I hope you’re all well!! So a few weeks ago, I put this picture up on Instagram:
And I got loadssss of great feedback and questions about how I got from December 2010 (damaged, very short relaxed hair) to November 2014 (thick, healthy natural hair). Now this is not a piece to bash relaxed hair or to say that all relaxed hair is thin and weak (I have friends with thick relaxed hair). However, relaxer just completely massacred my hair! Maybe it was the way in which my relaxers were done or my hair just couldn’t handle it! I dunno! All I know is that relaxer turned my hair into a HOT MESS. Like before I cut my hair super short, the hair on my crown was like an inch long whilst the rest of the hair was longer (pop back a couple of months to my post about my hair journey and read all about it). Anywayyyy since I got so many questions about it, I figured I would tell you some of the things I did that took me from A to B. So here goes!
|Just the other day :))|
- Protective styling – I think protective styling was the NUMBER ONE thing I did. From 2011 (when I became fully natural) until about 2013, I constantly had braids. In hindsight, not the best thing for my edges, but thankfully, Jesus came through for His girl and restored my edges. However, it did make my hair grow a great deal!
- Millet – People always look at me funny when I say this but eating millet really helped my hair grow! Millet is a seed that originates from Asia and Africa (hey there!!). It is rich in iron, B vitamins and calcium and it is also gluten-free (yassssss!!). Iron and B vitamins are EXCELLENT and vital for healthy hair growth. I would recommend purchasing the millet flakes as they’re much easier to incorporate into your diet. It tastes a little like oatmeal or corn – I dunno, it’s pretty bland lol so I usually eat it with cereal, oatmeal, yogurt etc!
- Deep conditioning – To be fair, prior to 2013 (when I properly started caring for my natural hair), I only deep conditioned like once a month, which really wasn’t enough! However, I started deep conditioning wayyyy more and my hair really started to thrive. I now deep condition once a week and my hair is healthier than ever!
- Reduction in heat – When I first started my hair journey, I didn’t know how damaging heat could be. As I became more educated, I realised that heat is really not great for your hair. It can damage the cuticle and suck moisture out. When I decided to use heat, I made sure to use a heat protectant e.g. Tresemme, John Frieda.
- Use the correct tools – Put the fine tooth comb down and walk away! Or, at least, use with immense caution! Personally, I prefer to finger detangle but a wide tooth comb works pretty well too! Use whatever works best for you but make sure it’s not ripping your hair out.
- Use the correct products – ladies, ladies, ladies, as women with beautiful curls/kinks/waves/nooks and crannies etc, we can’t always use the same products as our fellow women with equally beautiful straight hair. Of course, some products can cross over but not all. Curly/kinky hair is naturally drier than straight hair because the sebum (oils the scalp produces) can’t move easily to the ends. My advice on products: WHEN YOU PICK UP A PRODUCT, THE FIRST THING YOU SHOULD DO IS CHECK THE INGREDIENTS! If it has sulphates/parabens/silicones/mineral oil, try to stay away or use sparingly.
- Moisture – Moisture is so so so key! Prevent dryness as much as possible. And do you know what the best moisturiser is? WATER! Yes guys, good old H2O! Water is your friend. Many black women freak out when water gets near their hair – do not be afraid! Water is your friend. If a product doesn’t contain water/aqua in the first two or three ingredients, it ain’t a moisturiser, sisters!