SunShine- First, congratulations on being recognized for having an AWESOME YT channel! You’re up to over 40,000 subscribers!
SunShine-Are you enjoying this natural journey? More like a roller coaster right?
AFRICANEXPORT-I’ve always enjoyed having natural hair. The roller coaster analogy doesn’t quite fit with me only because I’ve been natural for such a long time, I consider times that I have hair problems and my hair isn’t acting right, just a “bad hair day”. The acceptance of my decision to cut off my hair was an easy one, I was aware that everyone wasn’t going to like it, but I liked it. So at 16 years of age, I was stepping out as myself, and loving my hair came with time as I learned more about my hair. From 5 years of wearing locs, to trying to create the styles of my style icon at the time Lauryn Hill and researching more about natural hair hair care.
SunShine- Your hair is deliciously fab. Have you locked into a hair routine? Can you tell me more about it? What staple product(s) is a must have?
AFRICANEXPORT-My routine is pretty simple. I co wash my hair twice a week. I do this because after 2 -3 days no matter what the style is, my hair is in need of conditioning and moisture. So my weekly shampoo and deep conditioning helps me keep my hair cleansed and conditioned, but the co washing in-between the week keeps me up on moisture in my hair. I found that the traditional misting of the hair isn’t enough for me, unless my hair is styled and I was to add some softness. I don’t have staple products, because of the nature of my personality. I love to try new conditioners. Conditioners are the basis of my regimen, from detangling conditioners, rinse out conditioners and leave in conditioners. I absolutely love Carol’s Daughter products, Trader Joe’s Nourish Spa and Herbal Essence Hydralicious. I’ve also found a love for Blue Magic’s New Leave in Conditioning crème.
SunShine- Some curls want ankle length hair lol. Do you have a hair goal?
AFRICANEXPORT-I don’t have a hair length goal. I think that desiring and setting a goal for your hair is awesome. But that isn’t for me. However, I think a focus on healthy hair, and a regimen that works for you is the way to approach “wanting long hair”. Hair is always growing, so retention is your goal, length and inches will come with proper and consistent hair care. I think that some who have goals for the length of their hair have a tendency to become anal-retentive and for those who approach hair care open minded and look for guidance become overwhelmed and discouraged by those with such ridged views.
SunShine- Many people look up to you in the natural hair community. Who are your inspirations?
AFRICANEXPORT-When I started creating videos on YouTube, there were pioneers like RusticBeauty, and CurlyChronicles that I would watch. Needless to say, many of the ones who were ambassadors for natural hair on YouTube rarely make videos now. I’m thankful for their contributions because it sparked something in me, to want to share my natural hair journey. YouTubers and Bloggers who I love to follow are Curly Nikki, Jadison03, BeautifulBrwnBabyDol, and TheRealKimColes.
AFRICANEXPORT-I dress according to how I feel. I have very eclectic taste in clothes, and fashion. Many times an on- trend outfit is awaiting me in my closet, but I prefer to wear clothes and not let them wear me. For some, if you don’t dress “on-trend”, then you don’t know how to dress. On the contrary, when you have your own style you tend to be far more interesting in appearance, and intriguing to the onlooker. I define my original, funky and in -your- face personality by sporting, fun patterns, vintage pieces, chunky accessories, and your one and a million pairings.
SunShine-What dreams or aspirations do you have for AFRICANEXPORT in the future?
AFRICANEXPORT is my brand, but Vanisha is the woman behind it that wants to impact lives in a positive way. YouTube has just exposed my many talents and I look forward to the many opportunities I will have to share with you all and the world at large. I’m definitely a jack of all trades, and a master of SOME, so limiting myself isn’t an option. There are limitless things that AFRICANEXPORT will do, and I hope that everyone stays tuned and continues to support me as I support you all. You can keep up with EVERYTHING on my blog.
SunShine-Who is the beauty behind AFRICANEXPORT?
AFRICANEXPORT-Well the government name is Vanisha (no middle name) Sapp. On paper I can be considered a statistic, yet never perpetuates the negative stigmas. I’m such a regular person, contrary to those who feel YouTubers are D-list celebs. I was a young mother, whose learned a lot from negative experiences. From having a child with an absentee parent, whose in prison for life for statutory rape, to just now furthering my education at almost 30. I’m a strong willed woman whose become sharpened by experiences, I’ve an overcome negative, self-defeating attitude, and found a love and appreciate for myself AND others that I didn’t always have. My desire to touch others stems from me seeing friends and family fall victim to depression, and the hardship of life itself. There are so many facets of myself and my life that so many people can relate to. I love intellectual conversations with friends and I’m a home body (which explains all the YouTube videos). Self-teaching myself any and everything I see and have an interest in, especially DIY, and craft projects. I was a hell of a dancer in high school, but I don’t get to do it much. However, take me to a dancehall club and I will be in the middle of the dance floor with the duty whine. :O)
I don’t quite know how I stumbled upon Vanisha’s YouTube channel, AFRICANEXPORT, along my natural hair voyage and had no idea that she was on her way to being one of the biggest names among natural hair Vloggers according to the Huffington Post. Additionally, I loved looking at her hair styling tutorials. Vanisha is always so “real” and has a “tell it like it is” attitude. She has a keen fashion sense and eclectic style. Her love for thrifting and the dramatic pieces she finds makes her very interesting to watch. I am ecstatic that she wants to use her platform to make a difference, to uplift others. She certainly has the tools to make people stop, look, and listen! Thank you Vanisha for sharing your story with the SunShine’s Natural and Loving It! Community. I know you’ll continue to “keep it real”!
I’ll see you guys on the next chat! xoxo