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Tuesday, April 20, 2010

What I've Learned and Done So Far.

Research
So far I've been doing tons of research on tips to effectively transition my hair to natural. I'm not gonna do the BC (big chop) because I think my hair is short enough as it is. I have to thank the styles I've subjected my hair to as a teen for the breakage and short length. I even found out the thinning around the edges of my hair was due to tension alopecia and not heredity. Here is a pic of the thinning edges on 4/9/10. I'm still very self-conscious about it, but I do notice they are filling in. More pics to come of them about the progress of my edges.

Back to the research, the natural hair community on YouTube has really helped me understand things like the BC and transitioning. For readers, who don't know. Transitioning is the process of growing out relaxed hair. A person transitioning their hair would have two hair types. The relaxed ends which are straight and the new growth which is curly (our natural hair!). From what I read, it's pretty difficulty to transition because the hair is so weak at the demarcation line which is the point at which the new growth and relaxed hair meet. I think it might be a lot harder for girls with longer hair, but I think mine is short enough to transition without great difficulty. I know it'll be difficult, but not as difficult if I had longer hair. Another bit I realized was that going to the salon and getting my hair blown out so early in this transitioning process was a mistake. My hair was definitely not ready for that. Since that blow out, I've trimmed my hair quite a bit to get rid of damaged ends and breakage. So now it's a bit shorter.
Back to YouTube, they has tons of tutorials about how to style a TWA (teenie-weenie afro). I would classify myself as having a TWA, but with some relaxed ends. I've also found some good websites like napturality.com and coilyhair.com. I mustered enough courage to try my first twist out. I will not show you a pic because it was baaaaad. The pic was also not good quality anyway. I also learned to do some flat twists and here are some pics. Now I remind you, I've never done this before in my life and styling my hair in it's natural state is a new thing for me. This was on 4/9
This style I kept for about 3 days. I would call this a protective style. Which is a term I learned on the natural hair circuit. It means keeping your hair tucked away so you don't have to mess with too much. It kinda protects the hair from the environment, too. A lot of natural hair experts say low manipulation is key because it leads to breakage.
Other Styles I've Attempted

This is the second twist out I atttempted. You could really see my thinning edges in the pics above. You can also see some of the relaxed ends I was talking about. I'm slowly, but steadily trimming them so that all of my hair is purely natural. I kept this style for about 4 days.
These pics are my attempt at flat twists with a twist out in the back.
In my journey to natural, I've found and fell in love with Carol's Daughter all-natural hair products. They smell yummy and my hair loves it. Their website directs you to products that fit your hair type. I've been using these products to achieve my looks. I'll soon do a product review once I've figured out what works best for me. I hope I get better at styling, though. I think practice makes perfect.

It's been about 2 months and counting into the journey and I'm learning more about my hair every day. I still get a little self conscious about how short it is, but I'm getting used to it. I'm trying to be as patient as possible. I'll soon post pics of the length of my hair and an update.


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