Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Products, Products Everywhere

Hello out there! So as I am going through this process, I've been trolling sites looking for some products that will be kind to my hair. As I've been reading, I realize there are a million products, combinations of products, must dos and absolute no, nos out there and I must say I am confused!!

I know to stay away from products with alcohol - and let me tell you that cuts the field down to less than half (yeesh...who thought it was smart to put alcohol in your hair?), but still I'm at a loss. Moisture is key - I get that and I know that my hair craves moisture and has a tendency towards dryness (can you say Sahara Desert), but really what should I be looking for? Is a product with Shea Butter better than one with Aloe Vera? What about a combination of the two?

Another thing - what about product hype? I read a lot of mixed reviews about Miss Jessie's products - either you love them or you hate them. I got the travel pack - you know the 2 oz of everything for like $50 as opposed to one jar at $50. I tried the Curly Meringue and umm, I have to say that I didn't like it much. I realize that I am NOT completely natural yet, but I was curious, so shoot me, but it made my curly hair oddly crunchy. Now the Baby Buttercreme wasn't bad, it actually smells good and gives me some moisture - however it did work better on my son's hair (he's got a head full of curls). I also did a coil-out using the Curly Buttercreme on my mom who has 100% natural hair. She made the switch from relaxers over a two year period due to a horrible incident where her hair literally broke off from a bad relaxer (yikes!). The coils looked great - nice texture, not crunchy or sticky.

I'm still getting the hang of everything and as I go along I'm sure I'll find the right combination of products to work for my particular hair type - whatever that is, because I'm confused about the whole hair typing thing too, but I'll save that for another post.

I am reassured by all of the posts on other blogs and forums out there from other transitioners that are running into the same issues on their journeys. So from them I glean hope and know that while the road might be tougher for some than for others, it's not a bad road - it just requires some work.

Until next time, happy transitioning!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Stepping Towards Freedom!!

Hi Everyone!! I wanted to create this blog to chronicle my journey as I step towards freedom - freedom from hair chemicals that is! Since I was 13 I have had chemically relaxed hair with a few breaks as I got older and chopped all my hair off. I've toyed with the idea of getting rid of the relaxer all together off and on for some time now - it's not as if I don't know what I look like without it - when I was 22 I chopped all the relaxer out of my hair and had a TWA of cute curls. But as it grew I didn't know what to do with it and got sick of wetting my hair and gucking it up with gel. So needless to say I went back to a relaxer.

Over the years I've grown and cut my hair, had braids, weaves - you name it I've done it. One day about 5 years ago, I saw an ad with a young woman with a great head of natural hair - it was gorgeous! I thought to myself, "I can do that," but back then I lacked the courage to go natural but wanted the look, so I found a product (Aveda's Be Curly) that worked really well on my hair - you see even though I relax my hair, I only do it 2 maybe 3 times a year so my hair still curls up when it is wet. Anyway I rocked the curly look off and on for a while. But never went completely natural.

So what brought about the change? Why do I now want to be free of chemicals? That's easy - I had a son. My son Jayden is the absolute light of my life. He's 1 years old and just developing his own little personality. One day while he and I were at home and were watching television a commerical came on with a young african american woman with long, silky, clearly chemically treated hair and Jayden pointed at the t.v. and said, "Mama." Now of course he doesn't know what he's doing, but it became routine that every time he'd see an african american woman on t.v. with long straight hair he'd point and say "Mama."

I don't want my little boy to grow-up with a misconceived notion of what beauty is. All women of color are beautiful and that is not determined by hair. I took a good, hard look at myself and my 'hairstory' and realized that my curls are beautiful and that I don't need straight hair. So I am embrassing the me that God created.

So here I am in transition - I haven't relaxed my hair since October 18, 2008 - right before my wedding. I currently have about 2 inches of new growth. I've decided to transition without the big chop, I enjoy my length and have no shame about that. My hair right now is about 3 inches past my shoulders and I am going for BSL.

I've decided that I will wear transitional hair styles - mostly just wearing my hair curly to blend the two textures.

So here I am making my first steps towards freedom....