Happy April Loves! How were your weekends? Do you notice anything different about me? You guessed it. I got a new haircut into a short tapered style last week!! At the start of 2017, I sat down alone and with my husband and came up with some goals for the year: both personally in my marriage and with family/friends, and professionally in my career and here on the blog. I knew my health was at the top of the list. I’ve begun eating healthier (portion control and cleaner eating), and working out with a trainer 2-3 times a week. I’ve been seeing my therapist monthly for my emotional and mental health. But for so long, the health of my hair has been an unspoken issue that I’ve tried to hide and not address. One of the things I’ve been battling for as long as I can remember, is how to fully embrace my natural hair without tons of protective styling and wear it out proudly. Some of you that have been rocking with me over the years, may be asking yourself, “Huh? Hasn’t she been natural for years?”.
And the answer is yes. I have been natural. Almost by force. Relaxers were killing my scalp and causing my hair to break, so when my college hairstylist told me she would no longer apply relaxers to my hair because of it, I began the slow transition of growing out my natural hair and each month, she would trim an inch of my relaxed ends. We did this for about a year until she cut off the final relaxed strands, and I have had chemical free natural hair since 2011. But when I say fully embracing my natural hair, I mean wearing and styling the hair that God gave me, that naturally grows out of my head in kinks and corkscrew curls proudly. And NO, I haven’t fully mastered that. I’ve been blessed with hair that is tightly coiled, shrinks in humidity/moisture, and looks cottony and is soft to the touch and at times she can be very high maintenance. So when I started my career in higher education over two years ago, I embraced protective styling as a means to an end, one where I thought I’d be protecting my hair from manipulation and strain and where I could have freedom from long weekly wash days and nightly twisting and re-twisting only to sometimes get my desired results.
And I’m not saying protective styling is bad. It can be a great thing, when done in moderation and on healthy hair. It’s just that I was doing it way too often and sometimes, I let the wrong hands get a hold of my hair and it suffered. After removing this last protective style; marley twists which you can see here, here, here, and here, I left my hair out for a week and tried to do it on my own and I realized that I couldn’t get my hair to cooperate in any style due to so much damage. There was growth, don’t get me wrong but in the midst of that growth, was split ends, breakage, and thin edges from too many protective styles with braids, twists, and crochet styles.
I knew I couldn’t continue to do this on my own and began researching hairstylists that were great with natural hair and I received quite a few recommendations. After reviewing their work, I chose a stylist, booked my appointment, and drove from Lexington to Louisville, KY last Wednesday, after work. My hairstylist was very patient with me and accessed my hair and its needs in a mini-consultation. I’d already gone in expecting a trim or major haircut so that I could start fresh with healthy hair, so there was no surprise there. When she blew my hair out, it was so long but in different lengths all over my head so I decided to get a tapered cut that would give my hair a healthier foundation for growth but still be long enough to twist and take care of when I got home.
“A Woman who cuts her hair is about to change her life”-Coco Chanel
Check out my Instagram post, where I gave them a sneak peek yesterday. You know what I may share there first, so please follow along!
I say all of this to say, I have not been the most confident when it comes to this hair of mine. I have not always felt beautiful and that has led me to make decisions out of convenience and not in the best interest of the health of my hair. With that said, my husband and sister have been amazing. They have talked me through all of this and have lifted me up when I felt less than pretty. My husband has comforted me when I was in tears or close to tears and made me feel beautiful.
This haircut is growing on me, the maintenance is hopefully going to get easier, and I’m confident it will grow healthier and stronger than ever before in this new journey. If any of you are feeling like I was and are on the fence about getting your haircut, I am here to say DO IT! It’s just hair, (I know that’s easier said than done, trust me) and it will grow back before you know it. We can do this together and support each other! I need your help too! If you have any questions or just want to vent about your natural hair experience, please email me or comment below. I would love to talk more and there will be more natural hair posts on this blog (about products, styles, etc.) in the near future, so stay tuned!
Photography by Jonah Brown
SHOP THE LOOK BELOW:
[ OUTFIT- Sweater :: Chambray shirt :: Skinny jeans :: Converse :: Necklace – gifted :: Glasses :: Bracelets :: Fitbit :: Watch :: Lipstick :: Earrings :: HAIR- Shampoo :: Conditioner :: Oils :: Leave-in conditioner :: ]
This year, I give myself no choice but to be fearless. Fearless in love, work, relationships, life, and style. I sure do hope you join me!
Thanks so much for continuing to support this blog of mine, it really means the world to me!