In an earlier post, I expressed that learning to manage and care for my natural hair has been a process. I wanted to take a moment to reflect on that journey—the ebbs and flow along the way.

10 years ago I decided that I would no longer relax my hair. It was a decision I made because I read about how the chemicals from relaxers went into your bloodstream and can cause health issues. Even then, I wasn’t ready to embrace my natural kinks and coils.

I transitioned with braids and kinky twist for about four months and then I decided to spend the next five years getting my hair blown out at the hair salon every two weeks. It looked cute, but over time I noticed that my hair was thinning and it wasn’t as full as it once was.

I was now at a crossroad in my life. Do I venture into the unknown and discover what my natural curls and coils actually look like as they grew out of my scalp or do I continue to do the then socially acceptable thing and find a way to “tame” this thing I call hair.

If I choose to embrace my natural hair: would I still feel pretty? Would I feel accepted? What would I look like with the curly top? I had those questions and so many more running through my mind. I decided I would empower myself with knowledge—so I took to the Internet and found amazing women that embraced their natural hair and shared the wealth of knowledge they gained along the way.

Although I was on my way to embracing my natural hair, I wasn’t ready to let go of my highlights and I wasn’t ready to let go of blowouts all together. I mean, come on… Who doesn’t like a nice color here and there to switch things up?

So, from 2011-2018 I would get my hair highlighted twice a year and I would get my hair blown out for special occasions which ended up being about 3 to 4 times a year. I found that I had a problem with heat damage and highly frizzy hair. That’s when I started to apply the different things I learned along the way such as identifying my hair porosity and using products that help to support hair health and that would work with my hair porosity. I started to apply the curly girl method (CGM) and the LOC methods to my natural hair journey. I gradually started to see an improvement in the overall health of my hair. I noticed that my hair became thicker and fuller with the use of natural oils such as: cold pressed castor oil, extra virgin olive oil, avocado oil, almond oil, coconut oil etc. I can now say that I’m pleased with my hair health.

However, it’s still a work in progress but I’ve come to truly love and embrace my natural type3/type4 kinky, coily, curly hair. I’ve learned that if you take time to learn how to care for your hair you’ll be rewarded with healthier, happy hair. It’s called a journey for a reason. It’s continuously evolving and we continue to change and progress as individuals. Learning to embrace your hair and taking the time to care for it is only the beginning.

Right now, at this stage of my journey my focus is to retain length. Now that I’ve gradually cut the highlighted color out of my hair I can truly say I’m all natural. I look for good ingredients in my hair care products. In fact I’m venturing into Ayurvedic land. Through my study and research, I’ve learned that Ayurvedic herbs have great benefits for the hair and body. I can’t wait to see how my hair responds to adding those products into my haircare regiment.

Thank you for taking this journey with me. I’ll be sure to keep you posted along the way. And remember: be patient with your hair, be patient with yourself and in time you’ll reap rich rewards.

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