Natural Hair: The Experiment

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This was a bit of an unintentional experiment with wearing my hair out in its natural state. For me that meant no extensions in the form of braids or twists, how I normally wear my hair; no heat – straighteners or blow dryers (primarily because I don’t own any); and no chemicals, which I haven’t used since September 2012. I was transitioning from relaxed hair to natural hair till about July or August 2013, when I chopped off all the relaxed bits.

I just wanted to share a bit of what my (so far very short) experience with wearing my hair out has been like.

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4  Things I’ve Learned:

1. It’s tough. Wearing my hair out in the it’s natural state (no heat, no chemical relaxers, etc) requires so much more effort and so much more self confidence. I can’t hide behind my braids or my mermaid hair anymore. I need to make sure I tie it up every night, the right way, so it doesn’t look like a scraggly mess in the morning. My mom said, I’m much to picky to wear natural hair because I don’t normally have the patience to do it, but I’m slowly learning.

2. Water and oil are your friends. I have basically stopped using hair grease, that Blue Magic stuff that was my childhood. And because I’m not into how my edges look, i.e. they’re never slicked back, I don’t use any gel either. My go-to product has become coconut oil, sometimes mixed with shea butter. And during the time that it’s twisted (which is how I wear it normally) I like to spray water on my hair and scalp to keep moisturized and use some Argan oil I got in an Ipsy bag to seal the moisture in; as all the online natural hair gurus taught me to do. I think it works though, because my hair hasn’t really been feeling dry.

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3. Twistouts are not my friend. Neither are afros or cornrows. I just can’t get them to look good on me. I mean I get them to work and the curls look good, just the style looks horrendous with my face. So I basically stick to one style because I don’t know what else to do.

4. I like my hair. I’m not quite sure I’m at a love stage since it takes so much damn effort and I look better with braids. But I most definitely don’t hate it. In the shower when I’m washing or conditioning it and I get to see the curls at their most natural, it’s amazing how beautiful they are. I also appreciate the versatility and creativity that can come with natural hair, even if I have no clue how to style it. It’s definitely not something I’ve ever liked before but I’m definitely liking now. I think I’m embracing it, learning to adjust to it and try to discover another side of me. I’m not saying I wont ever wear braids again, I definitely will as it is the easiest way to wear funky colours and I have some purple ombre hair that is dying to be used. But for the time being, I think I’m going to continue and this little journey of self discovery and learn more about myself.

nathair

 

NOTE: I wrote this just over a month into wearing my hair out. Mid November, I braided my hair randomly, because 1) I had the time to do it, 2) I was particularly frustrated that day and 3) I realized that perhaps winter with its dryness and hats is not the greatest time to wear my hair natural. It’s already frizzy enough with toques contributing to that. I was seriously considering sewing some satin into my hats so my hair wouldn’t get messed up but that was too much effort and I feared they would never stay on my head. But I definitely do stand by everything I wrote and will definitely wear my hair out again in the warmer months 🙂

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