Wednesday, January 26, 2011

It's My Hair: Decisions

Hair is a big issue and industry for Black women. It is our thing. We will spend all day on a Saturday in the hair shop to get our 'do did. I know that if my hair looks good, then I feel good. It's a great feeling leaving out of the shop with my hair perfect. I fee like the world is my oyster. Yes, a fresh hairdo does all of that for me. Hair is a very big piece of my overall appearance. There is a big movement in the African American culture of women going the natural route. This has intrigued me for some time.

The whole natural movement is very interesting to me. The routes that one can take to get back to their natural state as well. I, however, am not a fan of the Big Chop route. If I do chose to do this, I will def be going the transitioning route. I just don't think I wanna cut all of my hair off to go natural. That is just not gonna happen. I've had my hair cut in a short, Halle Berry-type style about 13 years ago. It was cute but the growing out stage was horrible. I hated it. It wasn't growing fast enough for me. I wore micro braids and a weave for a while. I hate weave. i will never ever have hair sewn in or glued into my head again. It just wasn't for me. The braids were cool and my best option when growing my hair out.

I have read a lot of blogs and forums about the transitioning to natural hair. There is a lot of great information on the web. I absolutely love MopTopMaven and CurlyNikki. These sites are encouraging and very friendly. They are full of natural hair care help and advice. I will say that some of these naturalistas are hardcore. They are usually referred to as the Nazis (not politically correct but still). They believe that in order for one to be completely natural, one should not even straighten their hair or use certain products. I think that's nuts. If I were to go the natural route, I would def be utilizing the Chi iron. I like to wear my hair wrapped. I do not like the negativity that I get from some of these women on the forums. I read those forums to gather more info. This has been a long discovery journey for me. And, I'm still not done yet.

I do like the plethora of natural styles I've seen on African-American women. Locs are gorgeous. Especially when they are neat and tidy and long. I love the look. It's just not the look I would go for. There are also the afros. Big or small, everyone is different. I personally like the braid-outs and twist-outs that I see. They are beautiful and soft. I like soft hair. Because i like to play in my hair. Love for a man to run his fingers through my hair as well. That is one of the best feelings in the world. I always wonder about the naturalistas that I see and their hair story. I'm very curious about that.

My fear in letting go of the chemicals is that I have no idea what my "natural hair state" is. I also do not want to do the Big Chop either. I love the length, thickness and feel of my hair now. Going natural is not like me putting in a rinse. I can not just wash it away. What if I don't like it? What if I can't deal with it? These are the big, huge questions that haunt me about this decision. Granted, I know some will say things like "I am not my hair," but in some actuality, I am sort of my hair. It's a part of me. That may be vain but it's my truth. I am still on the fence about this decision. Are any of you ladies naturalistas? If so, tell me your story. If not, what is your take on this issue? Talk to me!

ETA: My girl Kimberlie has another interesting take in natural hair. Please check it out as well.

Tanika Ray, an Extra correspondent, is my hair inspiration. I love her hair. It's always gorgeous, no matter how she styles it.


  1. I am definitely my hair..can't lie. I am in the process of transitioning to natural. I have the same fears that you do. I won't do the big chop but I will grow it out and slowly cut the relaxer out. I'm not sure if I will like my texture but I know if I don't, I can always just relax it again. I plan on wearing sew ins and micro's during the grow out phase. I just hope that I have the patience...and Yes Tanika's hair is always gorgeous! I love the color and hair is really thick also so I'm crossing my fingers my texture is similar to hers..the second pic is my fav..LOVE IT!

  2. IDK. I always ask myself if I am fully represented in all aspects of who I am when I change my hair. When I wear my natural hair, I feel like ppl mistake me for a rasta, earthy type-hippie (so to speak). Which part of me has value in those areas, but I loooovvveeee straight, silky and bouncy modern hair. Ppl always tell me, "I can't believe you of all ppl are natural." As if I am some sort of prom queen materialist. IDK. I hope I am not my hair. If I were, confusion would be my middle name.

  3. @ HB- So you know I'm not surprised that you like Tanika's hair as well. I'm still confused as to which road to take. Thank you for your feedback though, Twin!

    @ Tia - In regards to the question "Am I my hair?" I just mean how connected are you to it. I am very conscious of my hair. It's a part of my overall outward appearance, you know? Thanks for commenting, Cousin. ((hugs)) It means alot girl!

  4. Don't Big Chop if it's not for you. I will say that growing out natural hair is different when growing out a short cut with a relaxer. I've done both lol. You don't really go through that awkward stage because you can do things with your natural hair at any length: short 'fro, then to puffs, then twist-outs, etc. But don't do it unless you feel absolutely comfortable.

    I transitioned for over a year this time and it was OK. I only did "wash n go" styles because my hair was still curly with a relaxer; but I got tired of the straight ends. That's how alot of people end up chopping. But there are so many protective transitioning styles that will mask that you have 2 textures and protect the hair from breakage at the "demarcation" point.

    I won't say it's an easy transition, either way you do it, but I've enjoyed it. Some days I look like a boogawolf and other days I look so fierce that I don't want to go to bed at night & mess up my hair lol.

    Ms. K do you have pictures of yourself as a child to see your natural texture? Have you tried stretching relaxers to see what the new growth looks like? It's not very accurate b/c the relaxed hair is weighing on it, but it'll give you an idea.

  5. Ms. K - Someone just pointed me to this site and I want to share it with you! I almost want to loose myself of the weave and flat-iron! These woman are absolutely stunning! make sure you hit next page at the bottom to see more!//

  6. @ Kimmie - I am so thankful for the info, Kimberlie. I need all the info I can get. I do have pictures of me as a kid. But my hair is in a thousand plaits. So I cannot really get a good hold on what my texture is. I may try out that stretching thing. I don't think I can do the BC. I don't wanna have no hair on my head. I would not be comfortable like that. I'm so confused, can you tell? Lol.

    @ Mahogany - Thanks for the info. I am checking it out right now, Mahogany. Great pics so far. iLove!!!