Afro Alice is back with the interviews and this week, we are pleased to introduce you a fiery hot naturalista, FB page owner, poet, entrepreneur: Rebeca Gerlus.
Tell me about yourself.
Hello, my name is Rebeca Gerlus and I am a proud Haitian woman. I live in Haiti and am the founder and Chief Executive Office of Youth & Young Adults International Agency.
Aside from running the Agency, I truly live for fashion and everything artistic especially in the hair industry. I have always loved to do my hair, to rock different styles and be out of the norm when it came to it. I love to see diversity and love to imagine looks that will create a stare.
How and when did you become natural?
Since the year 2008, I had been thinking of becoming natural. Back then, I was rocking my perm but was still doing a lot of funky looks. I realize that I wasn’t really the type to always wear a blow dry; I was becoming more bored with the look and was always doing curly looks. In the year 2010, Haiti was hit with a devastating Earthquake. I flew back to the States three weeks after the quake but I wanted to come back home. I felt that God had really done something good in our lives for everyone in my family survived except our uncle who passed away. My house did not crumble, so I felt extremely blessed, because of that I wanted to give God something I cherish incredibly. I LOVED my hair; I was very attached to it so I knew it would be the ultimate sacrifice. I decided to move back to Haiti and bought a plane ticket for March, a month before my departure; I took my scissors and cut off my hair. I was wearing braids and just cut my hair from it, I than went to the barber and had him fix it for me. A few days before my departure, I again went to another barber shop and had my hair faded. Truly it was one of the BEST cut I ever did! I felt so free, so renewed, so fresh, and so happy. It was a feeling I will never forget and till this day think it was the best cut I ever did.
How did people in your surroundings react to that change?
My family were a bit shock, they knew how attached I was to my hair but they didn’t say anything because my mother, sister and cousin were already natural. They all had transitioned so perhaps it was a shock to them the no hair thing but they are so used to my “in the moment” nature.
Tell us about Versatile Hairstyles.
My page Versatile Hairstyles was created once I noticed how so many people were truly enjoying my many looks. At first, to help me on my journey, I started to watch youtube videos, I watch many people but the very first one was prettydimples01. I watched her fervently and got inspired a lot! I then started to follow other youtubers but my inspiration came from within. I just let it flow with my hair, sometimes thinking of a style, doing it on my hair, seeing something from someone and creating my own version. I don’t like to wear what others have; I can see a style from someone and create my own that is what inspiration is to me. So truly youtube has been an ENORMOUS supporter! I learn extremely from other people talents. As I was doing my styles, I kept taking pics, and sharing them on albums on my personal Facebook page. When I was on my third album, I realize that it would be better to create a page, so I thought of a name, remembered someone post underneath one of my pictures saying how my hair was so versatile, there came the name J I name the page VERSATILE HAIRSTYLES because to me, my style is not limited to the natural look, its versatile, so it comprise any & everything we can do with our hair, accentuated with the natural look.
What’s your hair regimen?
I don’t really have a regimen for my hair. I am natural but color treated, I always manage to moisturize and use products that work well with my hair and my color journey. I believe that being natural is a learning process. It is your journey with your hair, to learn what works and doesn’t, to try out different things, to be bold and just dare!
What do you love the most about your natural hair?
Natural hair can be pretty boring IF you don’t know how to style them. What I love most about Versatile Hairstyles is that it gives you a lot of choice to help with styles, lots of funk, and just many more. I love being natural! It’s the best decision I’ve made for myself when it came to fashion. I am able to do so much more, I am fortunate to know how to braid so I can pull any look. I am now experimenting with cuts and OH BOY can say no more lol! I love it love it love it love it!!!!!!!! I am really enjoying being natural, I have NEVER EVER flat iron my hair and don’t feel the need to. The most I do is blow dry to give me a blow out, big look. I live in a hot Island, we get more heat than cold so I am not going to waste my money, plus I truly don’t feel the need for it.
Any project you are working on related to natural hair?
I have MANY MANY MANY projects coming up for not only the team natural in Haiti but for the versatility! I will not spoil the surprise but can tell you all to seat tight and just wait for our upcoming activities J
A message to the natural hair community?
I will tell people to really do what is best for them and just go for it if you want to. For the newly natural hair sis, I will say to
1- Be patient with your hair
2- Never style your hair dry always make sure it’s moisturize with water therefore manageable
3- Let yourself explore and experience all your hair has to offer
4- Learn how to work with YOUR texture
5- Find products that work best with your hair
6- Don’t let any style stop you just because your hair is in its natural stage
7- Don’t change your hair because of professional environment; learn how to do professional styles
8- ENJOY the journey for it is truly amazing
Facebook Page: Afro Alice
Twitter: Afro Alice