Thursday, April 14, 2011

Hair: My Natural Versus Your Natural

I think this secret, natural hair group that I'm in on facebook is doing me more harm than good. Every time I read the posts, comments and tips, I have the HARDEST time finding myself within the experiences.

Issue #1

You see, I've been natural most of my life. Well for a little over half of it actually. The last perm I got was at age 16. But since the age of 16 *dun dun dun!!!*, I have been pressing my hair. *BIG GASP*

Before joining the natural hair group, I thought I was a natural lady. I reasoned that since I didn't use creamy crack, I was in the mix. But apparently, I am disillusioned. I, JJ, am not a part of the cool kids. *tear* I mean, I totally get the whole heat damage thing, but what about this? What if...pause for effect...there is no heat damage?! What if the natural chemical bonds that can suffer under excessive heat are perfectly fine? If that can be possible, should the hot comb still be shunned like the plague? Should heat be so hated?

Well guess what. I have no heat damage. Yeah I said it.

I'm sure the natural hair enthusiasts within my secret group would beg to differ that my hair MUST have SOME sort of heat damage, but I assure you that it does not. Since I've joined the group, I've done research on heat damage and I know all the characteristics of the catastrophe. Thankfully, my hair has none of the systems. At least it doesn't based on the amount of curl that attacks my head when my hair is washed.

You see, I wear my hair short. A la Meaghan Good

and pre-shaved Rihanna such as pictured below.

I transition from the curly, wet TWA to a sleek, short cut with a hot comb. And if anyone knows about maintaining a short cut, you would know that it requires frequent cuts. Being that my hair grows like a a weed, I have to get my hair cut monthly. Otherwise, the style grows out and doesn't look as sharp and sleek as it's supposed to. So for real, for real, my hair doesn't have any time to become heat damaged! It's gone before it has a chance! Hence, scissors are my savior.

So now you might be saying, well if you're convinced that you have no heat damage, what's your issue? Just keep pressing and cutting your hair and live your life!

Well...I've been wearing my hair short for some years now and I'm ready for a change. You see this beautiful, young lady right here.

I want her hair. I want to migrate to a new place and actually see what my hair can do if I put the scissors and hot comb down.

Here lies Issue #2

Since joining my secret natural hair group, I've been researching how to transitioning my already natural self (yes, I'm still claiming natural even though I don't fit the look every other natural lady has) into a different kind of natural self. And what I'm understanding is that moisture and protecting your ends (the oldest parts of your hair) is the key to success. I thought that sounded easy enough until I started looking into how to protect my ends.

Protective hair styles...Bantu knots, cornrows, braids, twists... Huh? So in order to get long, flowy, big, curly hair I have to go back to Africa first? Not that I have an issue with African hair styles. It's just that I wore them as a child and absolutely HATE them on me now.

My girlfriend commented on my fb wall that "Whether it's natural or relaxed, straightened or curly, it's really about finding what you makes you feel like a beautiful woman...The best hair is the hair that works best for you." I totally agree with her! Do you know how miserable I would be wearing hairstyles that I don't feel beautiful in?! Even if they're for the sake of a beautiful result? I just can't. I can't go through years of being embarrassed to leave my house for a future hair style that may or may not work for me.

But I really really really want big, curly hair! =(

AND I've noticed within the secret group that most of the chicks braid, twist and cornrow their own hair!  ...which leads me to believe that you need to have some serious hairstyling skills in order to make this work. Not only do I have none, at least not in this new territory that I may or may not tread on, but who has time to sit and twist or curl tiny little sections of my hair? Talk about torture! Someone suggested that I find a natural hair stylist and stick with them through my journey, but what difference will that make if I am against the African hair style options that will be presented to me?

SIGH. I don't know what to do. And I promise you that worrying about this is going to be the death of me. This issue seriously leaves me up in the morning. Yes in the morning...when my husband leaves for work and I have two more hours of sleep left. I just can't seem to stop thinking about it! It haunts me every single day!

What to do... What to do...


YaYa said...

Hey girl. I RARELY twist or braid my hair. I have decided that I do not like the way I look with my hair twisted and I'm still adjusting to how I look with a twist-out so most of the time I just do the wash-n-go look. Especially in the summer because its so easy.

A great product I use every time I wash my hair after having it straightened is the Pantene Curly Hair Ampoules. I swear by those little conditioners. They really help revive my curl from any heat damage I might have done.

I'm trying to have Natural Hair party soon, so since you're just around the corner, you have to come.

j.a.j. said...

Natural Hair Party! Sounds GREAT! Let me know. (Didn't know you had a blog! Gotta check you out.)

YaYa said...

Lol yea Its a well-kept secret. Lol aka I never promote it. I need to start doing that tho.

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