Six months after the big chop! Happy to be natural again…It feels good! My hair journey has included weaves, braids, perms, and wigs…Many of these styles weakened my fragile hair-line and caused my hair to thin…I currently wear my hair in protective hair styles such as braids and yes I throw on a wig every now and then. When my hair grows out more I’ll feel more comfortable wearing it out. Baby steps!!
My hair journey was one filled with many transitions. As a natural hair wearer of 14 years plus I’ve long come to love my beautiful natural God given hair. As a child my natural hair was braided, plaited, straightened with a hot comb and sometimes curled with curlers hot from the kitchen stove. The press and curl didn’t last very long due to the humidity and high temperatures where I resided. I transitioned from the press and curl to the perm, the perm provided me with bouncy straight hair, I just hated how my scalp would burn if I perspired or scratched my scalp before getting my bouncy straight hair. With the perm my hair would break at the point of demarcation if I failed to get my touch ups on time. I wore the perm for years even with the burning and breaking…go figure. After tiring of the straight look I wore a Jeri curl for many years, Because my hair was moisturized daily with the curl my dense type 4b/c hair responded very well, I had the biggest curl fro ever! I loved the curl but didn’t like the products that I had to use to keep my hair from drying out. It wasn’t long before I tired of the Jeri Curl and went back to the straight perm. Over time my hair started to thin in the top. I decided to give my hair a rest and wear individual braids and extensions. These braids and extensions gave me the length I desired and gave my hair a much-needed break. The only problem with the braids and extensions was every six to eight weeks they had to be taken down and done all over again. The growth my hair experienced while in the braids was short-lived when the braids were removed. It was a vicious cycle, my hair would grow, break, grow… I was desperate to find a style that would allow me to embrace my natural hair without the breakage. I almost forgot!!! I also wore the Afro during the 70’s, … During that time natural hair blogs, tutorials and product lines especially formulated for our hair type were not available as they are now, so keeping my Afro nice was a work always in progress. My break came when i read an article in the Monitor… a local community newspaper. The article featured the Sisterlocks TM approach to natural hair. Dr. JoAnne Cornwell who patented this approach was interviewed and the rest for me was history. Sisterlocks has enabled me to wear my hair in its natural state, it allows my hair to do what it naturally does…coil and curl without the aide of synthetic hair, gels, stylers, lotions or anything to alter my hair texture. The Sisterlocks lifestyle for me has been so incredibly liberating. Bad hair days are a thing of the past. Feel free to share your natural hair journey in the comment section below…it’s amazing how the paths of our natural hair journey intersect. Can I get a witness??
Unknotted Bantu Knots makes for a style that easily lasts for days, just tie up at night with a satin scarf and when showering don’t forget your shower cap, moisture will cause your styles to fall. The back is secured with an XL Flexi 8 http://www.lillarose.biz/cathythomas
When I was their age my regimen consisted of shampooing and conditioning my hair followed by a pressing with a hot comb (comb heated up on the stove) This method of styling my hair would often result in my ear or neck getting a burn here and there. The press also only lasted for a few days because of the extreme heat and humidity in my home town. For these girls their regimen consist of shampooing , and conditioning, no need to deal with hot combs, regular combs, picks or brushes. The weather is also of no concern to these girls, their locks aren’t afraid of rain!
Many who wear their hair relaxed often ask if they need to cut the relaxed hair in order to get Sisterlocks, not necessarily, you can start your Sisterlocks with approx. 3 inches of new growth. The new growth will be locked only because chemically altered hair will not lock. The relaxed ends can be styled and as the locks mature they can be trimmed.
Many choose to transition from a perm to Sisterlocks by wearing protective hair styles. Wearing protective hair styles can help prevent the hair from breaking at the point of demarcation, demarcation is where the permed hair and new growth intersect . Unfortunately many of these styles are left in for long periods of time and when taken out the hair is often lacking moisture and breaks easily. The key is to not leave the styles in for more than a few weeks, some will leave their protective hair styles in for months at a time, this leads to matting and breaking. Once the protective style is taken down the hair must be shampooed and moisturized with the proper products before the hair is put back into it’s protective style. Hair grows approx. 1/2 inch per month for most, so be prepared to stay with this routine for at least six months to get the desired length needed to start your Sisterlocks. Once the desired length is achieved the permed ends can be trimmed off or you can keep them and trim them after you reach your desired length with Sisterlocks.
- Cornrows flat twists and individuals braids are great protective hair styles provided that they’re not done to tight or left in to long.
- TWIST/BRAID OUTS: This style can be done on freshly cleansed hair or dry hair that has been stretched for added length and volume. After moisturizing, apply your styler of choice and separate your hair into sections and twist or braid it. For added interest, you could put the ends of your hair or the entire length itself on rollers. Once your hair is completely dry, or after some time has passed, unravel and separate the twists gently to hide the parts and increase the volume. The best part about these styles is that you do not need to rewet your hair to restyle. To make the hair pliable enough to detangle, you can either spray it with water or add a good detangling product, then add a styler if necessary and restyle. Also, to maintain your hair’s health, make sure you moisturize and seal your hair, especially at the ends.