Whether you have just begun your natural hair journey or you are considering it, I am sure you have all of these big plans for your hair, right? But wait! Before your start dreaming and planning you must have realistic expectations for your hair or you are not going to be happy…period point blank!
Texture I hope my hair won’t be nappy!
Texture has to be the number one thing that newly naturals wonder about. Will I have kinks or loose ringlets? Whatever your texture happens to be just know this, it is beautiful no matter what. Although looser textures are flaunted more often, kinkier textures as just as beautiful. Curly hair has to be handled very delicately overall, but just know the more kinky your texture is the more delicate and protective that you will have to be with it and don’t skimp out on the moisture!
Shrinkage sometimes up to 80% of your actual hair length Almost all naturals have shrinkage to some extent. You may have 50% shrinkage or even as much 80% (like me!) Although I am presently at about 10 inches of hair, it looks like I have about 3 inches of hair when I don’t stretch my hair out. So depending on your hair type, although you may have a good amount of hair, it may not really look like it! However, if there are times where you want your hair to look more stretched you can use braid outs, twist outs, roller sets, banding, and African threading to extend your tresses. As your hair grows longer this will be less of a problem.
Moisture preventing dry hair is pretty easy! You will need to effectively moisturize your hair to keep it healthy. If you suffer from particularly dry hair a good technique is the LOC method. First use a liquid like water, then use an oil, then seal the moisture into your hair with a moisturizing hair creme.
Regular Washing + Conditioning Schedule Often times when we were relaxed we were trained to be afraid of water and hence many of us did not wash as regularly as we should. This will all vary from person to person, but it is good for you to wash at least once a week. Water is your friend not the enemy.
Keep your hands off your hair it’s hard but try! Especially if you have a kinkier texture constant manipulation of your hair will lead to breakage. This includes daily combing or brushing, styling, or detangling improperly. It is best to keep your hair in protective styles like braids, buns, or twists and low manipulation styles like twist outs or braids outs. The more you touch your hair the weaker it becomes, so you want to keep your contact with it to a minimum.
You can’t do everything, everyone else does and that’s okay!
You may not be the girl that can spritz water on her hair and just go. And that is okay! You have to embrace your hair for what it is, and do what works best for you.