A: I am originally from Philadelphia, PA. However, where I am currently going to school the natural scene is pretty much non-existent. I see a few naturals here and there, but for the most part, I’m finding most women in Philadelphia wear relaxers in their hair.
A: I transitioned for almost 7 months. My last relaxer was back in February 2010 and I chopped the relaxed ends off on September 3, 2010. Transitioning for me was a really interesting experience as I had no intentions of that day in February being my last relaxer, but in March I stumbled on to a few natural hair websites and after that it was a wrap.
In the beginning I was still straightening my hair at least 2-3 times a week. At times I did not use moisturizer or a heat protectant. I continued this process until April, when my hair started breaking off badly. At this point I decided to wash my hair once a week and wear a braid out. For the entire summer I wore kinky twist extensions. Around September I took them out and decided to cut the ends off. I must say that I found it to be an awesome experience. My favorite conditioner during that time was Herbal Essence Hello Hydration and my styling methods were still developing.
A. Overall I received little to no support, but that did not bother me. My mom wouldn’t help me cut my ends off, so my BC actually came out pretty uneven. While I was trying to figure out my niche with styling, I was finding the stares and questions about my hair were abundant. Many women commented that I really should have a relaxer and some actually told me that my hair would look better with one! This feedback didn’t bother me, as I continued my natural journey.
A: Since I have worn my natural hair texture, I have become more aware of my body and how I take care of myself. Overall my eating habits are healthier and I exercise more now than ever.
A: In the beginning, I experienced more frequent breakage than normal. I assumed that going natural would solve all of my hair issues, unfortunately I still had to deal with awful dry spots and weak ends. I didn’t realize early on that I would need to wet my hair more often and protect it better from the elements. I did find after reading more and asking other naturals for advice, I have gotten past most of those newbie issues. Split ends and single strand knots are still worries of mine… now I know to just trim the unsalvageable and use more conditioner!
A: My hair is usually in a protective style. Lately, it has been two strand twists, flat twists, or a combination of both. When it is in these styles, I wash/condition and deep condition once a week. I don’t have a shampoo preference. The conditioner changes with my mood as well. The only consistent part of my routine has been my deep conditioning mixture: Argon Oil, melted Coconut Oil, Safflower Oil, Root Stimulator Hair Mayonnaise, and Root Stimulator Olive Oil Replenishing Conditioner. I mix those things together until it is as homogeneous as possible.
After washing and detangling with a regular conditioner in the shower, I coat every hair on my head with the DC, cover with a cap, put a towel around that … and wait anywhere between (depending on my schedule) 2-6 hours. I style while my hair is still wet.
Regarding natural hair styles, I have done mini twists, flat twists, two strand twists, twist outs, and left my afro out to air dry. I love being able to do so many different things
A: Going natural is a journey and there will be ups and downs especially during the first year as you try to find out which regimen and products will work for your hair. The journey is well worth it since you find out what you are really made of due to the uniqueness of your hair. Yes, there will be stares, but on this natural path you will become bold if you are not already. When I say ‘bold’ I mean being yourself and not letting anyone change your views. I tell women that if you are ready to take this journey, be bold, have self confidence, and dare to be different!
A. I just love how this underground community has taken the internet by storm. I want to thank everyone who has indirectly helped me out in any way. Whether if I read about your method and copied, or watched a tutorial on YouTube. Hopefully in a few years it will be more widely accepted for Black women to work with what grows out of their head, instead of paying companies for chemicals used to straighten it.