In absolute honesty, I never really took care of my hair. I spent a long time in my teens trying to straighten it with straightening irons, desperate to get rid of my curls, covering it with hairspray and scraping it up tightly in a bobble at the top of my head. It didn’t seem to grow and I rarely wore it down. I dyed it, and have dyed it over the years, often a deep shade of red, and then actually bleaching it to put on a bright red hair dye last year.
This curly hair of mine, so fine and thin, I didn’t know what to do with it. I’ve had it cut in the same style for years; sort-of bob, short at the back and getting gradually longer at the front, slightly layered. I like the style but OH MY GOSH I would love long curly hair. My problem is, is that it doesn’t grow. It really just doesn’t grow, only breaks when I brush it (dry)n or wash it.
I began to observe, with fascination, the increase of women with their hair braided and I decided I had to try that. I was ready for a change and I thought I would give it a go. It took about 6 hours to do and a numb backside but it looked amazing. I loved it.
What I wasn’t ready for: how heavy it was, the maintenance, how it would affect my sleep, my poor scalp. I kept them in for around 5 weeks but I didn’t take care of them. Taking them out was almost traumatic, I wasn’t ready for the amount of hair that actually came out with the synthetic hair, how dry my scalp would be or that my remaining hair would be damaged. I didn’t take care of the braids, see?
You would think I would learn but, nope, less than two weeks later I had twists put in. Less hair, a different texture, still a long sitting but so much better. They were lighter, looked more natural and still had me feeling awesome.
I loved the feel of the twists and the look of the braids, but something had changed, By this time I had spoken at length to a friend about her hair care routine. Her hair, similar to that of mine, looks thick and healthy. We went to a local hair shop and she guided me through the aisles, making recommendations about what hair oils and conditioners would be best for my hair texture. Amazing. I’ve never EVER had any kind of guidance about how to correctly care for my hair so I bought a few items and promised I would use them as soon as I was ready to go back natural.
The twists didn’t last long. Two weeks later and they are out, out for good, and I won’t be looking back. My recent discovery of the Mocha Caramel Club and the inspiring stories of the women behind it has prompted me to begin my own natural hair journey. Not that my hair wasn’t natural before the braids, it was, but I will be actively taking better care of my hair following the advice given by those who are on that natural hair journey. My children, also of mixed heritage, have different texture hair to mine and it is so important that I know how to take care of their hair too. No more hair colouring, braids, brushing when dry, brushing at all, Sof’n’free or just treating it like I don’t care how it grows. This is the very beginning, it’s all new and exciting but I am ready for a head of healthy curls.
Find Ms Annika on Facebook : Annika Spalding (Author)
and twitter @Me_Myself_I 🙂