Actress, model, photographer, and occasionally a DJ, Roxanne Kalie is the kind of woman who can have you willfully inspired by her ambition, and bursting into laughter at the same time.

She has a knack for telling every story in a way that evokes emotion. So naturally, when I learned of her first public transitioning hair experience, I couldn’t resist having her share it here, with you.

Here’s what she had explained happened:


My mom began relaxing my hair when I was about 9-years-old. It was to ‘tame the bush’ and make working with my hair more manageable for her.

I thought that my hair was ugly because it wasn’t straight. From the word go, the long, straight blow-out was more acceptable and at school I felt the pressure to fit in.

At 15, I represented Cape Town in an International World Youth Festival that took place in Europe.  On the 5th day there, my blow-out had puffed up and no longer looked ‘presentable’. I did a ‘wash-and-go’ style and let my hair air-dry (because diffusers didn’t exist at that time) and as the days went on, my afro naturally grew in size, making it impossible to miss.

People stopped me in the street to touch it, compliment me, and even to take pictures! I felt so confident, even my walk began to change. I felt beautiful and that’s when I made the decision to return to ‘natural’. Upon my to return to South Africa and back to school, it became a problem. Teachers saw it as me ‘trying to make a statement’.  They thought had I’d done something unnatural to get my hair like that! They even called me a clown on some days.

I was told that as a result of me not abiding by the school rules, I was giving my peers permission to do the same and on a few occasions I was even made to sit on the floor as punishment.

I then changed schools at the end of Grade 11 and ended up at a private school in Cape Town’s CBD, where I was respected and treated as an individual. My hair was not up for debate and I wasn’t going to revert back to chemical treatments and hours under a hooded dryer to make my teachers feel comfortable.

Wearing my hair in its natural state was a choice that no one could take away from me. I still experience some challenges around my hair in my field of work. But it boils down to the ignorance of hair and/or makeup artists who chose not to educate themselves on the correct styling and maintenance of ALL hair types.

Hec-tic. Find Roxanne on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter as @Roxcizzle, to see more photos of her natural hair, inspiration, and behind the scenes shots of her life as an actress.

Roxanne Kalie  (photo/ Caylin Wilsnach)

Her go-to hair products:

  • Currently using L’Oreal Paris Elvive Curl Nourishment – Love the texture and smell of the products, the no foam shampoo is a crème that gently dissolves impurities without stripping the hair’s natural oils.
  • Aloe Vera – (raw plant or store bought) It repairs skin cells on the scalp, leaves my hair shiny and smooth and promotes hair growth.
  • Luster’s S-Curl Texturizer gel  – I get this in the States (hopefully there’s a good one locally) the only gel that lays my edges beautifully and any unruly hair if I’m doing a pineapple or sleek look. This gel holds everything in place – with NO white residue, NO hardness and as soon as I’m done with a particular look, I brush it out and I’m able to re-style! 

    If you enjoyed this post, was inspired by it, and can even relate, let me know in the comment section below 🙂


Author: Robyn

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