The Early Years

When I opened my eye for the first time on that autumnal afternoon (or was it morning?) of the 25th of September , I was ready and already rocking the 70’s look. Yep, my mummy told me that I came out with a fully formed fro! But as soon as it my hair was introduced to air and water the fight begin

From as far back as I can remember until the age of about 7 or 8, every Sunday evening I would have my weekly cry as my mum would braid and twist my hair the the schooling week. My natural hair is so thick and my scalp so sensitive I would spend the following 30 minutes after ‘the ordeal’ (and of course during) weeping and I remember my dad saying ‘just cut it off it it’s causing so much grief’ or something to that effect. So as a compromise, my hair was permed. You remember that scene in Coming to America when Darryl’s family leave a parting gift of a Soul Glo wet patches, sadly I remember remember those days. For a number of year I curly permed then moved to relaxing. Why am I telling you this so you understand that my hair has know a lot of chemicals over the decades and I think as a result my hair will respond diffidently… She says!

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2 Months Mark

So what I’m finding is that my hair DOES NOT like transitioning one little bit! The having two textures thing is a no no. My hair is breaking left right and centre, and before you ask I am doing only co washes, deep conditioning weekly but it doesn’t seem to be making much difference to the relaxed hair. It’s not massive clump of hair but I’ll notice a new shorter area from time to time. Honestly I’m not too surprised as the difference between my natural hair and relaxed hair is like oil and water. My nature hair is very thick and strong and my relaxed hair is weak and thin and it’s a simple as that. I wanted to try and transition without doing the big chop but I’m thinking that I either need to braid or weave or cut it. I might pick a super short style that wouldn’t look too odd with super curly roots haha!

Some positive news, I’m loving how my new growth is feeling. After a wash I can feel a delightful bed of ringlet overlaying my scalp :o) yay we’ll get there in the end! I have about a half an inch curl (longer stretched) which looks super healthy a shiny. So really I just want to encourage anybody that is finding that their hair is breaking that they are not the only one. I honestly am not to worries because as I mentioned it’s the relaxed hair that is breaking and by new hair seems to be growing well and looks healthy.

I will add that I did change my diet to clean  high protein. I try to avoid any processed for food anyway, but I am making a conscious effort to make sure I’m eating fresh and lean! I think I’ve just found a new blog title.

The Transition – Relaxed to Natural

My my I have been away a long time (slap wrist) it’s been a journey, but we’ll start from scratch as I embark on another journey that is THE TRANSITION! Okay, for those of you who don’t know what I’m banging on about, in a nutshell; afro hair can be hard to manage without proper knowledge and understanding of what the hair needs. As a result many women with gorgeous locks pay ridiculous amounts of money to have their scalp burnt (not always) and their hair fried aka relaxed (chemically straightened). Goodness that sound like so form of penance.  Well it kind of is or at least it was for me because no matter how “gentle” the relaxer was, I always ended up with scabs on my scalp. Please don’t get me wrong, I know this isn’t everybody’s experience and I know some people have healthy(ish – how healthy can it be when you’re using chemicals to alter your hairs natural formation?) hair that is relaxed and this was my experience for some of the time but if i’m honest, I spent most of my time in a state of hair cardiac arrest and trying to heal damaged and distressed hair. Sadly that is where I found myself again, and after finding my hair had broken in match left and right side patches, giving me two new growth only ‘crop circles’, that was the last straw and it was then, in that moment of utter despair that I decided that enough was enough. I would give up relaxing and baldly go where many have gone before!

I can’t tell you how much time I have spent reading blogs and watching YouTube videos trying to glean as much information as I can about how to manage this process. Interestingly enough, I have actually been making my own natural deep conditioners and hair mask for just over a year so I already had an understanding of the types of products and care that would help me manage my hair. What I have found to date is that there are a TON of videos about transitioning and about caring for natural hair, but what I have found is that most of the information is 1) from across the pond from our US cousins (for which I am super grateful) 2) the ladies in the videos have great genes! With all due respect to all the help and support our US beauties have dedicated to the cause, but, sadly I can’t identify with with their beautiful healthy new growth as mine journey seems to be quite different.

I am two months in to my journey now and I’ll be honest it’s hard work and it does scare me not knowing what to expect from my hair, or if I will be able to manage it. However, I am committed and we, my hair and I, have a number of years to get better acquainted.