Friday, January 22, 2016

Accidental Afro

Sunday marks exactly 3 months since I chopped all my hair off and started over. Pre-chop, all I knew about being natural was that yall used mad products, were obsessed with discussing curl patterns, and swore out you were holier than thou because yall apparently loved yourselves more than relaxed girls. LOL i'm being sarcastic but you get my drift. I didnt understand much of what came with being natural. How could I? I had been relaxed for majority of my life. My mother used to put my perm in my hair as a child and at some point, some family friends of my father moved into our basement. The wife had been a hairdresser in Haiti so of course my mother and I used that as an opportunity to get her to perm our hair. She was great at it. No worries. Even when they moved out, I would still get my hair relaxed by her in her apartment in the Bronx. This is all I knew. If you wanna comb that thang on your head, you better go relax it. By middle school, I had started entertaining the idea of relaxing my own hair. I was already smooth with the flat twists, how difficult could it be? I tried; followed the directions on the little paper they put in the box, and voila! This teenager was capable of relaxing her own hair. This went on up until July of last year right before I went to Africa. Relax my hair every 8 weeks, wash it once a week, and occasionally get it trimmed and blowed out by the Dominicans. SUPER LOW MAINTENANCE. I never thought twice about my hair being a major part of my life. Because it wasn't. Until October. I had returned back from Jamaica after celebrating my cousins nuptials and planned to take my braids out that I had got installed before I went to Africa in August. I had literally only had braids once in life before that and it was back when I was 12 and we were going to Hawaii. Black folk love slapping braids in their children's hair before vacation. Any who, I dreaded taking the damn braids out because I was tired as hell so I said i'll take them out Tuesday and just put my hair in a bun until I can wash it over the weekend. DISASTER. I take all the braids out and notice multiple knots and what appears to be mini dreadlocks in some areas of my head. LOL no bullshit. I wash and condition it thinking this will loosen up the knots. I attempt to detangle and i'm literally pulling my hair which doesn't feel good. I tell one of my co-workers the next day who always wears braids and shes like get you some Johnson & Johnson's detangler and just do piece by piece. I try and fail. The hair is just getting more mattered. Plus between the new growth and my relaxed hair, the relaxed hair is just snapping. I reach out to another homegirl like dawg, i'm gonna have to cut this mess off. She reaches out to her hairdresser and the hairdresser advises me to get a specific detangler and says it will loosen up, just be patient. Nah b. I try and fail again. At this point, i'm like F it. I rather start over because my hair was literally locked. It had been a good 3 months without a relaxer so it was straight war between the new growth and relaxed hair and the new growth was winning. I told my same home girl, I'm over it. I want to cut it and perhaps weave it up till it grows back to a decent length where I can relax again. She refers me to someone not far from my house. I call the hairdresser and tell her the situation and she's like you don't have to cut it. Come in and let me see if I can untangle it. In my head, i'm thinking lady, I already made peace with the idea of cutting it... I'm not interested in having my scalp pulled any further. I tell her I want a weave but depending on how short she has to cut it, what are my options. She says she can do what's called a quick weave where they glue the hair to a cap. Aiight bet. I go and purchase the hair she told me to get. $145. Bombaclotttttttttt...... Mind you this is the same person who had been spending a hot $5-8 every 2 months for a boxed perm from the grocery store for the last 20 years!

I get to the hairdresser and have her take a look at what is now an actual bird nest mixed with dreadlocks on my head. She attempts to detangle and I'm just like nah. I think it's a wrap. Let's just cut it. Fast forward - she cuts it all off. I don't feel any type of way. It's just hair right? It'll grow back. Women been natural since the beginning of time. She weaves me up and styles it. I pay $120 for the cut, a deep condition and new weave. That's $265 dollars I just spent on my hair. $265 can get me a flight deal to another country. But I just spent it on my hair. Unbelievable. Anyway, I carry on with life like normal. I told everyone I speak to regularly. Some of the reactions were like I had just been diagnosed with a terminally ill disease. Um ok... something wrong with yall but whatever. 3 weeks later, I go back to hairdresser to get weave removed. I want access to my scalp and don't want to be dependent on a hairdresser. I'm just not about that life. That making it rain in the hairdresser life. More props to those who are. I buy a wig and have her trim it. This is what I am wearing from now on.

Well that's what I told myself. Until I got tired of it - and I was like fuck this wig. And well here I am...



Adjusting. Embracing. Learning. 

There are a few things I learned that I wish naturalistas would've kept it real about. Yall lied.
  1. Maintenance. Being natural is far from easy. Everyone swears out it is. I spend more time and money than I ever have on my hair. Those products cost a damn arm and a leg. Also, how you think your hair will look vs what it will actually look like is always completely different.
  2. Coconut oil. Coconut oil leaks everywhere. Be strategic when placing it in your scalp. It also doesn't smell good in my opinion. I don't know about you but I don't enjoy putting smelly things in my hair.
  3. People's comments/opinions. Everyone wants to comment on your hair or ask annoying questions like you are a science project. Hey guess what? I am still the same person, I just have a different hair style. I did not lose my hair in a fire or due to some illness. I chose to cut it off. LoL. If you weren't concerned about my hair growth pre-chop, no need to be concerned now. 
  4. Natural hair aint created equal. Folks stay asking me if i can just wet my hair, put some lotion in it and it be curly. Nah bruh. There are various hair types. I have 4b/c hair. The kind that doesn't retain water well and is super coiled, coarse, and dry. Naturally. I have to do A LOT to achieve a certain look. The idea that everyone has type 2 or 3 hair and can wash and go is fraudulent. Aint no soft curls over here bih. See chart below if you don't know what I am talking about.

Three months into this transition, I now know what products work with my hair (I think), the proper procedures when removing braids and the required maintenance when I do have braids (conditioners, oils, etc). So there - yall can stop asking me 1,000 questions now. If you happen to have the same hair type as me or know someone who does, let me know. If not, just shutup. Thanks. *muah*

xoxo,
P

16 comments:

  1. I swear I love you, lol! And like I told you when I saw you, I think it looks GREAT! F the rest. 😘

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  2. Gurrrrrlllaaaaa!! I love this blog homey! I'm glad you're embracing this look because it looks excellent on you! I'm also glad you've done your research on being natural and finding what works for you. Tariqah

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    1. Aw thanks sugar! I'm so grateful for you for getting me off to the right start! You da bomb boo!

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  3. πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ this entire piece killed me!! You already know you slayin them!

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  4. Girllll you look gorg! You rocking that cut! You should have seen my head when I first went naturalπŸ˜”.. I have experience 1-4 ESPECIALLY 4.. You will be fine.. Once you get the hang of it it will be easier and a breeze... Rainy days will be fun!!

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  5. LMAO!!! I loved this post and all its honesty! It is easy once you've spent hundreds figuring out what products work. I have found that the pricey ones ain't all that and doesNOTHING for this 4c I got lol as it grows sectioning and detangling is a life saver, cream conditioner, sealed with good ol Shea butter keeps its moist and easier for $10/2 months. Good luck, I love my thickness but it's WORK!

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    1. Awesome and good to know! And hype we got the same texture! Lol

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  6. yo this is how i ended up natural too!!! it was 2003, got them damn microbraids, took 'em out, washed it, shit locked up, and had to cut it all off. what they didn't tell me was that you should detangle with conditioner after you take the braids out before washing it cause once the water hits it, you'll never get a comb through it again. snip snip is the solution.
    You look so cute!!!

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  7. That's exactly what happened!!!! Ridiculous. Thank you hunny

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  8. Love this and love the cut! Best thing you can do for your hair is have a moisture routine. Don't obsess over products, techniques and length. That ish will drive one crazy lol. I've been sticking to same products ever since I started my journey. All that other stuff is overrated. Lol

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  9. Poiette! I seriously love you! You're gorgeous with whatever hairstyle you choose! When I finally let go and made the chop..my momma said "put on some lipstick and big earrings and you'll be fine"..I've been rolling ever since! Enjoy the journey wherever it leads!

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    1. Aww thanks my love! Lol def rocking the lipstick and earrings *muah*

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