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?

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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155 Comments on "Is Growing Out Kinky Hair Worth the Effort?"

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Monique, Sofull Sista

I would sug­gest ask­ing your­self what you enjoy most:
Hav­ing long hair, but being restrict­ed to pro­tec­tive styling? OR
Hav­ing short to medi­um-length hair with free-range for styling?

I real­ized I prefer the latter…I plan on get­ting a styled cut very soon! I’m 4b, hair is col­lar­bone length…

The Natural Haven

Pro­tec­tive styling huge­ly appeals to me and my gen­er­al hair lazi­ness.

Pro­tec­tive styling can be cute too, you just have to be cre­ative.

http://thenaturalhaven.blogspot.com/2011/07/can-twistbraid-protective-style-be.html

T.
“Pro­tec­tive styling huge­ly appeals to me and my gen­er­al hair lazi­ness.” That’s basi­cal­ly my sto­ry too. My only length-relat­ed desire was for my hair to be long enough for me to be able to put my twists up in a high bun, because that makes it even *more* low main­te­nance, which is basi­cal­ly what I’m after. Hav­ing achieved that, I don’t have any oth­er length goals.  That being said, I do enjoy see­ing growth because it makes me feel that after near­ly 20 years of being nat­u­ral, I’ve final­ly start­ed to take prop­er care of my hair. But grow­ing longer… Read more »
Byoteenapp
Lol! We must be triplets. I put a pro­tec­tive style in, slap a wig on and keep it mov­ing. I love the ver­sa­til­i­ty of wigs while pro­tect­ing my own 4b/c hair and have been able to grow it between my shoul­der blades. Like Lela7 it grows out in lay­ers with the front being much short­er than the back, but what­ev­er. After years of BC’ing when­ev­er the mood hit, I’ve recent­ly jumped on the growth band­wag­on. My per­son­al chal­lenge is to keep pro­tec­tive styles in until my b-day next June, when I will have my first blowout in, oh,…12 years. Then… Read more »
Lela7
I’m sim­i­lar to you. My hair nev­er real­ly grew beyond neck length when I was younger for a num­ber of rea­sons, e.g. used to comb it every day with a fine tooth comb, only used blue mag­ic etc.…. But now, its amaz­ing. I’ve been pro­tec­tive styling for around 2 years (wear­ing wigs etc) and the growth is amaz­ing! No one in my fam­i­ly can believe that my hair is actu­al­ly com­ing onto my back. Unfor­tu­nate­ly my hair tends to grow in lay­ers, but all over its the longest I’ve ever had it. My aim as a nat­u­ral was to retain… Read more »
AfroKisses
I wasn’t par­tic­u­lar­ly fond of pro­tec­tive styles when my hair was short­er. But for me per­son­al­ly it’s worth it now. How­ev­er, I like the way I look in pro­tec­tive styles and I don’t know that it would be worth it to wear them if I didn’t like the way I looked because I also think I look good with short hair. If I’m hon­est I might look a lit­tle bet­ter with short(to prac­ti­cal­ly no)hair. But I got tired of always mak­ing sure my head looked nice…not my hair…my head…I’m try­ing to see how long it will grow now and I’m… Read more »
boho.barbie

I don’t under­stand why peo­ple think the idea of type 4 ladies with long hair is so far fetched. I have type 4 (i think A,B,&C) hair and with the excep­tion of my BC last Feb., I’ve always had BSL hair (nat­u­ral or relaxed), and it’s on it’s grow­ing back in no time. It’s not uncom­mon for me to see and not unre­al­is­tic.

Anne

I stand to be cor­rect­ed but I don’t think she asked whether it was unre­al­is­tic or far fetched.…

SomeLIHBooks

This is a very well placed ques­tion. I was just fin­ish­ing up my twist out for the week and I start­ed to won­der if the grow out I was doing is worth it. I have aspi­ra­tions of mid back length and if I can han­dle it, waist length hair, and like the oth­ers above, I’m doing it my way and because I can. Would straight hair be eas­ier to man­age, yes, but I love my kinks and coils and the fact that I can have every style makes it worth­while to me.

MJ
Hmm..this is a very inter­est­ing ques­tion. Right now I’m a new nat­u­ral (just cut off the rest of the relaxed ends a few weeks ago!) and I’ve nev­er had my hair this short. I’m enjoy­ing it while it grows out and prob­a­bly when it grows longer, I may cut it short again! I think it real­ly all depends on where you are men­tal­ly in your jour­ney and what your goals are. If you real­ly want to grow it long, real­ize that you have to do a whole lot of pro­tec­tive styling. If you just want to enjoy your hair the… Read more »
b.
Longer hair is fun. I have the hair pat­tern you men­tion. I’ve nev­er been real­ly obsessed with long hair, but I’m giv­ing it a go just for the heck of it. (And my hair was nev­er very long ’til now.) I’m grow­ing it…at MY pace. Sure, I could retain more and have it grow longer quick­er. How­ev­er, hav­ing it grow as long as pos­si­ble as quick­ly as pos­si­ble isn’t my per­son­al goal. Healthy, beau­ti­ful hair is my goal…hair I can enjoy at any length. So, is it worth it? Yes, if you do it the way YOU want. The tips from… Read more »
Cam

” The tips from oth­ers are great, but the moti­va­tion and method must be per­son­al.” +1 couldn’t agree more

ElectricFeel

I think everyone’s jour­ney will be dif­fer­ent.
So there won’t be a right answer, feel me.
I think YOU need to do what’s right for you, I’m think­ing
you might feel pres­sured to have long hair. It should not be that
way. 

And if you do decide to go through with the “long hair path” remem­ber to:“Focus on the jour­ney, not the des­ti­na­tion. Joy is found not in fin­ish­ing an activ­i­ty but in doing it.”

Indhirap

Ops! like Lisa said… is worth if that´s what you real­ly want! I’m lucky my genet­ics let me grow hair fast ( i mean an inch a mon­th or so) but I’m lazy!!! and i get tired styling my hair… My hair is to shoul­der blade lenght I’m con­sid­er­ing cut­ing it! O.O

The Notorious ZAG

same thing here… i cut mine last novem­ber because i had grown tired of it long. chopped it all off to about 2–3″ long. now, its back to where it was (shoul­der blade) and i’m think­ing about cut­ting it again -__–

Lisa

It’s worth it if that’s what you real­ly want. Me, not so much. I am on the jour­ney of grow­ing my hair long with­out hav­ing to sub­mit to pro­tec­tive styling because I’m not a fan of it FOR ME. I got 4 good inch­es of growth in a year (even after cut­ting my hair 1.5″) with­out pro­tec­tive styling. I’ll con­tin­ue on this path. I might not see huge growth like oth­ers but over time, I’ll see it. And I’m a 4B gal.

Adrian

So girl­friend, tell me what your doing??? I just cant stand twist­ing my hair for hours at a time. I mean I real­ly love it for the first three days and then…I don’t

LJ
Sor­ry if this is going to be a long respon­se: For me it’s worth the effort because I am hav­ing fun. For the first time in my life I am con­fi­dent that I can “style” my own hair, and that it looks neat and pre­sentable. I am also con­fi­dent that it is healthy and it is grow­ing. that was nev­er the case for me when I was relaxed or nat­u­ral grow­ing up (we went back and forth). My nat­u­ral hair was dry, unman­age­able, real­ly kinky and unkempt. the bar­ber hat­ed me because my hair broke his machi­nes — that’s how… Read more »
FaithPeach

Amaz­ing sto­ry hun; so many kinky haired nat­u­rals need to know this. You’ve inspired me to keep going with my own growth. :o)

Jane

Won­der­ful sto­ry.

Yay to mak­ing things hap­pen for you.

Shelli

What a great respon­se! I’m not some­one with tight­ly curly hair. But, I think the thing that you said here there is so rel­e­vant in regard to the ques­tion is that you enjoy what you need to do to retain length. I have come to LOVE pro­tec­tive updos/styles, so it’s not tak­ing the fun out of nat­u­ral hair. How­ev­er, if you like to wear your hair loose and pro­tec­tive styling is not enjoy­able, then it’s prob­a­bly not worth it to that per­son. So, as always, you have to do you=)!

JJ

10/10 respon­se

Bitty Boss

Damn girl! This IS my sto­ry too! +++++1

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