Interview - Erika from Empty Locket

Introducing Erika. Fresh faced natural beauty! 

Q: What is your hair story?  What kind of hair styles have you rocked, before embracing your natural hair?
A:  My mother permed my hair at the tender age of 5. I started out with two long, kinky, beautiful braids and ended up with brittle, bone straight hair up to my ears by the time I was sixteen. I was in high school when I began experimenting with various products and black rinses. One day I showed up at my childhood dominican hair salon and the stylist who gave me my first perm looked at me with a sad face and she goes "Ay mami why you hair look so bad?" 

I was ashamed of my hair ever since. I struggled with my hair all throughout my teenage years and it was shedding more by the day. I began to get braids which I hated. They'd pull and tug at my scalp. I hated the smell of the green gel they used, the smell of weave and burned hair and grease and throbbing headaches after I was done. A few years later, I cut my hair off just out of the blue one day.  I grew out an afro that was big enough to wear in a small puff, but it was still shedding. I was using vegetable glycerin and I had no idea what I was doing with my newly natural hair, I didn't know how to care for it at all. One day, my coworker and I were having a conversation about hair and she simply asks "why don't you get dreadlocks?" I thought about it all day and that night. I decided to do my research on locs and how to care for them. I wanted to go to a reputable salon to get them and I decided on Deeply Rooted in Atlanta, GA. I printed out two photos to show the stylist exactly how I wanted my locs to look :-P.  I drove 4 hours to Atlanta and my locs were born.

Q: Did you have any big fears about going back to your natural texture?
A: I have always been comfortable with natural hair but since it was so short, I didn't feel like it fit me or my personality. Some women look beautiful rocking a fro, but I did not and I knew that. I was especially afraid of how others would view me, but I quickly got over that and began to make the best of my hair as it was :).

Q: What are three products you can't live without for nurturing/styling your hair?
A:  I don't use many products on my hair anymore at all. For me, the health of my hair is mostly internal. So I'd have to say water, a good diet and my aloe vera gel.

Q:  You have a great  natural hair blog. What was your inspiration for starting the blog? And what has been the most rewarding part of your blogging experience?
A:  EmptyLocket initially started out as a personal blog where I had planned to talk about my love life (or lack thereof :)). But I  quickly realized that I was a lot more comfortable and interested in talking about my hair. A lot of my friends at college were interested in going natural and would always come to me for advice. I enjoyed educating them and seeing their faces light up when I'd give them transitioning tips, etc. It came as second nature to me and I decided to turn my blog, into a hair blog.

Q: How can we keep up with you and your journey i.e. blog, twitter, facebookfotkitumblr, personal or professional website? (Optional)