Natural Hair Diary: Alexis Felder, TV Producer

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In the second installment of "Natural Hair Journey" series, Afrobella.com's Patrice Grell Yursik profiles Alexis Felder, a reality show producer with a glorious head of chemical-free curls. NATURAL WOMAN: Alexis "Lexi" Felder AGE: 26 CITY: Atlanta, GA by way of Hampton, VA OCCUPATION: Reality Show Casting and Production HAIR JOURNEY: Lexi tried to transition when she was 12 years old, but faced a lack of support from her friends and her mother. "My mother didn't understand," she said. "It was like, 'Why would you do that? When are you gonna get a perm?' So I relaxed it again." She gave it another try as a college freshman. "It was the worst... I didn't know what I was doing! I tried to keep my new growth straight to match my relaxed ends," she said. "Sophomore year, I made my college dance team and, since our hair had to look uniform, I cut my hair down to three inches and got micro-braids." She never looked back!  FAVORITE PRODUCTS: Kinky-Curly Curling Custard ($17, kinky-curly.com), Ohm Sweet Hair Pudding ($8, goingohm.com), Cantu Leave-in Conditioning Repair Cream ($4.99, drugstore.com), and Miss Jessie's Curly Buttercreme ($21, missjessies.com) -- which she says is great for twist-outs! HAIR ICONS: "Tracee Ellis Ross is like the messiah of natural hair celebs," says Lexi. "And I've always loved Kelis' punk rocker natural styles." ADVICE TO ASPIRING NATURALS: "Go natural because you want to, not because someone is encouraging you to. You're the one going through the journey! Also, YouTube videos can really help. With so many different hair textures reviewing the same products and styles, you can figure out what works for you!" Check out Lexi's YouTube channel, LexiWithTheCurls, or follow her on Twitter @curlygirllexi. If you'd like to submit your natural hair transitioning story and photos, please email Patrice Grell Yursik at essencenaturalhair@gmail.com.