2016 has truly been an eye opening and amazing year for my natural hair. I learned things I never realized about myself as well as my hair, which allowed me to reach goals I never thought my hair was capable of. I am feeling more myself than ever!
The beginning of the year was a struggle for me and my natural hair. I was new in the corporate world, freshly graduated with a business degree and trying to find my way. This year I found out how hard it was being a black girl in a workplace of people who don’t wear twistouts, braidouts or kinky afros. Once I realized I stood out, I began to doubt my natural hair and its beauty.
Key to My Hair Growth: Do it for Yourself
Being the only black person in my department and the only natural on my floor, I was having a really hard time accepting myself, but after that moment in the salon chair, I vowed I would love myself and my hair in its natural form. (If you haven’t read my My Natural Hair Salon Nightmare! go check that out so you know what I’m referring to) After removing that sew-in, I stayed true to my word and began to embrace my natural hair from that moment on. And after taking the huge leap into wearing my coarse 4c hair full time, I noticed one thing, I had damaged leave out and thinning hair. This was a real eye opener because I hadn’t even realized the damage I was causing my naturally coily hair. I had done this to myself worrying what others would think of me and how they would perceive kinky roots. Point here is you can’t worry about what people are going to think of your natural hair. You have to do what’s necessary for your hair to thrive if you ever want to reach your natural hair goals. I believe this is my number 1 natural hair lesson of 2016.
Prior to my breakthrough, I was doing protein treatments weekly and using majority protein based products. I thought that because I wasn’t treating my hair properly that protein treatments would “fix” what I had broken, but that wasn’t the case. Our hair thrives off moisture, and when I started the 90 Day Hair Growth Challenge I found this out first hand. This was when I really began seeing my hair grow and I was able to grow out my damaged leave out and then some. From this challenge I learned my hair loves aloe vera juice as a leave-in and being deep conditioned with raw honey. I’ve also started following a modified version of the Coily Girl Method were I don’t use harsh shampoos. (Updated Wash Day Routine > Winter Haircare Regimen for 4B/4C Hair )
I began wearing twists as a protective style and leaving them in for weeks. This kept my hands out of my hair, which prevented breakage and unnecessary shedding. Now that the challenge is over and I’ve gotten into the stage of wanting to experiment more with my hair, I like wearing updo’s, twistouts and other low manipulation styles.
No Combs or Brushes
I have always been the girl who loves combing, brushing and playing in her hair. But after rocking twists as a protective style for 3 months straight, I’ve developed the habit of not touching my hair unless I’m styling. This has attributed to me maintaining my naturally thick hair. The most I will do to my hair is using a pick, which I don’t do daily. Do not over manipulate your hair ladies! Let go and let grow. Try putting in some two-strand twists and wearing them for a week before rocking that twist out. The less you do to your hair the more it will thank you!
2016 was the start of my blog and it has been amazing sharing my tips and experiences with you all. I want to thank you all so much for your kind words and reading my content every week. I hope you all have a safe and blessed New Years Eve, ill see you in 2017 for more natural hair