Kinky, coily, curly, napptastically natural; these are all words and phrases I’ve heard used to describe my year-old untamed mane. I say year old because it was only last July that I stopped putting chemicals on my hair and scalp completely. I cut the perms and relaxers (even color, farewell to my burgundy low lighted streaks) and completely let my tress grow to its now ferociously fabulous state. ‘Going natural,’ as it is often referred to has been one of the most enlightening and rewarding promenade I’ve had in my 21 years of life.
I’d liken the journey of going natural to falling in a deeply obsessive and unrelenting love affair, although I wasn’t always this smitten. When ‘they’, those ominously adept natural voices of the world, tell you going natural is a journey they aren’t kidding. No hyperbole here. You begin like a baby taking its first steps and end up like a long distance marathon runner with big brand name endorsements. Personally, my natural journey began by accident which made my transition between chemical and chemical-free rough to say the least (pun intended).
Though I may have enjoyed the convenience of having ‘relaxed’ straight hair, the chemicals had made it limp, unhealthy, and prone to breakage. Eventually I gave up on taking care of my hair all together and simply opted to wearing extensions. Turns out, I had them in for so long my perm simply grew out. No fuss, no harm; or so I thought. Little did I know I had missed a crucial in-between step of the process where you learn to manage your natural hair for the first time.
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