naturals out there?

The best thing about being natural is the natural community and the versatility. The natural community is so wonderful, everyone helps one another whether you know each other or not. They are useful for product reviews, latest hairstyles and tips and even motivate you to continue your natural journey. The natural hair community is so friendly and we all support one another, it’s like one big curly family. Some advice that I would give to wanna-be naturals is that you may be scared and don’t know what to do with your hair in the beginning but as time progresses you will begin to love it more and more. I would suggest that you do your research on natural hair and see if it works for you. Natural hair isn’t easy (like some people may think). Hair is hair and should be taken proper care of no matter what texture, color, perm, natural or what ever else.

- Where can one find and follow u on the web?

You can find me on Instagram/twitter @mynaturalhigh and I also have an online shop called myNaturalCreation, just it out

One of the things I love about Tamsy's locks is her hair colour! I am almost certain I would dye my hair at some point and I know it is pics like Tammy's that make me more and more certain of this.