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Your year in hair: Terica

Avatar • Dec 29, 2009

The natural hair journey is all about growth — physical and personal. From now until early January, I will be collecting your stories of hair growth in 2009. If you saw progress in the length, health or thickness of your hair… or if you just have had an amazing personal journey, email your story to blackgirllonghair@gmail.com. It can be as long or as short as you want it. Be sure to include photos showing progress. 
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TERICA RELAXED IN JANUARY 2009
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TERICA TRANSITIONING IN MARCH 2009
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TRANSITIONING IN OCTOBER 2009
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TERICA’S FIRST TWIST-OUT AFTER BIG CHOP, NOVEMBER 2009
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IN BRAIDS, DECEMBER 2009
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In 2001/2002 I attempted to go natural and after 10 months with no relaxer decided to revert to my old ways due to the ease I felt it would provide.

On November 20, 2008 I had my last relaxer, decided to try going natural again and haven’t looked back since. The difference in the two experiences in my opinion was the lack of education the first go-round when it came to caring for my hair. My hair is COMPLETELY different this time around and has been 100% natural since October 8, 2009.

I decided to go chemical free because I was ‘over’ the straight hair look and wanted to explore my options. I also adopted a healthier lifestyle a few years ago and felt that my hair needed to fall in line. Also I have had relaxers since the age of 10 and didn’t want to shortchange myself by never experiencing my hair in its natural state as an adult. My 4‑month stretches between relaxers made me very curious about my natural texture.

My big chop didn’t go very well. I went to a new (recommended) hairdresser who didn’t know how to care for natural hair and used a ton of products my hair wasn’t used to (harsh shampoos, weak conditioners and mousse, OH MY!). I left feeling both disappointed by the experience but excited because finally most of the relaxed ends were gone. I went home, washed, rushed to do something with it and kept it moving. Unfortunately, I also realized that she left a lot of straight pieces for who knows what reason so I went to chopping to attempt to get as many out as possible. A week later, I did my first 2 strand twists and have been loving my natural do ever since!

Since it’s winter and I love wearing hats, I’ve been mostly wearing twists and braids since my BC but come spring, I plan to do a ton of free form styling. The 3–4 very different textures in my hair make wearing a wash and go improbable, but we’ll see! I’ve been sharing everything I’ve learned from your site and others with anyone who will listen and I’m enjoying my naturally beautiful hair more as each day goes by! 

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lina40
10 years ago

gorgeous Terica! Congrats and continue to enjoy the journey!

Tami
Tami
10 years ago

Your hair looks lovely!!

sha
sha
10 years ago

Hello,I wanted to ask Terica but if not her I would like for this to be answered.How do you care for your hair in the transitioning stages?How do you not go crazy because you cant do anything to it?I know when I’ve tried before it was hard and I know part was worrying about what others were thinking when they looked at me.But I wan to succeed this go round.I just needing a little help to make it through the transitioning.I know my mom has always told me about using vinegar to help stripe it to get through faster.Is that… Read more »

Terica
Terica
10 years ago

Thanks Lina and Tami! I’m definitely enjoying it! Sha, I just kept it simple while I was transitioning so I didn’t overly manipulate my hair and cause breakage. In the beginning I did a lot of wet sets. As my natural hair got longer, braids and buns were my go to styles. I think there’s a lot you can do with your hair when you’re transitioning, you just have to get creative and think about it differently! As for the vinegar stuff, I don’t know how much stripping it will do but I do ACV rinses to clarify after washing/conditioning.… Read more »

Yoshi3329
Yoshi3329
10 years ago

Congrats On the growth and enjoy your journey!

salonblabbermouth
10 years ago

I just want to say keep up your perseverance as you go natural. I’ve had a reviewer who had gone natural for two years and had a stylist burn their hair. Once you find something that works stick with it. Next time you seek a new stylist let them wash your hair first, and take baby steps with what you let them do next. There are great stylists out there, but like you said they all aren’t educated on managing natural hair. Good Luck!

vonnie
10 years ago

your hair is GORGEOUS!!! love the braids in the last pic

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Terica
Terica
10 years ago

Thank you Yoshi and Vonnie. Blabbermouth, you’re right, it’s hard to find a good natural stylist but I’ll just take baby steps and in the meanwhile keep doing it myself!

kerrah
kerrah
10 years ago

hi terica,
i have not put a perm in my hair since sept/07. SInce then i have been wearing my hair in braids and wigs or just pushed back in a ponytail, because i really don’t know how to take care of it. I have a very nice grade of hair, it’s very soft but it tangles so easy. What suggestions do you have, how do you straighten your hair? also do you twist your own hair or do you go to a salon

Terica
Terica
10 years ago

Wow, you have been transitioning for awhile! I only made it 10&1/2 months. Your hair sounds similar to mine. My sister calls it poodle hair because of how soft and ‘mushy’ it can be. I now realize maybe I needed more protein and less moisture. Maybe you can try incorporating more protein conditioning into your regimen?? Just a thought. While transitioning I typically just wore braids (no extensions), buns or rollersets. I haven’t straightened my hair since I’ve been 100% natural but for the 2 times I wore it straight while transitioning I just blow dryed and flat ironed where… Read more »

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