CN:Were you a long term or short term transitioner, and why?
Jennika: I transitioned for 13 months. Not sure if that is long or short, but I wasn’t mentally prepared to have short hair. Also, I wasn’t sure what type of hair style I wanted for my wedding.
CN: When did you BC? What was your initial reaction to your natural hair?
Jennika: I BC’ed soon after my wedding, June 2. I loved what I saw! The curl pattern in the front was more loose then the back, and I think the stylist saw my confusion, so she pulled the front into some twists for me. It was a huge sigh of relief to have the remaining relaxer cut off. I felt very free.
CN: What was your transition routine?
Jennika: I decided to go natural while I had braids in my hair. When I took them out, I flat ironed. I would wash weekly, and use Biolage products(the shampoo/conditioner I used while relaxed) until I started reading on what was good for my natural hair. Then I began using a shampoo/conditioner I found, called the Naked Bee. It worked well for the natural and relaxed hair, in my opinion.
CN: What was your staple hair style during the transition?
Jennika: At the beginning, I flat ironed every two weeks or so. I decided in Jan 09 I wasn’t going to flat iron again until my wedding in May. From then on, I would wash and wear my phony puff. There was a few times I went to the stylist to get my hair trimmed, and she would do a twist out on me, which I loved!
CN: How did you moisturize your hair to prevent breakage at the new growth line?
Jennika: I was much more worried about taking care of my natural/relaxed line, and I think by way of that, my new growth line just happened to get moisturized! I deep conditioned whenever I washed. I used a coconut milk DC by Palmers.
CN: Why did you choose to go natural?
Jennika: I didn’t get my first relaxer until I was 14, so I remember my hair before I relaxed. I loved how my hair looked relaxed, but I was worried about what all those chemicals were doing to my hair. So I thought long and hard about why I relaxed. I came to the conclusion, that I didn’t think I was as pretty, without my hair straight. Sad, I know. This was just the surface of a whole heap of self esteem issues I didn’t realize I had! The transition period was more then a physical transition for me. It was VERY mental. I mean, there were days my hair was not looking so hot. But I had to go to work and fight through that “I am not looking too good today” feeling. In the end, I love walking around knowing that I am not my hair.
- The first pic is my hair, 7 months post relaxer
- The second, is my twist out
- The third is a week after my BC
You know what….isn't it amazing that many women of color, can't bring to look at themselves in the mirror without straight hair? My story is the same but different. I am actually Indian and black, and have always attempted to measure up to not only white standards of beauty but also black standards, so I actually straightened my hair at the age of 26. Just this year, at the age of 38, I have discovered, "the wild indian" look I was trying to hide with relaxed hair, is actually suitable for my features.
Looking at your photo's, I see the same thing. I noticed in the photo with straight hair, you seemed to be hiding a certain angle of your face, with a profile shot. Whereas, with your curls, you have proudly displayed your face. So in other words, your curls enhance your beautiful features. The same ones your were uncomfortable with in the beginning. I am glad that you found yourself.
beautiful!!!! love those curls Jen!
Thank you all for the kind words!
Your hair is fabulous!!!
gorgeous hair 🙂
Beautiful Jen! 🙂
Aww your hair is GORGEOUS!!! I love reading these stories… 🙂
I love your twist out and the natural pic… just lovely!
I told you before; your big spirit supersedes your hair. I'm glad you decided to share your story. Fabulous hair for a fabulous woman.
Beautiful smile and gorgeous curls! Thats a lot of hair for a BC! I'm glad that she got over her self-esteem issues and is able to accept herself as God made her. Very happy to know that another woman has been set free!