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It’s A New Year: 5 Resolutions Every Natural Should Make in 2014

Avatar • Jan 6, 2014

New year, new resolutions. Like me, I’m sure many of you have already written goals and created vision boards with objectives related to finances, health, business, love, and more. I sincerely hope that we can all stick with, work through, and meet our goals by the end of 2014. But before you get off and running, check out these 5 resolutions every natural should consider in the new year:

5. Experiment With Styles and More

natural hairstyles for black women images

It’s a new year — why not? Within the past 3 weeks, I’ve seen more 2nd and 3rd big chops, daring cuts, funky colors, and jaw-dropping updos. I even chopped the rest of my transitioning hair in early December to get ready for 2014. The beginning of a new year is the perfect time to reinvent your natural hair. Plus, there are some super cute hair trends around the corner for Spring and Summer, like:

  • Messy, Chunky Braids
  • Ethereal, Romantic Updos
  • Statement Accessories (think big bows, super cute clips)
  • Beach Waves (hello, big braidout)
  • Edgy Bobs and super short cuts (if you’re aching for something more drastic)
  •  
    Even if you aren’t one for trends, there are still plenty of super cute styles that fit the “new year, new do” mantra everyone is throwing around right now. Need some inspiration? Click here.

    4. Detangle the Right Way, Thoroughly

    Before you go off dismissing me, telling me that it takes too much time, energy, and effort to detangle your hair thoroughly, and that you’d lose 87% of your hair if you did things the right way, just hear me out for a second. First, let’s clarify that by thoroughly, I mean as detangled as possible for your particular head of hair. For someone like me, that means my hair is about 80 — 90% tangle-free on any given wash day. Second, I by no means think that having all the time tangle-free hair is realistic. Natural hair is never going to be 100% tangle free — our curls, kinks, and coils, like to clump and frizz together, because they love each other so much. Third, I don’t mean that you have to do this every single time you detangle (unless you want to). Do it with a frequency that works best for your hair and your time schedule. I wash my hair about two times a week, and I detangle thoroughly first every time. Otherwise, I’m setting myself up for a shower nightmare. The point here, is to just do it. Detangling thoroughly will help cut down on breakage, knots, matting, and even lend itself to better styling results in some cases.

    As far as detangling the right way, that is also completely based upon your hair’s needs. I personally like to detangle using water, and either Suave Professionals Almond and Shea Conditioner or Soultanicals Mango Dip Detangling Slip. I saturate my hair with water and product, and go to work with my fingers in 5 sections before taking it to the shower to cleanse. That works for me and my hair. If dry finger detangling with coconut oil works for you, or you have a concoction and comb that does your hair right, then by all means stick with what works! However, if you’re losing mountains of hair (and a significant amount is breakage), you may want to re-evaluate how you’re detangling your hair, and what you’re detangling with. Commit to doing better by your detangling sessions in 2014, and watch your hair thrive!

    3. Support Small Business

    small business saturday 2012

    Since August of last year, I have been on a mission to support, promote, and spread the word about great natural hair small businesses. Many of them have been featured on my blog, and here on BGLH. In truth, this personal movement began after I wrote an article in which I researched many relaxer product brands that had attempted to launch natural hair product lines. The general consensus among readers is that we ain’t buying it. As it stands, I am currently on a mission to support at least 1 natural hair small business every month. I do understand that it can be terribly inconvenient to wait for products to arrive at your doorstep (especially when I need it ASAP), pay shipping, and often pay a little more for a product than you normally would from Target or Wal-Mart. But I encourage every natural and transitioner to find at least one small business to support one time this year. Through writing these small business features, I have gotten to know a number of the owners and discovered that they are sweet, determined, goal-oriented, natural hair-loving, ingredient researching, entrepreneurial Black women and men, with a vision for better hair care. These small business owners truly care about healthy natural hair, and it shows in their ingredient choices and products offered. Looking for somewhere to start? Click here.

    2. Deep Condition More

    As I have more and more fun with my new natural hair, I’ve discovered that I needed to make a few adjustments to the regimen that I used as a transitioner. The first such change was to focus on sealing my ends more. The second change, which had the biggest impact on my hair, was deep conditioning more often. Instead of doing a monthly or biweekly deep conditioning treatment, I aim to do one at least every week — if not twice a week. Since making this adjustment, I have seen less breakage, less difficult tangles (you know, the kind that force you to break out the scissors), practically no split ends (although I do understand part of that has to do with chopping my hair a month ago), and retaining moisture in my hair has been super easy. You don’t have to deep condition overnight or for hours on end to receive these benefits. Deep conditioning 20 or 30 minutes with or without heat is plenty of time for your hair to absorb what it needs, and for the ingredients that condition the hair to do their magic. Looking for a good deep conditioner? I’m always on the prowl, and I have sort of a thing for deep conditioners. I do. Deep conditioners and curl definers drive 85% of my product junkie-ism. You can kill two birds with one stone, by checking out these small business deep conditioners: tgin Honey Miracle Mask or Triple Moisture Replenishing Conditioner, Koils By Nature Ultra Moisturizing Cocoaloe Deep Conditioner, Camille Rose Naturals Algae Renew Deep Conditioner, Darcy’s Botanicals Pumpkin Seed Conditioner, Curl Ecstasy Hair Tea, All Things O’ Natural Natty Cupuacu & Rhassoul Deep Conditioner, Karen’s Body Beautiful Luscious Locks Hair Mask, or Shescentit Riche Moisture Masque.

    1. Chill On Hair Idols and Texture Wars

    Warning: moment of complete honesty and transparency coming.

    There are some days when I get on Instagram or browse natural hair websites and go into side-eye/eye rolling autopilot. Not because folks post pictures of the same people (although admittedly, I do get a little tired of that), but because of the comments that follow as a result.

    She’s my hair idol!
    I can’t wait for my hair to look like this!
    Omg, you are so lucky to have xyz texture, I could never do that with my hair!
    Look at that length! I want my hair like that now!
    You’re so lucky to have all that hair. I wish…
    So jelly! I hate my hair!

    The recent article I read on Naturally Curly titled “What is Instagram Doing to Our Self Esteem” pretty much put all my feelings on the table. I am guilty of following bloggers, naturalistas, and fitness gurus on Instagram, many who’s social media fame has catapulted them near the level of celebrity. In an effort to love myself more, I refuse to put someone else’s hair and body on a pedestal that I won’t stand on myself. Just to clear that up a bit, I don’t think I’m pedestal-worthy, so I’m not putting anybody on one. Yes, these social media mavens have gorgeous hair, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with affirming them and others (in fact, affirming others is a great practice to adopt), but to do so at your own expense is damaging. There is a fine line between inspiration and obsession. To be inspired by someone else’s hair journey is one thing. To covet their coils is another…

    Which takes me to my next point. Perhaps this should be another resolution all to itself, but for the sake of simplicity (because the two points are closely related), I’ll keep them together. I am ever so tired of the texture wars. All textures are beautiful. Kinks are no better than curls. There is no coil hierarchy, besides the one that you buy into and impose upon yourself. I don’t care who propagates what images, or what hair models a brand uses to promote their products. If you don’t like what you see, don’t support it. I’m tired of the arguments about certain hair types being promoted above others. Changing our hair means nothing if we have not changed our thinking. All textures and types of natural hair are to be celebrated, and it is important to understand that even within our collective community there is diversity. And that diversity in and of itself is beautiful, and what makes natural hair so dope. So please, let this one go for 2014.

    Are there any natural hair resolutions you’re making for 2014? Share!

    For more transitioning and natural hair tips from Christina, check out her blog, The Mane Objective. You can also find her on YouTube, Instagram and Facebook.

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    About Christina Patrice

    Born, raised, and living in Los Angeles, Christina is BGLH's resident transitioning expert and product junkie. In addition to loving all things hair, she is a fitness novice and advocate of wearing sandals year-round. For more information on transitioning, natural hair, and her own hair journey, visit maneobjective.com. Or, if you like pictures follow Christina on Instagram @maneobjective.

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    JeremiahNew Year, New Beginnings, New Hair | Smiley's CornerDeylaTINA SMITHIt’s A New Year: 5 Resolutions Every Natural Should Make in 2014 | Black Girl with Long Hair | The You Boutique Recent comment authors
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    just another girl
    Guest
    just another girl

    Word, especially to that last point

    Jaqui
    Guest
    Jaqui

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!! Death to texture wars! Celebrate all because healthy hair is beautiful hair. I’m tired of “Hairism” and refuse to entertain it one bit in the new year and indefinitely.

    @heyitsqui

    JazzWife
    Guest

    THIS!

    In an effort to love myself more, I refuse to put someone else’s hair and body on a pedestal that I won’t stand on myself.”

    Perfectly said!

    dmalikat
    Guest

    I love everything about this article — especially the recycling of the same gurus. I enjoy seeing a diversity of naturals and admittedly the detangling portion too. Thanks for this!

    Jeremiah
    Guest

    Great tips. I started doing these thnigs when I started reading your blog and have had great success and growing and retaining length!

    Mukisa
    Guest
    Mukisa

    My most favorite resolution is number one. Just as a personal choice, I am making commitments for 2014. Things that I commit to are things that I am serious about doing. I don’t and most people don’t take resolutions seriously. Ask a few people if their diet or fitness resolutions make it February or March 1. I think that we as a natural hair community should COMMIT to positive, affirmative and encouraging thinking. One doesn’t need to envy or insult someone to love oneself.

    TWA4now
    Guest
    TWA4now

    I want to stop bad hair habits. I want my hair to GROW!

    krokan
    Guest
    krokan

    I like number three VERY much lol. Y’all are MORE than welcomed to support my small business :C)
    http://www.shop.kinksandall.com
    Look forward to hearing from you!

    amanda
    Guest
    amanda

    Changing our hair means nothing if we haven’t changed our thinking”. This was on point. Instagram seems to have become a “covet“gram and I’m ready for it to stop. Number 2 and 3 are my personal goals also. I’ve made a goal to buy all of my products from black businesses. It definitely is not as cheap, but I want to support them/us.

    lala
    Guest
    lala

    Great point: take the pictures for inspiration to have HEALTHY LONG HAIR not obsess over someone else’s hair and “cry” if yours isn’t the same

    Jennice
    Guest

    I wish people would concentrate more on the health of their hair and less on length.

    Renee
    Guest
    Renee

    I am confused about sealing. I big chopped for the second time May 31-not because I had a problem I just loved rocking the cut. Now that im growing my hair out, I deep condition often and am considering a protein treatment. Its just something about sealing that my hair doesn’t like. I normally just add oil to my daily spritz. Is that ok?

    Christina Patrice
    Guest

    Hi Renee! An oil/water mix will give you some light sealing, but not total coverage/occlusion like a straight oil or butter would. If it is working for your hair, then don’t fix what ain’t broke! Alternatively, you can try using aloe vera gel to seal your hair, and even some styling products. Many styling/defining products actually act as sealants, that’s how they help keep hair defined. But like I said before, if your oil/water mix is working, don’t stop!

    youngin girl
    Guest
    youngin girl

    I agree. This is a well-written and thought out article. I can’t wait to experiement with accessories and get creative.

    Natalia
    Guest
    Natalia

    I won’t even lie, my natural hair resolution is a little vain (and some will be angry because every natural must fit their mold), but…I just want my hair to grow longer! I do all the necessary detangling, conditioning, trimming etc., but I need to eat better and drink more water (I’m not gobbling burgers and beers every night; I could just use a couple more salads and glasses of water). My hair is quite healthy (at 95%) but, I think I could probably get to my lower back (straightened) and retain 100% growth by January 2015. Fingers crossed!

    Christina Patrice
    Guest

    Nothing wrong with having a hair goal! I just chopped the rest of my transitioning hair in December, and now that I’ve got a fresh start, it’s all about growth and length retention for me! I’m on the same mission to eat a little better and drink more water. Healthy hair starts inside!

    Nappy4C Rocks
    Guest
    Nappy4C Rocks

    1–4 completely agree.…

    JENNID
    Guest
    JENNID

    Excellent points! My goals are the same as last year. Easier hair care and styling. I have been experimenting with ways to shorten my wash day, find quicker wash day styles. So far its been a success! Other goals for this year is to go back to being a kitchen mistress with a few of my product needs. A lot of the stuff that’s being marketed to us naturals is too expensive. I mean basic any body can make sheabutter pomades and oil mixes are selling for $25–30. That’s crazy considering those items from a bulk retailer are so cheap.… Read more »

    Ugonna Wosu
    Guest
    Ugonna Wosu

    I don’t understand this site sometimes. You tell us in one article that Deep Conditioning and keeping conditioner on for an extended period is a “myth”, and then in the next article you say “deep condition more”.

    Chanda
    Guest
    Chanda

    They never said DON’T Deep Condition or that it’s bad. When you do DC, don’t leave it on for hours and hours or overnight (they said that in both articles). You can still Deep Condition every week if you want. Two different things.

    Ugonna Wosu
    Guest
    Ugonna Wosu

    they have said deep conditioning isn’t necessary in a few past articles.

    TINA SMITH
    Guest
    TINA SMITH

    YES THEY HAVE

    Pat
    Guest

    My resolution is out with all of these natural products that I bought only to go back to tried and true products that have been around forever, there is a reason they have stood the test of time. I will not purchase any more of the natural products as they didn’t make my hair look or feel any better, got much better results with the less expensive products!!

    Smallfro
    Guest
    Smallfro

    I loved this article. It has a lot of great points. I think the best thing about this year is I know what to expect of my hair. I have decided to stick with what works for a entire year. I may try new things, but will not change with every fad in the natural hair community. I just returned a hair steamer this week. Consistently and simplicity will be my motto for 2014.

    Jay Symone
    Guest

    [img]https://bglh-marketplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/image‑6.jpg[/img]

    Similar to mine! Just uploaded my resolutions!

    Bridget J.
    Guest
    Bridget J.

    Love your resolutions!

    Ellie
    Guest
    Ellie

    Great article. I checked out that link about instagram & your self-esteem. You guys made some reasonable points, no buts. I still don’t have instagram

    Sibongile Amy
    Guest
    Sibongile Amy

    This will be my first full year natural since my high school days when I didn’t have a choice concerning getting a perm. Im really excited.
    Having transitioned a year and BCed in Oct, 2013, this year the goals are continued natural hair growth. LENTH 🙂 and keeping my edges alive.
    A great natural hair year to you all!

    TINA SMITH
    Guest
    TINA SMITH

    WE NEED MORE PEOPLE LIKE YOU. SOMEONE TO TAKE A STAND AND SAY THE HAIR IDOL OBSESSION IS UNHEALTHY. I SAY IT ALL THE TIME AND I’VE SEEN THE SAME COMMENTS. AND I GET CALLED A HATER ETC.… FOR SPEAKING THE TRUTH. I HATE THE PHRASE HAIRCRUSH. I CRUSH ON MY OWN HAIR. KUDOS FOR YOU FOR KEEPING IT REAL. I THINK IF MORE BLOGGERS AND YOUTUBERS TOOK THAT STAND WOMEN WOULD FEEL BETTER ABOUT THEMSELVES

    Deyla
    Guest
    Deyla

    Five awesome and realistic resolutions, especially the last! 😉

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