Is Growing Out Kinky Hair Worth the Effort?

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Jessica brings today’s question of the day;

I went natural back in 2006, and kinda had fun with my hair the first few years of being natural. Earlier this year I became really focused on retaining length and started applying some protective techniques. I quickly learned that in order for me to retain maximum length I need to keep my hair in protective styles for at least two weeks at a time, and that my ends need to be tucked during this time. As you can imagine this limits my styling options tremendously. And, while I know I’ll probably have a lot of fun with my hair once it’s long, I was having fun with it when it was short, too. It’s like, I know that kinky hair can grow long, and that 4b&c-textured naturals (like myself) can have long hair. But the reality is that, for many of us, it’s a far more intensive and challenging process than for looser textures. And it just makes me wonder, is growing out kinky hair worth all the effort? Though I’d love to hear from everyone, I’d particularly love to hear from kinky-haired women who have actually grown their hair out. Was it worth it?

Wow. I’m looking forward to the responses on this one! What say you, ladies?

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Black Girl With Long Hair

Black Girl With Long Hair

Leila, founding editor of Black Girl with Long Hair (April 2008), social media and black beauty enthusiast. When I'm not here, I'm moderating a Facebook group for black mothers called Black Moms Connect.

 

153 thoughts on “Is Growing Out Kinky Hair Worth the Effort?

  1. I’m echoing what someone else said (so that you’d hear it). It’s totally worth it if you (1) strive to find a simple routine, (2) don’t obsess over length and don’t set length goals, (3) trim your hair sparingly (I do once every 6 months), and (4) let your hair be what it is instead of spending so much time trying to force it to be what you want it to be. If you hair is kinky, you’ll save time if you give yourself an awesome kinky style. If you have wavy/curly hair, you’ll save time doing an awesome wavy or curly style. If your hair is frizzy one day, don’t worry about it and act fierce.

    Too many women with natural hair get caught up in all the article and crazes and make their routine so complex it takes over their life. One shampoo, one conditioner, maybe an occasional deep/protein conditioner. Then to style, one leave in product and one oil if you like oil. It’s always crazy to go into womens’ bathrooms and then have more hair products than the Target beauty aisles.

    I cut my hair in 2007 and recently it was at my mid-back straight…but then my hairdresser got extra scissor-happy with my trim. BUT it’ll grow back, so no worries. I’ve finally gotten to the point where I just think, “It’s just hair.”

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    • Your middle paragraph is exactly my routine right now. And my style is just one braid at night, that gets unbraided in the morning and picked out with my fingers, and gets braided back up at night. If I don’t go out, the braid doesn’t come out.

      Nice and easy, lol.

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  2. This is a toughie, Jessica. I am at that point myself. I am a 4c natural, with a LOT of thick hair. I can’t even really style my own hair, It’s just that much and that thick. I went natural in March and already my hair has grown enough that it can be styled. My mom graciously two strand twists my hair every two weeks and that works for me, given my busy schedule. I just wonder about all the 4b/c women with longer hair as well.

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  3. For me it’s not worth it. No matter how long my hair gets, it always looks shoulder length lol. Its belly button length straight but it’ll never stay that way, so I don’t really care anymore about growing it out. It was more fun in a lion fro anyways.

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    • AMEN! Look at my routine(8 months natural): shampoo once a week, cowash every other day, boom, that’s it! Lol! My hair is growing really well and it looks amazing :)

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      • candy your routine will become increasingly unrealistic as your hair grows trust me….unless you have hours of time every other day to spare

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      • I could never do this now. When it was short I washed every day and before I knew it it had grown. I am struggling now to wash or cowash weekly.

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  4. My hair is long and its been six years. The hair just grows before U know it. I can’t say its harder to manage it just takes longer because the hair is longer. It does look short when curly only because it is healthy. 4a curls over here!!!

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  5. I was stuck at APL until I began protective styling regularly. I’m at MBL now and continuing to protective style. I still wear my hair down every now and again, but it’s mostly tucked away for two weeks at a time. Based on my experience, it’s certainly worth it. As far as styling, I used to think I would be limited, but all that was really limited was my imagination. I do all kinds of styles now. I hated protective styling at first, but I grew to like it with expansion of my style repertoire.

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  6. Every woman goes through their journey. Its all about self image, determination, and mentality. For many women, the natural journey is a spiritual experience. Its not an instant gratification for women with kinky textures. Personally, I started my natural journey because, “I don’t rock fake Gucci, Louis,or Prada, so why am I consistently wearing Brazilian wavy 24″?” It was more about seeing my natural beauty, and not being pretty for a black woman. There is something about being the only black woman in a room and being the only one who has ever had a weave. It is worth it. EVERY bad hair day, every joke, every look of disapproval. I’d do what it takes every day for the rest of my life to see my self image in the mirror for the first time. I love the hair I’m in.
    [img]http://blackgirllonghair.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/20140317_232115.jpg[/img]

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  7. I think growing out kinky hair is worth the effort just as much as growing out relaxed/texlaxed/locs/whatever else… The point in growing out my hair is to maintain health first, and length or whatever style desire second. I’ve been natural prior to now, and grew my hair waist length, then got anxious and cut it really short… and the cycle for me continues, but the hard work and effort does not. I agree, shorter hair and even relaxed hair takes less time (for me anyways) than my kinky hair (4a/4b), but the effort is the same. I have not stopped researching how to grow healthy hair, and experiment with products that work. I understand the struggle, but knowledge is power. And hopefully, it will be looked upon as your daily maintenance/regimen.

    When people comment on my hair taking a long time to do, or a lot of effort, I try not to give off a weird look (because it wasn’t hard to do)…and now I take it as a compliment, because I know how to handle my hair, and it looks damn good and healthy lol!!! I just cut my hair, and now that I’ve satisfied the really short hair look, I’m growing it out long again:) And this short hair, long hair pattern continues…

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