Category Archives: For the Love of Natural Hair
Today’s post features a talented blogger. I’ve shared some of his work before. I have been following his blog and I must say I am very impressed. I asked him a week ago would he consider doing a guest post for my blog and he happily accepted. I asked him to share his thoughts about dating women with natural hair. Here is what he had to say………..
Because I Love Your Locks- Dating Women With Natural Hair
Let’s be honest: hair on a woman is a beautiful thing. Regardless of race, it is always something to see. Straight, curly, or what some refer to as “nappy” is all acceptable in my world. Plus, my childish side has an inclination to play in it. Thus, I find hair to be “attractive”.
At the end of the day, I don’t care whether a woman’s hair is natural or not. However, it does excite me when there are no perms or unnecessary chemicals added. It is a lovely thing for women to accept their natural hair as their own. Also, it allows for women to be confident in their unrefined, unadulterated beauty. On top of that, many natural women know how to flaunt their styles confidently. In turn, I see as many natural women being proud of their hairstyles as women with perms and such.
Oh, one more thing: with natural women I can reference Coming to America and say my favorite “juices and berries” line.
Still, many women wonder what men think. From my experience, I will tell you this: the majority of us are going to accept you (and your hair) for what it is. That is unless it is a total mess.
In fact, there are plenty of instances where men have been excited or thrilled by the notion of a woman wearing natural hair. Many areas with enriched cultural populations have no problem with natural hair styles. So, men will go along with what is being worn. Also, there are men that have even celebrated the beauty of natural hair (see Glenford Nunez). So, there will be plenty of men excited about a natural hairstyle.
Still, there are going to be instances where men don’t like natural hair. That is totally fine. Maybe he isn’t a man you need to date. Seriously! Unless your hair is horrendous in a natural state, then you might need to reconsider a man that has an issue with your natural hair. If he wants it straightened out, you need to find out what HIS issue is. He may prefer straighter hair. He may have some “straight hair preference issues”. Either or, there are plenty of fans to cancel out those that don’t like the natural follicle expression.
At the end of the day, most men are going to go along with what the female’s hairstyle preference is (unless it doesn’t look good). If they, as black men, don’t like your hair then they you may need to leave them be. Most men shouldn’t care about hair texture anyway. Natural hair enhances the aesthetic approach of a woman’s energy and aura. It is no wonder that the natural approach to hair is gaining popularity. It doesn’t take Sampson to note the importance of strength in hair.
About the Author:
Born and raised in Gary, Indiana with parents of southern descent, Mark A. Harris is just a regular guy with a gift of gab. When he is not writing blogs for Chocolate Covered Lies or reviewing music, he will usually be teaching middle school children about Social Studies, finding time to see his intellectually stimulated yet quite daughter, or trying to figure out who can finance his first few fiction books he plans on writing. He currently resides in the Atlanta suburbs with his wonderful girlfriend. He can be reached on Twitter @darcwonn, Facebook Mark A. Harris, and email firstname.lastname@example.org . Check out his blog http://chocolatecoveredlies.com.
Mark has once again delivered! This post is relevant and timely. Ladies, if you are wondering how men feel about natural hair, this man just answered. I know he can’t speak for all men and I know some men are just not down with it. It’s their preference. For every on man who doesn’t approve there’s five men who do. That’s my truth about dating!
Men, do you agree with his thoughts on women and natural hair? Ladies, did he put it down or what? Show a brotha some love!
- Biggest Headlines of 2010: Natural Hair (bellasugar.com)
- glenford nunez: the coiffure project (blkcowrie.wordpress.com)
I have been on this journey since 2011 and it hasn’t always been easy. I have grown to embrace what my natural hair is and will become. I have had some good and bad hair days, and I am learning something new all the time. I have probably watched a million YouTube videos and tried tons of hair products. I have to admit I am a bit of a product junkie….recovering product junkie 😉 I have staple products that I wouldn’t trade for anything.
I’m not the best stylist when it comes to natural hair. I can’t flat twist to save my life. Most of the time I make shit up as I go. The two styles that I have conquered are the puff and twist n curl. I’m still working on my wash-n-go, even though it has been my summer style. That brings me to the point of this post!
Sometimes by accident you stumble on a great hairstyle! It’s like every thing in the natural hair universe align and is on one accord. That’s when magic happens! Every naturalista knows what I am talking about! The magic of a fantastic hair day!
The other day I had a day old wash-n-go and I was in the mirror trying to revive it. I put a little dollop of Oyin Handmade Hair Dew on my hair and rubbed it in. I whipped my hair back and forth like Willow Smith. I also added just a little Vitamin E Oil by Ampro and started to fluff. I fluffed and fluffed, and fluffed…….That’s when Fluff Magic happened!
I achieved Big Hair from an old tired wash-n-go! I was tickled pink at the results. Will the magic happen again? Will I get this exact hairstyle again? Who knows (Kanye shrug) but for now I am embracing the magic!
There are several videos and blog posts on how to fluff natural hair. The challenge is to fluff and not make the hair frizz. Here’s a hair tutorial by br0nzeqt on getting big hair by fluffing.
click on the link
Do you have techniques on how to get big hair? What are your fluffing techniques? What products do you use? When was your last natural hair magical moment?
We are knee-deep in the summer and I am willing to bet that every natural hair diva has developed some type of hair routine or protective style. Beating the heat while looking fabulous is the name to the game!
I have rocked a wash-n-go since May. I’m loving every minute of it. It’s just so damn convenient. I have experimented with a several products, but there are two products that have won me over. Of course there are challenges with being naturally fab. One challenge is getting 2, 3, and 4 day hair. 🙂 The biggest, yet unavoidable challenge is those pesky single strand knots aka fairy knots!
After experimenting with a few products, I tried a sample of U R Curly Loose Curl Enhancer that I received at a meetup. This stuff is the bomb! It is alcohol-free, rich with Glycerin and Soy Protein and enhanced with Provitamin B5 and Echinacea, which are great for moisture. It doesn’t leave my hair hard, crunchy, and stringy. It doesn’t dry my hair out or leave a sticky residue. My hair is soft and curly,not to mention it helps with frizz. The fragrance is very light! I’m not sure how the U R Curly Tight Curl Enhancer works but this is a winner for me. Well at least for my summer routine. I have to admit I was skeptical at first, because my hair likes creamy products more so than products with a gel like consistency. The biggest task was finding it locally. I tried Wal-Mart, Walgreen’s, Sally’s, and Ulta. No Luck at ALL!! I searched online only to find that it was on back order. Needless to say I found it at a Wal-Mart when I was in the D.C. area. The price was $8.99. You better believe I racked up! Several sites have it and the price ranges from $8.99-$9.99. Not too bad for 8.5 oz.
The other product I use for my wash-n-go is Ouidad Curl Quencher Hydrafusion Intense Curl Cream. I LOVE THIS STUFF! I have only used it for my wash-n-gos. It leaves my hair moisturized, frizz-free, defined, soft, and shiny all day. It’s a light-weight cream but it packs a mighty punch. I get beautiful ringlets with is stuff. I don’t use it daily because it’s $26 for 5 oz. I use it on special occasions or when I am feeling extra fly. I found this product at Ulta.
I have developed two wash-n-go routines for the summer. One routine is quick and easy, while the other takes a little more time.
Quick and Easy
I co-wash my hair daily while in the shower. I may wash my hair with shampoo once a week and sometimes once every two weeks. I detangle and let the conditioner marinate while I handle my shower business. I rinse and wrap my hair in a t-shirt. No Towels!! I apply leave-in and styler. I style my hair in the desired style using my hands only. If my hair is still drippy, I diffuse lightly.
- Conditioner: Suave Almond and Shea Butter or Tresemme` Naturals Nourishing Moisture
- Leave-in: As I Am Leave-in Conditioner
- Styler: U R Curly Loose Curl Enhancer
- Refresher: 4 Naturals Freshen Up Curl Refresher
A Little More Time and Effort
After a fresh shampoo or co-wash ritual, while my hair is wet I put my hair in about 6-8 twists. This is a modified version of Curly Nikki’s routine. It’s what she calls the Pippi! I wish I could only put my hair in two twists. It’s too thick and a little shorter than Curly Nikki. I wrap my hair in a t-shirt for 10-15 minutes. This help to speed up drying but don’t leave the twists in too long. I then pull apart each twist adding leave-in and styler to each section. I style and voila`! The results are awesome! I have a more stretched look. The curls have clumps and are popping everywhere!
- Shampoo: Giovanni Tea Tree Triple Threat
- Conditioner: Suave Almond and Shea Butter or Tresemme` Naturals Nourishing Moisture
- Leave-in: Karen’s Body Beautiful Sweet Ambrosia
- Styler: Ouidad Curl Quencher Hydrafusion Intense Curl Cream
I have not figured out how to get more days out of this style without wetting it every day. The satin bonnet smashes it beyond repair and I can’t pineapple. I leave the house with wet to damp hair but it’s not a problem at the moment……..It dries in no time because it’s so damn hot!!
What is your summer routine? What new products have you tried? Do you have any tips or suggestions on how to maintain a wash-n-go style?
I decided to try henna after reading and hearing about its wonderful benefits for natural hair. I tried to read everything I could find about it online. Let me tell it is an overwhelming abundance of information about henna. There were many different types of henna and many recipes for mixing henna. I decided I would try Curly Nikki’s recipe. She has a very detailed tutorial on how to henna on her site. Click here henna tutorial
I follow her instructions step by step. I had newspaper all over the bathroom. I only left it on for 4 hours because I was anxious to see the results. The results were amazing! My hair was soft and shiny. The color wasn’t as auburn as I would have liked it to be. It was probably a result of not leaving it on for the full amount of time. What I can say is that it colored my gray strands beautifully!
I tried henna again 4 weeks later and again the results were awesome! I left it in for 12 hours this time. I did what Curly Nikki suggested and used two plastic caps and a satin bonnet and got some sleep. The next morning I rinsed, conditioned, and styled. I believe in time I will get the auburn color that I am seeking. My plan is to henna every 4 weeks if time allows. I used Jamila Henna BAQ and I am hooked. I found it on Amazon.
It looks like henna is a winner for me! Stay tuned 🙂
Have you tried henna? Do you have any stories or tips to share? Do tell!
The National Natural Hair Meet Up Day is an annual one-day event. Its purpose is to allow the opportunity for women across the country to meet in their own communities while networking, sharing and meeting (virtually) other women across the country participating in meet ups on the same day. Natural hair meet ups are events designed to share information, techniques, inspiration and products to aid individuals in their natural hair journey.
Natural beauties from all over the United States meet up in their area to mix and mingle with other natural beauties. It’s an awesome affair for women who are natural, transitioning to natural, or deciding to go natural.
Miss Stephanie with Gulf Coast Naturals did her thing when she organized a Natural Hair Meet Up event for the Gulf Coast Curlies. The event was a success! Natural Divas showed up and showed out with their voluptuous curls. The giveaways were out of sight. This was definitely an event to remember.
July 22, 2011 was the day of my last relaxer. I decided I would take my journey to natural hair late August which is now a year ago. I tried to embark on this journey back in 2007. I was not successful at all. At the time I had long hair and I had not done any research on the process of going natural. Let’s just say that was a BIG MISTAKE! About 3 months into the journey the humidity in the south made my hair go whoosh like a big balloon and I ran back to the relaxer. Even though I had succumbed to the temptation of the creamy crack, having natural hair never left my mind. I thought about it for years.
my attempt to transition in 2007
My reasons for wanting to go natural were because the creamy crack always burned the crap out of scalp, my hair dye and relaxer just would not play nicely together, and dandruff wanted to take control and hang out in my hair. I would have relaxers burns, no matter how much of that orange medicated stuff was slathered on my scalp. My hair would break off when I would get my hair dyed, no matter how many deep conditioners and trims I would get. The dandruff seemed to multiply when I turned 30. My subconscious said enough already!
I started researching whether to big chop or transition in August 2011. I decided to transition, since I have always had medium to long hair. This time my hair was cut in an angled bob. It was much shorter than the mane and tail in the picture above. I decided this time I would gradually cut it off. In my mind, this was going to be a piece of cake. If I can style and maintain relaxed hair surely I can do this. Well about 4 months into the transition the new growth was taking over. The body/roller wrap was no longer working. I started getting my hair flat ironed to hide the new growth. That was working out just lovely. Only a few people knew I was transitioning. Meanwhile, I kept doing my research on the internet. I started seeing stuff about hair types, product junkies, natural hair styles. Wait a minute!!! Talk about overwhelmed. I realized I needed to enroll in a Go Natural 101 course. I started asking questions and talking to friends that were natural. One friend finally asked, “What do you want to achieved with natural hair?” She said if you want to have chemical free hair but want the straight look then continue to flat-iron. She went on to say if you ever want to see and develop your natural curl pattern stop flat ironing immediately. She informed me that I must wear styles that will blend the two textures of relaxed and natural. She said try roller sets, rod sets, straw sets, Bantu knots, etc. She also said most people choose to wear sew-ins and braids during the transition. She also suggested products I should try. This was the turning point of my journey. Thank you CJC!!! You know who you are!
I decided I would take my friend’s advice. After that I started reading everything I could find on the internet about natural hair. I pulled out my notebook and took notes. I stumbled across several websites and watched tons of You Tube videos. Among the many websites,Curly Nikki was one of them. A very informative website, thanks Curly Nikki. My first transition style was the Bantu knots. It looked like a straw set because I did them small, nevertheless I liked it. I’m sorry there’s no picture to show. I hated the picture but the hair was cute. I went to work that morning rockin the new hair-do. We had a staff meeting that morning and I was late of course. When I entered everyone just stopped and looked. That made me very nervous. My boss said, “I love the hair!” She then added, “That’s why she’s late, she wanted to make a grand entrance.” I gave my nervous shy smile and found a seat. After the meeting, several people came to me and complimented my hair. I must say I was impressed with the response.
I continued with my journey and trying different styles. The style that worked the most for me during that point of the transition was the twist n curl. I was a twisting and curling sista. I could get at least 2-3 days out of that style. The products that I started using were Giovanni Smooth As Silk Shampoo and Conditioner, Suave Almond & Shea Butter Conditioner for co-washing, and Cantu Shea Butter Leave-In Conditioning Cream. I later added Kinky Curly Knot Today and Curling Custard to the stash.
I started to notice my curl pattern and tried to figure out my hair type based on that. It was too confusing. I don’t think I will ever figure that out. I asked my mom what was my hair like when I was a little girl. She said it was really thick and I had a lot of it! She said some parts were wavy, some were curly, and some were kinky. She said it took a while to wash, press, and style my hair because I had so much hair. I remember those Saturday Sessions by the stove. It was mom and I, the pressing comb, and Blue Magic hair grease. Yikes! My mom was adamant about not putting a relaxer in my hair. I remember I wanted to be like everyone else and get a relaxer. Pam said no!! I got my first relaxer in the 5th or 6th grade against my mom’s wishes. My step-dad got the bright idea to take me to a salon to get a relaxer. When we got home, he got cursed out big time. My mom was pissed. He was in the doghouse for a long time. I’m glad I was just a kid. For some reason in 7th-8th grade I didn’t get a relaxer. My mom took really good care of my hair because I didn’t have breakage. By the time I was in the 9th grade I wanted a relaxer because I wanted my hair in a style. This time my mom said yes.
(Me age 4 or 5 with no relaxer and sandy hair)
My friend Chocolate Trouble insists I was and still is a red-head. Me giving her the **side-eye**
Ok I digress back to the story. During my transition, I deep conditioned my hair weekly and got a trim every six weeks. In May, I decided to do a mini chop. A friend suggested I try the lady that cuts her natural hair. I made my appointment and went to see her. She wanted me to big chop right then. I told her I wasn’t ready. She told me my curl pattern was developing quite nicely and that I should just chop away. The back of my hair was 95% natural but the front still had a little ways to go. She couldn’t convince me to big chop. I just wasn’t ready yet. She decided to let another lady give me a cut. I asked the lady could she cut my hair properly with two textures. She said yes. To make a long story short, she screwed my hair up. My hair was several different lengths. It was a hot azz mess! I was very upset. I couldn’t do anything with my hair. My friend M came to the rescue. She gave me suggestions on what I could do. That’s when I discovered the puff. I had decided I would just cut my hair shorter to get it even and get kinky twists for the summer. Two weeks later, I got my hair cut even. Of course it was short because it had to be even with the shortest part. The guy that cut it said I was probably 85%-95% natural now. He flat ironed it so I could see my length. It was a shorter version of the bob I had when I started going natural. I liked it and it was just a few more steps from being completely natural.
Since then and now I’ve been sporting the curly puff, wash n go, and the twist n curl. There is still a little relaxer in the front. It seems my front left side has the most relaxer. I will be cutting it some more in the near future. Maybe eventually I will get those kinky twist. I must say it has been a journey. I am learning about how to properly take care of my hair. I started out being a product junkie but I took a step back. I’m still learning my hair. Having a lot of products can really confuse things. I do have products that I use for certain things. My biggest challenge is styling my hair and making it last. It’s very hard to do in the south. #heat and humidity
curly puff again
1st attempt at a wash n go
What I have learned during this process is that you must exude confidence. You must be ok with the fact that there will be day when your hair refuses to cooperate and when that happens proudly walk with your head held high. You must know that you are beautiful with or without straight hair. Embrace your kinks, coils, waves, or curls. There will be people who frown upon your natural hair. Don’t let them bother you. If it is your desire to sport your natural hair then just do it. Whether you big chop or transition, they’re both a journey of discovery. I have love for all of my friends whether their hair is relaxed or natural. It is my hope that they display the same kind of love. A lady asked me how long was I going to keep my hair natural. I said more than likely forever. She said why? I told her because it versatile and when I want to have straight hair, I can just flat-iron it. For right now, I am embracing and enjoying my curls. That’s the beauty of natural hair…..versatility!
I would love to hear about your journey to natural hair. Please share 🙂
I’m on the journey to being natural and I have quite a few natural friends. The discussion came up about black men and their thoughts about natural hair. This post is very insightful and definitely worthy of a reblog. I would love you hear your thought about this topic. Come on men, what are your thoughts?
Do you feel that black men ( in general) are becoming more accepting of natural hair on black women?
There is a stereotype that most black women with natural hair tend to date white men. I don’t feel this is true, but I can understand where the stereotype comes from. If we look at the music videos, men’s magazines and other forms of media we mostly see black women depicted with long straight hair. Even in magazines or media that are supposedly marketed at black men we see this.
The fact that black women are continuously bombarded with an image that implies that only straight hair is beautiful creates a wharped perception of beauty for both black men and black women. In recent years, it seems more black women are steering away from putting chemicals on their hair. Many women are rocking locs, twists or afros. However, many women are…
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