By Chinwe of Hair and Health
Just like many of you, I have had both relaxed hair and natural hair. Prior to big chopping five years ago, no one could have convinced me that my natural hair was manageable.
You see, in my relaxer days, my new growth became unbearable after about four weeks and really annoying at six weeks. I had to make sure my hair was “laid”, or perfectly straight down to the roots in order to get a comb through it. Only then – when my hair was super straight – was my hair “manageable”, and this became more obvious as I began to transition to natural years ago. There was no way that my stick straight ends combined with my kinky new growth were any more manageable than a fresh relaxer. However, relaxers were damaging my hair and I was willing to go natural even it took more work. But would it really take more work?
After my big chop, I was taken aback at how manageable my natural hair was, especially with the right products. It was no longer stiff, dry, and hard but soft and pliable. I could go outside in the rain with my TWA (teeny weeny afro) and not be afraid of the weather ruining my style. I could quickly transform a bad hair day into a good one by wearing a puff and spritzing with some water. I could even retain a lot more length than when I had a relaxer. I was now convinced that my natural hair was very manageable.
As my natural hair has gotten longer, I am not going to lie and say that this journey is as easy as it was for me right after the big chop. I do have my days, particularly when it comes to detangling, when my natural hair is a bit of a challenge. However, I certainly do not miss standing in the bathroom applying a relaxer to my head, then rinsing, then neutralizing, then conditioning religiously every several weeks. I do not miss trying to make my new growth more “manageable” by relaxing it bone straight.
Is MY natural hair less manageable than my relaxed hair was? No. The fact that I let my strands just be “natural” from the roots to the tips makes it all the more “manageable” for me.
Ladies, is natural hair less manageable than relaxed hair? Share your thoughts!