Natural Hairnamix: Ring in the New Hair!
January 8, 2014By Rossette Allen

The end of one calendar year sometimes means the end of an era, a mindset, a habit or pretty much anything that you might have embraced or held dear to during that year. It is usually the time of year when people start to reflect on different aspects of their lives and make a mental and sometimes physical assessment and how they can improve in the new year.


For us ladies, we are always considering new and innovative things to do with our hair and with the new found respect for natural hair texture; many are toying with the idea of abandoning their chemical-using ways and trading them in for a more naturalistic approach to caring for their hair. For many, this is a no brainer. Both the decision making and the transition process were expedited without second thought. There are, on the other hand, those who are somewhat in the valley of decision.

I can well understand why there would be some apprehension, especially if using a perm or any other straightening chemical is all you have ever known throughout your whole life. In many cases, the hesitation is as a result of their own uncertainty or it may stem from anticipation of negative responses. I totally understand and can relate to the mixed emotions come with the big chop.


Assessing the pros and the cons will help to make the decision process somewhat smoother. Below are four points that will seek to present benefits to “Ringing in the New Hair” by commencing the natural journey.



1.     More Versatility

 There is a common misconception that natural hair is boring and doesn’t present much option as it relates to styling. That couldn’t be further from the truth as natural hair offers so much versatility both in terms of styles and texture.


Hair in its natural state has multiple personalities and can pretty much take on different characters. The difference with natural hair and chemically processed hair is that the latter is usually permanently straight as natural hair, while kinky, curly or coily in texture, has the ability to switch between straight and kinky texture. This versatility is a huge selling point for a lot of naturals as they love the idea of wearing their natural texture, but like the option of wearing it straight if they so desire. In addition to the textural versatility, there is also the fact that natural hair can be styled in a variety of very creative hairdos. Never resign yourself to thinking that ringing in the new hair will mean boredom. With a little creativity, it will be the most interesting hair experience that you ever had and will appreciate the versatility that it presents.


2.    More Cost Effective


Expense reduction is not uncommon on many people’s list of New Year’s resolutions. I don’t know if there is one person these days that is not trying to save a dollar wherever possible. The recent economic downturn has left many usually well-off people scrambling to make ends meet. Finding ways to curb the budget will require a little stretch of the imagination, some innovativeness and a full dose of practicality. For a woman, cutting back on beauty products and services - though not a preference - may become a necessity.  Wearing natural hair will help to alleviate some of the costs associated with hair care. Getting regular relaxers to maintain chemically-treated hair can prove very expensive. This, coupled with the need for wash, style and touch ups will certainly put a dent in the budget. This is not to say that natural hair doesn’t have expenses associated with its maintenance but there is definitely more leverage as it relates to keeping hair care costs at a minimum.


Hair products for natural hair are not exactly cheap but they can go a long way. In contrast to the $60-$80 every six weeks for a relaxer, that cost for products is relatively minimal. Stepping out in the New Year and embarking on a natural journey will sure save you a pretty penny and enable you to make more sound financial decisions.




3.    More Likely to Thrive      


Becoming natural will provide the platform for the introduction of freshly grown, healthy hair. The ends of the hair are the oldest part and the part that has had the most exposure to the damaging effects of the elements such as wind, dust, sunshine etc. Hair that is freshly grown out of the scalp is usually at its healthiest and is more likely to thrive if cared for and nurtured in the right way. If you are having issues with the health of your hair in its relaxed or transitioning state, chances are that if you embark on a natural journey you will be sure to enjoy a more fulfilling experience with your hair. I always tell people that becoming natural is not a free ticket to healthy hair but with a clean slate and a healthy head of big chopped hair, you will be able to apply the necessary steps for maintaining its health and watch it grow into a beautiful bundle of bountiful goodness.






4.    More Liberating 


There is something about being natural that brings about a sense of liberation. There is this unexplainable burst of freedom that one experiences once they get rid of the chemically-processed portion of their hair. Whether it is a low fade, an inch or many inches long after the chop, there is generally that feeling of pride and almost a literal feeling as if a weight has been lifted from your shoulder.  Aside from the freedom and versatility that comes with being natural, there is also liberation from pain, physical pain, scorching pain that comes with piling on heaps and heaps of relaxer to the hair. The chemicals that are used to compose relaxers are so harsh that sometimes individuals are literally brought to tears. Now if that is not enslaving, I don’t know what is. We have become slaves to the chemical and it is quite understandable when it is referred to as the “creamy crack” as it is almost as if we are addicted to it. What other reason could there be for subjecting ourselves to the same treatment month after month despite the known torture we are about to face.



I vividly recall my very first relaxer experience when the burns were so intense that the tears were steadily flowing down my cheeks as I cringed and squinted through the pain in anticipation of a favorable outcome.


Although the memory of my first relaxer experience never left my mind, I never hesitated to go through the pain staking process each month. My decision to go natural certainly liberated me from the traumatic experiences I had with relaxers.


There is also the stigma that long, straight hair is the only image that depicts beauty. As soon as one embraces their natural texture, it generally breaks that mindset and triggers a self-acceptance that is very liberating.


The beginning of 2014 may or may not be the time that you choose to make the decision to commence your natural hair journey but it can definitely be that time where you seriously consider the benefits of taking the step. However long it takes, it is important that you fully think it through and ensure that it is something that you truly want to do. Like I always warn people, it is not a walk in the park, but it will be worth every ounce of effort that you put into it.


If you are sure to make the decision to big chop in 2014, let me take this opportunity to wish you a Happy New Hair and if you decide that it is just not the right time, then Happy New Year to you, too. Much Love!!!     



Candie's Natural Hairnamix was birthed a few months after Jamaican native Rossette "Candie" Allen began her natural hair journey in May 2010. She gears this column toward naturals, transitioning naturals, aspiring naturals and the naturally curious, sharing experiences, expertise and experiments while celebrating emancipation from chemical slavery.



Visitor Comments (2)
Posted By CANJOSHPHILL on January 25, 2014
Thanks for reading and posting your feedback. Glad you were able to benifit from it. Continue to be blessed.

Very Informative
Posted By HELENMVD on January 21, 2014
I enjoyed reading this, and find it very helpful(especially the part about saving money on hair products!)
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