We get a lot of emails from very disgruntled, urgently desperate readers. If you are one of them don’t feel bad. I remember when I started my journey on having healthy hair and I wrote Curly Nikki. It was along the lines of “My hair is so dry, I don’t know what to do. How do I get it to look like yours? Please help me as fast as you can. Thank you and have a nice day”. Swear to God, I di that. She never responded to my stalkin’ ass but now I understand that she has bigger fish to fry like accepting NAACP awards. (GO GIRL!!!!) Anyway, because we do have some time on our hands, I figured we could do some published Q&A to hopefully help others that are experiencing the same things.
1. Q: Hey! I attend a university in a predominantly white city in CA. I went natural 2 years ago. It’s still a challenge to wear my hair in its naturally big state. 95% of the time I wear my hair in a bun bc I don’t know how to do any other styles with my hair! What’s been an even bigger challenge is having the urge to flat iron my hair when it comes to my job. I want to know if you or other women have a fear of standing out bc of their hair & how to deal w/ this as women of color. Thanks!
I had this same fear when I started wearing my natural, unadulterated curls out. I was coming off of the flat iron dependency. Many people were not used to seeing my natural curls. Shoot, I wasn’t even used to seeing them. I had not fully mastered my hair care. Some days I was really proud of my curls while other days my curls were dry, frizzy, uncontrollable tufts. But regardless of what my hair was doing, I was scheduled to work. I was terrified of what others would think. I experienced some negative comments here and there but I wanted to learn to love my hair and I knew in my heart that the illusions and conditioning of hating my kinky hair were not based on reality. I say STOP straightening your hair and focus on straightening your mind. Mind over matter. Allow yourself to be afraid walking into work with your natural hair but walk into work with your natural hair anyway! The more you manage your natural hair and stay away from the flat iron, the sooner you will learn how to care for and style it and in return the more confident you will become. Soon you wont be concerned with what others think and you will be surprised by how many people will actually like it!
2. Can u give me some methods to loosen up my curls? They’re so tight & it makes me look like a child.
Well, aside from chemically altering your hair, you are going to have to go the traditional route of 1. Waiting until your hair grows a bit longer so that it can be stretched 2. Try braid outs, twist outs and bantu knots. On the first day of a “braid or twist out” your hair may be tightly coiled but if you maintain them well enough by re-twisting and using only a little bit of water (think a spritz or two from a spray bottle or a small handful of H2O in your palm), you can have looser, fuller curls by the 2nd to 3rd day. Please research “how to stretch natural hair” on Youtube.
3. Q:Before you throw tomatoes at me and yell newbie just know that all I ask for is help. I have 3b hair (3c hair in the very back of my head and 2b hair on my bangs due to my reckless straightening ways in middle school). Im 16 and I feel like my hair can NEVER be healthy or dead nor look decent. I cannot put my self toward the CG no-poo method (let alone do I understand it), and I tend to be lazy when it comes to my curly hair routine. Ive used the Pantene Pro-V Curly Hair Moisture Renewal conditioner followed up by a normal shampoo(non- curly hair based and also by Pantene) and recently I have used the Aussie Moist Condition, which may I say I HATE. Anyways lets get to the dirt. For I don’t even know how long, Ive had extremely dead dry fine curly hair. Ive been to the salon with about 3-5 inches of visible dead hair waiting to be chopped off. I also deal with a lot of hair loss, I can latterly finger comb my hair when its dry and a clump of hair will easily fall out. My dilemma is how do I get my fine limp easily damageable hair to be healthy strong and moisturized. I would tell you my porosity level but when I did it 1/4 of the strand floated to the top, some to the middle and the rest to the bottom. Wanna throw those tomatoes yet? I don’t know what to do and as much as I hate to say it, because of my current hair conditions, I hate my curly hair, but all I seek for is hope. So curlies will you help?