The Fundamentals of Learning to Love My Curly Hair
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Over the last 34 years, I have had a love hate relationship with my hair. Honestly, mostly hate. Growing up, I had no idea what to do with my naturally curly hair. Most days it was a frizzy mess.
For my entire middle school career I literally wore the same hairstyle - half up with it on the top of my head in a scrunchie. I longed for the straight hair of nearly every girl I knew growing up. In high school I was able to figure things out a bit more, but it was still touch and go as to whether it would be a frizz ball. I also had bangs that I straightened for some reason!
By the time I was 18, I decided I would get a chemical straightener. Yes, I know, people do this all the time. Unfortunately for me, this was 2002 and the Keratin treatment wasn’t as readily available as it is now. My hair was basically a frizzy cotton ball after the treatment! To make matters worse, I had no idea how to blow dry my hair and it just looked SO BAD!
In the midst of all my hair struggles, I decided being a hair dresser was my destiny. I’m not quite sure what I was thinking and clearly it didn’t pan out, but one good thing came out of it! I learned how to use a blow dryer and a straightener from my classmates. From that point on I started wearing my hair straight nearly every day.
Over the years, it has become increasingly damaged and quite thin. I have always had fine hair, but between highlighting it and all the heat it takes to wear it straight, my hair is just looking limp and lifeless. So, I have decided to learn to love my naturally curly hair again and wear it curly much more frequently.
The less I use the blow-dryer and straightener, the stronger my hair should get. I am hoping it will get thicker and that the curls will be less frizzy. Right now it is just so damaged, so I think a break from my straight routine will help it get back to a healthier place.
I am also going to start deep conditioning it once a week. I used to do this all the time, so I am not sure why I stopped! They have sample size deep conditioners for $3.99 at Target that I bought yesterday to try out. I like the size because it let’s me try a bunch of different ones.
Ideally the break from heat will help my hair grow. Because curly hair shrinks so much, my hair looks really short when I wear it curly. I want it to be about 4 inches longer so it looks medium length when I wear it curly and long when I wear it straight.
My current look it similar to a wet poodle! I am going to power through because I know it will grow faster if I wear it curly a lot more often. I have grown it some over the past year but keep having to cut it because the ends are so damaged.
This is a huge benefit to wearing my hair curly more often. Some of the blogs and YouTube videos I have been watching have super complicated routines, but my experience has always been less is more.
If I put some product in and just leave it alone, it tends to come out looking the way I like. Being able to just hang out while my hair dries and not have to worry about spending 45 minutes on blow drying and straightening is pretty amazing.
This is going to sound a little weird, but wearing my hair curly will help me reconnect with my authentic self. Part of me doesn’t like wearing my hair curly because it reminds me of my younger, less confident self. I am not the same girl with super low self esteem. Wearing my hair curly tells me that I have come full circle. I can be me again but with a better mindset.
I am not going to stop straightening my hair forever though. I love to wear my hair straight and have a ton of variety in how I style it. My plan is to swap what I was doing before. Instead of wearing my hair curly once in a while, that’s what I will be doing with straightening. Maybe a blow-dry 2-3 times a month to mix up my look. I will keep you guys updated on how it’s going!
Have you gone through a similar change to get your hair back to it’s natural state? Let us know in the comments!