Fave Instagram Naturalistas: @Afroista


A beautiful soul with a gorgeous head of healthy hair is how I would describe Afroista! I have been following her for awhile now and she never disappoints with effortless style and grace. She is certainly a natural lady worth following!!



Some know me as Afroista but my name is Tessa. I was born in Brooklyn, but Hell’s Kitchen is where I call home.

Afroista is my brand, I wear various hats with intentions to share tools that have enhanced my life. To live outside of the box. Thus far I have hosted thrifting parties, and various artistic cosmic gatherings. My online store will soon be open with crystal trinkets, thrifted clothes, limited edition apparel. I collaborate with brands for campaigns, consultations, & styling.

I am blessed to also work at Dyekora Sumda Midwifery Services, as the front desk/ marketing. Memaniye is a home birth midwife, who actually supported my two home births. I’m fortunate to work in an amazing community, we dedicated to empowering each other. Working at Dyekora Sumda has inspired & encouraged me to find my individual artistic balance.

What or Who inspired you to go natural? Did you bc or transition?

 13 years ago I began my back to natural journey. It was a process (and continues to be) one of true self discovery. This path has enabled me to see that I am an ingenious woman of the land.

I was tired of trying to fit into the mold of what people thought I should look like. It felt like I was jumping through hoops and I was tired of the act.

My hair was uber damaged while it was relaxed.  I would shalak it down with gel and tie it into a bun between touchups. The thought of going back to my roots began years prior, when I started dying my hair. I recall sitting in the chair daydreaming  what my curls would look like. Praying that maybe somehow I would see them after the color was compete. Only to be disappointed.  Folks told me I would never get my curls back. That ignited something in, though it took years for me to consign, I stopped getting touch ups.

 I will never forget the elders who hailed me in the street for for rocking my roots. They use to say “I remember when all the ladies were proud of their Fro,”or that I reminded them of Chaka Kaun & Diana Ross. They became my inspiration because to me they were living their life to the fullest (pun intended)

The entire process of my transition took maybe 2-3 years. I wanted to maintain my length, the last time I had short hair was when I was 9. I felt so liberated when I cut the last bit of relaxed ends off!

What are your current hair goals?

Last year I reached my initial goal length. My hair reached the arch of my back.  In the same breath I had determined to shift to a drastic look, some color a cut, or dreads. Well, I enabled folks to go scissor happy. Quite traumatic, I’m not gonna lie. It was “healthier”, lighter, & easier to manage. But never again. I do enjoy the new shape. I’m going to let it grow out till it reaches my tailbone, and beyond.


Top 3 products and prices.

 Ancient Blends Hair Oil $20 : this fusion is great for my scalp. I use it for my hot oil steam  treatment

Soultanics Knot Sauce  $18, her whole collection is in heavy rotation!  A scrumptious creamy moisturizer that aids me when I’m re-braiding my hair. A lot goes a long way! My youngin tell me it smells like a scrumptious dessert.

KKB Sweet Ambrosia  $18 this is one of my staples. An “everyday”conditioner that’s light and does the job! Especially on those mornings when my head tie comes off and I need to give my mane some extra love.


Is there a product you have used that you would NEVER use again? Why?

Neva, Neva, Neva will I use Castor Oil! It clogs my pours and creates a film on my scalp. I have tried it pure and in mixed products and I have the same reaction. I’ll stick to my coconut oil.


Do you have a favorite go to hairstyle?

Braids & double strand twist. I usually plait  part of my hair and twist the other so that I can manipulate it in various styles.


How do you protect you hair at night?

I’m a faithful headscarf tier. The worst thing is when I’m tired and I can’t find my  favorite scarf!  I have a few backups just in case.

Do you have a name for your hair or If you had to give your hair a name what would it be?

Afroista, The People’s Muse 😉


If your hair is colored what do you use to do so?

Ive teetered and tottered on dying my hair. You have inspired me to color, but I haven’t taken the plunge.  I’m a lazy natural, and up keep on colored hair is a bit much for my lifestyle… But I’m still interested.


Sum up your natural hair journey in three words.

Back to Natural

Any advice to the natural newbies?

Enjoy the process of learning about YOUR texture. Whether it’s dense or loose, your mane is unique to you. It is divinely beautiful, & all hair is good hair.


What is your favorite compliment you have ever been given on your hair?

My youth often states it has magical powers. The last time I blew out my hair, I walked in and he proclaimed “You took away your magic!!!” He wasn’t content until my curl returned to which his response was a tight long hug and “it’s back!”


If you could tell your younger self NOW something about your natural hair THEN what would that be?

It’s okay that your coils aren’t loose, that your hair doesn’t fully sleek back.

I know that we are inspired my various coils, but please try not to compare yourself to others. Your mane is full of life just like yourself!


Keep Rockin Tessa!

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