Time-For-A-Install-Vibe-Vixen

By Irene of NaturalFantastic.com

Weave and wigs can work great as pro­tec­tive styles.  They allow you to leave your hair nat­u­ral and enjoy the con­ve­nience of straight hair. No shrink­age to con­tend with, less detan­gling, pro­tec­tion from the weath­er and ver­sa­til­i­ty. How­ev­er, for some wom­en it may be time to let their nat­u­ral hair out, to shine in all its glo­ry. Here are some ben­e­fits to doing this. Hope­ful­ly this will encour­age you to take the next step and come away from being reliant on weaves and wigs.

So what are the ben­e­fits of ditch­ing the weave and let­ting your hair out more often?

1. You will become bet­ter at man­ag­ing your nat­u­ral hair
As with most things prac­tice makes per­fect. The more you leave your hair out the more prac­tice you get at man­ag­ing it. You will learn the best tech­niques for main­tain­ing it on a dai­ly basis. This includes form­ing a hair reg­i­men that suits your rou­tine and lifestyle. You will also have the oppor­tu­ni­ty to elim­i­nate prod­ucts and tech­niques that do not work well on your hair. If your hair is packed away under the weave or wig cap every mon­th, you many only see it once in a while. Some peo­ple only take their hair out of the weave to wash it, then they rein­stall it all over again. If you wear your hair out reg­u­lar­ly you will become famil­iar with it and learn the best tech­niques man­ag­ing it.

2. You will be in a bet­ter posi­tion to assess the health of your hair
Detan­gling my hair this week made me real­ize it was def­i­nite­ly time for a pro­tein treat­ment. Because I am famil­iar with my hair I noticed there was more shed­ding than usu­al. I was able to rec­ti­fy this straight­away because I had access to my hair. When your hair is weaved you don’t have imme­di­ate access to it. If there is a prob­lem you will not know until you take the weave out. By this time more dam­age may have occurred that could have been avoid­ed. When your hair is out you can assess it reg­u­lar­ly and decide what action to take, such as: a trim, a wash, a treat­ment or a mois­tur­iz­ing boost.

3. It is eas­ier to mois­tur­ize
Many of us know that we should mois­tur­ize our real hair reg­u­lar­ly when it is in a weave. How many of us actu­al­ly do this though? I cer­tain­ly didn’t.  It seemed too com­pli­cat­ed at the time and out sight out of mind. I spent more time groom­ing the weave because it was the weave that was vis­i­ble to every­one. I would take the time to style it with curling tongs or a flat-iron, mois­tur­ize it and blend it with my real hair so it would look its best. I would usu­al­ly for­get about my real hair under­neath. If your hair is out more often you will know imme­di­ate­ly when it becomes dry and be in a bet­ter posi­tion to mois­tur­ize it. You are also more like­ly to mois­tur­ize it on a reg­u­lar basis and pre­vent it from dry­ing out in the first place.  When it is hid­den away under the weave, it’s easy to for­get about it.

4. Oth­ers will become used to your nat­u­ral hair
If you are con­cerned about the reac­tion friends, fam­i­ly and work col­leagues will have to your nat­u­ral hair remem­ber that the soon­er they see it the soon­er they will get used to it. If peo­ple see you with your hair out all the time it real­ly doesn’t become that much of a big deal after some time.  They also get to see how beau­ti­ful it is nat­u­ral.  You may have to deal with com­ments and ques­tions, some may be neg­a­tive but you will be bet­ter equipped to deal with them after some time. Some peo­ple may not admit that they feel more com­fort­able with you when you wear your weave. The soon­er they real­ize that you are not going to hide your hair away for their ben­e­fit the bet­ter.

There is also that dread­ed feel­ing you get when you have to take your weave out and don’t have an appoint­ment to get it rein­stalled straight­away. You kind of feel naked or may not be sure how to style your nat­u­ral hair in between weaves. Some of us dread bump­ing into peo­ple that are used to see­ing us with our weaves. If you wear your hair out you will no longer have to deal with the dread­ed ‘in between weaves’ feel­ing. What you see is what you get with nat­u­ral hair.

5. You will become a hair styling queen
Styling your nat­u­ral hair will become sec­ond nature to you. It’s like learn­ing to play the gui­tar. If you nev­er take it out of the case how will you ever learn to play it? Your nat­u­ral hair is like a blank can­vas, there are end­less styling tuto­ri­als on YouTube and you may also sur­prise your­self  by invent­ing some styles and tech­niques of your own. Weaves and wigs are great pro­tec­tive styles but there are numer­ous pro­tec­tive styles you can try with your own hair that are ele­gant and appro­pri­ate for all occa­sions. The­se include two strand twists, buns, roll tuck and pins, French braids and var­i­ous updos. Check out CharyJay’s and Fusion of Cul­tures’ YouTube chan­nels.  They are pro­tec­tive style queens. If their styles seem too com­pli­cat­ed, you can  adapt them to suit you per­son­al­ly. The­se tuto­ri­als should provide you with inspi­ra­tion; you don’t have to fol­low them exact­ly.  Remem­ber nat­u­ral hair is very ver­sa­tile so there is no rea­son to get bored or run out of styling options. Check out the series: The Ver­sa­til­i­ty of Nat­u­ral Hair.

6. You will not have to wor­ry about the neg­a­tive aspects of weaves, wigs and hair exten­sions
Many of us gasped in shock when we saw the first pho­tos of Naomi Campbell’s reced­ing hair­line. The dam­age to her hair­line was believed to have been caused by years of wear­ing weaves or hair exten­sions. In an indus­try that pro­motes a cer­tain stan­dard of beau­ty you can imag­ine the pres­sure she was under as a black mod­el to look a cer­tain way. Over the years more pho­tos of her have come out high­light­ing the same prob­lem that only appears to be get­ting worse. It is as if the fake hair on her head is tak­en care of more than her real hair under­neath. Trac­tion alope­cia can occur if your hair­line is con­stant­ly put under pres­sure through sewing, braid­ing, glues and tight comb attach­ments.

naomi-campbell-21

Naomi Cambell

Naomi Camp­bell

The prob­lems asso­ci­at­ed with weaves are unlike­ly to affect wom­en who sim­ply use them once in a while for diver­si­ty. They are going to have more of an impact on those wom­en who rely on weaves for every­day use. Anoth­er neg­a­tive aspect is that some­times weaves look awk­ward, we have come a long way in ‘weave tech­nol­o­gy’ but it still isn’t per­fect. Some­times you see people’s tracts show­ing, your hair doesn’t blend well, or you have hair that sheds like crazy. I don’t con­sid­er any of this eas­ier than hav­ing my nat­u­ral hair out. You will also save a lot of mon­ey. We seem to be the only race that wears hair tex­ture that doesn’t match our nat­u­ral hair. Some of us don’t even wear weaves that match our nat­u­ral afro tex­ture when it is straight­ened (Yaki).  The silky tex­tures seemed to be pre­ferred.  I’m glad to see more black owned com­pa­nies intro­duc­ing afro-tex­tured weaves that com­pli­ment our nat­u­ral hair.

Even Beyoncé has experienced downside of lace front wigs

Even Bey­on­cé has expe­ri­enced the down­side of lace front wigs

7. Nat­u­ral hair only gets bet­ter with time
The more you learn about man­ag­ing your nat­u­ral hair the more it will thrive. Most of us had to deal with neg­a­tive com­ments from fam­i­ly mem­bers when we first went nat­u­ral. How­ev­er, the more time that pass­es the few­er and far between the­se com­ments become and we even start hear­ing more com­pli­ments from the same peo­ple. Care­ful­ly man­ag­ing your nat­u­ral hair will result in growth, bet­ter styling tech­niques and over­all healthy hair. Like wine, nat­u­ral hair only gets bet­ter with time. Don’t hide away behind fake hair, week in, week out. This is choos­ing sec­ond best to the beau­ti­ful hair on your head already.

“No one should feel that they have to wear a weave to have pre­sentable hair; a weave should be a con­scious styling choice, not a crutch”

~ Audrey Davis-Siva­sothy~

Do you prefer weaves to wear­ing your hair out? Share your thoughts below.

Irene is the cre­ator of NaturalFantastic.com. A UK girl of Nige­ri­an descent, she is now liv­ing in Aus­tralia. She cre­at­ed NaturalFantastic.com to encour­age oth­er wom­en to embrace their nat­u­ral hair and to share some advice on going nat­u­ral, and stay­ing nat­u­ral.

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68 Comments on "Perpetual Weaving as a “Protective Style?” 7 Reasons You Shouldn’t Do It"

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Tamia

I’ve vowed to nev­er wear a weave. Although I’m only 16, i speaks as if not sure. I only would con­sid­er get­ting them on spe­cial occa­sions such as grad­u­a­tion, by the ill be 2 years post relax­er, cur­rent­ly tran­si­tion­ing, and that’s even far fetched. I’ve heard they help your hair grow but then if you don’t take care of it, there’s this.
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Zhana

This is hor­ri­ble, this girl was veing fool­ish for leav­ing in her weave that long.

Zhana

Hmmm Idk. I wear wigs to pro­tect my hair dur­ing the win­ter. I apply cas­tor oil to my braids and scalp every­day and do the bag­gy method every oth­er day. Also i take­out my braids on the sec­ond week and wash, oil rin­se, con­di­tion, detangle,deep con­di­tion, apply leave in and seal oh and also was my braids in between. My hair has been grow­ing and break­age is min­i­mal or none.. But that’s just me..

Jae
We should all be self aware about what we do per­son­al­ly with our hair, but still be very care­ful how we express our opin­ions to oth­ers. For every rea­son we shouldn’t wear weaves and wigs, we have the same amount of exam­ples of wom­en who have suc­cess­ful­ly worn them and have healthy hair. I am one of them and enjoy the ver­sa­til­i­ty most­ly because I would be bald with the num­ber of col­ors I uti­lize. I appre­ci­ate this arti­cle as a guide only and not a rule to myself and those who choose to wear weaves and wigs even “nat­u­ral”… Read more »
Kelly
When I wore my hair loose, I didn’t retain as much length as I have wear­ing braid exten­sions off and on. I most like them because I swim and exer­cise. Also, when I wore my nat­u­ral hair loose I wor­ried over it too much — prod­ucts reg­i­men, length reten­tion, etc. Now I mois­tur­ize and go and I do scalp mas­sages. Also, braid exten­sions have been a part of African and Black Amer­i­can cul­ture for cen­turies; so I don’t think it’s a neg­a­tive or odd cul­tur­al hair prac­tice. While I don’t believe exten­sions should be installed too tight­ly on inces­sant­ly, I… Read more »
TINA

THROW THE DAMN WEAVES IN THE GARBAGE YOU PHONEY. WHO ARE YOU TRYING TO FOOL. FULL OF INSECURITY THAT YOU NEED TO GLUE, TACK, SOW SOMEONE ELSE’S HAIR INTO YOUR HEAD. THANKS ALOT FOR GIVING THIS DISPICABLE PRACTICE BUSINESS

Elle
Beau­ti­ful­ly writ­ten! I “per­pet­u­al­ly weaved” 15 years ago when I stopped per­ming my hair. I avoid­ed my perime­ter, had tal­ent­ed styl­ists and achieved amaz­ing and healthy results. I did this for years. My rea­sons how­ev­er were fear, inse­cu­ri­ty and lack of styling know-how. Fake hair was an attempt to hide.  But I grew. It was a long, hard and euphoric process — and it’s not over, but I now know and love who I am. I no longer hide any­thing, Lol! Over the years I’ve shaved my head bald at least 4 times, worn pret­ty TWAs, rou­tine­ly wear ‘unde­fined’ hair, sleep… Read more »
ida voyder
I’m a “see me as I am” kin­da girl. Have nev­er worn a weave, but have seen many with it — long sto­ry short doesn’t look pret­ty with the reced­ing hair­line to behind the ears, that was the postal lady that deliv­ers mail in my area, also a for­mer co-work­er with the same prob­lem. In that case my for­mer boss would com­pli­ment her telling her how beau­ti­ful her hair looked, but she was miss­ing her hair­line. I nev­er said any­thing because I fig­ured she had mir­rors at home, and there were also mir­rors at our work­place. Sad to say I’ve… Read more »
Love

A lady I work with wears weave and wigs and she has no edges. She said she wears the weaves and wigs because she has no edges. I sug­gest­ed the weaves and wigs may­be the cause there­fore how could they be the solu­tion? She said what is she sup­posed to do walk around with nap­py hair and no edges smh and lol

Pat

No, nev­er wore a weave. I’ve heard some that wear them say that their scalps itch alot due to the corn­row­ing to hold it up so I knew that wasn’t for me.

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