Well, its been a year and eight months since my last relaxer and about a year since my big (deal) chop. In case you missed it, please check out part 1 and part 2 of my natural hair series; Self Esteem and Life’s Detour.
Initially, I was willing to try just about any combination of products. It didn’t take long before I realized that I was spending in my estimation, way too much time on my hair. But compared to other “naturalists” it seemed like I wasn’t spending enough time.I would say my natural hair care routine is virtually non existing. I wash and condition my hair about once a week, sometimes two or three times depending on my workout intensity. I generally moisturize, add oil (like jojoba or tea tree oils) and let it air dry. If I have time, Ill do cornrows in the front and either leave the back out or wear a beanie (Pics #1& 2).
When it was shorter and my new fro was still new to me, I continually looked for fresh ways to style it (Pic.#3). I asked whoever would listen for advice on how they took care of their hair. Everyone that I asked who’s natural hair looked really nice, began to list their hair care regimen. They listed a multitude of conditioners, creams, oils, moisturizers and lotions. They detailed the washing, co-washing, conditioning, moisturizing, stretching, twisting, avoiding heat and the list went on and on.
Eventually, I began to grow leery of the effort it was taking for the up keep of my hair. I heard talks about different hair textures like 4a, 4b etc. I never bothered to find out what texture my hair was. The texture I identify with is soft and kinky. That’s about as technical as I’m willing to get. In an effort to maintain my sanity and not start to resent my kinky curls, I developed my no-routine, hair routine. I began taking care of my hair not very different from how I take care of my body. I keep it clean, hydrated and groomed. Once in a while, on special occasions, I spend a little more time making sure that it’s just right. Other than that, I try to do styles that will last for about a week at a time and when I get tired of styling it, I get braids. I enjoy wearing my natural hair and I don’t plan on relaxing it anytime soon. Everyone is different so I do what works for me.
Personally, I’m convinced that natural should extend beyond just hair care (a topic that I’ll address in the 4th and final Natural Hair, Don’t Care series). What we put in our bodies should be more important than what we put or don’t put on our hair.I realize that its important to invest time, energy and resources into something that you care about and want to see grow and flourish. I honestly wish I had the time and patience required to have a more involved hair care routine. I know that the things that I prioritize in my life such as my relationship with God, the cohesiveness of my marriage, the health and well being of my children and the success of my chiropractic practice is cultivated through dedication, consistency and hard work. Similarly, I believe that if my health is a priority and I’m taking care of my inside; my hair will also reflect overall health.
Do you have a hair care routine? Natural or not, I’d love to hear it.
Disclaimer: I’m really not big on posting a bunch of head shots of myself. The purpose of these is simply to show some of the styles I talked about in this post. I hope it doesn’t seem narcissistic:-)