Why I transitioned to natural hair & how I did it

I thought about transitioning to natural hair more than twenty times in college. Fear was the one thing that held me back every single time. The thought of doing the “big chop” scared me and I didn’t have the patience. I also knew that I wanted to pursue a career in broadcast journalism, which required a “consistent look” to land a job (so they tell you). If you’re in the industry, you know exactly what I’m talking about. I felt pressured to keep my hair in the same straight style I had been rocking for 20 years.

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Examples of “big chop”. Photo credit: Allure 

So I waited and I waited, until August 2018. That’s when I finally got over my fear and took a leap and I’m so glad I did. 2019 was a year for growth in so many ways. My hair is a physical reflection of that journey.

Why I transitioned? 

In 2017, I started running into hair care experts who warned me about the dangers associated with relaxers.

“Some relaxers may not contain caustic ingredients, for example, but they may have fragrants or preservatives — such as parabens — that can be harmful. Parabens are potential hormone disruptors, their risk increasing with accumulated use.” – CNN 

I also started to think about relaxers on a deeper level. When I was 10 years old, I wanted them mainly because I wanted straight hair like the other girls (whatever that meant). Now that I’m older, I’m realizing that a little self love goes a long way. Seeing my natural hair is refreshing. I’m choosing to embrace my natural beauty.

Note: I will never knock anyone for getting relaxers, this is just my story. 

How I did it. 

I didn’t do the “big chop”, because I wanted to rock extensions in between my transitioning period. Instead, I opted for clip-ins, u-part wigs, full wigs, crotchet braids, faux locs and braids. Which meant trimming my relax ends every few months, in between styles.

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Check out the video above for a more in-depth explanation on how I transitioned throughout the year. What’s your story?

Special thanks to all the experts who convinced me to go natural, including Tracey Edmonds and Lucky Marquez.

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About the author

Reporter/Fill-in anchor with ABC7 News

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