The decision to return to natural hair after relaxing your locks for years is certainly a bold one. However, it’s a whole process, which means you can’t just decide to stop relaxing your hair and let it return to its natural state. Check out the steps you need to take in order to go from relaxed hair to natural hair!
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1. The big chop
One of the most common ways to return to natural hair without months of transition is to do a big chop. If you decide to go for the big chop, you will need to cut off the relaxed hair off your head and only leave the short natural hairs.
As a result, you will be left with a TWA, or teeny weeny afro. This method has both pros and cons. The pros of doing a big chop include the fact that you get rid of the damaged relaxed hair at once and get a fresh start. The texture of your hair will be much more consistent and you won’t have to constantly repair broken hair.
The obvious con of the big chop is that your hair will be very short, and not every girl is prepared for this instant hair length change. The biggest con of the big chop, however, is that if you’ve only worn your hair relaxed, you will have to learn how to take care of your TWA very quickly. Luckily, there are plenty of super cute TWA hairstyles to try!
2. The transition
If you prefer to take things slowly and are not ready to chop off your damaged hair, you will need to prepare for a long transitioning periods while your natural hair grows out. Here are a few tips on how to make this process easier for you and your hair:
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- Reduce the styling. The hair that is growing out is very gentle, and the remaining relaxed hair can also be broken very easily. During the transition period, try to use as little styling products as possible. You should also avoid flat ironing your hair too often, since it’s very damaging to the whole hair length.
- Improve your diet. The things you eat and drink have a huge effect on the state of your hair. First, make sure to increase your water intake, and we do mean pure water – teas, coffees, and other drinks don’t count. Second, increase your protein intake, especially lean and plant-based protein to rebuild your hair faster.
- Avoid prolonged protective styling. You may think that protective hairstyles are the best way to grow out your natural hair, but if your protective style is too tight or your wear it for too long, you risk putting unnecessary strain on your already brittle hair. Opt for protective hairstyles that can be worn for up to 1 week at a time.
- Find the right products. Going from relaxed to natural hair is nearly impossible without a set of products, but you will need to try plenty of them to find what works for you. We suggest looking for bloggers with similar hair situations and trying the oils, creams, and gels they personally found helpful.
- Protect your hair at night. Twisting and turning in your bed with unprotected hair can have a devastating effect on the state of your locks. If you don’t own a silk bonnet yet, time to get one! You can also achieve the same effect by switching to silk pillowcases instead of cotton ones.
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A full transition from relaxed hair to natural hair doesn’t happen overnight. You need to accept the fact that there are going to be both good days and bad days when your hair won’t look good no matter how hard you try. Just remember that at the end of the process, you will be rewarded with healthy, shiny, and strong natural hair!
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