How To transition to natural, my personal tips

KinkyKeeperKinkyKeeper Registered Users Posts: 963

5 things you MUST know about natural hair and for during the transition.

1. Never, never, NEVER try to detangle or comb it without some type of conditioner in your hair. You are just asking for breakage and pain. Only detangle with fingers/wide tooth comb. It was rough until I discovered that conditioner is your best friend.

2. You may have a very kinky/nappy texture. Do not look at curly haired pictures and think your hair will look like that. Do not think your hair will grow downwards or shine or sway. On the other hand, so not assume your hair will be kinky curly. It may be loose curls or even straight. It may even be different than the last time you saw it, as our hair changes textures throughout our life. Embrace the texture you have or you will be running back to relaxers. Transition your mind, not just your hair.


3. Hair grows kind of slow for some people and it can get discouraging.Document your progress. This is important becuase it's easy to ignore your progress. Get a camera.

4. Go to the below websites, check out people at the forums, how to videos on youtube, look at people's fotkis, really research becuase there is now so much more info on natural hair than there used to be. Also know everyone's hair is different so find what works for you. Experiment and find a good nappy support group.http://nappturality.com is a good site. For tighter curls there is also http://cnappynenow.com

5. You may get negative reactions from people like dirty looks and mean comments. Some people are still negative about nappy hair and some people just don't like change. Just hang in there becuase you know your hair is healthier. Other people's nappy issues are not your own.
WATCH THESE VIDEOS:




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There are 3 options for transitioning:

1. Leave hair out while transitioning
PRO: Learn to deal with new texture right away and what works and doesn't. Can grow out natural hair and keep relaxed hair so you don't have to have short hair. You don't get the culture shock of braiding down. Can cut off hair in little chops if you want or keep it until ready for the BC.
CON: The hassle of dealing with both textures can lead to a premature BIG CHOP. Also if you aren't ready for short hair not good for you because breakage might occur since the meeting point of relaxed/natural is fragile. Hard to find styles for both textures.

2. Braid hair down/put under weave.
PRO: This is good if you don't want to deal with the hassle of two textures and want to keep relaxed hair as long as possible. Also can wear kinky textured weave so you know what you would look like with natural hair and how to treat it.
CON: Some culture shock when hair gets unbraided and you don't know how to deal with new growth if you wore a straight weave. Braiding down for too long can also cause breakage and thinning around the temples.

3. The BIG CHOP
PRO: Easiest, cutting off hair right away means no hassle of two textures and right option for people who's relaxed hair is damaged or they just want it gone right away. Also you get to know your natural self from the beginning.
CON: leaves you with about 1" of new growth. Not for you if you hate short hair.

HAIRSTYLES:
1. Straighten the new growth to match the relaxed hair
>Flat iron
>Blow outs
>Straw sets
>Roller sets

2. I personally prefer to match the relaxed hair to the new growth. It's healthier, the styles last longer, you can do it yourself and it teaches you how to deal with your own texture right away.

> Twists (can do with your own hair or extra kinky hair)
> Twist outs
>Bantu knots
>Cornrows at night and let out in the morning gives an awesome texture
>Natural hair color like henna
>I rock the curly fro look often and pin down/straighten the bangs
>I braid front and let back hang free
>buns (different varieties of these)
>french braids
>I pin back one side of my hair and let the other side hang free
>I love the faux hawk look.
>Shingling (not sure you can do it with relaxed ends.)
I like youtube.com. Some great natural users for product, inspiration and styling tips
I like youtube.com. Some great natural users for product, inspiration and styling tips

http://www.youtube.com/user/itsmsheathernicole
http://www.youtube.com/user/rusticbeauty
http://www.youtube.com/user/naturalnana

<A href="http://www.youtube.com/user/richeau&quot; target=_blank>http://www.youtube.com/user/richeau


Goodluck, hope that helped.

Comments

  • pulchri2dinouspulchri2dinous Registered Users Posts: 1,014
    Those are great tips! I have heard that heat can damage your hair and cause your curls to go straight (Youtube vid).

    Also another con about weaves is that people often judge you for wearing them (relaxed and natural people alike). BUT, this could also be a pro, because since people also judge others for wearing their hair in it's natural texture you'd get used to it earlier! lol
    4, fine, low-medium density, low porosity


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    "When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don't adjust the goals, adjust the action steps." - Confucius
  • Lorraine09Lorraine09 Registered Users Posts: 126
    Great tips! I think one very important issue you brought up is loving and accepting your own hair texture. I am not too keen on using the term nappy to describe tighter curl patterns, but I guess some people don't mind it. What bothers me is when some people say that they would go natural if only their natural hair wasn't so nappy. It is really sad when we cannot embrace what grows naturally or when some people make it seem as if some do not have a right to be relaxer free. All hair types are beautiful and it is what you make of it.
  • pulchri2dinouspulchri2dinous Registered Users Posts: 1,014
    I feel the same way! I get such negative vibes when I hear the word "nappy". I was showing a friend of mine some natural people and she saw one girl with super curly hair and she said "I would go natural if my hair looked like hers" I was like ... ugh. How do you even know what your hair looks like and what is so wrong about hair that doesn't look like hers? Then the whole good/bad hair thing. When I hear people talk like that I feel likeif you don't like your own or other people's you must not like mine, because I don't have that "good" hair . I love my hair though :)
    4, fine, low-medium density, low porosity


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    "When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don't adjust the goals, adjust the action steps." - Confucius
  • Lorraine09Lorraine09 Registered Users Posts: 126
    Ugh...yes, good/bad hair is another term I dislike. The reason why it is so silly is because what may be considered a "good" hair texture to one person, it may be considered bad to another. Good hair is healthy hair. I also think some people confuse being natural with doing nothing to your hair, and maybe that is why they are afraid of it? Yes, there are some natural people who do not take care of their hair and it is extremely dry. I am so glad there are so many helpful natural sites out there. I will never get another Creme of Nature! Lol. I have been convincing people I know to do it (go natural).
  • pulchri2dinouspulchri2dinous Registered Users Posts: 1,014
    Maybe they associate it with not doing anything, but shouldn't that make it more appealing? I've always hated salons and being natural has allowed me to take control of my own hair and it doesn't seem as demanding as a relaxer.

    Just letting people know about why I choose natural ingredients and why natural is the best way for people to become interested in the natural life, but only if they want to. I found that you can influence someone's decision only if they're willing. One of my friends begin researching ingredients and all sorts of stuff and decided on her own it was time to stop relaxing. I think that's the best way, because she was actually interested on her own. On the other hand, some people just don't care what you have to say and even when they're hair is breaking off and you try to let them know wh they get so defensive. You know what I mean?

    Keep spreading knowledge though! I think that spreading the knowledge about natural hair is the key :)
    4, fine, low-medium density, low porosity


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    "When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don't adjust the goals, adjust the action steps." - Confucius
  • Lorraine09Lorraine09 Registered Users Posts: 126
    Definitely! I have been wanting to go natural for years, but honestly I was afraid. It wasn't until more recently when I started to do research that I felt more comfortable and excited about it. No one should be ashamed of their natural hair. You are right, you'd think the thought of doing nothing to your hair would seem more appealing, but I think some people just assume natural=nasty/bad-looking hair. I've always had long hair, but the relaxer has taken a toll on the health. I have so many horror stories involving my scalp and bald patches at times that I just don't think it is worth it anymore. Plus, I recently colored my hair before I made the decision, and there is no way I would ever color and relax at the same time again. You are right, you have to want to do it for yourself, but having a support system helps. My sister and I share tips all the time and check out the natural hair sites. I feel that I have learned more about my hair in the 4 1/2 months that I have been transitioning than I ever have in my life and it feels great! It would be great to see natural being the majority for once!
  • pulchri2dinouspulchri2dinous Registered Users Posts: 1,014
    We completely took over the OP's post. I feel kinda bad :laughing6:, but, this was a great conversation :) Good luck on your journey
    4, fine, low-medium density, low porosity


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    "When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don't adjust the goals, adjust the action steps." - Confucius
  • Lorraine09Lorraine09 Registered Users Posts: 126
    Lol! We sure did! Yes, it is a lot of valuable information, and thank you!
  • Curly-NymphCurly-Nymph Registered Users Posts: 11
    This was just the thing I was looking for. My mom may be going natural pretty soon, so thank you for putting this up!

    (And pray my mom chooses to go curly! >.<)
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  • KinkyKeeperKinkyKeeper Registered Users Posts: 963
    We completely took over the OP's post. I feel kinda bad :laughing6:, but, this was a great conversation :) Good luck on your journey


    No prob, lol. You guys are still talking about transitioning and natural hair and I'm glad if my tips can start discussions. On using the word nappy-I like it. I can understand why some people don't like it but I am a big believer in taking a word back. We have the oppotunity to take the power out of this word once and for all. As for me, just the other day I was put to the test when it comes to the term nappy. A little black girl took it upon herself (I am Biracial and have type 4 hair and I was wearing it in an afro) to tell me my hair was the "nappiest hair she had ever seen". And she used the word nappy in the way you would say "disgusting abomination" of course. I believe if I had not come to terms with the word nappy I would have been quite hurt. As it was, I smiled brightly, patted my hair and said, "Thank you honey. My hair IS looking particularly nappy this morning. How sweet of you to notice." The look on her face was priceless if I do say so myself.

    And eventually if we want to transition to using the word Kinky that is cool. Actually kinky is better just becuase it describes our hair better. Nappy is obviously meant to be pejorative, every other word to describe hair texture (straight, curly, wavy) describes the look of the hair strands. If you had to frame of reference you would know what someone meant when they said straight hair. It brings an image to mind. Straight is a universal word. We all know what straight anything is supposed to look like. It goes from point A to point B with no detours along the way:

    straight-hair-2.jpg
    Same thing with wavy and curly. We use these words to describes shapes that occur in nature (a plant curling upwards toward the sun, waves in the ocean for example), as well as our hair:
    wavy-hair-with-band-from-more-com.png

    wavy-hair.jpg

    But if you didn't already know, you would have no idea what someone was talking about when they said "Nappy" hair:
    ????????
    Of course, becuase we have a frame of reference we know that Nappy hair is meant to describe tight curly type 4 hair:
    2006-afro-curls.jpg

    So I do think eventually Kinky or some other term should replace Nappy becuase it is more descriptive (Kinks we know is supposed to be like zig zags) but I think Nappy needs to go through a period of "denegativity" where the pain is stripped from it. Until that happens when we demonize the word nappy, I feel like we demonize the hair type itself. I see this all the time when I use the word nappy (in a positive way of course) and people who relax their hair and our ashamed of their natural kinks and naps will berate me for it. How is someone who relaxes their hair gonna try to tell me what I can call my own hair? Becuase they don't even know anything about their own nappy hair, they just know it's supposed to be bad. They don't want to think about it, face it, they just want it gone and lyed up and straightened out.

    That's my take on it anyway.:laughing6:
  • pulchri2dinouspulchri2dinous Registered Users Posts: 1,014
    I agree with you kinkykeeper!

    I looked up the word Nap on dictionary.com:
    . A soft or fuzzy surface on fabric or leather. tr.v. napped, nap·ping, naps
    To form or raise a soft or fuzzy surface on (fabric or leather).

    The above definition lead me to belive that this is where it all started...

    I looked up nappy:
    adjective, -pi⋅er, -pi⋅est.
    1.covered with nap; downy.
    2.(of hair) kinky.
    3. "downy," 1499, from nap (n.). Meaning "fuzzy, kinky," used in colloquial or derogatory ref. to the hair of black people, is from 1950.

    Which lead me to look up downy:
    –adjective, down⋅i⋅er, down⋅i⋅est. 1.of the nature of or resembling down; fluffy; soft.
    2.made of down.
    3.covered with down.
    4.soft; soothing.

    And finally down:
    noun 1.the soft, first plumage of many young birds.
    2.the soft under plumage of birds as distinct from the contour feathers.
    3.the under plumage of some birds, as geese and ducks, used for filling in quilts, clothing, etc., chiefly for warmth.
    4.a growth of soft, fine hair or the like.
    5.Botany. a.a fine, soft p-u-b-e-cence on plants and some fruits.b.the light, feathery pappus or coma on seeds by which they are borne on the wind, as on the dandelion and thistle.

    And there we have it. lol I've come to the conclusion that many black people DO have nappy hair (according to the above definitions), but like KinkyKeeper said, the tone and context in which the word is used makes it offensive. That's what really bothers me... the way people say "nappy". It's not a black/white "issue" either (I know there's a thread about it). I'm not okay with ANYONE using nappy as if it's a bad thing. I would have said thank you to that little girl though :)
    4, fine, low-medium density, low porosity


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    "When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don't adjust the goals, adjust the action steps." - Confucius
  • Lorraine09Lorraine09 Registered Users Posts: 126
    Great points. As mentioned, we have come accustomed to the term nappy being used in a way to put others down. I'm personally not comfortable with using it yet, just as I am not comfortable with some people using the "n" word as a common greeting. If you embrace the term (nappy), by all means do! We as a people are still struggling to completely accept who are, but it certainly takes time. Btw, I would have love to have seen the expression on that little girl's face. Great comeback!
  • desert flowerdesert flower Registered Users Posts: 188
    I don't know if this is just a Southern California kind of thing, where racial boundaries seem to cross in pop culture a lot but the word nappy was used by all races of girls at my high school. It usually just meant their hair was frizzy that day...the Filipina girls, most (but not all) of whom had stick straight hair ALWAYS used this word about their own hair...way more than any of my Black friends.

    In fact, there were a few girls and a couple of guys who wore their hair in afros or afro puffs but nobody ever described their hair as nappy, because everyone loved their unique look...always dominated the Best Hair category.

    What is sad, though, is that the word nappy came to mean "a bad hair day" as opposed to a particular hair texture or curl pattern.

    Has anyone else had that experience?
  • pulchri2dinouspulchri2dinous Registered Users Posts: 1,014
    That is so interesting, because I've actually never heard a person of another race say the word nappy.

    EXCEPT... that white guy from the radio lol (I was just about to hit "post" until I remembered him)
    4, fine, low-medium density, low porosity


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    "When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don't adjust the goals, adjust the action steps." - Confucius
  • desert flowerdesert flower Registered Users Posts: 188
    That is so interesting, because I've actually never heard a person of another race say the word nappy.

    EXCEPT... that white guy from the radio lol (I was just about to hit "post" until I remembered him)


    The first time I realized that it was a term that "belonged" (another discussion...) to Black women was when a Black girl from Louisiana transferred to our school. One of the girls in the locker room who was half-White and half-Mexican was combing her wavy hair and complaining that it was extra nappy that day. Her best friend who was Black agreed with her and tried to help her put it in a ponytail.

    The new student freaked out about the word being thrown around, especially by "a White girl" and was upset that the Black girls didn't seem to take offense to it.

    However, I think that in Southern California - or at least where I grew up - a lot of "ethnic" words, be they Black or Spanish or Spanglish and even Arabic or Farsi in some parts have gotten absorbed into the vocabulary of all young people.
  • pulchri2dinouspulchri2dinous Registered Users Posts: 1,014
    Hahaha. I like places like that where people just get along (for the most part) and don't have to worry about accidently misusing "someone's word". I don't think it belongs to anyone, after all, it's just a word :tongue3:. What bothers me is when people use it in an effort to make someone feel bad about his/her hair (Intentionally or not).
    4, fine, low-medium density, low porosity


    event.png

    "When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don't adjust the goals, adjust the action steps." - Confucius
  • desert flowerdesert flower Registered Users Posts: 188
    Hahaha. I like places like that where people just get along (for the most part) and don't have to worry about accidently misusing "someone's word". I don't think it belongs to anyone, after all, it's just a word :tongue3:. What bothers me is when people use it in an effort to make someone feel bad about his/her hair (Intentionally or not).


    Yup, I miss my old neighborhood. When I got to colllege and found out that so many people just didn't like other people, I was so angry...at the world and at myself for being so naive!

    I agree that when a word is used to make someone feel bad, whether it was intentional or semi-intentional (saying it as you make a horrible face without realizing), then it's all bad. When I first straightened my hair, my mother in law, just stared at it and said, horrified, "But...it's soooooooooo straight...why?" When she saw my roots growing in, she hugged me and told me how she had been waiting for this for two years...hysterical considering she is an 80 year old woman with very thin 1A hair...but still hurtful...good thing I love her!
  • Lorraine09Lorraine09 Registered Users Posts: 126
    I don't know if this is just a Southern California kind of thing, where racial boundaries seem to cross in pop culture a lot but the word nappy was used by all races of girls at my high school. It usually just meant their hair was frizzy that day...the Filipina girls, most (but not all) of whom had stick straight hair ALWAYS used this word about their own hair...way more than any of my Black friends.

    In fact, there were a few girls and a couple of guys who wore their hair in afros or afro puffs but nobody ever described their hair as nappy, because everyone loved their unique look...always dominated the Best Hair category.

    What is sad, though, is that the word nappy came to mean "a bad hair day" as opposed to a particular hair texture or curl pattern.

    Has anyone else had that experience?
    Wow. I've never heard that before! I guess I need to move out of the south! Almost anytime someone uses the term nappy here, it is meant to be an insult. I don't think I've ever heard of it being used in a joking way. Everything in the south seems to be either black or white. No one understands anything in between.
  • KinkyKeeperKinkyKeeper Registered Users Posts: 963
    bump
  • moskazimemoskazime Registered Users Posts: 1
    i have at least type 3a or B curls does anyone know how to get type 4 curls message me at [email protected] any tips are good,but don't tell me to get a perm. any natural ways all tips are greatful.That's me on the left thats my hair.iwant to tighten them

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