Why did I go natural?
It started when I was a Freshman in college in the winter of 2005, I had just had my first relaxer the summer before and was clueless as to how to care for my hair while away at school. I had previously worn my hair in braids or press n’ curls and heat damage from the hot comb had already gotten the best of me more than once as a child. I wanted to look more mature as many of my high school class mates had told me that braids were for kids. So a relaxer seemed like the easiest solution – throw it on and wash it out, easy right?
I made a horrible mistake. Not only did I burn more than half of my hair out, but the hair behind my left ear was almost completely gone and my edges were shot. I went from having BSL hair to barely touching my ears..there was a lot of crying for a loooong time. Then, after about a month of crying and poking at my almost bare scalp, I decided to dye my remaining hair TROPICAL BURGUNDY. I know, I’m a big ball of bad choices. So now, not only was my hair chemically burned from the relaxer but I almost had destroyed any remaining healthy ends and roots from the dye.
Still clueless as to how to care for my hair, other than with hair grease and flat irons, I continued to destroy my hair for the next two years until I put my hair in a weave for the summer of 2007. But once the weave came out, it was right back to working on dry hair with grease and hard bristle brushes. It wasn’t until I landed my first job after college in the spring of 2009 that I put my hair into a protective style. The next time that I would see my hair for a period of longer than 3 days wouldn’t be until 2012. I wore extension, wigs and micro braids religiously, determined to never have to look or deal with my hair ever again.
During the fall of 2012, I decided that I was tired of paying hundreds of dollars every single time that I wanted to get my hair done. Plus, I was about to turn 26 and realized that I still didn’t know how to take care of my own hair! Not wanting to shame myself or my mother any more than I already had, I started looking up proper hair care etiquette (For some strange reason, this had never occurred as something that I could simply Google on my own). I went through enough blogs, videos and online communities, that I felt like I could’ve earned my next degree in hair care. After about 2 months of research I finally made the decision to take my sewn-in out and become acquainted with myself again.
I went out about bought enough products and equipment to open my own beauty supply store. Raw shea butter, oils, mud wash, gels, a hooded dryer – if you can think of it then theres’ a 90% chance that I probably own it. I followed online vloggers and mimicked their methods to the T! Napural85 was like my unmet mentor. But the more I followed and tried to immolate my hair crushes, I came to realized that my hair simply doesn’t have the same curl pattern. I wanted those soft and springy curls that seem to just flow after a wash and go. But it looks as though mother nature and genetics played me the “too bad” card because my hair is thicker than the amazon jungle with three different curl patterns depending on what side of my head you’re looking at.
Although wash and go’s are a no-no for me, I did finally find a regime that works for me with a staple set of products. It took me about two months to find what twisting methods to use and what products get my hair the perfect balance of moisture and hold. And who knows, maybe those methods might change this summer when it goes from -5 degree out to 80 with a humidity index of 70%.
This blog is a way for me to track the changes in my own hair needs and maybe help someone else out there who’s a newbie like me. I’m still a long ways away from my goal but I hope to achieve thicker and more manageable curls with a little bit of extra length. Because honestly, if it gets too long I might just cut it out of sheer laziness.