Natural hair textures require its own set of standards for care, that differs from relaxed hair care. Which is why transitioners should know what these standards of care are in order to avoid breakage and bad hair days!
1. As your hair grows out study your curl pattern, its coarseness, its kinkyness, and coils. Learning and accepting very quickly what your hair can and cannot do will save you from too many rough days in the road ahead. For instance, while there are some naturals that can wet their hair frequently you may not be one of them! Using practices that do not work for your hair type will land you with a bad hair day and in the worst case scenario breakage.
2. While you are transitioning you are dealing with two textures. You have your straight ends from your relaxer and your curls at your root. The difference in these two textures can cause breakage if you are not careful. By wearing protective styles such as buns, twists, or low manipulation styles such as twists outs you can spare yourself from breakage.
3. When you do decide to do twist out or braid out styles, to give your hair a more consistent look throughout use rollers or rods on your ends. Otherwise you are going to have a not so hot looking style. You will end up having curly roots with flat straight ends, which often doesn’t make for a good style.
Or you could just try rod setting which looks super awesome!
4. Don’t you dare comb your hair from the roots to your ends! When your hair is straightened this doesn’t pose a big problem, but in its curly state this is something you definitely do not want to do. When combing your hair, you will be GENTLY combing your hair from the ends to the root using a wide tooth comb or denman brush.
5. Lay off the heat styling tools! Once you are natural it is fine to change it up every once in a while, but when you are transitioning try to take a break from the heat use. Using hot combs or flat irons can cause permanent straightening of the hair, just like relaxers do, especially if you are a newbie and do not know how much heat your hair can take. You are trying to revert to your natural texture during transition right? Then why defeat the purpose by adding something into your regimen that will work against you?
6. Transitioning is a lengthy process that requires patience and may take up to a year or more depending on how much relaxed ends you have. However, it is the perfect solution for those who are not comfortable with the big chop. You have the time to wait until your hair reaches a length that you are comfortable with and then you can chop off the remainder of your relaxer. So take your time, learn your hair, and love your curls.