I cannot count how many times I have seen an awesome style, watched the technique used, and thought... damn, I will try that over the weekend (it looked easy enough)! But later, after hours spent on the style, diligently following each step, and sometimes even using the same products, it all went wrong. To make matters worse, when you unravel your hair for work the next day, there isn't even enough time to fix it! So yes, I have been there, done that and worn the T-shirt!
Below are 10 reasons why the natural hair tutorial you watched on YouTube didn’t work for you (along with useful tips). There will be a part two to this post so stayed tuned for the next :)
1. You haven’t taken the time to experiment
YouTubers are human beings. So, of course they have to experiment and practice, practice, practice. Natural hair is all about trial and error! Many have been known to post videos such as a “Failed Twist Out” since unfortunately the style they tried didn’t work out the first time; but they were still brave enough to show you their disaster. Practice is the only way they will know how to get it right themselves. So don’t be fooled. Just because a YouTuber is gracing your screen with a fab look, doesn't mean they got it right the first time out the gate. Even if the technique they used didn’t work for you the first time, try looking at different ways to come up with the same style by creating your own technique that works. Just practice!
2. The products they tried don’t work for you!
This doesn't mean that there is anything wrong with you. This is perfectly normal. Hair products are not a one-size-fits-all situation! You don’t have to rush out and buy the same products a YouTuber is buying! Try using your Holy Grail products or using new products that you believe will work for you along with the Youtuber's techniques. If you have noticed a few YouTubers using the same or similar products to create the same style you would like to try, then do your research , find reviews about these products, purchase a few and then narrow them down to ones that you find work.
3. The YouTuber has a different hair texture than you
The style results of a YouTuber who has looser textured curls will be different from a viewer who has tightly textured curls! Let’s be honest. Ultimately the style results are not always going to be the same! Even if the YouTuber creating a style has more or less a similar texture to your hair type, there is still no guarantee the style you try will work. Try and experiment with techniques and products which work well with your texture to create the great style you’re looking for. Don’t be afraid. Practice comes before perfection.
4. You haven’t used the right sized products to match your hair length
It is important to use styling tools which suit your length. This can either make or break the style you want to create. This especially applies to rod set styles. For example: If you purchased the shorter length Curlformers when your hair was in a TWA, but now your hair is longer, the results will not turn out the same. Your hair simply has out grown the product. I would advise that if you are going to buy Curlformers, to purchase the extra large size. That way, as your hair grows, it will still fit the Curlformers and will save you money!
5. You haven’t yet found a way to avoid frizz when unraveling your style
I now wear rubber gloves and rub my hands in oil to prevent frizz when unraveling my twists (don't judge me! Lol). Some use hair pomade instead. However, when separating my twists, I would make sure I am twisting my hair in the opposite direction (like unscrewing a bulb) before separating them gently apart where it naturally wants to separate. I don’t force it!
6. You may be rushing during the process
This is another big issue. If I leave little time between washing and styling my hair before bed, I will end up rushing. Whether I am unraveling my curls or twists, and I have little time, again I will end up rushing. The likelihood is my hair will either, frizz, tangle or will still be damp .These are all recipes for disaster. Try to make a realistic estimate of the time it will take you to complete the style and its drying time (so important!). Don't rush or leave it for another time!
7. You may be using too much product
A common misconception of styling natural hair is that the more products you use, the better chances you have of achieving a successful look. This is not always true. Too much product can lead to frizz, longer drying times, dryness and build-up.
8. A YouTuber has a different porosity level to you
If your hair porosity levels are different from a YouTuber, you may have different styling results. A YouTuber who has normal porosity hair tends to not have problems retaining moisture in their hair. Normal porosity hair also tends to take colour treatments better than naturals with high or low porosity hair. Here’s a tip: work out your porosity level first with a ‘porosity strand test’ (just Google it for more info!), then work out how best to style your hair based on its porosity level.
9. Your hair may not be properly detangled before styling
Whether you choose to use combs or your fingers, ensure your hair is thoroughly detangled. Not only will you avoid knots and mats in the finished style, but this will also better the chances of your style looking great and smooth. Finally, detangled hair is simply easier to style.
10. Your hair length is different from the YouTuber
Length has definitely been one of the reasons my hair has never turned out the way I wanted, but I still thought “hey I can pull this one off”! When my hair was a lot shorter, I would try and create buns by adding Marley hair pieces to my teeny weenie ponytail. My edges were living proof of this being a disaster when they started thinning. Big mistake! Moral of the story: Try to create styles which suit your hair’s current length.