Natural hair always seems to be a learning experience. Even though I’ve been natural for six years, I seem to always be making a slight tweak to my regimen, finding a combination that I like a little bit better, or making my hair work with my schedule a little bit better. And I’m sure you all have some “resolutions” for your hair this year or have vowed to stop doing some things. If you’re doing any of the below, I recommend some slight tweaks.
Using products your hair hates: I get it, some natural hair products are really expensive and we can’t always get them from places that accept returns (thank you, Ulta!). However, there’s a difference between a product not being your favorite, like your hair is a bit frizzier than you’d like or the smell isn’t your preference, and the product slowly damaging your hair over time. If a product dries your hair out or makes it hard, stop using it. These lead to breakage over time and will affect your length retention. *Frozen voice* Let it go…If you don’t want to throw the product away, moisturizers often make great lotions or foot creams, and shampoos and conditioners can be used for shaving. Just make sure you check the ingredients.
Copying your favorite blogger or vlogger’s routine: Sure a lot of naturals on social media who share their regimens and tips have absolutely gorgeous hair, but that’s just what it is — theirs. And while I definitely think you can test out someone else’s routine to see if it works for your, especially if you’re new to natural hair, don’t get frustrated or think you’re doing something wrong if it doesn’t work. Hair properties are very unique and can be affected by external factors like climate or hard water, so it’s not likely that your hair is going to act the exact same way. Try out their advice, then try out some things and tweak a bit to make the routine your own.
Freaking out over frizz: Frizz really gets a bad rap in the natural hair community, still. True, frizz can be a sign that you need to work on your moisture-protein balance, but it’s not always a huge deal. I know that one of the key ways I get frizz is either sleeping on my hair without wearing a satin scarf (even though I have satin pillowcases) or fluffing out my hair before it’s dry because I’m impatient and need to leave the house. So yea, in harmless cases, it’s really no big deal. The hair may be a little bigger and a bit more wild, but natural hair often does what it wants. Let it!
Relying on protective styles to grow out your hair: While there’s really nothing wrong with protective styles, if you mainly wear your hair in a protective style to grow it out, I’m not sure how that’s going to help when you get to your goal. If you’re hiding your hair in a weave or wig, you aren’t learning how to retain length with your hair out while it grows, and if it’s up all the time it’s difficult to pay attention to factors that could hinder your growth. Now, if you want to keep doing protective styles after your hair grows out, by all means, keep doing it, but if the goal is to wear it out, it would be beneficial to spend some more time with your hair.
What hair habits are you leaving in 2015?