Two years now since I’ve been natural and its been a bitter sweet experience. I did the big chop and I texturized my hair because I thought it would be more manageable.
I didn’t quite embrace my natural hair at first,I would texturize it because it was so short and I didn’t know how to handle it.
I decided to go back natural because I was fed up of the relaxers who did more harm than good. My hair was breaking badly,the colour had changed from black to brown and I couldn’t wet my hair as freely as I wished without me looking like a stray cat. I wanted freedom and relaxing my hair every three months was also costly. Moreover I heard that relaxers are toxic and damage ur scalp,I believed so because I was a victim of having several scalp burns and oozing painful sores after I tried economizing and let my sister do my hair. Dollars were saved but my scalp wasn’t.
My cousin gave me my first relaxer just before attending high school since I wouldn’t have time to comb my naturally thick hair in the mornings before school,relaxers made it easier.
I recall my hair reaching my back the first day I did my hair,was so thick and long,I felt amazing. I flipped that hair and I felt like magic. With years my hair got damaged and broke horribly and my hair got short at the fronts. I started not liking my hair but still relaxed it because it was what I had become accustomed to. I hated how I got roots fast every time I wet or washed my hair. Sea and river baths became less enjoyable since I had my hair to worth about after. Every night we were required to set it in rollers so it could curl the next day,no doubt there were good hairstyle days but my hair always got roots fast and was still breaking.
Endured damaged hair for years and I decided to dye my hair on my birthday,bleach it actually. Oh my I looked so gorgeous with blonde curls however upkeeping it was tedious as I couldn’t wet it as I pleased. So I got fed up and was motivated to go natural because almost all those around me was becoming hair conscious and natural was the new trend. I was reluctant at first but went all the way in Feb 2015.
The first year was hard and at times I wanted to give up as it was so short and couldn’t style as I wanted. I so desired to have my hair in one,up in a messy bun but I had to endure the afro season and it was tough.
I thank God for my best friend who also joined the natural journey and she assisted me greatly with product usage. I honestly did not do proper research before embarking on this journey. I didn’t know how to care for my hair using modernised and more fulfilling products that suited my hair texture. She told me about sulphate free shampoos,leave in conditioners and deep conditioners.
It was a whole new world and I became excited about my journey since i began experimenting with new products. Before that I felt stuck in a rut and texturized my hair as I didn’t like the texture. My hair also was still breaking, I was upset about that since that was one of the reasons why I went natural in the first place to avoid breakage. My bestie rescued me again and hooked me up with some hair mayonnaise that elimated breakage.
So doing your research before you return natural is very important. Research your texture and discover what works for your type of hair. It took some trials with different products to decide what I liked best. I decided I wanted products that enhanced my natural curls and encouraged growth so I use Olive oil deep conditioner.
My hair texture has changed significantly from when I was a kid. As a child I had very course,thick short difficult hair. That was why I texturized my hair to make it more manageable,but I wasn’t embracing my natut hair,there was still chemicals added in my hair. I must say my encouragement to go all the way natural came from the huge wave of naturals posting embracing their natural hair all over social media hashtag team natural bombarded me and I seemed to be missing out.
I got so motivated that I followed these natural hair queens and the products they used and started experimenting some more. I got to more growth but the ends were still texturized, one day after washing my hair I got so frustrated with those straight ends that I took a scissors and began chopping the straight ends. I wanted to be fully natural.
So with patience I got all the texturized ends out and I was all natural. My hair had to undergo me being very patient and loving my hair. I developed a hair regimen,I got the products and my hair has gotten curlier and longer.
The journey has been bittersweet, ups and downs but the longer I stick it out the more I see my hair transforming to the curly long hair I desire. The key is patience,self love, love the crap out of your hair and don’t be afraid to experiment different hairstyles and products.
Natural hair journey may not be for everyone,but it’s a personal decision I made for personal reasons which I stated and its doing what works best for you and loving yourself no matter what.