It has been three months since I big chopped. Even though it has only been three months it feels like I’ve been natural for so much longer. Recently I was looking at my pictures albums on facebook from over the years and I did a double take and said to myself “oh, that’s right I had a relaxer”. Looking at those pictures I realized that I was relaxing my hair for twenty years and during that whole time I only liked one hair style. I told myself that chapter is closed and that it’s time to move forward.
With that being said my hair is a TWA (teeny-weeny afro) the sides have grown in and the top is really curly. I have adopted a new motto “embrace the shrinkage”, my hair is curly so I won’t be able to show the world my length which is fine by me I think of my hair length as my little secret. I should tell you that I have one strand on my head that is bone straight, I remember as a child asking my mother why my hair wasn’t naturally straight like my classmates. When she sat me down and explained to me why my hair was different she forgot to mention that I would have straight hair, it would just be gray and in the front of my hairline. Can you image a two-inch gray hair that loves to stand straight up in the air; while the rest of your hair is neatly coiled and is laying flat? I tell my gray strand every morning that it’s disrespectful and when I find my shears it will be gone! Okay I’m done ranting…
I am starting to see my hair pattern and the density of my strands. I have curly coily hair that is fine to medium density.My favorite pastime is playing in my hair; Yes, I suffer from HIHS (Hand In Hair Syndrome). I’ve learned you can go broke buying hair products because it seems that my hair is similar to my personality. The longer my hair gets the more it likes to change its mind. At one moment my hair will be in love with a product and the next it gets bored and is ready to move on to something else. Just like my personality my hair has expensive taste; I found that my hair loves Curl Junkie Products. Since my hair is short the price doesn’t really bother me. A 12oz bottle of Curl Junkie Beauticurls Argan & Olive Oil Daily Hair Conditioner might run me $19 but it will last me at least six months.
Time flies when you are having fun, I’ve enjoyed every moment of my natural hair journey. I’m embracing my shrinkage, finding staple hair products and enjoying playing with my curls. What I have learned is that what I enjoy the most is taking this journey one day at a time.
- Natural Hair Myths, Fibs and Fairytales (songstressa.wordpress.com)
They say it’s not who you are on the outside, but who you are on the inside that counts. I agree with this statement but I would have to add that how you represent yourself on the outside is a reflection of yourself on the inside. The first time you meet a person you can size them up before saying hello. You look to see how they carry themselves; do they stand up straight or slouch? Do they take pride in their appearance? Are they wearing garments that flatter their figure? Is their hygiene in check? The list goes on… I find it amazing that we can learn so much about a person by how they carry themselves.
My demeanor alludes confidence; it’s not a conceded confidence. It’s the type of confidence that tells the world how comfortable I am in my own skin. This type of confidence comes from self-love and exploration. When I meet someone for the first time I examine their body language and clothes. So If I was to examine myself I would think that this girl is confident because of how she carries herself. She stands up straight when she walks which shows she has high self-esteem. The outfit she chose is interesting because she isn’t showing too much skin and yet she has chosen items that flatter her figure. Which tells me that one, she takes pride in her appearance and two that she knows who she is because she is able to select clothing items, put them together and convey the message of confidence with ease and believe me that is not easy.
My eye glasses needed to coincide with the message I am telling the world. I wear glasses 90% of the time so I needed these glasses to show the world that I have a quiet confidence about myself. I was anxious about buying a new pair of glasses because of my hair cut. I love that my hair cut reveals my facial features, birth mark and moles. I didn’t want these glasses to compete with my hair cut and face. I needed frames that would flatter my face, look nice and not draw attention away from my hair cut.
I believe I did a great job with the glasses I chose. I found this Prada frame that flattered my face, looked nice and didn’t draw attention away from my hair. If you’re like me and you did the big chop and/or have to wear glasses 90% of the time. Figure out how you want your glasses to represent yourself. Do you want your glasses to fade into the background, like myself, or maybe you want to be bold and let your glasses be front and center. Have fun eye-glass shopping or shopping in general and remember to have fun because all you’re doing is showing the world a reflection of you on the inside.
- Nine Tips For Wearing Makeup With Eyeglasses (bellasugar.com)
Yesterday marked the one month anniversary of my “big chop”. You can read more about that in “Hair Today Gone Tomorrow”. After I did the big chop I was afraid that I was going to regret my decision. The decision I made to stop relaxing my hair, to transition to natural hair, to big chop so close to my birthday and to go to the barber shop and cut off the majority of my hair.
What I can say is that I don’t regret a thing! I was tired of the scalp burns from the relaxer and the dissatisfaction from hair stylists. I transitioned and fell in love with my hair texture and when I big chop I was happy that one, I listened to my mother and went to the barber shop and two, that I stop trying the control the situation (Hello, My Name is Melinda and I’m a former control freak) and allowed the barber to not only cut off my relaxed hair but most of my natural hair as well.
I’ve learned this past month what products and techniques make my hair happy. I can tell that my hair is happy when my hair naturally curls up. The leave in conditioner my hair seems to be in love with, right now, is Darcy’s Botanicals Pumpkin Seed Moisturizing Conditioner. I use this product as a direct leave in after I deep conditioner, as a daily leave in and when I do my version of The Curly Girl Method (CGM). My version of the CGM is when I co-wash my hair and I apply a conditioner and do not wash it out. Darcy’s Botanicals Pumpkin Seed Moisturizing Conditioner is the only leave in product I really need for my hair at this stage. My hair is naturally curly so I have learned that I can tell if my hair likes a product or not if my hair curls up; I have tried different products in my hair and if my hair doesn’t like a product my hair will looked like wool. Not to say that there is anything wrong with a hair texture that doesn’t have a curl pattern. But Every time I apply this product to my hair, my hair can’t help but curl up it makes my hair happy.
Given that it has been a month since my big chop I was contemplating if I wanted to show any progress pictures, I decided that it wasn’t the right choice for me. I would rather do progress pictures every three months. My reasoning being that I don’t think you want to see a picture of myself with a ½ inch more of hair every month. I would rather show you progress pictures of myself with hair that is 1 ½ inch longer, especially when you consider hair shrinkage. People have told me that their starting to notice that my hair is growing and filling out and I can tell when I wash my hair because I can feel that it’s a little longer. But after I wash my hair and it dries I’m not able to tell because of the shrinkage; so I’ll show you in September when my hair has grown another inch.
With all the information out there on the topic of hair I didn’t know if anyone would want to hear what I had to say. So imagine my surprise when I received email notifications about people “liking” and/or “following” my post. I am flattered that some of you “like” my post and that some of you are following Hair & Now. It is kind of you to take time to read my thoughts on hair and self-image. So thank you to everyone for reading Hair & Now. If there is a topic you would like me to write about just leave a comment.
Here are some tips that I have learned and applied to financing my healthy hair journey.
Search for products on hair online boutiques.
- Curlmart (www.curlmart.com) is a hair online boutique that offers hair products for curl, coily and wavy hair. This was a fantastic starting point for me when I was transitioning because CurlMart explained what type of products would likely work for my hair type. Right now CurlMart is offering 20% off plus free shipping on purchases over $60. Coupon Code: FREESHIP60
- Curls of Joy (www.curlsofjoy.com) are another hair online boutique that has hair products for curly, coily and wavy hair. Curls of Joy offer Loyalty Rewards; their motto is the more you purchase the more you save:
- Silver Status Place 2 orders, get 10% off your 3rd, 4th, and 5th order.
- Bronze Status- Place 5 orders, get 15% off your 6th through 10th order
- Gold Status- Place 10 orders, get 20% off all future order
- Amazon (www.amazon.com) is a great place to purchase hair products. Amazon is an online store that is able to offer products at a lesser value because they do not physically stock their products like the traditional retailer.
Search for Ways to Save Money
The best part about purchasing items online is the coupon codes and
incentives. Here is a lesson that I learned in College:
It is more expensive for a company to attract new customers then it is to keep and satisfy the customers they already have. So with that being said many companies will offer you coupon codes, incentives and free gifts with your purchase. A company I ordered from, AveYou (www.aveyou.com), sent me my package and attached a card that said “Hello Gorgeous” on one side and a coupon code on the other side with a recyclable bag with their logo on it.
- If the product you want is not on sale search online for coupon or promo codes. A website I like is www.retailmenot.com; they offer coupon codes on hair boutiques and more.
- Be informed when online boutiques have sales. Black Friday is not the only time to purchase big ticketed items, hair products are also on sale!!! To find out about upcoming sales sign up for email notifications at your favorite hair product website.
When There is a Will There is a Way.
If your reading this and your saying to yourself I can’t afford these products, here are three options
- First, establish what your comfortable spending on hair products and what product companies line fall into your budget. For example Shea Moisture, in my opinion, is reasonable prices with most items costing $10.
- Second, if you’re not sure about what type of products you might like and your budget is tight go online and see if the hair product company you are interested in has sample sets. Curl Junkie (www.curljunkie.com) and My Honey Child (www.myhoneychild.com) are companies that I have personally ordered sample sets from.
- Third, if you agree with everything I said but you still can’t afford the hair products you want it’s time to get creative. What is your side hustle? What is the one thing you are good at that you can turn into a little business? Now when I say side hustle I mean a legal talent. I don’t care what anyone says everyone on this earth is good at least one thing. You just have to figure out what that talent is and how you can turn that into a business. Maybe you’re good at braiding people’s hair. You can charge them for your services in return earn some money.
What you can do is if you’re a struggling college student and have a room full of text books. You can sell those text books to Amazon. In return Amazon will give you a gift card and you can use that card to purchase your hair items. That’s how I bought my Huetiful Hair Steamer! Hope this helps!!!
- Free-Samples Miss Jessies Hair Products (niceteenichelle.wordpress.com)