Do you remember back in the 1990s when it was en vogue for young women to wear over-sized male clothing? Popular singing group, TLC managed to do so while appearing crazy, sexy and cool. Some of us (points to myself) didn’t do such a great job imitating the look i.e. wearing our mothers tapered legs jeans (yes, mom jeans) and our father’s discarded Charter Club work shirts. Not everything is for everybody, and when it comes to hair, this nuance couldn’t be more true.
One thing that I’ve learned over the course of my hair journey is the fact that no one (not even the vloggers with lusciously thick, long hair) has “perfect” hair. Some styles and methods simply don’t work and I want to encourage those of you who may be in the early stages of your hair journey. Even when you have waist length coils and curls like I do, your hair still may not “act right” and that’s just fine.
When I had relaxed hair I wore roller sets countless times, so I thought I would have no problem wearing this style once my hair was natural. In general, roller sets are preferable to direct heat methods, such as flat irons or blow drying because you place less heat stress on your hair. Therefore, I was pretty disappointed when I realized that after over an hour of roller setting my natural hair then 2 hours of drying, my hair looked like the aftermath of completing a Taebo workout in a wind storm. Some sections were straight, some curled, while some of my hair managed to remain in tight coils. I would love the Joan-from-Girlfriends bouncy and full roller set, but alas it doesn’t work for me. If I want to achieve that look I have blow dry my hair, then roller set, which essentially defeats the purpose of avoiding direct heat.
Style Icon Breanna
There was a time when I would simply say this style didn’t work for my hair because of the nature of my hair texture. However, two years ago, I sampled a product that allowed me to achieve a pretty decent wash n’go. The problem was that in order to subdue my thick hair into coils and curls I had to painstakingly apply the thick product to every section of my hair. To me, if a wash n’ go requires an hour just to apply the product, then another 30 minutes to diffuse the hair, the purpose of the style is lost. Moreover, my hair was so coated with product that I knew that after a day or two my hair would be dry and brittle and require a thorough cleanse so that my hair could be properly moisturized. Just because I can achieve a style doesn’t mean it necessarily works for my hair. If the health of my hair is compromised in the process of styling, then ultimately the style is a hair fail.
I have a love-hate relationship with twist outs. On the rare occasion when I wear mini twists (it takes about 12 hours to twist my hair), I absolutely LOVE the resulting twist out that I have after a few weeks. The traditional twist out, usually styled with 20-40 twists, on the other hand, has never lived up to its hype for me. While my braid outs are defined, my twist outs often seem frizzy and last for only a few hours. Recently, however, I decided to wear what I felt was a rather failed attempt at a twist out because I wasn’t in the mood to care. To my great surprise a few women complimented my hair. So perhaps, there are a few healthy styling hair fails that are only viewed as unsuccessful because they don’t meet my high standards. That’s probably the same for you.
What are some healthy styling methods that do not work for your hair?