By Ayoka of Nap­py Sexy Fly

bday
My daugh­ter has a whole lot of nap­py hair as you can see. Her hair is below waist length stretched. She is 5 years old and of course has nev­er had her hair straight­ened. She knows she’s beau­ti­ful because we always tell her that she is sooooooo beau­ti­ful. She knows noth­ing of self loathing. She loves her skin and hair and every­thing about her­self because we adore her and tell her so all the time. We live in a pre­dom­i­nant­ly white com­mu­ni­ty so she inter­acts with them on the reg­u­lar but has no issues. She attracts love and kind­ness like a mag­net because this is what she expe­ri­ences all the time in her home. This is her foun­da­tion. It’s all in how you treat your chil­dren. It’s all in the mes­sages you send them. A child should not feel inse­cure, ugly or unwant­ed. Our job as par­ents is to make sure they know they are per­fect and pre­cious. Their lives even when we are not around will reflect the love we plant­ed in their souls.

As for her hair, there is no way on earth her hair would ever be as healthy or achieve this length with a relax­er. I have old­er twin daughter’s who’s hair was as long as this. Their father begged me for years to relax it because he couldn’t do it on their vis­its so I gave in even­tu­al­ly and let him take them to have it done. I knew what would hap­pen but he didn’t believe me when I told him. Their hair was super long and healthy to start then it began to break off. It even­tu­al­ly broke off to chin length in a year’s time even though they had their hair done pro­fes­sion­al­ly and kept it up. Need­less to say, they are both tran­si­tion­ing now and nev­er want to see anoth­er relax­er as long as they live. Now when I send them to their father for vis­its, their hair is in braids. They know how healthy their hair was pri­or to the relax­er and how bad­ly it dam­aged their hair. Relax­ers hold no mys­tique for them. They will not be beg­ging me to perm it for prom. Nap­py hair is frag­ile not strong and chem­i­cals break it down to the point that it is even more frag­ile and prone to break­age.

My youngest daugh­ter is by my hus­band. We both agreed no chem­i­cal would ever touch her hair. Her hair got this long by treat­ing it the way nap­py hair needs to be treat­ed. Very lit­tle manip­u­la­tion. I put her braids in and don’t take them down for weeks at a time. I wash her hair in the braids. When its time to redo, I take it one braid at a time mak­ing sure to mois­tur­ize and oil to pre­vent break­age. I sep­a­rate and smooth with my fin­gers and very gen­tly comb the ends with a wide tooth comb and re-braid. She usu­al­ly has any­where from 8 to 12 braids. It takes about 2 hours to do her hair because I don’t yank and snatch through it like it needs to be pun­ished. The keys to healthy naps are mois­ture, low manip­u­la­tion and a gen­tle patient touch. That’s pret­ty much it. Her hair is also nev­er blow dried, in fact no heat is used on her hair.

For all those who use hair typ­ing, we are both 4b in oth­er words nap­py. Her father is a pure blood­ed Ghana­ian (Ghana, West Africa, black­est Africa, home of the purest naps and deep­est melan­in endowed gor­geous dark skin where the major­i­ty of us can trace our roots because it is from there that the major­i­ty of our ances­tors depart­ed) :) I am an African-Amer­i­can with no recent inter­rup­tion of my African blood­line, in oth­er words not mixed. Yes, true African naps can achieve length if so desired if you hon­or God’s bless­ing by nur­tur­ing and lov­ing them and car­ing enough to learn about how to take care of them instead of try­ing to mur­der them with tox­ic chem­i­cals.

As long as I am in charge, my daugh­ter will nev­er feel the burn of chem­i­cals or the heat of a straight­en­ing tool. She will always know and not ques­tion the pow­er and truth of her own God given beau­ty just as she knows it at the impres­sion­able age of 5.

Nat­u­ral­ly I was amazed by this sto­ry, so I asked Ayoka to share her daughter’s reg­i­men. She sent this in her reply e-mail

“Peo­ple can mis­take a well man­aged head of 4b hair for 3 type hair. I get that a lot and I edu­cate peo­ple so they aren’t mis­tak­en and know that their hair can do all the stuff my daughter’s and my hair does. I think when peo­ple under­stand all the options they have with their hair and that it’s real­ly not that dif­fi­cult to man­age, then we will see more of us let­ting go of the relax­ers because relaxed hair isn’t near­ly as ver­sa­tile, healthy and in my opin­ion, beau­ti­ful on us as our own hair tex­ture.”

AYOKA’S DAUGHTER’S REGIMEN

1. Very low manip­u­la­tion. This is the most impor­tant thing I must empha­size for type 4 hair. 4b hair is the most frag­ile and if you’re break­ing it off while you’re try­ing to grow it, you’ll nev­er see length. I’m able to avoid a lot of manip­u­la­tion because I keep it stretched nev­er let­ting it bunch up, tan­gle up or shrink.

2. Keep it stretched. This is espe­cial­ly impor­tant for me because she has a lot of hair and I can’t afford the sit­u­a­tions that will sure­ly jump off, if I allow all that hair to shrink and wrap around each oth­er. The detan­gle would be enor­mous. The way I keep her hair in a stretched state is by keep­ing it mois­tur­ized, oiled and in box braids, this way it is nev­er real­ly tan­gled to the point where I have to go at it like a mad wom­an. I am able to detan­gle her hair for the most part using my fin­gers. I use a wide tooth comb to help and a soft brush down the length of it to smooth it out when I style it. The most impor­tant thing is to nev­er snatch though it. Be gen­tle and work your way from the bot­tom when detan­gling.

3. I nev­er wash it all loose. That would be an epic under­tak­ing. I always keep her hair sep­a­rat­ed. I take her braids down one at a time (I do this in our bath tub) wash, con­di­tion, rin­se and slop­pi­ly twist or braid that sec­tion and con­tin­ue on to the next until I’m done and ready to style. I most­ly co-wash and ACV rin­se pri­or to co-wash­ing when it’s real­ly dirty. When wash­ing I do not ever scrub the hair again­st it self like you see in com­mer­cials this will cre­ate tan­gle and knots. I wet the sec­tion thor­ough­ly and pull the con­di­tion­er gen­tly down her hair shaft and rin­se down­ward, loos­en­ing and sep­a­rat­ing any tan­gles as I go using a wide tooth comb from the ends upward if nec­es­sary.

4. Mois­ture is key for type 4 hair because as we all know it’s dri­er than a dessert. My daugh­ters hair likes heavy prod­ucts. So any thick leave-in or mois­tur­iz­er is where I start on her damp washed hair. I coat each sec­tion with a leave in or mois­tur­iz­er (not picky just has to be thick) and then seal with olive oil and shea always gen­tly pulling the pro­duct down the hair shaft. This is heavy but for her dry hair it smooths it out and helps it to stretch to the max with­out heat. I spray her scalp and braids with pure Aloe Vera juice mixed with olive oil. I redo her hair no more than every two weeks. If she’s rock­ing 8 or more braids that can be styled dif­fer­ent ways, I’ll leave it up for up to a mon­th, clean­ing her scalp with a wet rag and clean­ing her braids from top to bot­tom with a wet rag, some­times I’ll wash her hair while in the braids if it gets to dirty. Yes it gets fuzzy when I do this but some­times I’m lazy and some­times she doesn’t feel like get­ting it done lol. If she’s got her 5 braid sit­u­a­tion going on, I will of course take her hair wraps off each braid and tie her hair up at night and use some pro­duct to brush and smooth it in the morn­ing and put her hair bands (non-elas­tic and using very lit­tle ten­sion). She looks fresh like that for 2 weeks.

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For more of Ayoka, check out her blog HERE.

Black Girl With Long Hair

Leila Noel­lis­te, founder of Black Girl with Long Hair (April 2008). Social media, pop cul­ture and black beau­ty enthu­si­ast. bell hooks’ hair twin…

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178 Comments on "Mom grows out daughter’s kinky natural hair to waist length"

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AMarie

@TMS

I LOVE LOVE LOVE that Mar­cus Gar­vey quote! There are some days when I just want to tell the nay-say­ers “nope, God didn’t make any mis­takes with me!”

@Ayoka

Your daughter’s hair is beau­ti­ful :D I plan to do the same with my daugh­ters- no perms, tex-lax­ers or any­thing- just love, care and a lit­tle mois­tur­iz­er :)

TMS

@Ayoka’s 1/10/10 com­ments:

Well said!

May God con­tin­ue to bless you and your fam­i­ly.

Peace & Bless­ings,
TMS

” God made us his per­fect cre­ation. He made no mis­take when he made us black with kinky hair.”-Marcus Gar­vey

Black Married Momma

Amen. Amen! Amen.

NappySexyFly
To any­one it may con­cern: This is Ayoka. Just want­ed all my African sis­ters to know I love the con­ti­nent and we are all sis­ters. Our moth­er is black and nap­py and beau­ti­ful. This is some­thing I want­ed to express to Africans in the dias­po­ra (Amer­i­can Africans etc) who think a cer­tain way about the Africans they came from (the West Africans with the “tough nige­ri­an hair”). We in the dias­po­ra have been told lies about our moth­er which has caused us to want to dis­tance our­selves from her. I am try­ing to show the truth about our African moth­er.… Read more »
Nikki
@ Ms. Wright, I didn’t find the line, “Our job as par­ents is to make sure they know they are per­fect and pre­cious.” to be scary at all. I don’t think her daugh­ter will be dev­as­tat­ed when some­one lat­er points out her “imper­fec­tions” at all, on the con­trary, I think she’ll be con­fi­dent enough to brush the neg­a­tiv­i­ty off and believe in her­self, because her par­ents have instilled self con­fi­dence and self love in her. I thought this arti­cle was so touch­ing, because I wish that I’d been raised to feel this way about myself. My father wasn’t around and it… Read more »
Sherri

What a bless­ing to read about Ayoka and her daugh­ters! Ayoka, thank you for affirm­ing your daugh­ters and not being ashamed to say so! I have always believed good par­ents pro­tect their chil­dren as a moth­er bear would pro­tect her cubs. Your daugh­ters are blessed to know you love them as God cre­at­ed them and they don’t need to be con­cerned about oth­ers’ opin­ions. Keep up the good work!

Ms. Bar B
Sim­ply per­fec­tion!! I almost want­ed to cry I could relate so much. Relate in the way that, as a child, my hair was just like this… until I got my first perm. Just like her twins, my long hair was destroyed! And just like with her lit­tle girl, I wasn’t about to let that hap­pen to my daugh­ter. As a result, my daughter’s hair is near­ly the same length as her daughter’s hair is. I even blogged about it after going through a comb­ing out ses­sion (adopt­ing the title of your won­der­ful blog, lol):  http://comfortingplace.blogspot.com/2010/01/lil-black-girl-with-long-hair.html Thank you so much for bring­ing… Read more »
Gem
I am re-post­ing this on my blog. This makes me so hap­py, I can’t even tell you! I also did not take her com­ments in a neg­a­tive way. As some­one with type 3 hair I often get side-eyes and side-mouths when I try to extol the virtues of nat­u­ral hair to black wom­en I know. We have all heard the “my hair is too nap­py” speech. I think it’s won­der­ful that this wom­an is rais­ing her type-4 hair daugh­ter to be nat­u­ral. It all starts with the chil­dren. I think we NEED to see more type 4 reach this length just… Read more »
cc
I loved this arti­cle. It is tru­ly nice to see a moth­er who cares enough about her daugh­ter to have enough patience to do her hair with love, and to let her know that she is BEAUTIFUL the way god made her. I read some of the com­ments, and I was sur­prised that some­one could get offend­ed by the fact that the moth­er lets her daugh­ter know that she is per­fect just the way she is. I think that’s our respon­si­b­li­ty as par­ents. Espe­cial­ly as black wom­en we face so much pres­sure to con­form. We are con­stant­ly faced with images… Read more »
Sasha

Beau­ti­ful lit­tle girl…beautiful mom! I’m more dis­turbed that peo­ple will find neg­a­tiv­i­ty in even the most pos­i­tive sit­u­a­tions.

This was a very encour­ag­ing post for 4a/b beau­ties! Thank you! :-)

CO

She is such a cutie! Thanks for shar­ing.

Apartmentlife

Beau­ti­ful lit­tle girl! I hope she con­tin­ues to have a great expe­ri­ence as she grows up. 

@Bee, I don’t think she meant it that way. I think she’s just say­ing that accord­ing to soci­ety, her hus­band is the rep­re­sen­ta­tion of true black.

Ms. Wright
Her hair is gor­geous and I’m glad she’s teach­ing her daugh­ter to love her­self. How­ev­er, “Our job as par­ents is to make sure they know they are per­fect and pre­cious.” This line makes me ner­vous. All I can imag­ine is this lit­tle girl grow­ing up and being dev­as­tat­ed when some oth­er girl (or a may­be a guy) calls her on her “imper­fec­tions.” Or even worse, judg­ing oth­er chil­dren like her as imper­fect because they’re dif­fer­ent. I’ll give the moth­er cred­it, I’m sure she’s tak­en the pre­cau­tions nec­es­sary to make sure her child isn’t that type of per­son, but not all… Read more »
Joli
hmm­mm I don’t know about this state­ment. Although I love her com­mit­ment to nat­u­ral hair and her daughter’s love, it seems like anoth­er per­son with 4type hair who likes to dis­miss 3type hair. Look, I know there are always com­ments about dif­fer­ent types of hair, but come on… when she was talk­ing about how she is “pure African” it made it almost sound like hav­ing dif­fer­ent cul­tures was “unpure”. Oh well, I don’t feel like caus­ing any neg­a­tive ener­gy, but I wish one day all types of kinky tex­tures can accept each oth­er with­out hav­ing to make speech­es about how… Read more »
Nikki

GO MOM!!!!! Her daugh­ter is beau­ti­ful!!! Mama is beau­ti­ful too! Beau­ti­ful hair. :D

MissyD
This lit­tle girl is so adorable!!! She is too pre­cious. But I real­ly like this arti­cle. Recent­ly a friend of mine just real­ized that I’m nat­u­ral (when we first met I had a weave on and then he went over­seas for a few months). He asked me all sorts of offen­sive ques­tions like do I shave, do I bathe in juices? Then he remarked about Angeli­na Jolie’s daugh­ter and her “nap­py” hair as if it were a plague. So I’m going to send him this arti­cle to read and hope that he reads the more of the blog. I can’t… Read more »
Monique

Props to Ayoka for know­ing how to prop­er­ly han­dle nat­u­ral hair. Her daughter’s hair is beau­ti­ful. KUDOS for teach­ing her to love her­self as she is!!!

I hope we see more of this in the black com­mu­ni­ty as knowl­edge AND accep­tance of nat­u­ral hair spreads.

mellowyel

aww, she’s gor­geous! and WOW WOW WOW such beau­ti­ful hair! i think she one-upped Princess Tiana in that last pic, lol. inspir­ing

Yardyspice

Her hair is so beau­ti­ful! Kudos to you mom.

Yoshi3329

That great, though, I didn’t have to see princess tiana, can’t stand that movie.

dajewel

this is a great arti­cle!!! am lov­ing the frank­ness in the arti­cle!! my hair is a 4, and i have had peo­ple mis­take it for 3 because i keep it so mois­tur­ized, etc. i also have to co-sign with her with wash­ing the hair in twists: it makes a world of a dif­fer­ence. i pret­ty much co-wash/shampoo and dc when my hair is in twists, gen­tly untwist, detan­gle with my fin­gers (i haven’t used a come since the mid­dle of last year) and retwist.

revolution grl

what a beau­ti­ful, beau­ti­ful lit­tle girl and mom too! this post made me smile so much :)

trackback

[…]  Any sug­ges­tions?  I’ve just come across a great post on http://bglhonline.com/ about how a moth­er grew her type 4 child’s hair down to her waist, sim­ple regime and empha­sis on LOW MAINTENANCE, so I’ll have to adapt that by learn­ing how to […]

vonnie

wow, her hair is so beau­ti­ful and that sounds like such a great regime to adapt. I need to get on some­thing like that, I like to play in my curls too much :( That is a prob­lem that i know cre­ates tan­gles, but it’s so soft and fun. I’ll be sure to adapt some­thing like she does, twist or braid it up and let it thrive. Great post, thanks for find­ing and shar­ing her sto­ry! The mom sounds like a great par­ent, teach­ing her gor­geous daugh­ter great self worth and esteem. BRAVO!!

http://socialitedreams.wordpress.com

tryinottotexlax

This is prob­a­bly the most heart-warm­ing and inspir­ing sto­ry I’ve read on BGLH. Gor­geous AND smart? Yes please!

Jane Ug-Lbc

She’s beau­ti­ful!!!!!

bee

wow, great arti­cle. how­ev­er, one state­ment in here rubbed me the wrong way, “Ghana, West Africa, black­est Africa, home of the purest naps and deep­est melan­in endowed gor­geous dark skin”, so if you’re not from west africa, you’re not authen­ti­cal­ly black??

afrofeelin

Oh my god!! the daugh­ter and the moth­er have beau­ti­ful hair !! I wish I could have hair like this ^.^

afrofeelin

OH my god !!! The daugh­ter and the moth­er have beau­ti­ful hair. I wish I could have hair like this ^.^

Michelle

ok, her with pri­ness tiana is the most adorable pic­ture EVER!! that is the cutest thing i have seen in a while. what a lucky lit­tle girl to have such a great set of par­ents with their stuff real­ly togeth­er.

Kay

This is the per­fect respon­se to Ms Union’s blog. Absolute­ly gor­geous.

*It is your duty as a black wom­an to smile at and com­pli­ment every lit­tle black girl you pass in the street.*

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