I recently made the decision to “loc” my natural hair. For those who have no idea what I’m talking about, it’s basically allowing my hair to form into “dreadlocks.” Though I hate that word and rarely use it. I use the word loc or locs.
African American hair is extremely unique, so don’t think of this process as just a style. My hair naturally locs due to it’s extremely course and coily texture, the hair strands basically just wrap around each other and connects. Yes I can still wash it, in fact you should keep it clean. No I’m not a rastafarian. I’m not writing this to feed into stereotypes surrounding locs or lack of understanding of black hair, I’m writing this to share my journey.
I decided to go natural my junior year of high school after researching and learning more about black hair. I’d realized I’d been taught to “perm” or relax my hair (a chemical straightening process lots of black women do to keep straight hair) my entire life. Learning more about the dangers of this and how damaging it can be to the hair I decided to transition to natural hair.
I stopped getting relaxers and I’ve been fully naturally since 2011. Though I never fully understood my natural hair. It was very difficult for me to learn how to maintain my natural hair. Black hair in it’s natural form is unique and beautiful but A LOT of maintenance.
I’d spend entire days washing and deep conditioning, trying products and moisturizing. I’d attempt different styles, none of which ever turned out properly. I’d spend hours on end twisting my hair, sit for 10 hours to get braids. It all just took so much energy and time.
I’d began experiencing lots of breakage and never retained the length I’d aimed for when starting this journey. I was never told that diet and stress and number of other things played a huge role in hair health. I’d also never realized how much time we spend as black women maintaining our hair.
I enjoy experiences and enjoying my weekends making memories with others. I found I was spending more time doing my hair than I did actually having fun.
The amount of maintenance my hair needed became a serious issue during my pregnancy. I was extremely sick, and at some point on bedrest and unable to walk. I still managed to spend hours on end twisting my hair out of obligation. I hated it!
I became so fed up with the fact that even when I had no strength to stand I HAD to do my hair. No one around me understood this struggle as this is something that is unique to black women. (Yes white girls do their hair, but it doesn’t take them an entire weekend).
So after years of struggling with my loose natural hair, I decided to loc! Boy do I wish I would’ve started this journey sooner.
I’d become a huge fan of low-maintenance styles during my last few years as a natural. Since I am now a married mommy and full time student, I can’t just set aside entire days or weekends to maintain my hair, yet with loose natural hair if I didn’t breakage would be an issue.
I’ve been locking my hair for 6 months now and besides moisturizing, shampooing my scalp and adding essential oils I leave my hair alone!
I’m learning this is the best thing I can possible due for my hair type.
Though this journey is not only allowing me the freedom to stop being tied down to my hair but also the freedom to spend my free time making memories with the ones I love!
No more Saturdays stuck inside pre-pooing and deep conditioning. At least not for me! CHEERS!
*For more on my journey check out MikeandRere on Youtube. Click MikeandRere above (below the photo) to watch the video*