Happy Anniversary to Me <3

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Today, October 11, 2013, marks four years since I big chopped!! It was a Sunday afternoon that I went to my sister in law’s house and asked her to cut off my relaxed ends, I had blow dried my hair as best as I could beforehand. I transitioned for about six or seven months and I could no longer handle my two textures. She kept asking me if I was sure I wanted to do BC, I said yes. She took  a spray bottle of water and spritz my hair. She then cut my hair where the ends didn’t curl. I felt good once she was all done! I felt free. I walked back in the house and everyone was looking at me strangely, she had company. No one said a word. My brother finally told me he liked it and my mom said the same. That evening I went to Target to get a lot of earrings. I needed to spice up the cut. I then stopped at Carol’s Daughters and got some hair milk and hair spray.

I went home that evening and planned to do a wash n go the next morning before class. I secretly thought I had a curl pattern like Bre Scullark from America’s Next Top Model or actress Tracee Ellis Ross (see pics below). CLEARLY my picture above (on the left) from sixth birthday shows a coarser hair texture. So do all my baby pictures but I thought I just needed the right products to bring out my loose curls. I was positive I had undiscovered loose curls. I thought they would come out of hiding once my hair grew longer and once I found the right hair products.

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So that morning, before class {I was in my last semester of undergrad}, I washed my hair with Carol’s Daughter shampoo and sprayed my hair with the curl spray or whatever it was. I had curls but they were tight and not loose. My hair had shrunk up into a tight coily/curly do. It didn’t look like Bre or Tracee’s hair but I was kind of pleased. I took the bottle of curl spritz with me to school {just in case I needed to freshen up my wash and go in between class}. Silly me. By the time I got on campus, my hair was hard and dry. So I went to the bathroom before class and spritz some more. My day consisted of a lot of spritzing.  Once my hair dried up, I couldn’t even comb it. My teeny weeny Afro looked like Esther Rolle’s from Good Times. I don’t think anything is wrong with her Afro. I am just trying to give visuals. I don’t have many pictures from that time because they were on my old cell phone that got lost.

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I got a lot of reactions and some stares on campus but I was okay, I felt confident. It wasn’t until I went to my work-study job and a fellow co-worker told my boss {when I left the office} “Natural hair isn’t for everybody.” I knew he was referring to my texture. If I had a looser curl pattern, he wouldn’t have said that. Later on, after my boss told me what he said, my confidence decreased. She didn’t like my hair either so she was so happy tell me what this guy thought of my hair. For the rest of the week, I walked around campus with a knitted beret and under the beret, I had a scarf. LOL, my head was HOT! I would’ve skipped school but it was my last semester. It was October and I was graduating in December. I couldn’t afford to miss class.  I was really embarrassed by my natural hair after that. I was hiding from people on campus, I stopped going to my work-study job and I hid from my neighbors. It was BAD! Eventually my sister-in law put kinky twists in my hair. For some reason that co-worker’s comment really got to me. I never liked him, not even as a person so I am not sure why I let his ignorant comment affect me but I was 21 and going through the motions.

So the first two years (Oct 2009-Oct 2011) consisted of kinky twists, cornrows with extensions, Senegalese twists, weave and twists with my real hair {eventually} because it was getting longer. But I did A LOT of hiding my real hair under these protective styles.

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I used to pay get my hair washed and twisted {at a natural hair salon}. It was twisted on wet hair. I only paid twice. WASTE of money.

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Twists with my real hair Summer 2010

This was the last straw. These twists above  were so expensive and the hairdresser {at a natural hair salon} did NOT know how to handle my texture! These twists were not cute and they were very SPACED apart. Today,I can do cuter twists myself {#IcandoBADallbyMYSELF..lol}. But at the time, I was young in the game. I never wanted to try & do my own hair so I got jipped 😦 #SHAME

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Afro shot from Summer 2010

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Kinky twists Fall 2010

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I got a weave that made my natural hair flourish. The weave was in for four weeks. This Afro was a result of my weave. My hair grew SO MUCH!

Afro shot from Spring 2010

ImageTwists with my real hair Spring 2011

Then 3rd yr (Oct 2011- Oct 2012) I started doing updos and blow outs!. My hairdresser at the time hooked me up!

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This up-do was inspired by Laila aka Fusion of Cultures Sassy Tutorial: ‘Don’t Get It Twist{ed}’

I showed my  hairdresser at the time a picture of Laila and she did a great job recreating her up-do. Laila is the QUEEN of up-dos! Check out her YouTube Channel

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Do you like my First Lady Michelle Obama calendar in the background?? lol I used to be STALK her life 🙂

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2011 Afro shot PRE-dye

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At the end of Summer 2011, I dyed my hair, not myself {but my friend/hairdresser at the time}. I used a Dark N Lovely hair dye. BAD IDEA! My hair was soooo DRY and not the same texture. The dye over processed my hair.  The dye was cute though and as time went on it looked light brown even thought it was a red dye.

2012 I did more updos and sometimes added hair to the front like the first two pictures below.

I also did high buns and Celie twists

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I had my hair dresser add hair in the front because without it my real hair would shrink up and I felt it looked like a kid’s hair do.

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This hair do was inspired by Alex Elle of The Good Hair Blog

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I showed my hairdresser at the time this picture and she re-created the style above.

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In Spring 2011, I went to the salon and had my hair pressed for the first time since I went back to natural.

My hair was cut in layers.

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Afro shot summer 2012, see the layers?

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I rocked a lot of buns in 2012, always with a scarf though.

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My sister in-law did feeding cornrows and added extensions

Oct 2012- Oct 2013

I did mini twists {with my real hair} by myself!!

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Afro shot  April 2013

Oct 2012-Oct 2013

I got Marley twists done a couple of times. I started getting them last December {2012}. I currently am wearing Marley twists and I rocked Celie twists just about everyday. I brought back the puff this past summer. I used to wear puffs a lot in summer 2011.

So that is a brief overview of my natural hair and styles over the past four years. I TRIED to make this post brief but it’s four years of natural hair 🙂 I used to do a lot of protective styling but the updos started thinning  my edges and they also made me very tender-headed. I started getting headaches.

What I Know:

  1. Weaves done right make my natural hair FLOURISH! But I cannot maintain a weave, they always look busted on me.
  2. I don’t like mini twists done with natural hair {ON ME}. I prefer to add hair because I don’t like the shrinkage.
  3. I love blow outs and big Afros.
  4. I am not going back to relaxed hair even though I used to say I would.
  5. Natural hair doesn’t mean wearing an Afro everyday. There are many options. Natural hair can be classy, chic, wild, edgey so on and so forth!  Natural hair is VERSATILE!
  6. I will never dye my hair at home or use a Dark N Lovely dye.
  7. Natural hair salon doesn’t mean they will know how to handle my thick, coarse, tightly coiled and kinky hair.
  8. Too much heat and high manipulation has stunt my hair growth, my hair should be longer.
  9. Protective styling and low manipulation is a must for me.
  10. Eating healthy and working out help my hair grow and glow!

Hair Goals:

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This right here! To have my Afro look like this!!!!

Other goals:

  1. Eat healthy and work out CONSISTENTLY! It’s definitely a lifestyle that I am totally not about. But I am not getting any younger!
  2. Create a hair regimen and make time for my hair. I never like making time to do my hair.
  3. Finger detangle more and comb less.
  4. PROTECTIVE style often
  5. MOISTURIZE daily
  6. Explore new products that are all natural
  7. Use LESS heat
  8. Have FUN with my hair and do cute styles! I am already over these Marley Twists.

HAPPY Anniversay to my hair!

How long have you been natural? What are some of your do’s and don’t’s?  As well as hair your goals? Let me know in the comments 🙂

Thanks for reading and God bless you 🙂

~Amma Mama

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17 thoughts on “Happy Anniversary to Me <3

  1. Congrats on your journey, lady!
    Your hair is so lovely and thick and luscious, I’m getting green from serious hair envy right now.

    I’ve been natural for 3 years and it’s been wonderful, but boy, once I hit the three year mark, it’s like my hair just quit lol. It’s been more of a struggle lately, but I guess my hair is in a different phase now so I’m learning to deal with it and be more creative in troubleshooting!

    My don’t is definitely “protective” styling, my hair falls out in clumps! My do is washing and deep conditioning weekly.

    😀

    xx

    P.s That Tupac pic caught me totally off guard, I screamed LOOOL
    P.p.s I don’t want that girls hair in the last pic… I want TO BE HER!

    • Awww thank you!!! I can’t believe I made it. I always secretly plotted to relax my hair again.
      Thank you for sharing your don’t. It’s so amazing how my definite do is your definite don’t..lol I love your hair though. My hair has changed too and I am still learning how to deal with it as well. I think that’s why I like protective styles because I don’t like dealing with it through its phases. And big LOL at you screaming, I didn’t mean to alarm you dear :-p
      Yes the girl in the last picture is absolutely gorgeous!!!! Thank you so much for reading and commenting 🙂

  2. I hate that comment that “natural hair isn’t for everybody”. Smh it’s so discouraging as only a select few black women can wear their hair in its natural state.

    ANYWAY, your hair is gorgeous! I know how you feel about the twist shrinkage. That’s why I’ve switched my go to protective style to marley twists but even then I’m hesitant about it being too tight. No use of protective styling if I lose all my edges!

    • Thank you!!! And yes it’s a very discouraging comment. So is the comment I got from a lady while I was transitioning. She asked me how I was going to get a husband with natural hair because in her exact words “don’t no man want a woman walking around with an Afro”. She really told me that but years later went natural and is still natural. Thankfully her husband didn’t leave her and she wasn’t subjected to wearing an Afro 24/7 {insert sarcasm}.
      And yes protective styling is a major no no when you’re losing edges and an excessive amount of hair :-/
      Thanks for reading and commenting. I always enjoy reading your comments because I can tell you actually read my post..lol:-)

      • lol sure I love your blog!

        And YES my mom told me the exact same thing though! She asked me how did I expect to get a husband wearing my hair naturally. She said men like straight hair so I should keep my hair straight. I later told her how much her words hurt and she apologized. Now she’s asking me questions about going natural from seeing how quickly it’s growing!

        It’s amazing how the older generation of naturals is so set on straight hair is “better”. It just goes to show you how this natural movement is really changing mindsets of what beauty is. I love it!

    • Why thank you!! And welcome 🙂
      I do blow it out. I don’t have a regimen posted on here but I will post it just for you. Thank you very much for following 🙂

  3. stumbled on your blog via BGLH. you have great hair. protective styling can really damage one’s hair if not done properly. weaves are often a culprit. My hair doesnt care for either one. but I know it doesn’t like to be disturbed.
    I agree that not all so called “natural hair salons” really know what they’re doing. i’ve been4yrs natural and have never been to one. I think most specialize in locs and they just use loose haired women for more cash.

    • Thanks! You have great hair too and your blog is filled with great information pertaining to our natural hair. I found you on BGLH too 🙂
      Thank you for reading and commenting. I never returned to that salon and I warned all the naturals I knew..lol

  4. I found you via BGLH! So glad I did! Wasn’t sure how to quite tell you this through a more recent post that was much more *fitting* whilst perusing through your blog, lol. But I love, love, love your hair and congrats on making it four years post big chop 🙂 And it is awesome that you are also a fellow West African natural gyal!

    – Taiwo Kafilat
    naijacurls.tumblr.com

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