I am a mother, daughter, girlfriend, friend, manager, and an obsessor of all things hair. I have always loved hair- my hair, my dolls' hair, other people's hair. I like to look at different hair textures and styles. I like to try different hair products. I could talk about hair all day.
I think my hair type is 4a or 4b. My hair is not porous at all, so moisturizing it has been my biggest challenge. My hair strands are fine, but I have a lot of them, so my hair isn't thin. It can look thin when relaxed or straightened.
After having a relaxer for 24 years, I decided to transition to natural. I was on a healthy hair journey for 4 years prior to my transition. I learned so much about my hair- what products to use, how to take care of it, stretch my relaxers, etc.- but for a combination of reasons, relaxed hair just wasn't working for me anymore. My hair grew to the longest length it had ever been (arm-pit length), but wasn't as thick as I wanted it to be. It was hard for me to keep my hair moist. The longer it got, the worse it looked to me.
I remember my mother, her sister, and my father's sisters telling me that once they reached a certain age, their hair just couldn't tolerate relaxers anymore. I think the older I get, the more sensitive my hair is to chemicals.
I truly thought that I would have a relaxer forever. I never considered myself brainwashed, but maybe I was/am. I remember when I was a child, I used to wish for bouncy hair like the white women I saw on tv. I begged my mother to get a relaxer when I was 13. Since I hadn't seen my natural hair since I was a child, I didn't even know what my natural texture was. I also wanted to see if I had the courage and discipline to do it.
My reasons for going natural:
* I want healthy, thick hair.
* I want to know and be able to manage my natural texture.
* I don't want to be dependent on stylists/salons anymore.
* I want big hair.
* I want other women (and ME) to see that kinky is beautiful.
I did the big chop on June 30, 2012. My hair grows in a very tight "S" pattern. Because my hair is very dry and not porous, it's hard for my natural curls to form. My first year as a natural was challenging and frustrating, but I've gotten to the point where I know how to keep my hair moisturized, and I'm starting to love my locs! Even when I'm frustrated with my hair, I still feel positive and excited about the journey ahead. Not once have I regretted getting rid of my relaxed hair!
Tiffanita's hair do's:
* Consistent deep conditioning WITH HEAT
* Moisturizing spray of water, leave-in and oil
* Sleeping with a satin scarf or on a satin pillowcase
Tiffanita's hair don'ts:
* Henna - I think this helped ruin my relaxed and natural hair. Not great for low porosity hair. It caused extreme dryness and some breakage.
* Aloe vera juice (avj) - another product that its not for low porosity hair.
* Extreme heat styling - I got heat damage from getting my natural hair straightened just one time.
* Co-Washing - it's good when I'm washing my hair more than once a week, but my scalp needs shampoo once a week to get it clean.