I am not here to tell you to go natural or to process your hair. What I am here to do is share how I travel the natural journey and got to where I am. Here is an account of my natural hair journey including my favorite products.
Yes, I transitioned instead of immediately going for the big chop. Which is better? probably the big chop, but I wasn't mentally ready to cut all my hair off. How did I transition? OVATION CELL THERAPY!!! Ovation is the best thing that ever happened to my hair. It strengthened my heat-damaged, relaxed hair and restored my new growth to its original texture. These products work miracles. They do everything necessary for restoring and growing hair. The thing is, the products are quite expensive. However, they last for months and the result is totally worth it. In addition, once you restore your hair to a point at which it grows on its own, you may not need to continue using Ovation products. But, we'll talk about that later.
My mom does not understand for the life of her why I wore weave and braids for about four years straight. Listen and listen closely. PROTECTIVE STYLES HELP HEAL AND GROW. When they are executed correctly and you properly care for your hair, protective styles can literally be the life of it. I keep sew-ins installed for about three months at a time (I do not recommend longer) and in that period my hair grows about three inches. Awesome, right? I know. I keep braids in for about a month. The shortened length of time is because my hair slips out of braids more quickly than that of others. Even then, my hair grows about an inch per month of being braided. What a lot of people don't understand is that when in a protective style, the only shedding that occurs is that which is triggered by natural causes. The shedding due to handling and styling is eliminated. So, the more hair you put away for a longer time, the healthier and thicker you can expect your hair to be.
Warning: I recommend allowing your hair to breathe for at least one week between styles.
My big chop was the best thing I have ever done for my hair! Seriously. My hair has grown healthier and faster than it did before my big chop. How did it happen? One day, my junior year in college, I came home from class, upset about a friend, looked in the mirror and wanted a change. So, I grabbed my scissors and started cutting about 3-5 inches away from my scalp. Note that my hair was still slightly damaged because I had continued using heat on it, so what I was doing was cutting off all hair that had lost texture due to heat. When I had finished I had short, thick waves all over my head. I cried. I had never had hair this short and I had to go be a Hooters Girl the next morning. Over the next week I washed and worked my hair until I brought out the beautiful curls and waves God gave me. What products helped me find these curls and waves? Herbal Essences Hello Hydration Conditioner (blue bottle) and Aussie Miraculously Smooth Conditioner (purple bottle). I love and swear by these two conditioners. The funny thing is, they are not ethnic or natural hair care products, but they work better for my hair than any other product. It's not about finding natural hair products. It's about finding what products your hair responds best to.
Note: These products work best for naturally dry, frizzy hair.
MAINTAINING HEALTHY HAIR
I have used the above conditioners for about two years now. Yes, I have experimented with different products after hearing how great they work for others, but, once again, its all about what works best for your hair. I only co-washed for the past two years (unless my hair was extremely dirty with sand or gel, etc.) to keep moisture locked in. I highly recommend this practice because shampoo strips your hair of everything, including essential oils and nutrients. If you must shampoo I recommend Carol's Daughter Sulfate Free Shampoo. Sulfate free shampoos are better for your hair because they do not strip it but they still dry my hair out so I use it only when absolutely necessary. I wash my hair almost every other day just to make sure I am consistently adding moisture to it.
THE SECRET TO HAIR YOU LOVE
Love your hair!!! Just because your hair is healthy doesn't mean it will look the same as someone else's. You have got to love your hair back to health by being patient and finding what's right for it. Then fall madly in love with the hair you were born with. healthy hair is beautiful hair.
Tell us what products you love and hate?