So you want to go natural what’s next…? Before you go natural you should first understand how to transition from relaxed hair (or chemically treated hair) to natural hair. Before you go natural you should take your lifestyle into consideration. During this time consider why you are going natural is it for health reasons or aesthetics.This will help you in deciding the best way for you to go natural.
There are two ways to go natural. You can either go natural via transitioning or cutting away all of the chemically treated hair. The cutting of all of ones relaxed hair from the natural hair is referred to a Big Chop (or BC).
Lets explore the concept of the Big Chop first. The result of the BC is a TWA or tiny weeny afro. If you have a burning desire to go natural today and not in 6 months to a year or more then the BC might be for you. With the BC you might be shocked if you have not had time to explore natural hair. You are now obligated to deal with your natural hair DAY 1. Learning your natural hair from the BC phase could prove to be beneficial over the long run. The alternative to the Big Chop is transitioning.
Transitioning is the process of allowing the hair to be freed of chemicals while gradually trimming away the relaxed hair away. This can be achieved by wearing your hair in protective styles and having the relaxed hair trimmed away during your transition to the next protective style or protective style resting period. A true protective style will provide total protection to your hair from styling and the environment for a period of more than two weeks. But keep in mind it’s called transitioning because it is a process that occurs overtime. Don’t think that because you’ve ceased obtaining relaxers that your hair is going to grow two inches over night. Use this time to research the concept and construct of natural hair; and use the time to learn your hair.
If you decide to use heat on your hair while transitioning to natural please keep in mind you could incur heat damage. Thus if you are going natural because of damage due to chemicals you might want to consider another route. Also using heat on your hair can change the texture of your hair. Having said this, if you are seeking to wear your hair in the curly state then using heat up front might not be ideal. Your curls might not pop they way you wish them to.
During the transitioning period you will find that your hair will not be consistent in structure. You will have both straight hair and textured hair. Use rollers to help mitigate the inconsistency of the hair. We recommend using perm rods. Be aware of split ends during the transition as you are dealing with multiple hair textures. The transition period is the ideal time to begin to switch out your products for products tailored to unique complexities of natural hair.
Keep in mind that if you are transitioning you are not alone in your transition. This is the most widely used method of going natural. With this, there are many others in your shoes. We encourage you to stay connected to other naturals and to get a hair buddy.
If you are transitioning to natural hair or just did a Big Chop we would love to feature you on our blog! Send us your hair photos and we’ll feature you email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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