By Chin­we of Hair and Health

1. Set milestones to your goal.

Say your goal is to retain four inch­es of growth in the New Year.  Well, break up that goal into small­er mile­stones, such as retain­ing two inch­es by July 1 and anoth­er two inch­es by Jan­u­ary 1, 2014.  Or may­be your goal is to suc­cess­ful­ly tran­si­tion to nat­u­ral by the end of the New Year.  Then check off a mile­stone for each mon­th you suc­cess­ful­ly go with­out a relax­er. Some­times, set­ting the­se mile­stones – or small­er accom­plish­ments – along the way can make the over­all goal appear more fea­si­ble or even help you to deter­mine ear­ly on any changes that need to be made.  Also, when you reach each mile­stone, you receive that extra boost of faith to keep on going toward your end goal.

2. Make a solid regimen and stick to it.

With­out a solid plan, it will be very dif­fi­cult to achieve your hair goal.  So where does this plan­ning start?  It usu­al­ly begins with a solid hair care reg­i­men. Start with the basics, such as wash­ing with a gen­tle sham­poo, deep con­di­tion­ing, patient­ly detan­gling your strands, fol­low­ing up with a good water-based mois­tur­iz­er and a thick sealant, wear­ing a low-manip­u­la­tion or pro­tec­tive style, and fac­tor­ing in your inter­nal health.  Then tai­lor your reg­i­men accord­ing to your hair’s needs and your par­tic­u­lar goal.  For exam­ple, is your aim to grow out your heat dam­age?  Then incor­po­rate air-dry­ing into your reg­i­men and toss out the heat usage.  Is your goal to end break­age?  Then you may want to use a strength­en­ing con­di­tion­er, adjust your styling and detan­gling rou­tine, and incor­po­rate the nec­es­sary nutri­ents into your diet. 

3. Document your journey with photos.

Many times, doc­u­ment­ing your jour­ney via pho­tog­ra­phy will help you to bet­ter see your pro­gress or push you toward your goal. Decide how often you are going to take your pho­tos, whether it is once every two months or once every three or four months.  Cre­ate a pho­to jour­nal online, on your com­put­er (offline), on your phone, or sim­ply leave it on your cam­era (remem­ber­ing not to delete it, of course).  As the New Year moves along, note the pro­gress of your hair care jour­ney through your pho­to jour­nal.

4. Avoid comparing yourself to others.

Look­ing to your hair inspi­ra­tions for moti­va­tion is great, but don’t make the mis­take of com­par­ing jour­neys.  Each head of hair is dif­fer­ent, and if you find your­self won­der­ing why your hair isn’t grow­ing as fast as hers or why your tran­si­tion isn’t going as smooth­ly as hers, then you can fall into the trap of frus­tra­tion.  This trap of frus­tra­tion can lead to detri­men­tal tweaks to your plan or reg­i­men or you even­tu­al­ly giv­ing up on your goal.  Admire, but don’t com­pare.  Your jour­ney is “your” jour­ney.

Ladies, do you have any tips for achiev­ing hair goals?

Chinwe

Empow­er­ing wom­en of col­or to break bar­ri­ers. Cherish.Thy.Melanin. https://cherishthymelanin.com/
https://www.facebook.com/cherishthymelanin/

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31 Comments on "4 Tips to Achieve Your Hair Goals in the New Year"

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Moih Aunaturel

It is exact­ly what I plan to do.
1. I’d like to reach mbl by may and be full mb decem­ber. My hair has lay­ers.
2. I have set a good reg­i­men while I was in mini twists. I do cleans­ing hair infu­sions every 3 days.
3. I decid­ed to mon­i­tore this com­ing year on my blog.
4. I always admire but I know my hair has is own way so I don’t com­pare.

ASITA

There’s a few typos in my last post but I think every­one gets what I’m say­ing Lol *Damn auto cor­rect*

ASITA
I decid­ed to go nat­u­ral Decem­ber 2011 .my hair was past my shoul­der blades and I chopped it off because I was going to boot­camp July 2012 and id rather cut it than have boot­camp bar­bers do it .I was ner­vous think­ing how will I take care of it in boot­camp .we aren’t allowed to by the prod­ucts I need­ed .June came my hair was a lit­tle curly and untamed .and I gave into the creamy crack .but my hair reject­ed the relax­er and curled even more. In boot­camp all I could was motions sham­poo and con­di­tion­er and olive oil… Read more »
m2

Sis..I was try­ing to hit thumbs up..I’m retired air force and know your pain ..peace and bless­ings

Cnl

I too believe that not obsess­ing over your hair and some­times leav­ing it alone, is best. I just keep a sim­ple reg­i­men wash dc and mois­tur­ize once a week and do a pro­tec­tive style (fin­ger coil and pin up my curls) I wrap mine every night and spritz with a water based /oil solu­tion. oth­er­wise i leave it alone all that week. Less is def more.

Bri

my goal is sim­ply to reach pony­tail (or puff as the case may be) length. I’m slight­ly past 1 year post relax­er and 7 months post big chop. My hair is very dense so I think it might take longer than aver­age. One prob­lem I find is that I don’t like the more sim­ple pro­tec­tive styling( braid outs, twist outs, twists,bantu knots) on my hair length. I have to go through the has­sle of get­ting exten­sions and find­ing some­one to braid my hair when I pro­tec­tive style… so it doesn’t hap­pen often. Prob­a­bly not help­ing my goals lol

Yinka
I am a 4b/c in a cycle of grow trim grow trim because my hair is fine and my strands being 4b/c split in a slight breeze. I do every­thing I’m sup­posed to but I don’t expect any mir­a­cle growth sto­ries and accept that I am not in that group of inspi­ra­tional nat­u­rals who go from BC to APL in a year. I have no growth or hair goals, mak­ing con­crete ones isn’t a good idea for my hair. I am just hop­ing to keep it mois­turised through win­ter. I’m using oyin juices and KBB Creamy­li­cious to seal. I’ve just… Read more »
Anju

Hi… I have 4c hair which is rather coarse and thick. It does grow con­sid­er­ably but an impor­tant thing to con­sid­er is to learn your hair. I prac­tise pro­tec­tive styling dai­ly and only let my hair out may­be 3 times per year. I also mois­turise and use sim­ple prod­ucts which include VO5 con­di­tion­er, cas­tor, olive, coconut, vit E (when available)oils,shea but­ter and aloe vera juice.
It is true that our hair breaks eas­i­ly in the wind and for that rea­son, I let the ends breathe a few times per year, and when I do I moi­turise them first with a shea but­ter mix.

Black American Princess
Black American Princess

Ladies, what pro­tec­tive styles work the best for you? I’m get­ting frus­trat­ed with my growth, it’s not grow­ing fast enough for me! :(

Dawn

Hel­lo :)

First remem­ber that hair grows on aver­age 1/4–1/2 inch­es a month,so by “fast enough” I don’t know if you mean more than that rate.

My main pro­tec­tive style is two strand twists, and even then I keep all the ends tucked. 

My oth­er pro­tec­tive styles, if my hair’s not in twists, are updos–always keep­ing the ends tucked under. 

And wigs–those are great and con­ve­nient pro­tec­tive styles as well.

Addi­tion­al­ly, remem­ber to reg­u­lar­ly mois­tur­ize with water or a water-based leave-in, and seal that mois­ture with an oil or but­ter.

Hope that helps!

Morning

Dawn, I’m new to this site, and I love it. I’m learn­ing so much more about tak­ing good care of my hair and about dif­fer­ence hair­dos. I used to were wigs and some­time braids all the time. Now I’m wear­ing my nat­u­ral hair in Afros, pony­tails, corn­rows and more. It feels so great just let­ting my nat­u­ral hair out and about. I still like to wear my wigs some­times. Today is wig day, because it’s so cold out side and I don’t what to wear a hat. Thanks

lisa

Think of your hair as a new born baby, love, care, nour­ish and pro­tect it. The end result will be fab­u­lous — Healthy Hair!

caramelcurls
I think sim­plic­i­ty is key to retain­ing healthy hair. I tran­si­tioned for 10 months, and have been com­plete­ly nat­u­ral a lit­tle over a year and my hair is past shoul­der length, the length it was before I “big chopped.” Very pleased! I pro­tec­tive style via twists about 50% of the time and I wear my hair out the oth­er half. The only prod­ucts I use to mois­tur­ize each night are water/aloe vera juice and grape­seed oil. When I first went nat­u­ral I went over­board with prod­ucts, but I have found out that the less I prod­ucts I use, the more… Read more »
Lisa

+1000 Sim­plic­i­ty is always bet­ter!

Gina
I did pro­tec­tive styling almost exclu­sive­ly for 3 months ear­lier this year (because I was lazy) and I was real­ly shocked at how much my hair had grown in that time! Then, a few months lat­er, I tried press­ing my hair twice for the first time in over a decade. My hair looked great, but it was soooo frag­ile straight. Since I was not wet­ting it dai­ly, it start­ed break­ing exces­sive­ly. I would say I lost near­ly all of that growth in just two or so weeks of going straight. Not worth it at all. Pro­tec­tive styling and con­stant hydra­tion… Read more »
anastasia

Wow Gina, thanks for report­ing your expe­ri­ence. I’m a 4ab (fine)as well.

Gina

Do you find it frus­trat­ing as a 4 that so many sto­ries show girls who are 3’s? Noth­ing again­st 3’s, but most of the advice is not applic­a­ble to 4’s! I have been nat­u­ral since I was 18 and I am now 36. My solid advice is water, oils, pro­tec­tive styling, gen­tle stretch­ing, gen­tle detan­gling and sec­tion­ing while wash­ing, no heat and low use of rub­ber-bands, head­bands and no tight braids what­so­ev­er. I use a few oth­er prod­ucts once in awhile like gels and creams, but even after all the­se years, olive oil works in a pinch.

Anon
I per­son­al­ly think the 3s and 4as have more in com­mon than the 4as/bs and cs. I also think this new nat­u­ral move­ment embraces 4as and 3s as the image of per­fect nat­u­rals leav­ing 4b/cs out in the cold unless they ‘defy the odds’ and have super long Cipri­ana or Ser­a2544 hair lengths. It’s sad how the high­er 4s are always the ones to return to relax­ers or bemoan our hair tex­ture, give up and pro­claim the ish stuff etc was unman­age­able. I think some are mea­sur­ing their hair again­st looser types then decid­ing because their 4c can­not do wng… Read more »
anastasia
Hey Gina =) Your advice sounds great to me, and yes to the Olive Oil!  Ini­tial­ly I was frus­trat­ed with the lack of diver­si­ty, but soon decid­ed that I was going to have to take mat­ters into my own hands if I sin­cere­ly want­ed to under­stand what my hair requires. Nev­er­the­less, with that said, I’m so pumped when I see a 4a/b/c on this site as an icon, or on youtube, but I find few peo­ple are as hon­est about their struggles/setbacks (ie.learning opportunities)as Cipri­ana of Urban Bush Babes, or the young lady who runs Dark­er than Brown, or your­self and oth­ers… Read more »
Natalie

I’ve given up on hair goals, I’ve decid­ed just to enjoy my hair but good to all those who have them. I just keep to a very sim­ple rou­tine and if it retains length it retains length.

DreamGirl

I’m also just try­ing to enjoy my hair at its cur­rent length,when I had relaxed hair I was very chilled,no hair goals just let it be and keep it sim­ple and it grew like weekds,now I’ll admit I’ve become a bit obsessed and that’s not cool. The only goal I have it keep­ing it mois­turised.

Heart Curly

Good tips. I can’t wait to accom­plish my hair goals. 

My tip is to pay spe­cial atten­tion to how your hair reacts to the things you do to it. This way it is eas­ier to stop some­thing that is bad for your hair.

merry

how about ignore it?

i think fol­low­ing a rou­tine and then for­get­ting about your hair is good pol­i­cy.

a watched pot does not boil…

hav­ing said that, i’m hop­ing for armpit length by sum­mer. i was notic­ing my hair the oth­er day and was impressed with the length. i only have a cou­ple of inch­es to go. my only oth­er hope is for the hair at the front of my head to grow like the rest of my hair. it’s like this 1–2 in area refused to grow much past my chin.

anyway…i’m pret­ty hap­py.

binks

This! When I’ am not active­ly pay­ing atten­tion to my hair that is when I notice that “baby bush” has got­ten long long. I had PS in for about a mon­th and when I took it out I was sur­prise how much it grew. Some­times you have to let your hair do what it do…shrugs

anastasia

“baby bush” so cuute!!

cb

+1

Beth

Good one! I think it’s ben­e­fi­cial to for­get about our hair once in awhile. You can go crazy pay­ing too much atten­tion to its pro­gress.

anastasia

Agree 100%

Basics of good hair care and leave it be…
1 day you’ll be braid­ing or what­ev­er
and BAM…WTH??.…
yasssss…smile with­in
I’ve got this ish!

Dawn

^^ You got it! “Bam…WTH??” etc hap­pened to me TODAY. I kept twist­ing down a sec­tion of hair, and chile…I was smil­ing!

Avaspeaks

I will do the pho­tos in 2013. I think I will start right now this mon­th since I have got­ten back into my night­ly rou­tine of mois­tur­iz­ing and seal­ing my hair.

Jennifer Kennedy

I’ve achieved my length because of pro­tec­tive styling, prop­er han­dling tech­niques, and con­sis­tent mois­ture. I think you’ve given us all those tips!!

Pho­tos are great because you can visu­al­ly see your growth. Include pho­tos from dif­fer­ent angles. I usu­al­ly take pho­tos of the front of my hair, sides, and the back. I’ve fal­l­en off this, but had tak­en them every 4 months. 

Also, I don’t stick to a trim­ming sched­ule — only trim­ming when it’s need­ed and the hair that is dam­aged only. 

Thanks.

Cheers!
JK

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