“You look a hot mess.” That is what my friend’s sister told her the other day when she did her big chop. When my friend told me this, I immediately told her, “Don’t let that discourage you from doing what you want to do with your hair.” My friend then said, “My sister has never relaxed her hair and she has a better grade of hair.”
Let me address that. Yes, we all have DIFFERENT “grades” or textures of hair. But let’s take that a little further. A ‘grade’ is a letter you get on a test. A, B, C, D, F. It is a result of an evaluation. Is someone else’s hair an ‘A’ while yours is a ‘D’ or ‘F’? No. Why should anyone be evaluating your hair? Guess what? Everyone’s hair has qualities that someone else may want. That girl with the better “grade” may want to have thicker hair or her hair may not be able to hold styles the way yours can. The point is to work with what you have. Like India Arie says, “I am not my hair.” And you are not yours. We as women (no matter the color or hair “grade”) are beautiful and have more important qualities. I know other people’s opinions sometimes matter to us, however, we have to learn to not let them matter. I am speaking from experience. When I was transitioning in 2009, my cousin told me one day, “Girl you need a relaxer.” I quickly responded, “No I don’t.” That shut her up real quick. Several years passed to 2011 to my grandmother’s funeral and that cousin and I hadn’t seen each other. By this time I was fully natural and the response to my hair was, “Oh it is so pretty. What do you do to it? What products do you use?” Then there was another cousin who wouldn’t dare compliment me but I could tell by the looks that she liked it. But guess what? I didn’t care. I KNEW my hair was gorgeous and I knew that was all that mattered. I love my hair, my husband loves my hair and my girls love my hair. And guess what? You will love your hair, too!!
Being natural is so incredibly freeing. It is also hard at the beginning trying to figure out what products will work for you. But once you get the hang of it, you will not regret the decision. I know I never have. My only regret is not doing it sooner.