I'm baccccckkkkk with Part II of my natural hair journey story! Part I summarized my relaxed days, pretty much. It was drab and dreary, I must say. But here comes the good stuff!
So, remember this photo?
Well, during this time, I had also just started my first semester of graduate school. I began to form some close relationships with a few of the ladies in the program. One, particularly, began to intrigue me because of her....hair. One day it would be straight, and one day it would be...in a fro. I'm like...how is she doing that? Honestly, I was thinking subconsciously, because my forward mind really didn't think about it all that much. Anyway, our hair conversations began, and she was telling me that she went natural because she has a skin condition, Eczema. As a result, her scalp could not handle the chemical process of relaxing and would result in flare-ups and burns. She stopped soon after discovering this, and transitioned to natural. Here she is!!!!
|She would go from this beautiful head of straight hair|
|To this wondrous, hair envious puff!!!!! I would be like..... O_o (LOL!)|
I began transitioning in February 2010 and it was...difficult. In the beginning, I didn't really know what to do. So I began to research. Not heavily, just on YouTube on different transitioning styles that I could try. I attempted braidouts and rod sets, and really stuck with these for the majority of my transition. I did get some microbraids for a short duration in March. They were awesome, and would have stayed in longer, but they kept falling out after only a week. (Shame on me for getting a relaxer only 2 weeks prior, my hair was just too straight to hold them).
I also dabbled into weave. FAIL! I went to one of these $50 sew-in spots in Atlanta suburns and the lady only washed/conditioned my hair and did no deep condition. She then proceeded to braid synthetic hair along with my real hair for length purposes. I think my scalp had some sort of allergic reaction with the synthetic hair (or something!) and my scalp was on FIRE! I tried so hard....I put oil on my scalp, I carried around a rattail, everything, but.....alas, after only a week...it HAD TO GO! $200 down the drain. Wahhhhhh! It was serious, yall.
The next six months consisted of braidouts and rodsets. I loved them because they'd last around 4-5 days and then I could do it all over again. What I DIDN'T like, however, was the amount of breakage I was seeing. I was getting tired of it. What's the point in all this hard work of transitioning, if all of my hair is going to eventually fall out anyway??? (I know that's not exactly solid, but that's how I felt).
|Now that I look back at this photo, this braidout was a mess...|
|I loveeeed rod sets, they just took so long! I was just learning.|
|Another rod set|
|Loved this braidout!|
I was nearing the end of my graduate school program, about to start a new life, in a new place. What's not a better way to start than to Big Chop!!!! I BC'd on July 21, 2010, just days away from my 23rd birthday (whoop to the Leos in the houuussee!). The only negative was that the barber cut off more hair than was relaxed, therefore, I might as well not have transitioned at all...LOL! I was still cute THO!
I was styling and profiling, yall! Yall couldn't tell a sista naaahhhhtttinnnnggg!!! LOL I absolutely loved the results. I was not sad at all, I loved the low-maintenance routine (which consisted of co-washing daily with V05 Moisture Milks - Passion Fruit Smoothie Conditioner, apply a healthy amount of Cantu Shea Butter Leave-In Repair Cream, and sealing ends with Shea Butter). I accessorized like a mug, and I was F.L.Y.
What happened after the BC? Stay tuned for Part III!!!!
P.S. - Yeah, I'm long-winded, but I like to be detailed so that you can go to another place in time with me!