For the most part, I have always been pleased with the length and condition of my hair. (Picture below: It was spring 2007, I had a relaxer and color.)
Until I discovered the FLAT IRON *insert dramatic sound* in late 2007!!
After a year of flat ironing my hair to death, I received my last relaxer in January of 2009. I went the natural route because my hair was breaking off due to excessive heat damage. I used the flat iron entirely too much, I’m talking almost daily WITHOUT A HEAT PROTECTANT! I was sooooo CLUELESS at the time but hey you live and you learn. (Picture below: It was January 2009, I just received my last relaxer)
Through the transition process, I was surprised and intrigued by my natural curls. Thanks to Youtube videos and natural hair sites like Protecting your Crown and Glory and CurlyNikki, I began to learn how to care for my own hair. I transitioned for a little over a year and cut off my relaxed ends in February 2010. Caring for my own hair was a great feeling, I no longer had to depend on a stylist or spend half of my day in the salon. (1st picture: December 2009 still transitioning, 2nd Picture: April 2010 I had just cut off the remainder of my relaxed ends, 3rd picture: May 2010 my natural curls)
I have learned SO MUCH about my hair over the past 4 years and I’m still learning through the good and the not so great experiences.
Like when I relocated to Maryland in the summer of 2010, I wanted color OHH so bad. I mean I just couldn’t wait! I wanted it INSTANTLY! So I went into this random shop and let some unknown beautician bleach my entire head peroxide blonde! I wanted to cry. It was BAD!! (Picture below: June 2010 right after the hair disaster)
See I told you I wasn’t lying! LOL I can laugh about it now but the sad part is the stylist was so proud of herself. I wanted to wear a hat to work the next day. I mean LOOK AT THAT SCALP!! My scalp and hair were almost the same color. The pictures of me attempting to correct this horrible disaster are found below.
Anyway, lesson learned, patience is a virtue. WOOSAAA NEVER AGAIN! (If I ever lift my hair again, I will do my research and find a professional stylist that prides him/herself in spectacular hair care.) *Ends rant here*
My hair now:
My hair is complex, I have looser curls on the left side and the right side ALWAYS outgrows the left side despite me cutting it even. It is soft, unruly at times, thick, beautiful, sometimes at work I have to sit on my hands in order to stop playing in it but I embrace it all! Perfectly flawed, but I LOVE my hair for that. Afterall, what on God’s green earth is perfect?
I co-wash my hair at least once a week and deep condition twice a month. I love variety so I try to switch it up but my go to style is flexi rods. I love them because it requires little upkeep so I can flexi rod on a Friday and not have to do hardly anything to it until the following Friday. Since it is winter, I am currently in a protective style mood so I bun up my hair or twist/braid my hair back into protective styles. I also like to flat iron my hair every now and then.
I LOVE HAIR CHALLENGES like 12 weeks without heat or protective bun challenges. My hair must be growing because this detangling process is a BEAST OKAY!!
Nonetheless, patience and consistently caring for your hair pay off! Currently, maximum LENGTH retention is my goal. I’m excited about this adventure!
New Natural Advice:
If you are new to the natural hair world, my advice would be to develop patience because this journey is definitely a process.
Fall in love with your texture and your natural curls. Don’t compare yourself to others because this is your journey. That applies to products as well, what works for me may not necessarily work for you and vice versus. Experiment and try new products and hairstyles to see what works for you. If you are experimenting with a new hairstyle and it turns out disastrous, try again. The more you try, the more you will learn and the better you will get at it, just like anything else in life. 🙂
What are some of your hair goals?