Right now in the black hair community there is this movement towards rocking “natural hair.” That means wearing your hair in its most original texture. They are encouraging less perms and texturizers and more hair love. I agree with majority of their campaign points but it has created a huge divide between those who just aren’t interested and the self-professed natural queens. Being natural is quite the dichotomy. You hear natural and think simple, easy, and quick since it is what you were blessed with in the first place, right? That’s definitely not the case. Being natural entails pre-poos, co-washing, sulfate-free products, deep conditioning, twists, low- manipulation styles, LOC method, etc. Since I started showing my hair a little more love, I have had to google each one of these terms. The terminology alone is overwhelming and could send you back to perms real quick. Ultimately, I just think everyone should do what they are comfortable with and have time for. I have finally developed a routine and it makes being natural a little less daunting.
1. Wash with a conditioner every week.
2. Deep conditioning treatment every 2 weeks.
3. Straighten no more than once every three weeks. No touchups or anything!
4. Mist with water every morning to refresh curls and add coconut oil.
I have always been natural per se. Thanks for that mom. I was queen of the puffs, plaits, and wore barrettes on the ends of everything. After I became too old for those styles, I straightened the heck out of my hair. In the process, my hair became incredibly damaged. I really had no idea what I was doing and for awhile there, I completely destroyed my curl pattern. My path to healing my hair really started with a bout of laziness. When I got to college and was attempting to balance soccer practice, classes, and study time, I would just throw my hair in a bun with a little gel and call it a day. That was my first “protective style” I guess. Since then I have made incredible strides towards taking care of my hair. I still like to straighten it but way less often.
Well this summer, I decided to embark on a natural journey for two reasons: 1. Self Love = Self Confidence 2. I was tired of being like everyone else. I have always straightened my hair to look like those around me. I envied my white friends sleek ponytails and long manes. Whenever they expressed envy over my abundance of curls, I brushed it off and assured them they had it better. Now that I’m a little older with access to more resources, I have tried to minimize the amount of heat I use on my hair and try different styles. It’s funny, because now I feel like my natural hair matches my style and personality. Big, all over the place, and a little different!
So I really thought I was going to just lock up my straightener and rock an afro or maybe a really big afro puff. Well I was sorely mistaken. I didn’t realize I would need to comb and moisturize this stuff; lets not even get started on shrinkage. I have developed a ton of patience because wash day is a real thing. A good 6 hours dedicated to my hair every couple weeks. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not against the annual weave or braids as a protective style but I don’t do it often and don’t keep them in for too long, I like to be FREE! Below are some of the styles I have tried this summer.Havana Twists were a no go for my hair loved the look but it caused a decent amount of damage. My hair broke off and it just left my strands weak and screaming for moisture.
If you are looking for some resources to start your natural journey or just looking for some fun new ideas, these are some of my faves.
My Natural Sistas– https://www.youtube.com/user/MyNaturalSistas
Taren Guy– https://www.youtube.com/user/taren916
I know Lee– https://www.youtube.com/user/iknowlee
The Natural Hair Academy (Started by one of my college friends!)
Better Than Good Hair — Nikki Walton, Ernessa T. Carter (Amazon Link)
I hope this helps someone! Makes sure to share it with all your curl friends and natural sisters. If you want more information on exactly what products I use, let me know.