My Galaxy phone every few days reminds me of pictures I took years ago. Sometimes it’s a nice trek back into the past and at other times in brings up painful memories. However, today it brought back a natural hair milestone for me. A year ago today, I took a picture of my hair when I was first transitioning. I never noticed before until I saw that picture but you could see the permed hair meeting the new growth. It’s remarkable to me how much my hair has changed since I decided to go on this journey. I am so happy with how my hair is turning out even though my hair often times has a mind of it’s own.
UPDATE: When I originally wrote the following, it was back in May. I finally cut off those insipid ends. My hair now looks….alive. It is a rebirth from the conformed nature I put it through for so many years. Don’t get me wrong, permed hair is awesome; ALL hair types are incredible depending on the style of the individual. However, sometimes your hair just needs to breathe even for just a little while. I personally think I will always let my hair do it’s thing the way it was meant to. Not sure I would ever go back, but let’s see how I evolve over the next few years.
Here is the current state of my hair. I have a struggle dealing with my two type hair. One is growing quite vibrantly as it would showcase it’s tight coils like a beautiful garden of tulips. The other is trying desperately to outshine what’s naturally meant for my head so it shoots out at the front blocking my natural tresses from blossoming to truth.
There was a time when I started this journey that I couldn’t even think of cutting off my permed ends. It had become a part of me for so long that it was difficult to fully watch it go. I knew that going natural would mean eventually getting rid of my chemically straightened mane. At the start, however, I didn’t want to rush into it; taking my time was part of the process.
Now after about a year of going natural, I’m ready to cut off what was a part of who I was. In the past year, I’ve evolved so much from who I used to be. As a twenty-seven year old woman, I’m ready to shed off my old layers and become more of the woman I am meant to be; this includes cutting off my perm. Like a flower shedding off dead petals to make room for the new, I’m ready to blossom into the new me.
My hair blown out and completely natural.
To put in my hair or to not put in my hair? That is the question. Choosing the right hair product is like going to a new restaurant. Everything looks divine. You read the ingredients, check out the pictures, even the smells masking the venue will have your taste buds bouncing around in a frenzy. The combination of it all makes it difficult to make a choice. This is how I feel when I’m in the hair product section. Everything looks so enticing in terms of what can be put in my hair. Think about the language they use to write about each product.
“This soothing lather seeps into your scalp leaving your hair rich with volume and shine.”
“Tame those tresses while keeping your mane fresh with our shine and frizz control.”
How do I choose? It’s a tough decision, but the best way to pick what belongs in my hair tool kit is that magic place that lives in our hands, in our laps and in our homes. The internet introduces me to a bountiful amount of opinions made from all types of women with different hair issues. It’s always so reassuring to find a related hair issue to mine there.
Through all of the various products that I read about (Dr. Miracles, Mixed Chicks, Carol’s Daughter, Cantu, etc), there’s one that always seems to be at the top of the list: Shea Moisture. Without even realizing it, my Shea Moisture collection has grown. Throughout this process, Shea Moisture has held it down in making me feel more at ease and comfortable in transitioning. My tool kit will lead me to the natural hair glory that I’ve been waiting for. I’m so excited!!!!
Hair in natural style on my birthday last year.
I’m used to having hair of one. solid. texture. It iis either permed or natural. Hair, pick a side already. The problem I have right now is not knowing what to do with it. When I look in the mirror, I don’t see the same person anymore. No more straight locks. No more bounce. No more stability. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had plenty of days where my hair was out of control when I had the perm. If I did not go to the salon and did it myself, it would make this tent formation. My hand would fly into my hair every so often to erratically comb down the tent into something somewhat pleasant. Of course, my hair had its own plans. It was not going to stay down for nothing.
Now my hair is shorter and mixed: half natural and half permed. Natural hair has an authentic wonder radiating from the truth residing in all of us. Permed hair shows a different transition our hair can go through in bringing out a unique look to our overall character. Both have their definitions of beauty. For the past few years, black women have started to embrace their true locks rather than depending on this chemical tool for straightened hair. I am finally now on this path too. It is just difficult dealing with the two textures at the same time. Before my hair gets to the point of where it was meant to go, it is imperative to take care of the new growth and what is left behind. This means I must learn to embrace both textures. Hair, I am ready to do all that I can for you to be at your best. Even if it means going half and half for the time being.
Ryuk from Death Note
It is crazy how something you practically pushed into non-existence can become such a scary problem. This thing is like a grotesque reminder of why it is never good to let some things slide. It even reminds me of this anime character Ryuk from Death Note – it is always there some how reminding me of my impending doom. Alright, I’m going to pull it back because I’m getting a bit carried away. However, this “terror spot” is no joke and it must be taken seriously.
My best friend Gabby, who has amazing hair styling skills, (Seriously, if you ever need your hair done hit her up.) helped me untangle my hair when I took out my marley twists. She taught me that when taking out transitioning hair it is good to place the hair in a conditioner and to comb through it in order to soften the hair. It is better to do so to also limit how much damage caused to your mane. She saved me from making a terrible mistake. I almost just combed through it without the necessary precautions. When she was helping me out, there was still some breakage to my hair. For any woman who wants to swear they do not let their hair bother them, I’m sure none of them can stand on a soap box and say hair breakage does not have any effect to them. For certain, it woke me up. Then if that was not enough, the “terror spot” had gotten bigger. Gabby informed me that I had to cut more of the permed hair because basically the two textures cannot function together. It is like they are fighting against each other and the natural hair is winning. I have to take more steps to help my hair get from weak to strong. Through all of this, I’m so grateful to have a person like Gabby to be by my side during this process. Me, my hair and my scalp are being reacquainted. The little follicles on my head are desperate to meet me again. Believe me, I’m eager to meet them again too.
In the spirit of this holiday season, I hope to give myself the treat of taking better care of my tresses. Anyone out there who has the gift of advice, support, or whatever you have to offer, it would be greatly appreciated. We could become a part of a community of sisters helping each other out in any hair journey. To all out there, happy holidays. Wishing you all the best to you and your family during this season.