What inspired the start of the Shukura Naturoganics brand?
I have, for as long as I can remember, bought store brands and remixed them to get the desired texture that suited my skin or hair. Growing up there was no product that really worked for my hair type – now known as 4B – 4C. Petroleum Jelly or VO5 were the only brands at the time. I would always add additional oils and herbs, knowledge handed down from my mom, just to get the right combination that worked. My school mates loved how my hair looked and felt and would always request product, and I happily obliged. It was not until I moved from the island of Barbados to Texas a few years ago, while exploring a difficult job market, that I decided to explore my passion of crafting and mixing while waiting for the perfect job to come along. So what began as a personal journey quickly turned into an in-demand side business with family, friends, and co-workers as my first customers. I am humbled that I was blessed with such talents; it is a joy to share it with others and my healing comes in seeing their joy from using my products.
The name Shukura is an African word meaning “Grateful” – that is, to live a life of service to others through a journey to grace, joy and healing.
How much of a role do visuals and packaging play in the overall experience you seek to create for your customers?
Packaging has played a huge role. The labels are bright and colorful which catches the eye. The containers I use are two-fold: they convey a clean, crisp look to the brand, as well as enhance the labels.
What are some of the potential dangers of using products in the hair that are not natural and vitamin rich?
What we put onto our bodies also goes inside our bodies. If you put Parabens, sulphates, etc on your hair, chances are residue will find its way into your body. Just as we create build-up from using products, we (also) create build-up in our bodies, and over time a problem can occur. I use vitamins and minerals such as biotin, niacin, etc in my hair care as well as my skin care line of products. Vitamins and minerals help fill gaps found in our diets as well as the cuticle of the hair. These supplements enhance the health of our hair. Without these supplements our hair suffers breakage, becomes lack luster, and hair loss follows.
What type of results can customers expect from your Nato de Coco Hair Treat–which our March COCOTIQUE subscribers received in their boxes?
Nato De Coco Hair Treat is a smoothing moisturizing hair dress that revives dry, parched hair and scalp; while calming frizz, for shiny, smooth and beautiful hair. Additionally it adds gentle conditioning attributes that make (hair) soft. It nourishes and conditions with jojoba oil, avocado oil, coconut oil and castor oil. It has the added benefits of three butters: Cocoa, Shea and Mango Butters; as well as a botanical infusion of gotu kola, brahmi, calendula, coltsfoot, horsetail, comfrey, linseed, flaxseed, nettle, vitamin E and selenium.
What advice would you give for maintaining moisturized, richly conditioned tresses throughout the winter months?
Here is my advice for keeping hair moisturized. This works for me:
- Wash and go less often–-save this for the warmer months.
- Prepoo with hair oil; it adds emollients to the hair.
- Deep condition once a week since, with the winter months, you lose moisture from the hair--especially with the heater at work and at home. Deep conditioning adds that moisture back into the hair to keep it supple and to reduce the friction from the hair.
- Moisturize: Use Nato De Coco Hair Treat. This moisturizer is made with coconut milk as it first ingredient, which contains high levels of some of the crucial minerals like, iron, calcium, potassium, magnesium and zinc. It contains vitamin E and fats, which can prove effective in moisturizing hair. Fresh coconut milk can nourish hair and promote hair growth. It can be used for controlling excessive hair fall as well. The second ingredient is distilled water, which hydrates the hair cuticle.
- Use Hair Oil: It is necessary to seal the hair after washing and moisturizing to seal that moisture into the hair. Sealing the hair creates a barrier between your hair and the elements.
Learn more about Shukura’s natural products at the brand’s website, and connect with them on social media via Twitter and Instagram.