Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Common Transitioning Hair Issues: Dryness & Styling


Are you starting to get frustrated with your transitioning or natural hair? I hear from many people daily, and honestly, I can relate. I remember when I was at 7-10 months into my transition, my natural hair was getting really thick, while my relaxed hair was looking pretty scrawny. It is a true trick to master 2 contrasting hair textures at once (some folks are even juggling 3 differing textures). You're doing great!

Here's a few things that I did (and still do) to alleviate my styling woe's:

  • What products are you using? I have to read the ingredient label of any new product I'd like to purchase. Adding a new product to your hair care drawer can add new and improved problems to your daily styling. For instance, If you are using products with certain "cones" like Dimethicone, this may be a reason for dryness. A solution to that could be to first use a sulphate shampoo and wash (to remove the silicone). Afterwards, you'd benefit from a deep conditioner treatment (preferably one with natural ingredients). Afterwards, as a follow up you could do a mid week oil treatment (just put your favorite oil or olive oil on your hair, put a plastic cap and let it sit for a few hours).

  • Are you shampooing too much? Natural and Relaxed hair are quick to get dry, they don't need any additional help from harsh shampoos, or even any other surfactant prepared to remove those precious natural oils. Assess how many times a month your hair truly needs dirt removal/cleansing. This will of course be based on your environment, sweat factors, or basic cleansing needs.

  • If your products are not what's causing the dryness, then make sure you're doing deep conditioning treatments. 

  • When I was transitioning and I got tired of styling my hair, I put in human hair braided extensions. That gave me about 2 months of a break, and all I had to do was spritz a moisturizer daily. If you're unable to do that, maybe you could bun up your hair after stretching your roots. Bunning is great for long term transitioners. The ends of the hair is kept tucked away (after moisturizing). Just don't pull too hard on the edges, or that can cause damage to the hairline. Check out transitioning hair buns on YouTube if you need a tutorial.

  • Don't overlook perm rod rollers! They can put the relaxed hair "in check" for days! Because they're so small, they give a tight curl to otherwise dead straight hair. Also, the curl you get from the perm rod rollers lasts for days. Additionally, they are a great way to preserve your ends during your transition. They keep the ends of the hair "tucked away" in the moisturized curl. You will only need to tousle the curl with your finger to achieve your style. Once you've got the perm rod roller texture, you are free to style as you please (banana clip, buns, ponytails, wear it loose, etc).

  • Another thing I did was go to the hairdresser for a break. Instead, I think I got 10 more gray hairs LOL! I ended up being very aggravated instead of relieved and de-stressed. Most stylists I've been to have been rough with my hair (transitioning & all natural)!

First and foremost, just take a deep breath and then assess what needs to be done first (ie. moisturizing, then de-tangling, possibly stretching your coils by braiding or twisting). Then after all of that has been done, the best style option will be one that can last until your next wash day (maybe 5-7 days).


Much Love--tia

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