My Hair Story
There was only one inch of perm left to be cut and then my life would change forever. Snip! I was finally set free. No more relaxed hair, I was free.
But wait? Although, that seems like the typical "relaxed to natural" hair story that isn't mine. I didn't choose to go natural so that I could be set free from the chains of relaxers or because I needed to go on a journey to find myself. I ultimately went natural because I was going off to college. Yep, college. I had to figure out what in the world I was going to do to my hair. See I've never been the best at doing my own hair, I've always went to the salon or had my sister to do it and sadly I was parting from both. I wished my mom could drive back and forth so that I could get to the salon every 2 weeks but that definitely wasn't going to happen. Such wishful thinking.
So thank you Savannah State for helping me make one of the best decisions of my life.
Before I even thought about going natural, I started on a "Healthy Hair Journey" with my relaxed hair back in the 11th grade, 2012. My hair was at a point that just made me say "Ugh" when I looked at it. I had to fix that ASAP and that's where YouTube came in. I searched "healthy relaxed hair" and came across several ladies with beautiful hair, like my faves ULoveMegz and TheHappyHairShow, and my road to healthy hair began. I learned about creating a regimen, stretching my relaxers, air-drying, protein treatments, flexirods, and even about twist outs/braid outs on relaxed hair. I lived for twist outs and flexirods when I was several weeks post relaxers.
My relaxed hair returned to a healthy state but my new growth was pulling me in a different direction. I know it may sound weird but I began to become just a little obsessed with my new growth. It was just so soft and wavy. It reminded me of my wild, curly, carefree hair when I was younger. I wanted that hair again.
College was around the corner and my love for my new growth remained strong. My twist outs were poppin' and I began to think that I could take on the challenge of being natural. So April 2013, would be the last time that a relaxer would ever touch my strands and my natural hair journey began. I decided transitioning would be best for me.
My big head + The big chop= NO NO. Lol. That equation was out of the question for me. Kudos to everyone who had the courage to do the big chop!
My healthy hair journey for my relaxed hair paved the way for me to transition. I already knew about the struggle with detangling at the line of demarcation, deep conditioning, and curl friendly hair products such as Shea Moisture and Carol's Daughter. I bought Carol's Daughter Transitioning Kit which helped me deal with the two textures and stay sane at school.
I gave straight hair a try the first few weeks of school with the help of a girl in my dorm. As soon as I set out the door, my roots would just be poof up immediately. Once it finally kicked in my head that straight hair wasn't going to comply with the humid Savannah weather, twist outs and I became inseparable. I did these for a good half of the first semester until I decided to get braids as a protective style.
Just like many others, I dealt with moments of hating my hair and just wanted to end it all and get a perm. I would become discouraged because all I really knew how to do was twist outs and I was getting tired of them. Plus I had to redo them every night. It was annoying. I needed something new.
I went back to oh so faithful YouTube and discovered Mini Marley and IKnowLee who inspired me. I upgraded my twist outs to twist-n-curls and learned new styles like bantu knots, the puff, and pineappling at night. They showed me that natural hair was far from boring, it was versatile and you could be fabulous.
I'm thankful that my roommates were natural too because they helped me along the way with tips and tricks. They even introduced me to the Holy Grail for naturals, Eco Styler.
I didn't really keep up with how much perm I had left. I would just get trims about every 3 months to lose those permed ends. I guestimate that my trim in June 2014 was the last one in which I had permed ends. I'll just stick with that. It puts me at a year and some change of transitioning. I stopped saying I was transitioning and that I was somewhat natural.
Before, I went off to start my sophomore year I decided I wanted to get color with my "natural" hair. I went to the salon and had only the crown of my hair dyed a light brown color. Since this would be my first time having color on my natural hair I wanted to start off small. I returned to school with my new color and straight hair, which of course didn't stand a chance to the Savannah heat at all. I just waited until the cooler months before I had my hair straighten again. Smart decision.
It wasn't until I tried my first wash and go, in February 2015, that I felt fully natural. One Saturday morning, I thought let me just give it a try. I was scared that my ends would be dull and straight. I used Mini Marley's method as a guide and as my hair dried I fell in love. It transformed from a lifeless wet mop to a kinky curly mane. I discovered the many curl patterns in my heard ranging from 3c to 4a. Now, Wash and gos are my favorite style and have yet to fail me. *Crosses Fingers*
If going natural hasn't taught me anything else, it is patience. I've really learned to be patient and trust the process of things beyond just my hair. I love natural hair and its versatility. Although, natural hair seems like the maintenance is diffucult it is easier for me. It just varies for everbody. If you have any questions regarding my story or anything else, feel free to leave a comment below (:
You've heard my story, so what's yours?