If you have been natural or transitioning for any length of time, the temptation to relax your hair will probably have presented itself. First of all, don’t be alarmed, it happens to most of us at some point in our natural hair journey particularly if you had been relaxed for quite a number of years beforehand. Old habits die hard.
It’s like you have grown up being told that the world is flat and suddenly you are told that world is in fact round. By going natural you will have had to adjust your entire outlook on life and how you view yourself and even after accepting this, some of your old belief systems will kick in especially in times of stress.
You are not ‘betraying the sisterhood’ by your thoughts but don’t act on a whim, before you give in to relaxer temptation take a step back and do the following:
Remember your reasons for going natural or transitioning in the first place
You may have been frustrated with your constantly breaking hair when you were relaxed or you aspired to live a more natural life free of chemicals. Whatever your reasons were for choosing natural hair, chances are those reasons are still valid now so by backtracking, you will be undoing all your good work so far, there is light at the end of the tunnel.
Take a step back from your hair
Frustration can lead to rash decisions so take a step back from dealing with your hair until your head is in the right place. Slap on a wig*, weave*, braids or whatever you need to do so you don’t have to deal with your hair for a few weeks. Chances are once the stress subsides, you will remember how much you actually love your natural hair!
Re-learn natural hair care
Most people who have gone back to relaxing after having been natural or transitioned for a while will tell you exactly why they decided to give up on their natural journey and it usually involves frustration with texture, styling or a combination of the two.
If this is you, re-learn the art of black hair care. If you have a favorite blogger or vlogger, immerse yourself into their hair care tips and advice and soon the darkness will lift. You can do this!
Pretend relaxers had never been invented
My daughter is growing up in a world of 24 hour entertainment so she will probably never understand the pleasure that her mum got as a child from early Saturday morning cartoons (remember He-man?). As difficult as it is to fathom, there was a time before relaxers and people then just dealt with their hair as it grew. The idea of natural hair didn’t even exist, they just called it hair. So suck it up and get on with it.
Write a pros and cons list
Ah, the list is an old psychology standby but it’s very effective. By now you probably know the amount of work and effort it takes to grow black hair long weather relaxed or natural, I’m sure you’ve watched more than a few relaxed Youtubers so you are familiar with what a good relaxed regimen looks like.
Do you honestly think that it will be any easier to look after relaxed hair? Are you willing to take hours of trial and error to learn the skill of roller setting your hair straight? Relaxed hair may be marginally easier to comb through than natural hair but combing is not the only part of a regimen. In fact all things considered, in regards to the ease of a natural or a relaxed hair regimen, it’s a wash.
If you temptation to relax does not stem from a place of stress and you are genuinely making a well thought out decision wear your hair in a different texture for styling reasons, then by all means go ahead and relax your hair and enjoy your new journey!
Originally posted 2012-11-21 11:45:11.