15 Truths of What to Expect When Going Natural 2

The 15 Truths of What to Expect When Going Natural – Part 2

You’ve already read part one right? Good. Let’s jump right in to Truths 8-15.

 

Truth #8: Practice new styles despite your experience level.

Flat twists? Braids? Marley twists? Cornrows? The thought of us doing it yourself can make you shudder. And yea it can be nervewrecking at first attempt but what I want to encourage you to do is to just try it. Do it on a day where you have a bit of time to just practice and if it eventually doesn’t go as you thought then do your go-to style. But don’t let it intimidate you out of trying. You may surprise yourself after pushing yourself to practice enough. I never would have thought that I could do a bomb flat twist as my early ones were a complete flop but I’m getting better and better at it. So can you if you just try!

 

Truth #9: Retention is just as important as hair growth.

We can become so obsessed with massaging our scalp, moisturizing our scalp, and taking supplements that we forget how important it is to make sure we are retaining our length. Take care of the ends of your hair. Keep them moisturized too. Try to tuck them away as much as possible. Cover your hair at night or use silk pillowcases. What’s the point of growing your hair as much as you can if you don’t do much to retain it? That’s why many women feel like their hair doesn’t grow. It does! They just aren’t doing enough to retain their length. Your ends are just as important as the roots of your hair.

 

Truth #10: There will be people who criticize you.

Lawd. I can guarantee you that there will be that one person that will side eye you about going natural. There will be negative comments asking why you’re doing it and about how much prettier your hair was when it was in ____ style.  At the end of the day, block out the negativity. This is YOUR hair. YOU’RE the one taking care of it. And unless these people are about to pay to have a beautician to do your hair every day, then you shouldn’t have a care in the world about their opinion. I’ve had people including family members that brutally criticized my hair only to come back later asking me how I do my twist out so well because they’re going to try it themselves. It happens all the time. So let the negative comments roll of your back. For many of us, we’re just now learning how to do our hair while there are women of other textures that have been knowing how to do their hair since they were kids. Cut yourself some slack.

 

TRUTH #11: THERE WILL BE PEOPLE WHO WILL WANT TO TOUCH YOUR HAIR.

Cue Solange. Don’t touch my hair. You do NOT have to allow people to touch your hair. It’s your hair and no human needs to be petted. You can be polite about it (I’m sorry, I just don’t feel comfortable with people touching my hair.) or you can be unapologetically real about it (Um no I don’t know where your hands been. Do I look like I’m a part of a petting zoo to you? *look up, look down, side eye, and walk away*). I will leave your decision of your response to your discretion. There is a difference between a polite curiosity yearning to be educated and downright rude. You’ll know the difference, Queen.

 

TRUTH #12: YOU MAY GO THROUGH A SUPER NATURAL PHASE.

It’s normal, trust me. Suddenly it’s like you become obsessed. You’re buying a bunch of different products without even allowing enough time to see if it’s working for your hair. You’re watching youtube videos into the wee hours of the morning. You’ll be putting every kind of pantry item in your hair from yogurt to honey to vinegar to bananas and looking for new ones. Saturday literally becomes wash DAY as in the whole day is practically dedicated to you trying new stuff on your hair and 15 step regimens. You take way more selfies than you use to just to show off your hair. You may even catch yourself preaching to other women about how they should go natural. It happens…and that too shall pass because…

 

TRUTH #13: YOU’LL CALM DOWN AND REALIZE IT’S JUST HAIR.

Something will go off in your mind to realize that you’re stressing out over hair. HAIR. That’s all it is. It will grow no matter you do (see truth #9). That doesn’t mean you should be neglectful but that also doesn’t mean that you should put your life on hold for your hair. Make your hair regimen fit YOUR schedule. Who cares if that girl likes her relaxer better than wearing it natural or cuts her natural hair off just for fun? Let that girl be great. You don’t want anybody putting you down for being natural so why make her feel bad about not having a relaxer or getting a hair cut? You will eventually chill all the way out and just learn your hair to just do what’s needed to keep it healthy without having an anxiety attack over it. There’s much more to life than having long hair. (But the selfie thing mentioned in Truth #12 may not go away…just saying.)

 

TRUTH #14: BE PATIENT BECAUSE IT’S WORTH IT.

This is the only time that I will say that going natural isn’t for everybody. If you don’t have the patience to change your regimen so that you can have healthy natural hair then it may not be for you. And that’s okay. Nothing wrong with that. It’s your hair. Decide how you’d like to wear it. But if you decide to go for it, know that it’ll be worth it. You’ll look back at all your lessons learned and be proud of how much more knowledgeable you are about caring for your hair yourself instead of relying on somebody else to do it. You’ll be happy that you can pass down the knowledge and experience to your own daughter so that they’ll know from the jump what they need to do with their hair. It is worth it! It’s frustrating as hell sometimes but it truly is worth it.

 

TRUTH #15: EMBRACE THE HAIR YOU HAVE.

Like I’ve said before, there’s only one you. Your hair is unique. Embrace it. Love it. Show it off. Do not hunt for a perfect product that will make your hair look like someone else’s. You’re wasting your time because there’s no such thing as a non-permanent healthy chemical product that can change your hair texture to a different natural hair texture. Instead embrace what you have. I use to ambitiously hunt for a product or way to have Traci Ellis Ross hair. I had to stop and realize that my hair is will never look like hers because our hair genes are just different. With all the time I wasted hunting for a magical product, I kick myself for being so naïve. Lesson learned and now I rock my 4b/4c hair like no tomorrow!

 

So those are the 15 truths I’ve learned about going natural. Did you learn any of these truths yourself the hard way as well? Did I miss any? Let me know in the comments section and share with your curlfriends =)

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15 Truths of What to Expect When Going Natural 1

The 15 Truths of What to Expect When Going Natural – Part 1

Right now I have my hair in mini twists and by doing so it has taken me back to when I first went natural. I was struggling to find styles that I could work with and felt confident with doing. It wasn’t until a friend of mine that was also natural suggested that I wear mini-twists and she was the first person to do them on my hair. And omg I fell in love with them. Thus my pixie twists style was born.

Natural hair in mini twistsNatural hair in mini twists

Now I’m back to one of my first natural hair loves and it’s made me reflect on some truths that I learned the hard way when I went natural. So if you’re considering going natural, let me share the real with you so that you know what you’re getting into it because it ain’t all rainbows, fairytales and unicorns, honey…

And for the record, I have split this posts into 2 parts. Not because I’m trying to get post views but just because I don’t want you to look at how much I wrote and think “this girl talk too much, never mind”. Lol maybe if you like Part 1, you’ll stay tune for part 2. I just don’t want to overwhelm you!

 

Truth #1: It’s going to be challenging.

TRUST ME you will NOT have a perfect twist out style the first time after watching those youtube videos to whatever time in the morning you was up. You’re about to start a journey of trial and errors with PLENTY of failed attempts and bad hair days to come. Accept it. Embrace it. Decide what your simple go to style will be when it does fail (for me it was a simple pulled back puff).

Truth #2: You’re going to want to revert back so have a go to protective style.

I have yet to personally meet ONE natural that said she never ever glanced back for a second after having a failed attempt at a hair style. There will be days that you will think about having your relaxer back. There will be days you’ll want to straighten your hair with no cares of if it gets heat damage. There will be days, my love! And it’s only temporary frustration. So when those days come, have a protective style that you like and can get done so that you and your hair can take a break. Sometimes you just need to breathe and not be worried about hair before you make a permanent decision altering your hair. That’s normal.

 

Truth #3: Having a hair twin is a myth.

There is no such thing of having an exact hair twin that has the exact same hair as you. Even if you have the same texture, that doesn’t mean you have the same hair porosity, the same hair density, or the same hair strand thickness. All of those things matter with your hair care regimen and how your hair styles will turn out. Now of course you can hunt for someone who has very similar qualities. Maybe 2 of the 4, or maybe if you’re lucky 3 of the 4. Bottom line, don’t have your hopes too ridiculously high when you find a natural hair blogger online. Yes, they can provide great tips and tricks, but don’t forget the differences that your hair may have with them so that you don’t have unrealistic expectations.

 

Truth #4: Expensive doesn’t mean better.

You may feel the urge to find the PERFECT product for your hair. And in that mad dash of shopping where you evolve to a product junkie, you’ll wonder if that $35 conditioner is worth it. Yes we’re taught that you get what you pay for but trust me, your hair really isn’t THAT picky to only like high priced products. What I’m saying is that don’t think your hair will only do great with the $40 gel and not the $5 ECO styler gel. My advice is to start low just to get your regimen set. From there, you’re welcome to explore and splurge, but don’t trick yourself into think expensive means a better product. I’ve had plenty of expensive products in my hair that my hair snuffed it’s nose up at.

 

Truth #5: Not everyone is an expert.

WordPress. Weebly. Blogger. Youtube. It takes all of maybe 5 minutes to start a website. You can write whatever you like and post it on the internet for the world to see. But that doesn’t mean that you’re an expert on what you speak on and the same goes for anybody else that you look up. Now there are a lot of very knowledgeable and experienced natural hair bloggers and vloggers on the internet that are great resources. But my urge to you is to not read one post and think that it’s the gospel truth. Do some good research with multiple blogs and sources. Read books and articles. Talk to knowledgeable beauticians. Like seriously, do real research. Everyone has an opinion but that doesn’t mean that it is the best thing to follow for your hair. Refer back to truth #3 that your hair is unique so not everything will work for you no matter how long your hair idol’s hair is.

 

Truth #6: It will be harder to find a beautician.

Bruh.

It can be hard to find a GOOD beautician that genuinely cares about your hair and not just a stylist that wants your hair to be perfect. Stylists try to make your hair look good even if that means sacrificing your edges or your ends. Good beauticians care about the health of your hair to protect it while it’s in the style. Health should be your number one priority (that’s a big reason of why many people go natural in the first place) so be picky about who you allow to do your hair. Get recommendations. Read reviews. Look at photos of past clients. Go to someone with GOOD customer service (which is such a rarity these days but I digress). And most of all find someone that is knowledgeable about natural hair. You’re putting too much work in your hair to just let anybody touch it so select the right beautician for you.

 

Truth #7: Get ready to get out of your comfort zone.

Some of us have had straight hair since day one so it seemed. So to do such a switch to wear your hair naturally can be an overwhelming change. It’s a change that will take time to adjust to. Some people zoom through it as they love a variety of styles anyway so it’s no different to them. While for others, it means they will have to learn to love themselves more of who they naturally look like. We are all across the spectrum of how we handle the shift to wearing our hair naturally so it may be a step of out of your comfort zone. Remember that this is you and there’s only one you. You may be uncomfortable, but that’s okay. Your natural look will start to feel natural more and more like you after awhile.

So that’s truths 1-7. Stay tune tomorrow for Part 2 of this post. Did you experience any of these truths for yourself? Tell me about it in the comments section! And don’t be afraid to share this post to spread the truths to others!

graduation

Walking Off the Stage to Start New Chapter

I…am tired.

Like I just don’t feel like there’s words in the English language that will truly suffice to describe my level of exhaustion when it comes to school.

I started my journey to earn my Master’s degree back in the Spring of 2013. I took it slow at first but eventually I crept up to the Summer of 2015 and felt irritated that I still had 6 more classes to go.

working towards graduationI have been holding down a full time job through the entire journey as my light, gas, and water bill could care less about my education goal; they just want their money. However, going through this journey with only 1 or 2 classes a semester was making me feel anxious. I was tired of midnight deadlines and papers. I was tired of forcing myself to read through boring chapters. I was tired of pretending like I was so intrigued by Amy’s discussion post with my meeting the minimum 4 sentences of describing how she made a GREAT point.

I’s tired.

So I did something crazy that I wouldn’t recommend to anyone unless they just can’t do otherwise. I tackled full time work with full time school. Working a full time day job with 9 graduate credit hours. I did this for two semesters and hated every moment of it. graduationNow mind you, I enjoyed the topics (except for Statistics…that was straight hell) so it wasn’t like I didn’t like what I was learning but just the stress of meeting deadlines and completing assignments as soon as I got off from a stressful day at work was overwhelming. It was so hard to mentally focus to have creative ideas and designs at work and then come home and push my brain even more to focus on theories and designs. That was rough.

graduation day

You know how people look back on things and say that the time flew by. Nah. I did NOT feel that. Graduation day came at a slow pace. But I’m glad that eventually it did and I’m happy it’s all over. It doesn’t even feel like graduation has happen yet. It hasn’t fully hit me yet. Maybe when the Fall comes and I realize I’m not starting class, it will but until then I was try to focus on a few things that I’ve become increasingly anxious to get started on:

  • Growing spiritually – I’ve seriously slacked off from where I once was. Yes, I’ve stayed pretty much consistent with going to church but when it came to daily prayer and reading the bible, that’s where I’ve fallen off. It’s so important for me to make this a daily habit and I plan to focus on doing so.
  • Progressing in My Career Goals – I love my job but one thing about my field is that it is ALWAYS changing. With e-learning design there’s SO many talents that I can master to make my courses exceptional. I hope to study on my own time to broaden my talents to do just that.
  • Social Life – I’ve seriously neglected friends and family as I relentlessly sought after my career goals with my education. I regret doing so but now is a better time than ever to be a better friend, girlfriend, and daughter to those that matter most.
  • Finances – The state of my finances aren’t extremely bad but they are not extremely great either. With student loans, credit card debt, and other bills holding their hand out, I have to do a better job at management if i want to stay afloat but live life fully.
  • Physical Health – I’ve been putting this off so for long but do to some health issues that I’m having, I have to start putting my physical health as a priority meaning better eating habits, water drinking, nurturing my natural hair, better sleep habits and exercising.
  • Community Service – I’m a firm believer that as you reach milestones in your life, you should hold the door open for others so that they can grow and reach their goals as well. We have to help each other. I have several service projects up my sleeve (one of which is to begin career coaching) that I can’t wait to get started on to do just that.

So now’s the time! Just thought I’d give a little back story of where the new categories have come from. This blog will not only serve to talk about my journey as I aim for more out of life but will track my progress as I start shifting my focus to holding the door open for others to reach their goals. With this blog, I want to share my experiences, the lessons I’ve learned, and hopefully be able to relate with someone else out there that is hoping to aim for more in their life as well. I’d love to help anyone else that I can to help plan their journey to the life they envision when they truly aim for more. So follow the blog, follow the social media accounts, and let’s aim for more together.

A4M Pinterest

I prefer my hair to be straight. Yes I still love myself

I Prefer My Hair Straight. Yes, I Still Love Myself.

This is a response to all the annoying comments that I have seen online when ladies decide to wear their hair straight. All the women that automatically assume that if you decide to keep your hair straight, then you still are following the old standard of beauty that straight is the right way. To all the women that think you have a self-esteem issues if you wear your hair straight. If you have done this to wag your finger at women with straight hair, this simple message is for you.
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