Welcome to the first post in our new series all about natural hair! Whether you’ve been natural for years, or just decided to take the “Big Chop” I’m going to take you through everything I’ve learned being natural since I cut my chemically processed hair in 2010. To make sure we’re all on the same page in the weeks to come, today’s post is dedicated to make sure we know all the basics (and lingo) to go natural!
NATURAL HAIR 101
- Natural- Hair that has not been chemically altered to change its texture.
- Relaxer- A chemical process that straightens kinky/curly hair.
- Texturizer- A chemical process similar to a relaxer that loosens curls instead of straightening.
- Big Chop- When someone who wants to go natural cuts off all of their chemically processed ends.
- Transitioning- Process of going natural over an extended period of time by growing out the roots and cutting the processed ends. Less dramatic change than a Big Chop.
- Hair Typing- Classification of curl types. Ranges from wavy (2), curly (3), to kinky/coily (4).
- Porosity- How open or closed the cuticles of the hair shaft are. Directly affects how well the hair takes products and retains moisture.
- Pre-Poo- A treatment applied to the hair before shampooing to keep the shampoo from stripping too much moisture from the hair.
- No-Poo Regimen- Not using shampoo when washing and cleaning the hair.
- Co-Wash- Using conditioner only to clean and moisturize the hair.
- L.O.C Method- Ordered method of retaining moisture for curly hair. L is for liquid, like water or leave-in conditioner. O is for oil, like coconut or olive oil. And C is for cream, which can by any curly hair styling product.
- Single Strand Knots (Fairy Knots)- When a strand of hair curls around itself and forms a knot. AKA the natural’s worst enemy!
- Protective Styling- Styling the hair in buns, braids, twists etc to keep the hair from being over manipulated and help retain length and moisture.
Obviously this isn’t an all-inclusive list, but I think this is really all you need to know to get started on your natural hair journey! Look out for the next installation of this series where we delve into the world of protective styling! Let us know in the comments, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr if you liked this post!