For the longest time in the beginning of my natural hair journey, I had a vision of what natural beauty looked like. At least what I felt it would look like on me. Long billowy curls that would just evenly land on my shoulders like the women from the mainstream commercials. I just knew I would have those bouncy curls that would compete with the ringlets in magazines.
Turns out I do not.
It is not because of lack of good diet, water intake or even exercise. I simply couldn’t keep the scissors out of my tuft of ebony cotton. I would find myself growing it to a decent sized wide afro, dye it a few colors a year, then finally digressing with my boredom and hack it all off. Earlier last summer after promising the year before that I would never cut my hair again, I shaved my sides off and rocked a high top fro.
I did a 6th big chop last August. Ever since that day, I’ve felt more masculine and it unnerved me. I had cut it down to even out with my shaved sides. So I hopped on biotin without my other needed supplements to start to jump start my hair. It helped slightly.
I knew I needed to balance my intake, so I purchased a hair skin and nails supplement. It was that moment that I realized I was obsessing again. I had been going through my timelines, adoring other full mane wearing naturals.
I noticed that in my mind, I had accepted that long flowing curly hair was the equivalent of beauty. Not just that but it felt as if it measured my success (or lack of) as a natural. I know I’m not alone, considering the number of people asking what methods to use. Despite the chemistry involved, a vast majority of us have managed to simplify our routines. I’m still using Hawaiian Silky in the summer and Blue Magic coconut grease (on my hair only) in the winter. I have a very plant based diet, not yet 100% vegetarian but getting there. The biggest contributor to the health of my hair root to tip – water. I track my progress monthly by taking a picture on the same day that I chopped my hair. To aid in hindering my scissor happy hands I’ve started to invest in more wigs and curly sew – ins. The only way to really understand our curls, honestly is to have patience leave them alone and let them grow.