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When natural hair becomes a pain in the butt…

Avatar • Jan 4, 2011

Reader Jarquisha (pictured at left) says;

I have been an avid reader of BGLH since I began my transition in April 2009. I did my big chop on January 22, 2010 and today marks 11 months post-big chop and my 20th month on my natural journey. I have definitely been through some things while learning to properly care for my hair. Nearing my first year post-BC, I have encountered a problem that has slowly become a nuisance; I have begun to neglect my hair. I will go nearly 2 weeks without wanting to wash or style it. It is nearly 11 inches long and washing/styling is a tedious task that I’ve begun to avoid. Am I the only person that’s experienced this?

Lol, I doubt it! Has anyone else experienced this? As the inches keep coming does your hair become more and more hectic to deal with? How do you manage?!

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vonnie
Guest

every now and again i’ll get into those moods. When that happens, I get twists/braids and then i miss my hair like mad within a couple of weeks.

vonnie
http://www.socialitedreams.com/

Jai
Guest
Jai

Sis, you are not alone I think we’ve all been there at one point and time. Have you tried protective styling, you can twist/braid with or without extensions to give yourself a break even if it’s just two weeks. I wear protective styles 90% of the time because it’s convenient and I want to retain length.

Jarquisha
Guest

Hey! I actually do protective/simple styles all the time. But they never last more than a week without looking old. And I hate that. I’m not sure what I should do.

Olivia
Guest

Maybe you should try an extension style like kinky twists. My hair has been getting on my nerves lately so I’m on month 2 of my one year break from styling my hair. I mean, for some it may be extreme but I know I can’t handle all of the maintenance being a college student. I love being natural but I don’t have to rock a “soul” all the time. Yuh know?

Good luck!!!

Jarquisha
Guest

I’ve wanted to try that out, but I’d have to do them myself. No one else has touched my hair since I’ve been Natural. I’m too afraid of braid shops. Traction alopecia is too real.

Destinee
Guest
Destinee

I can definitely relate… Fingercombing has become a thing of the past and I haaaaate detangling. Ugh its definitely a chore that I put off until I cant anymore.

Monique, Sofull Sista
Guest

OOooh chile! I just wrote a post asking ppl if I should loc my hair b/c I’m TIRED OF IT!!! I don’t think there’s anything wrong with wanting easy/care-free hair. Free-strand natural hair is far from that (depending on hair type, length and style choices). As a woman who doesn’t wear weave and has about 9 inches of hair with 4b/c hair — I feel your pain! Not sure what advice to give, I’m still considering locs, lol — I probably won’t really go through with it though.

Jarquisha
Guest

I have considered locking my hair for a while now, but the idea of committing to them scares me. Crazy, I know. I like the freedom of my hair… I just hate doing it sometimes.

LaNeshe
Guest

I’ve realized that my regime has to keep evolving. I use to condition/detangle in 4 sections, now I do 6. Use to take an hour to 2‑strand twist, now it takes two. I’ve learned to accept it. A helpful thing is utilizing protective styles that you can leave in for like 2 weeks, like two-strand twists.

Cherie
Guest

This is exactly why I loc’d. I’m a low maintenance gal. I remember waking up some mornings thinking “dang! I gotta deal with this mess today!” Locs come with their share of trouble, but far less than when I was a loose natural. For the most part, its just get up and go now.

b.
Guest
b.

Just like a lot of things, the love comes and goes 🙂

I make my time of hair care a time of pampering. I think of my hair as part of my self care — it’s not about the hair apart from my general upkeep. Maintaining this mindset helps me a lot. My hair is longer than it’s ever been and it’s thick and tightly coiled. Just to give you an idea, see below. That’s not the smallest coil.
[img]http://bglhonline.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/Small coil.JPG[/img]

NappyKitchen
Guest
NappyKitchen

Girl, I get those things all the time. I call them spiders. I hate them. They make me not want to even touch my hair. What is the diagnosis? What is the remedy?

gs
Guest
gs

I get those too… hair circles… usually means I need a trim and a protein treatment.

Joy
Guest
Joy

Is THAT what causes those coils? I thought that was just the natural curl pattern of my own hair because they are all over my head, bathroom floor, clothes, you name it (imagine all those little coils on the head attached. Outside I am smiling, but inside I am two seconds away from BCing again every morning). I have not had a real trim since I BCd in December 2009 and I need a really good protein treatment, conditioner to keep my hair from being so arid all the time. Dry and rough hair when it was relaxed led to… Read more »

b.
Guest
b.

It IS the coil pattern…at least in my experience. When my hair does NOT coil, I get worried then! Coiling means your hair is strong enough to maintain its natural pattern. The photo wasn’t breakage…it was a shed hair.

You may need a few deep treatments if your hair feels really dry. That makes a difference for me.

b.
Guest
b.

Shoot…

That’s my hair when it’s been freshly washed then dried. If it’s a stray piece and it’s been wet, it forms circles like that when it starts to dry. If you look at your finger and see how small a space that is, you’ll get an idea of how small a circle that is! That piece of hair is inches long.

That’s just what it do! 🙂 I admit, I do freak out if I notice my hair on the floor unexpectedly…lol…

Jarquisha
Guest

I think time may be a part of the issue. I’m a full-time student at a very demanding university (Emory) and sometimes my hair is the last thing on my mind.

Moni
Guest
Moni

Yay Emory! I’m an alum (BBA 05) and loved my time there. Have you tried washing in braids? I basically follow a version of the never wet and loose routine and it makes it so much easier to deal with my hair. The night before I wash my hair, I apply deep conditioner and coconut oil to a section of hair, detangle and then braid it. I repeat all over my head (8–14 braids). The next day I wash it, then undo each braid and apply my products (leave-in, moisturizer, sealer). Let them dry overnight and then wear in a… Read more »

Moni
Guest
Moni

I forgot to add that you can do most of this routine while studying, since the time spent in shower is extremely short (like 10 mins to wash). That’s what I did when I was in grad school.

Jarquisha
Guest

I’ve never thought to try that. Sounds like a great idea! Thanks!

Jc
Guest

While I have had the long hair blues, I could never neglect my hair, I am far too vain.

It is completely true that once you get past 6–8 inches, the time necessary to care for your hair increases hugely.

The solutions are

1. Protective styling (twists, braids for several weeks at a time)
2. Cut (shock, horror) your hair back to a length when management was easy
3. Loc your hair

Sofull Sista
Guest

Looks like option 3 is a re-occurring theme here, I’m really giving it some thought myself!

Traci
Guest
Traci

I am a wash and go girl all the way. I’ve been natural since 1999 when I was 25 but I’ve never let my loose hair grow long because I knew I didn’t want to spend the time on it. So for my natural journey I’ve always had locks or a short cut.

tiff
Guest
tiff

rethink that, locs also require maintenance.
then products specifically for locs, avoiding buildup,relocking , de-linting etc

i have shaved off my locs sometime ago and would only do it again if i had stlyist/loctician on speed dial to take care of them

kadiane*francophone
Guest
kadiane*francophone

Cut !!! Have you done that yet Jc ?

Cacey
Guest
Cacey

and another option is to consider leaving your conditioner in instead of rinsing out, and using it as a styling agent to individually define your curl a la single strand twists (finger coils). provided you can keep your curls intact, you’re looking at at least a week of wash and gos where if you have my hair, you don’t even have to do the washing part. you literally just wake up and go. the only downside is you can’t play with your hair too much or else it’ll get frizzy. but for a true low maintenance kinda girl, like mahoganycurls… Read more »

Raven
Guest
Raven

I think my hair was easier to care for when it was longer and I could do protective styles with ease. I did a ‘mini-chop’ last month and figuring out how to manage shorter hair is much more difficult for me–probably because it’s the first time it’s been so short.

babycoily
Guest
babycoily

See that’s what I always thought. Longer hair=easier protective styling (although twists and braids would be more time consuming). I’d love to be able to bun and go.

Raven
Guest
Raven

That’s exactly how I feel. I can’t wait until my hair grows back!

binks
Guest
binks

I feel the same way. I have short hair now and I find it a pain even though I love my hair. With longer hair I know I can do the protective styles with ease and manage it better despite the time constraint with length but short hair to me is a total different ball game I’ am always checking and fussing to see if it is just perfect

babycoily
Guest
babycoily

Hmmm. I’m wondering when I will start to dread wash day. My hair is around 8 to 9 inches but my strands are fine. I keep my hair very stretched and in a puff most of the time so detangling has yet to become aggravating.

JenKen
Guest
JenKen

I feel the same way!! I absolutely hate detangling!! It really frustrates me. I think that part is the only part I hate about caring for my hair! Ugh!!

Milsani
Guest
Milsani

When I get to the point that I want a break, I take one! Usually I will get my hair braided, or even opt for a weave- whatever will let me be relatively free from my hair for about four weeks. After that time, I miss my free strands. But at least I can go back to my regular routine unstressed and wanted to do the work 🙂

D.W.
Guest
D.W.

This tool is a natural girls dream!! It will cut detangling time by at least half, a fourth for me. I swear!!

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000JI9JYQ/ref=oss_product

Jarquisha
Guest

Wow I’d never seen that before now. I’ll have to find a video about it on youtube. How do you use it exactly?

D.W.
Guest
D.W.

Did you read all the 5 star reviews? It works!! You just start from the ends and it gently removes all tangles and just glides through your hair. I was/am amazed that it works so well on coily hair too. It doesn’t snag or anything. I rarely have any hair in the comb when I use it. It is amazing!

Rachel
Guest
Rachel

Does it work on tightly coiled hair without breaking it ?

D.W.
Guest
D.W.

YES!!!! My hair is tightly coiled and it doesn’t even snag my hair. It is truly miraculous. I wish I could video a demo but no camera.

Rachel
Guest
Rachel

I might try it then. I’ve also heard about the tangle teezer here in the UK, and some youtubers say it works wonders too.

S.
Guest
S.

I felt absolutely the same way. I was at 16 months post-relaxer and I hated doing my hair. It wasn’t short enough where I could do nothing and it wasn’t long enough for me to do puffs and cute protective styles. It sucked. Plus it’s my senior year of highschool and I didn’t want to have to deal with it every morning. So I just cut it all off again lol. And I plan to keep it that way for awhile. It might seem a little extreme but you may want to consider it. My advice would be, don’t be… Read more »

Lizzie
Guest
Lizzie

The time that it started to take me to complete a pre detangle, braid for shampoo, deep condition, detangle some more and then style was frustrating to say the least! I stretched with braids only to find it had to be done over after a week and a half at the most. I loved, loved the look and feel of my natural hair but between work, school, marriage and being a mother of another natural I did not have the time and patience. Please don’t stone me but I ended up texlaxing my hair and it seems to be working… Read more »

Jarquisha
Guest

I actually texlaxed before going Natural, but treated it like a regular relaxer.

Lizzie
Guest
Lizzie

I’m still doing protective styles 90 percent of the time, I straightened it with heat only once since texlaxing (3 months ago)and I’ve limited myself to once every 6mos (or longer) to use heat. I plan on doing major stretches because when I texlaxed it was never about straight hair. Since I don’t like wearing wigs, I just wanted some ease with the tangles and something not so time consuming. For me, this helped retain length. But my hat goes off to anyone who does it the all natural way.

Tiffany
Guest
Tiffany

what is texlaxing?

quietdiva
Guest
quietdiva

Jarquisha, don’t worry about it. You’re not alone. There’ve been times when I’ve gone 4 weeks without washing. Sometimes even 6 weeks. Just rocking hairbands and scarves, ponytailing and bunning my twists. Sometimes you just can’t bother. Since you say locs aren’t for you, then as long as your scalp isn’t feeling dry and itchy, and you’re not letting your hair get all matted (coz that is when the real detangle-HELL starts!), then you’ll be ok. Your hair is resilient. It’ll forgive you. What I do nowadays is a break up the routine into smaller more manageable chunks. Roughly 30–45min… Read more »

Grace
Guest
Grace

Praise God!!!…it feels great just knowing i’m not the only one who feels this way.…I just put it in a protective style for at least two weeks and wait for wash days

W. Lotus
Guest

I love the supportive comments I am reading here! I have locs, and I don’t always feel like washing and tightening them every week. (For my hair to be optimal, I need to wash once a week.) Sometimes I will go 2–3 weeks without washing, because I don’t feel like taking the couple of hours to do the grooming. As long as I moisturize my hair every other day so it doesn’t get dry, regularly dispose of lint and flakes, and neaten up the edges with water from time to time, my hair is fine. I’d probably rock hats a… Read more »

ineyo
Guest
ineyo

Girlll I feel you!! Like another poster said, I usually break down my wash time. I take out whatever protective style I have on one day, then I will detangle with my fingers and apply some VO5 conditioner (pre-poo) the next, put a shower cap on, and rock either a wig or a beanie, and then wash it the next day lol! It’s usually a week long affair, but it works for me, because like you I am also a student (a nursing student) and I work fulltime so I don’t have the time nor energy to do my hair… Read more »

Stephanie
Guest
Stephanie

I have been feeling like this for the past two weeks! Today I just flat-ironed and braided my hair then pulled out one of my old wigs until I figured out what to do with my hair! I’m trying to prevent cutting, locking, or doing something that I will regret.

Alexia
Guest

I’m kinda there right now. Not that I’m too tired of my hair, but I need to simplify my routine. Here’s what I do (sorry if someone already said something like this): - get yourself the LaJay wig made by Vanessa, or whatever quick wig you feel comfortable with — for my “out” hair, I two strand or french twist it at night, spraying liberally with water as I go, of course — for my “in” hair, I keep it in braids — once a week, I wash my hair in the twists/braids, then detangle and rebraid/twist with the kimmaytube… Read more »

Tiffany
Guest
Tiffany

What are french twist?

maha
Guest
maha

I totally feel this post!!! Currently rocking a super tiny afro, after shaving my head for the summer. I can’t seem to make past the 2 1/2- 3 yrs mark. Maybe because i was in college at the time… I locked my hair twice in college combing out once and cutting off the second time. after combing the locks out my hair was even longer. I also lived in a place with a very small shower, yuck! It was so hard to do a serious wash and comb out with a foot of nappy hair in a dark, tiny stand… Read more »

Jarquisha
Guest

It’s funny that you mentioned that because I’m wearing two French braids now.

Nadia
Guest
Nadia

Happy New Year Everyone! I like the comment that the Emory alum left I will try that regimen, with my hair and my nieces hair along with my Moptopmaven info. Another tool that I just learned about and started using is the Tangle Teezer (love it and so does my niece). It’s $10 at Sally’s you use water+leave-in+ sealer oil+Tangle Teezer= Happy Detangled Hair! If your wondering, yes you start at the ends and work your way up to detangle and it does work on different hair textures. I’ve only seen two videos on YouTube really Empressri and someone else… Read more »

Rachel
Guest
Rachel

I feel the same, I love my natural hair but I really don’t like spending ages on it, I have other things to do with my life ! So I’ve decided for this new year to just wear braids all the time, I think it’s the easiest, plus I want to retain length, and no matter how gentle I try to be, there is always a moment when I get pissed off while detangling, and I’ll yank the knots out. So braids, for 3 to 4 weeks at a time. 1mits1 (on youtube) and her sister do that, and it… Read more »

Rachel
Guest
Rachel

Oh, and you can wash with the braids in.

LBell
Guest
LBell

I always have to remind myself that so many people are new to the natural hair journey. Not only have I been there, I’ve been there MANY, MANY times. What I did: First time: BC’d Second time: BC’d Third time: Wore extensions, then two-strand twists with my own hair, then locked Fourth time: BC’d Fifth time: BC’d Why did I BC so much? Because 1) the TWA really is the easiest no-fuss hairstyle for me whether I like it or not and 2) once I finally started taking my hair growth for granted, it wasn’t a huge big deal for… Read more »

Jc
Guest

lol my eyes were drawn to the repeating BC.

I never big chopped but I did cut 6 inches off and go back to 8–10 inches which was managable.

Since discovering my lazy side with 4–8 week periods in braids. I may not chop again but if it became an issue, scissors are always an option.

kadiane*francophone
Guest
kadiane*francophone

got my answer lol.

N
Guest
N

This is why people get relaxers.…15 years natural and I completely understand. I do braids, wigs, twists and now been pressing it for a change. Seriously considering a relaxer after all this time. TIRED. LOL.

Stephanie
Guest
Stephanie

Yes N, I understand! 11 years for me, and I’m considered it recently. But I think about the chemicals and I think “no!” I just keep my trusty flatiron.

binks
Guest
binks

I get what your saying but the chemicals, THE CHEMICALS!…lol. But now I understand when I see the natural women with super long (damn near waist length) hair most of the times it is either in locs or they “heat train” it by wearing it straight most of the time

Nina
Guest
Nina

I applaud you ladies who put that kind of time, care and effort into long, loose natural hair. I know I have been there, but not for too long because I always intended to loc my hair. If that’s not for you, please find some inspiration in Sera2544’s Natural Hair Maintenance channel on Youtube. I think she’s a student in medical school (or was) and found a way to manage her hair the whole time.

Good luck!

CurlyChronicles
Guest

I get like this sometimes. It seems as though the longer my hair gets, the most tedious it can be do it. It comes and goes but for me, it sucks more because I still don’t have a shower installed, only a (very pretty) clawfoot tub. Great for baths, no bueno for hair. I have to tile a wall before I put in the shower before I can wash my hair in the shower. So I dread hair washing a bit more now then I did before.

pookiwah
Guest

It comes with the territory baby girl — I recently took my [4b and dense] hair out of 4 week old minibraids (no hair added) and measured my hair which I hadn’t done for a while. I had reached 11 inches! Pleasant surprise but it also explained the long and tiring detangling session and the bigger ball of shed hair than I was accustomed to. Many people get tired of dealing with their hair as it gets longer. Choices: Loc, chop, or suck it up, lol. I’mma suck it up, I love my hair! Try a long term protective style… Read more »

tiff
Guest
tiff

suck it up, lol. I’mma suck it up, I love my hair”
LOL agreed!

Branko
Guest

I do not think that your hair length martets vielIch think that’s a lot. I am african american and I’ve been bald 10 years, but I do not lose so much hair per Tag.Ich not think that’s normal.

jjay
Guest
jjay

Hi Jarquisha and all of the other ladies posting here. I can definitely relate…when I needed a break (which has been for the last three months)I simply got a weave…which is my protective style, so I would suggest a protective style of your choice, just make sure whatever you choose is not too tight, which can lead to breakage.

Liyah
Guest
Liyah

Hi Jarquisha! It does feel like a chore at times especially when you have so many other responsibilities. I started getting my hair done from a natural hair stylist. I realized that I like getting my hair done–it’s therapeutic and I don’t have to spend so much time and effort doing it myself. I do however, wear protective styles roughly 1–2 weeks at a time. I then wear a twist out for a week and start the process all over again. You should consider finding someone reputable to assist you with your hair on those days when you are not… Read more »

Babeesh
Guest

I’m not sure where you’re getting your irnofmation, but great topic. I needs to spend some time learning much more or understanding more. Thanks for magnificent irnofmation I was looking for this info for my mission.

Nicole
Guest

I feel that way right now! I should have washed my hair today and didn’t feel like it. I probably won’t feel like it tomorrow either. I’ve been natural for almost 3 years and as my hair grows the process becomes a little more involved. Not wanting to deal with hair comes with having it.

Nikki
Guest
Nikki

I can relate to this too, i was in my 2 1/2 yr mark last spring when the hair in the back of my head grew past apl unexpectedly. It started taking forever to do and I got bored & tired so I cut like 6″ off. I want my hair back now and it grew a couple of inches. I plan on doing protective styles even if they take forever the day of to do. I want to wear them for a couple of weeks, and then take the style down and wearing it loose for a week or… Read more »

Shell
Guest
Shell

Hi Jarquisha. I’ve been natural for about 2 1/2 years. My hair is I think 4a & 4b and maybe something else. Lol. I don’t do the deep condition where I sit under a dryer for 1/2 hour but I wash my hair in the shower, put conditioner on it, put a cap on and finish my shower. By the time I’m done, I rinse my hair. I use a Shamwow towel for my hair to dry it and I use various oils on my hair (such as jojoba to start) and a blend of oils that I use. Sometimes… Read more »

Kinkiesweet
Guest

When that mood hits me I never let it bother me I just realize its time for some braids. That gives me a 2 month break and at that point I can either re braid it or I will miss my curls soo much Im ready for them to come out and play.

Good luck and don’t let it bring you down.

Tiffany
Guest
Tiffany

Girl I am with you & I’m 9 mos pregnant…seriously considering a perm…yeah i said the “P” word…dammit…this is a mess…help.…

Roseta
Guest

I Love my hair and need some advice how to keep them softer for me to be able to comb them without out breaking.

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