Going natural is a hair journey I have embarked on so many times then stopped along the way. I would reach a pretty good length, sometimes even shoulder length (A big deal especially in two years )and think, I can’t do this. So I would process it only to go back to the big chop Again!
This, for most of my adult life has been a vicious cycle I wanted to stop.
My pregnancy would not have come at a better time. The hormones, the bust of oestrogen made my hair so thick, lustrous and strong I just decided to ditch the hair relaxers and go natural, no turning back. Only this time, I was not dramatic with the big chop. I decided to transition.
Transitioning here, refers to going natural by growing out your processed hair instead of cutting it.
This requires a lot of care and protective styling for long, healthy hair. Which is why I went on to research on the best, most affordable hair care methods and styling. Here are my top pocket friendly afro hairstyles for transitioning and natural hair.
1. Ghanaian Lines
This is my favorite hair style. The lines, when stunningly done, make a woman look like an African goddess. It is fast so you do not have to sit all day having your hair done. It is also very affordable and versatile. You can wear the lines pulled up to a bun, in a push back do, and if you want a short term style, you can do two or four cornrows that are edgy and simple.
Most African women prefer to have their natural hair braided instead of always open. this is a perfect hairdo for those times when you just want your hair under wraps.
2. Crotchet Braids
The best thing about crotchety braids is, if you are patient enough and you know how to crotchety, you can do them at home. They are like weaves only they last longer and they are better for your hairline. You can decide how to style them and they being out the naturalist in you. We all want the more natural looking hairstyle especially if we have made the decision to embrace the afro, so why not give crocheting a try?
3. Perm rod setting
Heat is hair’s number one enemy. Protective styling is essential when it comes to hair and especially so, if you are transitioning. So for this style, grab a pack of perm rods. You will also need:
– Pure Castor Oil (Stimulates hair growth)
-Pure Coconut Oil (Works as a perfect conditioning oil and locks in the moisture)
-Sulphur Free Shampoo (prevents over drying of the scalp and hair )
-Styling gel(for holding the curls!)
Wash your hair with sulphur free shampoo, then condition it. You could also combine both shampoo and conditioner if your hair is not too oily. Separate the hair into sections and use coconut oil on the strands, castor oil on the scalp and shea butter from the roots to the ends (Especially on the ends). When you are done, apply a small amount of styling gel on the sections from the roots to the ends and wrap the sections with perm rods. Make sure you do all this with wet hair. You can spray your hair with holding spray then wrap your head with a cotton scarf and go to bed. You will wake up to beautifully set hair. there! If you prefer the hair salon, say you want to do your hair and go out, you can wash, moisturize, oil and gel your hair at home, then have the perm rods done at the hair salon. You can use the hairdryer only with minimum heat and for as little time as . If you are a daring fashionista, you can wear a turban during the day and wear the perm rods as you go about your day then remove them the following day.
4. THE WIG!
Yes, the wig. A lot has been said in spite of this hair accessory or this “type of hair”, but wigs are Heaven sent on an African girl’s bad hair day. Well, at least they are on Mu bad hair day. Wigs come in all lengths and textures. As an African woman, I am more inclined to the natural looking wigs or rather those that mimic the hair of a woman of African descent. When I cannot find one that does, I simply get a wig with small curls and comb the curls out.I wear anything beneath the wig from corn rows to three knot twists. It is a convenient, temporary and quick fix to a hair emergency. The beauty of a wig is that you do not have to worry about your hair line or your partner chewing your hair at night. Win-Win.