We’ve all heard people saying “my hair is in transition” or “I’m transitioning” and wondered what exactly it implied and what’s the process. After covering the big chop last week, it’s only fair to explain how to transition from relaxed hair to natural hair. We’ve compiled a list of things that can help you during your transition from the harmful ingredients of relaxers to styling your transitioning hair. We’ve covered everything there is to know so enjoy!
Meaning of transitioning
First things, what does transition mean? It’s a term often used by people who are going from relaxed/permed hair to natural hair, by growing out the relaxed part as opposed to cutting it all off (big chop).
People usually choose to transition from relaxed hair to natural hair because they are not ready to cut all their hair off or because perhaps, they think short hair doesn’t fit them. It’s truly a matter of personal choice.
Relaxers and perms are harmful. They contain harmful chemicals that penetrate your hair and scalp during application and alters your natural texture.
There are two types of relaxers, lye-relaxers and no lye relaxers. Lye relaxers contain sodium hydroxide as the active ingredients. It’s used by professionals and followed with a neutralizing shampoo to control the damage. The hydroxide relaxer has on average a pH of 13.
No-lye relaxers, although branded as gentle are still as harmful. They contain a potassium or calcium hydroxide with a pH between 9 and 11. The pH of natural ranges from 4 to 5 basically meaning that relaxing hair is the equivalent of dumping bio hazardous waste on our heads. Ok…maybe not but it’s truly harmful.
A study has found that women who use hair relaxers had an increased chance of getting breast cancer.
With that said, let us move away from that lifestyle and adopt a healthy regimen.
Transitioning is adopting a healthy lifestyle
As much as going natural means embracing your natural hair texture, it is essentially using healthy and natural products on your hair. These steps can start as soon as you decide to transition from relaxed hair to natural hair.
Don’t wash your hair as often. Every 10 to 14 days is good. Afro-textured hair is naturally dry, add on top that transitioning hair has two different textures at the root and on the ends, it needs extra TLC. Shampoo will strip all the natural moisture from the hair so space out your shampoo days.
Hot oil treatments
Try adding hot oil treatments to your regimen. Your hair will be prone to breakage so there’s nothing wrong with giving it a boost. You can seize this occasion to thoroughly massage your scalp before rinsing out the oils, it will boost hair growth.
If you want to restore pH in your hair after shampoo, deep conditioning is the way to go. It will add moisture to your hair and leave it feeling soft and bouncy. If you’ve had a bad experience with deep conditioner with horrible smells, try Mosara’s deep treatment masque.
Start trimming the relaxed part slowly and in no time, you will be all natural. Bonus: trimming=no split ends. Talk about killing two birds with one stone.
How to style transitioning hair
As we had mentioned above, transitioning from relaxed hair to natural hair means you will have two different textures that answer to two different regimens. Your job is to unify them to your best ability. Now that we’ve covered how to take care of the hair, one thing remains: how do you style them?
Covering up new growth can be tricky because you don’t want to be pulling it too much to style it, but you want to look somewhat presentable. Small trick: the headband. Yes, it’s time to build your collection of hair bands. They will conceal your growth with style.
You can also try protective hairstyles (protective hairstyles are the answer to every woman with afro-textured hair’s problems!!!). The protective hairstyles will ensure that your hair grows with minimal attention. All you have to do is moisturize your scalp two to three times a day, and you’re good to go.
Whatever you do, stay away from straighteners and blow-dryers. The transition from relaxed hair to natural will weaken your hair. Adding heat to already fragile hair will just break them and give heat damage to your new growth.
Things to keep in mind
Last tips to remember as you take care of your natural hair:
- Being natural doesn’t mean all the products are natural as well: go for the sulfate-free, parabens free, silicone free shampoos. Also, make sure you research ingredients that are in the new hair products you are about to try.
- Natural hair can still get damaged: it’s common to get heat damage with natural hair and you can also get breakage if you don’t properly detangle your hair.
- Some products can clog your scalp if used excessively: deep treatments can clog hair follicles and weigh down your hair due to their yogurt like consistency. Make sure to use them with moderation. For instance, if you wash your hair three times a month (every 10 days), only deep treat twice.
We hope this guide was helpful. Don’t hesitate to share your experience with us!