After suffering through one of the WORST natural hair salon experiences, I resolved to learn more about my scalp condition and learn how to care for my hair. Desperate for information, how to's, and tips I stumbled onto the natural hair community on YouTube. I developed almost an obsession for learning through product reviews, tutorials, and hair journeys. Among my favorite YouTubers were CurlyChronicles, African Export, and Kimmaytube. They have type 4 hair and it is well preserved. Their videos are pretty informative and helpful. Also, I learned a lot about DIY (do it yourself) recipes for spritzes, hair butters, and oil mixtures.
My hair journey about 2 yrs ago took a turn for the better as I learned that my hair thrives on natural ingredients. After using products that had awesome ingredients, such as shea butter, aloe vera, castor oil, and mango butter, I saw my hair change from brittle to breaking to moisturized and thriving. I could not believe that my hair was the same hair that was falling out horribly.
I remember giving up on the products that I typically found in the beauty supply store. All of the greases, pomades, and moisturizers promising the softest hair DIDN'T work for me. Frustrated, I gave up and just continued to work on mixing my own hair butters and moisturizers. While the moisturizers were fun to make; I found that I could never get my mixes quite right. I decided to go into the health store and there I discovered TheraNeem shampoo and conditioner by Organix South. Although it was more expansive then what I was used to, I bought it. I felt relief from my itching scalp and I continued to use it for several months. But, after a while the shampoo's effectiveness began to wear off. It was just as my doctor had said and I remembered that I had to rotate shampoos according to his instructions.
One day while walking through Target I saw a display on the outside of the aisle featuring a new hair product called Shea Moisture. Intrigued I went over and started reading the story of the creators, who now used their grandmother's shea butter preparations. I knew that raw shea butter in my hair worked really well. So, I began picking up the products reading their ingredients. I was impressed, but I wasn't willing to buy up a whole bunch of products, so I settled on the Coconut & Hibiscus Hair Milk. After using it for the first time, I was instantly hooked.
Over the next few months I tried out different Shea Moisture products including the Restorative shampoo, deep treatment mask, and moisturizer. I quickly learned that my hair did not like the raw shea butter line. So, I went back to the Coconut & Hibiscus line trying out the shampoo and curl enhancing smoothie. Instant love!! But, I still wanted something to calm my itchy scalp and that's when I discovered the Black soap line. The Purification Masque shrank the bumps on my scalp and took away the flakes. The shampoo was awesome and the conditioner worked well.
These last 2 yrs my knowledge and understanding of my hair has grown and changed. Initially, I did not know that my hair was curly and coily. I only knew the thick, thirsty kinks that resulted from my hair needing a touch up. Even as a child I had dry hair that poofed into a dry afro once my braids or plaits were taken out. My fear of water had disappeared and I run to water using it in my spritz to revive thirsty curls. Shea, mango, and cocoa butters in natural products provide a good sealant. Oils, such as Jamaican Black Castor, grapeseed, and jojoba are among my staples. I use store brought natural products along with my occasional mixtures of oils and butters. Shampoo bars have replaced regular shampoo and dye free conditioners and stylers keep my hair moisturized.
What is the point of sharing my hair journey? I want to encourage ladies, who have balding, shedding, and breaking hair to not give up! Don't get caught up in coveting thick, luxious hair. It took my 4 yrs being natural to figure out my hair. Work with the hair you have in order to get the hair you want.
Looking back on your hair journey what do you now know that you wish you knew when you first started? What are your hair milestones.