Do you know that over 60% of Nigerian women have chemically relaxed hair? though the movement has been on to go natural, team relaxed hair still lead the train.
New growths has always been a nightmare for me! one of the reasons I chosed to leave the league of team au natural was because my natural 4c hair is not only too thick to comb without having my arms give out due to fatigue, but also because its stressful to maintain and expensive to grow. I know those team kinky would be like that’s not true, but compared the amount products often recommended for such hair type to the amount I need on a relaxed hair and there was noticeable difference long-term.
Anyway, in the end, I dropped out of the world wide frenzy.
Switching over to the relaxed hair, I was instantly relieved from stress of struggling with a comb, or having to braid or style weekly or less……it was amazing. although switching over to a relaxed hair brought about new challenges, as there were lots of things I needed to learn, skills I needed to master if I ever wanted a healthy full, vibrant and long locks. It didn’t take long before I realized that relaxed hair care is totally different from that of a natural hair.
Ultimately, for everyone especially me hair care result expectations boils down to having full hair with a vibrant hair colour and of cause, the icing, a very long hair. long enough to make Rapunzel think she has this👇
KEYS TO HANDLING NEW GROWTH
the biggest challenge to me with new growths is not the fact that having two hair textures on one head (one relaxed and the other a 4c hair) which means there would be some combing and maintainance problems, but also because as a result of these factors you are more susceptible to losing hair legnth as old hair tends to get mismanaged.
there are some few tricks I had picked up along the way to stop my old hair from breaking out whenever my new growth have noticeably started to pose a challenge for existing hair.
one of the rules for growing relaxed hair is not only to relax your hair as infrequently as possible at most twice a year, but also to protect old hair (edges) as they determine your hair length. it is the ultimate holy Grail.
KEY 1: TREAT EACH PART DIFFERENTLY
this is the basics of it all. the biggest mistake you can ever make is attempting to handling your entire locks the same way. If common sense says it’s wrong to use the same hair care strategy you’d use with a 4c hair as with a relax hair, common sense would therefore do the same when you have a new growth!
why do I advocate for this you may be wondering, well from experience through trial and error and from doing a little bit of research on both hair types, the reasons for this therefore is
- relaxed hair are weaker than natural hair, so in the process of trying to get to the new stronger hair at the bottom, the likelihood of you damaging the former doubles.
- curly hair equals tangled hair, tangled hair equals dry hair (at least for most people😉). non the less moisturizing natural hair is slightly different from relaxed hair depending on your hair type however.
having two hair texture poses two great problems to hair length retention. One is to be able to efficiently moisturize both parts and also retain moisture. And two, which a heck a lot of us tend to fall victim of is, resisting the lure of mishandling.
- when washing your hair, cut your hair into parts and braid it first. the idea behind this is that 4c hair tends to curl up, tangle and shrink once it comes in contact with water. Throw in a little bit of hand maneuvers to get it all clean and you’d have a hot mess! Good luck trying to comb, moisturize and oils properly afterwards…….doing this little trick will drastically reduce your likelihood of mishandling and breakage.
- focus more on using a good live in conditioner for your new growth as well as a sealing oil for it especially if you are prone to having dry and stubborn new growth.
- protect old hair/relaxed end by braiding or protecting it with a humidity serum during harsh seasons, also resist the urge to constantly play with it with your hands (don’t let people touch too!). a moisturizer should be used before the serum which acts as a sealing agent.
- do a protein treatment once a week. and cover your hair with a satin cap or scarf at night when you go to bed. generally unless I’m leaving the house my hair remains wrapped up. doing this only has drastically shown results!
KEY 2: CREATE A NEW HAIR CARE ROUTINE THAT ALSO ADDRESSES THE NEEDS OF BOTH NEW GROWTH AND OLD HAIR
I cannot stress this enough, however in order to stretch out the time interval you need in order for you to be back at the salon chair for your next session, you need to switch things up when you start to notice disparity between hair types. I tend to get new growth pretty fast, if I was to go lazy on hair care, I would probably be needing a little bit of retouching every month!
you may need to switch hair care products during this period of time if the cosmetic you use isn’t cut out for the job. currently I’ve been maintaining my new growth for 3 months now and counting.
however because this is too much of a broad topic to cover on one post as I may need to discuss for the sake of my viewers
- how to properly wash a relaxed hair with new growths to prevent damage
- how to maintain and increase your hair length during this period of time
- a review of the best hair care products I’ve used within this period of time and the very worst in the market!
- how to create a winning hair care routine to fit into your schedule
- the best and worst relaxers you could possibly use and my experiences with them
- when to know if you need to switch salonist
- and how to relax a hair with product sensitive scalp like mine to prevent hair damage and burns
over the coming weeks one of each topics listed here would be addressed. to make a priority request please do so in the comment section below.
how long have you been on the team relaxed hair train, what are your experiences?, challenges? and failures? tell us your story and i may be tempted to tell mine with pictures….
spoiler alert, it’s horrid!