Norfolk, Va. - It's a touchy topic with most women: hair. Whether you dye it, straighten it, add products to make it curly, or weave to make it longer, many women can relate to the struggle to attain perfect locks. But for some, the best way to achieve the perfect hair means going back to the basics, their natural hair.
Laila Muhammad decided to take the big step and be transparent about the process and why she’s doing it. It's taken Laila four years to get to this moment.
She’s been wearing weave styles on television for 10 years.
So, why the change now?
She credits her former co-anchor Blaine Stewart for forcing her to face her truth, on a bad hair day.
Here is the video from that encounter that went viral four years ago:
Laila says since then, she’s wanted to wear her hair in its natural, chemical-free form. But, she had some reservations.
How would she style her hair? Would her hair be accepted? Would you the viewers see it as beautiful or a distraction?
“We're living in a society now where it's accepted, it's considered beautiful. Because you're natural you're beautiful,” said Quincy Brown, owner of The Beauty Parlor by Q and Company in downtown Norfolk.
He says nationally there is a natural hair movement, including here in Hampton Roads, where the majority of the clients in his salon are natural.
“That is the reason why this big movement has started because women wanted to have healthy hair and be liberated from the relaxer,” Brown said. “A lot of celebrities now are paving the way for black women to be able to embrace natural hair.”
Brown says transitioning from chemically processed hair to natural hair can be challenging.
“You get into the areas of where they can experience breakage because of the lack of consistency and texture,” he said.
Brown adds many women take a bold step and get what's called the big chop, cutting off the relaxed hair, which can leave some people in a state of shock.
“You’re thinking that you're going to have this curly textured hair and it may not necessarily be that way for everyone. Everybody has a different curl pattern.”
Laila’s last relaxer was about six years ago, so her hair transitioned to its natural state while she was wearing weave.
“Do you think I'm ready, bottom line?” she asked Brown.
“Yes, of course you’re ready!” Brown said.
Laila says she’s finally ready, not because it’s trendy or to join a movement.
She says she’s mentally ready and her hair is physically ready for a weave break.
Check out more of Laila's natural hair transition below.