BAA Growth Challenge

04 October 2010

03 October 2010

BAA Challenge Month 5

So I officially passed 4 months since my BC on September 22, which was cool. Hard to believe it’s been 4 months since I cut off my relaxed ends! I still haven’t had a day of regret. So it’s time for my 4th check-in for the BAA challenge (don’t be confused by the “Month 5” I started with 1 instead of 0. . . this challenge ends for me in December, but I think I may still track my monthly progress every 6 months).

Pictures over the jump :o)

01 October 2010

My Advice To Transitioners

I often find myself being asked for advice by friends about transitioning and my routine as a natural, or reading posts on forums asking for advice and not having the motivation to type it all out.

My personal transitioning journey actually started about 4 months after my last relaxer. I usually stretched my relaxers out that long (a habit I picked up going to undergrad away from home --I didn’t trust just ANYBODY with chemicals, or scissors for that matter, near my head-- so I had to wait until I got home on break which was usually about 4 months apart at a time) ,  but when it was time for me to get a relaxer I didn’t really have the money, and I didn’t really feel like going through the pain (my head always itched when it was relaxer time, and so I always scratched, and we all know what happens when you scratch), and my hair was growing wonderfully without it. I’d been thinking about going Natural for a while, but I kept putting it off for arbitrary reasons, so one day in October 2009 I decided to just stop getting relaxers. I called my stylist and told her what I was planning to do and tried to get a little advice, I don’t remember what she told me, but it wasn’t much. I do remember her telling me that she thought I’d only need to go about a year after I told her I wanted to just grow the relaxer all the way out (like my mom did) instead of doing a Big Chop. And thus began my journey.

The first thing I did was start doing some research. I don’t know WHY exactly I decided to do research. Probably because I was excited and since I wasn’t working at the time I had plenty of time and nothing to really fill it with. The first site I found was Nappturality and then I started spending a lot of time on CurlyNikki. I used the message boards on these sites to reach out to other transitioners as well as people who were already natural for advice. I had no idea how to do my hair since I never REALLY styled it before. I’d just flat iron it after I washed and blowdried it every two weeks, then it would just end up in a ponytail or just straight down until it was time to do it again. Knowing what I know now I cringe at that routine. Eventually I got myself together, started co-washing every week and letting my hair airdry in twists, I deep conditioned weekly and mostly kept my hair in protective styles. I also clipped my ends about once a month since I was going to be cutting them all off anyway (when I was relaxed I HATED getting my hair trimmed with a passion, I was focused more on length than hair health. I’m glad I got over that.

So anyway, my advice is fairly simple: