by Portia of huneybflyy.com (pictured above)
Over one year ago, I was blessed to become the mother of a baby boy. Pregnancy was a new journey for me and I didn’t know what to expect. Granted, the experienced women in my life gave me a wealth of information regarding what may or may not happen during my pregnancy, but for the most part everything was a surprise. The biggest surprise came when I was washing my hair one day.
I wet my hair in the shower and applied my shampoo as I normally do. However, when I went to massage the shampoo into my scalp, my roots felt thicker and sort of dense. I’m assuming because my hair was super stretched, that’s why I didn’t feel the density prior to washing. I heard for years that pregnancy can cause your hair to grow significantly, but I didn’t expect for my hair to change texture. My hair had never grown out this way. It had always been thick, but not THIS thick. I chalked the new texture change up to hormones and didn’t dig too deeply into anything.
Throughout the duration of my pregnancy, I decided to embrace the new texture and try to style my hair accordingly. I did my usual twist-outs, but my roots were becoming strange for me to work with. My usual products and techniques, weren’t working on my entire head like before. My twist-outs would look how they normally did, except my roots were so thick that they looked like they were sitting an inch off of my scalp (at least to me anyway). They also didn’t have the same definition as the rest of my head. I assumed that my hair would return to normal once I had the baby, so I wore a protective style (twists) for the rest of my pregnancy.
Of course after I had my baby boy, the last thing on my mind was my hair. It was something I didn’t feel like being bothered with while trying to bond with my son, so I opted for another round of twists. Before my next set of twists were put in, I washed, conditioned and blow dried my hair as usual. My roots were crazy thick at this point, but I figured since I just had the baby that it would take a while for my hair to grow normally again.
It’s been about 15 months since I was pregnant and my hair is still growing out densely and super thick. I even had to change the way that I detangle my hair because my Denman brush, which I used for detangling, was literally ripping my hair out. This wasn’t just a little bit of hair that was coming out in the brush; whole curls were being torn out of my head. It was becoming difficult for me to pull the brush through my roots, even though I already detangled the ends of my hair and worked my way up. That was a serious wake-up call for me and I now finger detangle my hair as a result.
I’ve also had to change up my styling products. On wash day, I would wash my hair with a VO5 shampoo (cheap, but my hair loved it), condition with cholesterol conditioner and apply coconut oil or extra virgin olive oil as a hot oil treatment. I also used to use a combination of Shea Moisture’s Curl and Style Milk, raw shea butter and Olive Oil Eco Styler Gel on my twist outs. Now, that my hair is a different texture, I’ve had to change a few of the products that I use. I still use the same conditioner, but I’ve switched my shampoo to a moisturizing shampoo. My hair now needs something heavier than Shea Moisture’s Curl and Style Milk, so I switched to Shea Moisture’s Curl Enhancing Smoothie. In addition, I’ve changed the amount of shea butter that I use. I used to apply the butter with a light hand, but I now use a little more. I’ve also changed the oils that I use for my hot oil treatment.
Previously, I would only use castor oil on occasion for my hot oil treatments, but I’ve recently added it as a hot oil treatment staple since it heavier than coconut oil or olive oil; and it works better with my new-growth texture. Even the amount of time that it takes my hair to dry has increased. To help with drying time, I either sit under a dryer after twisting my hair on wash day or I air dry overnight while sleeping on a silk pillowcase. I used to wear a satin bonnet and air dry overnight, but the bonnet began to leave my hair damp in the morning. Even without the bonnet, I still have to pray that my hair will be dry enough for me to have frizz free hair the next day.
I never expected to have to re-learn my hair’s likes and dislikes after years of being natural. I had my wash days and styling techniques down to a science. I would try new products here and there, but I never ventured far from my staples. For the first time in years, I had a moment of panic and was completely lost. It took me a few months to figure out what to do. Currently, my new routine has been working out great, but I’m still learning. I’m not sure if my hair will ever return to the way it was before. If it does, great! If it doesn’t, I won’t lose any sleep. Natural hair is truly a journey, even for a veteran like myself.
Has your hair texture changed since having your child(ren)? How are you dealing with the new texture?
Portia is a wife and mother who enjoys making things and people look pretty! As a graduate of Rowan University, Portia has an insatiable craving for natural hair, beauty, and fashion, but she also enjoys traveling and home decor. If you’d like to know more about her, visit her blog at huneybflyy.com