LOST..FRUSTRATED...HELPPPPPPPPP!!!!

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LOST..FRUSTRATED...HELPPPPPPPPP!!!!

Post by madamedetroit on 6th February 2011, 4:33 pm

Okay...I'm all about going natural and I'm ready to give it a go again. I say again because I tried to go natural once before (about a year and a half ago) and experienced MASSIVE amounts of breakage. I started off by stopping with relaxers and let my roots grow out for about six months then started to maintain my straight hair by getting Dominican blowouts. My hair was BEAUTIFUL!!
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I know, THIS wasn't helping my hair stay healthy, but I just wasn't ready to commit to the BC and my natural hair (which I think is a 4b or 4c) was SUPER kinky when compared to my relaxed ends. I started to experience a large amount of breakage in one part of the middle of my hair (which typically is the most coarse texture of my hair). I've always had extremely long hair and suddenly I had long hair everywhere but my edges (which had started to break years earlier) and the center part of my hair. After this experience, I decided no more blowouts and I'd go all the way natural. I scoured the internet, looking for tips and trips and tried to follow the recommended regimes. This included co-washing once or twice a week and using a leave-in conditioner, raw shea butter and coconut oil. My usual method of defining my curls (I thought) was either bantu knots or twist outs (which I'm just now learning I was making too small for the results I wanted). Meanwhile, keep in mind, I've still got this area of broken off hair (about 1.5" long) ans it was growing larger and larger. To try desperately to cover it up and still rock a cute 'do, I pinned most of it to one side and rocked a flower.
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This WAS cute, but I wanted more versatility and couldn't achieve that with the growing, gaping hole in my curls. After becoming totally frustrated, I decided I would give up the whole "natural hair" thing and just chop it all off into something edgy and perm the heck out of it again. The results were very cute and I thought that perhaps it wasn't so bad.
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Until...my hair started breaking off extremely rapidly in that same spot and this time it was about .25" long and encompassing the entire center portion of my hair (MY WHOLE CROWN!!)!...I panicked! I've always had very long hair. I had no clue what to do. I felt like I looked like a monster and I fell into a legitimately deep depression. I went to a hair loss specialist who then told me I needed to get some crazy hair laser treatments that cost $2,500!!!! I almost went for it until a friend of mine told me that perhaps I should just try to grow my hair out on my own first. I decided to give that a try and went back into my weaves and wigs. About six months ago, I finally cut out the rest of the perm and ended up with a mini fro of my natural hair but I'm not ready to rock my own hair yet. I've been continuing to get sew-ins while my hair grows out. I think I'll continue to do this until the summer and then give this thing a try again. I am writing this because I was wondering if anyone has had similar experiences and could help me out. Here's a little about my hair texture:
-My friends say I've got 'good hair' because it curls when its wet. They don't realize my hair is a dry, tangled and nappy mess when it's wet. It's never shiny and I can't put enough moisture in it. NOTHING keeps it moisturized and NOTHING makes it shine and NOTHING makes it manageable and soft!
-My edges (which are thin and will NOT crow no matter what tips and tricks I try) and kitchen/nape area are a DISASTER! They are DRY DRY DRY...NAPPY NAPPY NAPPY TANGLED TANGLED TANGLED!!
-The crown of my head is the same texture as my edges and nape, so the above conditions apply.

I want to do this next go 'round of natural hair right and I need the advice and guidance of a natural hair "big sister". Thanks in advance natural divas!

-A Very Happy [img][/img][img][/img]

madamedetroit

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Re: LOST..FRUSTRATED...HELPPPPPPPPP!!!!

Post by KnottyKinkyMommy on 7th February 2011, 4:09 pm

Your story sounds very similar to mine. I first went natural in September of 2006. I stayed natural for about 9 months and cut it all off again because I was having "issues" with a patch of hair that refused to grow in my crown. That part of my hair was about an inch long--it was really bad.

It was that patch in my crown that discouraged me. I chopped my hair off again and kept it short for years. I even texturized my hair twice. And then on February 11, 2010 I decided to try and grow my hair out again.

Now I'm just a few days short of a year long journey. And guess what? The patch is MUCH better this time around. The "patch" isn't really a patch at all. My crown is only about an inch shorter than the rest of my hair--its filled in nicely (knock on wood).

Similar to your hair issues: tangles, dryness and breakage have always been major issues for me. Keep in mind that this is what works for my hair.--hopefully it will work for yours as well--if not, feel free to tweak it as necessary.

Combating Dryness/Breakage:
Handling dryness will help combat breakage. Always use a water based moisturizer on damp hair. Always seal hair with oil after applying a moisturizer. For dryness, nothing works better for my hair the Qhemet Biologics Amla and Olive Heavy Cream--expensive, but you wont regret it.


Combating Tangles/Matting:
NEVER let your hair SHRINK. I can not stress the importance of this cardinal rule. When your hair shrinks, the strands become tangled. Tangles lead to matting. And matting leads to you cutting your hair off.

ALWAYS detangle your hair when its soaking WET and filled with CONDITIONER with a WIDE TOOTH shower comb. Once you are ready to style your hair, remember to keep it STRETCHED--whether it be braids, braid-outs, twists, twist-outs, coils, coil-outs, bantu knots, knot-outs or banding. I rarely wear puffs/fros/wash&gos. And when I do, I make sure that the weather is warm and that my hair is super detangled as well as super moisturized.



Other tips:

In regards to your sew-in, I've never had one before but I do wear wigs. Once I wore wigs and headscarves for a year straight and before I even realized it, my edges were GONE. So basically, just be wary of that because these "styles" place friction on the hairline. Just be sure to switch up the styles to give these areas a break every now and then.

Avoid heat like the plague (although I don't see anything wrong with heat a couple of times a year...no more than 3/4 times though).

Keep your hair hidden/protected most of the time but mainly in cold weather.

Thats all I can think of for now but I hope it helps. Good luck, hang in there and take care.
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Re: LOST..FRUSTRATED...HELPPPPPPPPP!!!!

Post by madamedetroit on 7th February 2011, 7:22 pm

Thank you soooooo very much!...This was a very very VERY helpful post. I'm going to look into purchasing the moisturizing products you were talking about! I'll let you know how it all works out. Thanks again! Laughing


Last edited by madamedetroit on 7th February 2011, 7:23 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : misspellings)

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Re: LOST..FRUSTRATED...HELPPPPPPPPP!!!!

Post by KnottyKinkyMommy on 7th February 2011, 8:09 pm

Awesome. I hope you like Qhemet. Her products are great. Oyin handmade makes some good stuff too. Smile
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