Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Transitioning to Natural Hair? Need Help?

You Can do this!

My transition from Relaxed to Natural  @ 8 mos post

Congratulations on your decision to grow your natural hair! Like many you’ve probably grown tired of chemical relaxers and everything that comes with that, and if nothing else you’re just curious and want to know if you can really do it. Well I’m here to tell you, that you can!!

 It’s been over 3 years since I’ve made this decision for myself. I transitioned for 9 months, and as of today I’ve been natural for 2 years! Happy Natural Birthday to me! This was one of the best decisions that I could have made as it pertains to health and beauty. My idea of what beauty is has completely changed and so will yours!  I’ve learned that God didn’t make a mistake when he created kinky curly coily hair.  And if you want to wear your natural hair texture, all you have to do is embrace it, learn it, and nourish it.  Learn to work with your texture and not against it, and your natural hair will flourish, even with attached relaxed ends!  

Braid out on/rolled relaxed ends

Keep Roots Moisturized!
5 mos post

8 mos post
Moist roots & Relaxed ends about 8 mos Post relaxer

I kept my hair moisturized so it makes it less daunting, but let me warn you, the transitioning journey is not for the faint at heart.  (And especially, if you have very thick, tightly coiled hair, because the two textures on your head will be like night and day! There will be times when you will fill the urge to give up, but do what you  need to do to push past it! (braid up, trim back, add more moisture, but get through it)

 Chopped off 4 inches( a mini chop) to make it the rest of the way! 

You will find that accomplishing this goal will be very rewarding, and if you do your research and exercise patience, it won’t be AS difficult. When you nourish your hair it makes everything else you do with it much easier, and when it's over you're left with a head full of healthy beautiful natural hair!

Me, Newly Natural!(2 years ago)

SO HERE ARE SOME THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW: ( NOTE: This isn't an exhaustive list of all the things you should know or do, but it's a pretty good start to guide you through your journey! )     

DO NOT Straighten your roots to match your relaxed ends during your transition, this can damage your natural hair texture and, and can compromise what your true texture is, you don’t want to start off your all natural hair journey with heat damaged natural hair. (For Example some textures could come in straighter than your true texture, this is also known as heat damage, and heat damage can really put a damper or your all natural reveal!) 

DO try styles that will easily blend with your new growth like: braid outs, and twisted flexi rod roller sets. You can even wear ½ wigs or braids. (These are called transitioning hair styles)

DO use all natural products and oils as often as you can, they absorb easier into the hair shaft, and does not leave damaging build up on your hair.

DO Co-wash (conditioner wash) your hair often it softens your hair texture and keep it moisturized. (Try to eliminate the use of sulfate shampoos they are very drying, and especially on natural hair.)

DO NOT wear tight or tiny braids or wear tight weaves while transitioning, this can break your hair and give you balding edges, or bald spots in other places! (Not a good way to start out) 

DO NOT look at other naturals and wish that your hair texture will grow out to be like theirs. This is very important because everyone’s hair is different, even within the same family!  So, embrace the hair that begins to grow out of YOUR scalp. You will also notice that your texture will start to develop more and more as it grows. You are an individual, uniquely made, so embrace that!    

DO  Remember often, why you decided to go natural,(it has to be more than a trend for you)  get a REAL conviction about why you want to embrace your natural hair texture, and TRUST me this will keep you going.

DO ask God for help and for His strength. After all, He created this unique and wonderful hair texture, so he knows exactly what your hair needs. I did it, and it works!   

*Oh! And as it pertains to your Big Chop (cutting your relaxer completely off) it’s a personal decision. Do it when you are ready. I did one, but big chopping isn’t always necessary. You can simply grow it off by doing small trims as you transition. (I will do a separate post regarding the scary, and exciting choice to *BIG CHOP*, so come on Back!

My Big Chop 2yrs Today!!!

 Well until next time…..

Keep it Healthy, and Happy!  


Thursday, September 1, 2011

Product let Down: How to make the best of it!

(Greetings, Healthy Happy Hair care advocates! It’s been a little while since I’ve posted. (I didn’t post at all in August). We had a sudden and unexpected death in our family last month and we are just trying to stay focused.  My family is living proof that God’s strength is PRESENT in weakness. Although we suffered a significant lost we are still victorious because that family member did go on to live with Jesus! So advantage, us!  Alright, on to today's Natural Hair Care Tip! : )

Making your Products work for you

Have you ever purchased a product like say a Moisturizer,  or Deep conditioner and wish it really lived up to its promises…you’re probably thinking how many times?  We read all the hyped up reviews, watch endless you tube product reviews on how great it is, only to learn after purchasing that we are not a part of that satisfied customer club!   Whether you’ve purchased a product based on your own curiosity or on the suggestion of others the let down feeling you get is still the same, this cycle can lead to a lot of frustration and loads of wasted money.  

(My friends) All of us have different hair textures and & our product selection varies

Natural hair has infinite personalities and differs from person to person. This is why experiences with products can differ from person to person; it doesn’t always mean that it is a bad product.  Instead of trashing the product or giving it away, try tweaking it first to fit your individual needs. In most cases, if it’s an all natural product, anything that you add (that is all natural) should not cause any harmful effects. Of course, use your best judgment based on known allergies, etc. (Just because something is organic, it doesn’t mean that you can’t have an allergic reaction.  I know people who are allergic to Peppermint oil and Jojoba oil!?) But I have found these cases to be rare.    
 So here we go!

Moisturizers that aren’t moisturizing enough: Try adding glycerin and coconut oil to your mix. Vegetable glycerin is always a winner in the moisturizing department and Coconut oil will help carry moisture deeper into the hair shaft.

Deep Conditioners without slip or moisture:  Some conditioners can be so thick that it’s hard to distribute throughout the hair. Try adding Extra Virgin Olive Oil, it gives amazing slip and it adds extra shine! For added moisture mix in Glycerin and or Honey!  

Hair butters and Moisturizers that are too thick:  Maybe you have fine strands, and the product you purchased is just way to heavy, try diluting the product with a little Aloe Vera Gel! Aloe Vera is moisturizing and it helps maintain a proper Ph-balance in the hair.  The gel will also help give your Hair butter more of a souffle or whipped feel.

Shampoos that are too harsh: Maybe you purchased what you thought was an all natural shampoo and learned that it had sulfates or is still really drying. You can soften your shampoos by adding: Water, Aloe Vera, Vegetable or Seed Oil.

These are just a few tips that you can use to make the best of your investment!  You may feel you should not have to add anything to a product that you’ve spent good money on, but it’s better than letting it grow fungus underneath your bathroom sink, or throwing it away?  Worse case it still doesn’t work and you know not to purchase it again!  But, at least you’ve tried to make it work for you.  
I always add ingredients like Aloe Vera, Glycerin, and EVOO to my favorite products to give them an extra Kick!!  So this can work both ways.   I’ve found that individual hair textures, porosity levels, and technique has a lot to do with how our products behave in our hair.  Our job is to learn our hair, and then find a perfect balance when it comes to our products.  

Until Next time keep it Healthy and Happy!!