1BN Contributor: My Top 6 Surprises After Going Natural

(photo cred:Dionysius Burton via Flickr under CC By-ND 2.0)

Kimberly J. Childs

Before I went natural, I must have googled the words natural hair, big chop and shea butter at least 1.5 million times! Yet, after all of my research, I still had surprises on my journey, and still do! Here are my top 6 surprises after going natural, the good and the bad!

1. My Hair Still Moves, it Even Swings Sometimes!

When I went natural, I had accepted the imaginary fact that my hair would no longer blow in the relaxed wind, as it had for years. However, I have discovered that my hair can still blow, without chemicals or heat. Believe me, there are days when I have my puff, and it’s not moving anywhere. Tornado or not. That is totally ok with me!

2. My Hair Holds Scents/Smells for Much Longer

When I use some of my more fragrant leave-ins, my hair holds that scent for days!  This makes using essential oils like rosemary or peppermint even better. On the other hand, it holds not so great smells too! At a recent family party, their entire house smelled like fried chicken and catfish, fried hard. Not bad for my tastebuds, but literally stunk for my hair!  I kept getting whiffs of that party in my twist out!  

3. Colors Look More Bold and Bright in Tight Curly Hair

Since our hair already stands out, a great color only enhances this! This has inspired me to try more shades. When I first color my hair, my puff looks so cute! Color makes your twists and braids even more gorgeous.

4. Working Out Can Still be a Hairy Challenge

As a natural, I just knew that working out would be so much easier, now that my hair loves water. However, it doesn’t love sweat:). For me, sweat is this evil liquid that lives and breathes to ruin my cutest braid out. If you are wearing a wash and go, it is much easier to maintain during workouts. Yet, keeping some styles is a challenge. This is where good protective styles come in.

5. I Only Have One Head, But 4 Textures of Hair

Rarely do you find someone with a full crown of only 4a or 3b type hair. I have at least 4 different textures in my hair. This was a big surprise to me. The very nape of my neck is a 3a. The rest of my hair is way up in the 4 family:).  This means in the back, my hair hangs a lot looser. Sometimes I have a curly mullet.:) I have to trim the back more often, just to stay even.

6. Members of the Natural Movement Are Like a Friendly Gang

This was the best surprise! When you go out, and see other natural beauties like yourself, don’t you at least give a head nod, smile, or something? We really need a hand signal or colors we all wear!  Your hair can spark a conversation while waiting in line, sitting at church,or at the gym. Gaining a support system that includes millions of ladies, is a blessing that I had no idea was coming.

Have you experienced any of these 6 surprises after going natural?
 Kimberly J. Childs is a freelance writer from Chicago who loves traveling, church activities, and natural hair. Please visit her website to check out more about her. 

                            1BN Contributor: My Top 5 Funny Reactions to My Shrinkage
                            1BN Contributor: A Nappy Girl's Prayer