So You want to go Au Natural?
Get ready to free your mind! Once you decide to go natural, you will really have to change your mindset with regards to hair care.
Because we are so few and far between, you may end up feeling alone and unsure about your decision. Remember that many women have been taught and conditioned to follow the everyday European standards of beauty. We all see the magazines and television ads that portray the one-sided narrow view of beauty as being tall & slender with straight hair. However, you now have a chance to set yourself apart from the norm. Our naturally curly hair is beautiful too! So hold you head up so the world can admire your true natural beauty.
Going natural & staying natural will require tremendous dedication and commitment. You will now have to learn how to care for and maintain your curls.
Be prepared for all the questions and responses you'll get from those who are curious about your natural look. People will question your motivation as well as seek advice for care and maintenance tips. So try to be as patient and as understanding as you can. Remember you are not just representing yourself, but the rest of us as well:)
Preparing for your Journey
There are things you can do to help prepare yourself for your new lifestyle.
- Surround yourself with others like you who are also choosing to wear their hair natural. This will give you the much needed encouragement and motivation you will need to move forward.
- Visit as many natural hair care sites as possible so you can take advantage of the knowledge of others who have been there. Also try to visit as many online forums as possible. Forum communities will help you stay on track. You will also learn very valuable tips & tricks to help you care for your natural hair. Many sites now allow you to view and post pictures of your hair journey so you can share your successes with others. Take advantage of the ones that allow you to keep a journal of your hair progress.
- Read as many books and magazines as you can find. Natural hair care is becoming far more popular because people have now educated themselves on how to care for their hair properly. There are also quite a few excellent books out that will help inspire you.
- Familiarize yourself with the various hairstyle options available to you. You will be experimenting with new styles & looks to help compliment your new lifestyle.
Choosing to be natural can be daunting at first. You'll find that many of your fears and doubts will stem from your lack of knowledge on how to properly care for natural hair. Just be patient and willing to learn from others. Remember you are not alone. So enjoy the ride:)
What is the best way to go Natural?
There are only (2) ways to go natural.
- You can cut off all of the relaxed ends of your hair. Better known throughout online forums as "The Big Chop".
- You can allow the relaxer to grow out until your natural hair has achieved the length you desire. This method allows you to just trim the relaxed ends as your natural hair grows.
Keep in mind that you will now have to learn to care for your hair in it's natural state. So take your time so you can be open to experimenting with various styling options and hair products that will work for your new hair type.
Working with your natural curls may seem challenging at first. But you will eventually learn to love your curls once you have found the hair care regimen that works for you. Your biggest challenge will be finding ways to make your hair more manageable (i.e.easier to comb and maintain).
Ways to Make Your Natural Hair More Manageable
- When combing or detangling your hair, always comb from the ends to the root using a wide tooth comb.
- Natural hair is easier to comb while wet! Many naturals can attest to this.
- Provide your hair with adequate moisture to prevent drying and breakage. Moisture is a MUST!
- Regular conditioning is also a MUST. It will become a very important part of your natural hair care routine.
- Keep heat to a minimum. If you must use heat, please invest in a good heat protectant. Keep in mind that heat (like chemicals) can alter and damage your natural hair texture.
Be creative!!! You are only limited by your imagination. So don't be afraid to try various styles and accessories to find what works for you.
Essential Tools Needed for Natural Hair Care
- A wide tooth comb.
- A boar bristle brush for smoothing down edges.
- H20 - Yes, lots and lots of agua. Natural hair thrives on water.
- A good detangler.
- A good hair softening cream.
- A very good moisturizer.
- A very, very good shampoo & conditioner:)
- A leave-in Conditioner.
- Scarves, headbands, clips and other accessories to achieve various hairstyles.
Good Natural Products to Have
- Shea Butter
- Aloe Vera Gel
- Jojoba Oil
- Coconut Oil
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