Because this blog is dedicated to natural hair in advertisements, commercials, magazines, etc., I don’t cover a lot of hairstyles, hair tips, or products. I am, however, dedicated to keeping my colored hair healthy. Let me tell you my hair story (see below for natural hair resources).
My Hair Story
For as long as I can remember, I’ve always had thick hair. Hair so thick that sometimes the only thing my mom could do was blow it out. Add a bow. And send me on my way. I remember sitting in our kitchen, with the hot comb heating up. The smell (and sound) of hair sizzling as she gently glided the comb through my naps. Sometimes, the feel of the heat on my ear or neck as I screamed, “Don’t burn me!” Desperately clutching the towel she gave me to protect my neck.
I didn’t get my first perm until I moved to Georgia. I don’t know if it was because my mom just got tired of doing it or if I begged to look like all the other girls in my school. But from age 12 to age 21, I got a perm about once every 2 months. I remember waiting my turn in the beauty salon, and listening to my stylist complain about how much hair I had. How thick it was.
And you know what’s funny? My hair never really got super straight when it was permed.
I didn’t really consider going natural until I was a college student in New Hampshire. Yes, New Hampshire. Times were hard in the Upper Valley, so I did what any industrious college student would do: I taught myself to perm my own hair. Sometimes, that didn’t work out too well, and I ended up with scalp burns. But, I was desperate for my hair to look nice. Back then, nice meant straight and permed to me.
At the time, I only had one friend with natural hair. She wore afros, twists, braids, and everything in between. I secretly loved the versatility of her hair. As time wore on, I grew to covet her hair more and more, and wonder why my kitchen (hair at the nape of my neck) would never grow.
That brings me to August of 2004, my last year in college. I remember putting my hair in a high ponytail and trying to get the short hair on my neck to disappear into the rest of the hair. Ya’ll know what I’m talking about. And I asked myself, why is that hair so short? Why doesn’t it grow? Then it hit me. Maybe it’s because I was overprocessing my hair.
Going natural was really as simple as that for me. While on a shopping trip to Massachusetts, I stopped by some mall salon. I walked right in, and asked the stylist to cut my long hair into a short bob. You see, my rationale was this: if I wasn’t emotionally attached to my straight hair, I wouldn’t miss having a perm when I went natural. That stylist, who knew next to nothing about black hair, cut my hair super short, and I never looked back. I transitioned for 6 months using kinky twists, and did my big chop in February of 2005. Back then, there weren’t many resources for women with natural hair. So, my hair was typically dry but oily at the same time (thank you, olive oil). It took years to figure out how to maintain my hair, and only last year did I learn the importance of sealing your ends.
It is in this spirit that I offer my guests and subscribers a list of resources for women who are transitioning to natural hair. Enjoy, and I encourage you to embrace the natural texture of your hair.
Resources for Transitioning to Natural Hair
Thank God I’m Natural Blog, No Big Chop? No Problem! How to Trasnition, SANS Scissors
Natural Chica, Tips for Beginning the Transition
Kinky Curly Coily Me, 7 Tips to Keep you Inspired and Focused
Curly Nikki, Relaxed to Natural: Transitioning Tips
Watch a big chop in action, courtesy of Sofn’free:
Youtube Pages I’ve used
*Stay tuned for more updates