Happy new year everyone!
On the 24th of December 2014, I marked my first year hairversary since I’ve gone natural and it only felt right to share some of the things I learnt over the past twelve months. Believe me when I say that it’s been an entirely eye-opening and gratifying albeit challenging experience and I’m glad to have taken that decision.
1. Patience is key.
You might as well return to relaxers if you aren’t gonna be patient. I don’t think my patience has been this much tested in recent times given how highly impatient I usually am. Managing my natural hair taught me how to work towards something without necessarily expecting instant results. I knew my hair was growing. I just didn’t like the pace with which it was growing. I wanted to see instant results and weekly differences. Somehow I got tired of this anticipation and just let my hair be. I also found out anytime I got myself unnecessarily worked up, I just tucked it in protective styles; works every.single.time.
2. The TWA stage is paramount.
A couple of months ago, I big chopped for a friend of mine who had been transitioning for 16 months. By the time she was ready to do a big chop, she already had a mini fro that was thick and strong as a sponge. She had totally skipping the tiny weeny afro (TWA) stage. Prior to now, I had advised her to create a regimen before going fully natural so that she could have an idea of what to expect and soften her hair over time. Believe me when I say that she tossed my advice out of the window. After a couple of weeks, she came back frustrated. She wanted to relax her hair. It was too full and coarse for her to handle. I told her to big chop again and start from the beginning with less hair. I big chopped after I transitioned for 9 months and it was rather easy because I created a regimen almost immediately after I made the conscious decision to go natural. My point is: do not overlook or undermine your ‘TWA’ days. You have no idea how important that period is. However you’re able to manage your natural hair at that period is the basis for the rest of your journey. If you want soft hair faster, start with your TWA. Pamper it, attend to it and take good care of it. Trust me, when it gets to the awkward stage length, you’d hardly have any problem with your hair texture and then you can decide to be a lazy natural if you like.
3. The importance of a functional regimen cannot be overemphasized.
No matter what you do, have a hair care routine. It’s the everything and then some. By the time it gets to some stage, it becomes more of a habit rather than a chore.
4. Wash day doesn’t have to be tedious.
For a long time, I failed to understand my general aversion for wash days. Everywhere I turned, there was almost always complaints of sorts. Personally, I always looked forward to wash days. Scratch that! I actually enjoy wash days. There’s a pleasure that comes with caring for something you love and I realised that it’s simply because I found what works for me early enough and stuck to it.
5. My natural hair journey has highly influenced my lifestyle. This is easily the biggest highlight of my year. Suddenly I’m re-evaluating and making changes to my skincare and diet. I’m becoming more conscious and aware of my environment. I’m thinking outside the box and making adjustments. It’s a whole new ball game for me and it can only get better.
I’m really excited and looking forward to another year. Like they say: with more length comes more responsibilities.© Copyright 2015 Ebun Oluwole, All rights Reserved. Written For: Get your Sizzelle on!