Pros and Cons of Going Natural

Chloe Vaughn

The Pros

Worry Free Rain or Shine

Before I went natural, unsuspected water was a BIG deal! It may sound petty to some but spending so much time and money for straight hair is pointless if rain comes around and wrecks it the next day! Now that I mostly wear my hair in its natural state, I don’t have to worry about weather as much! Bring on the rain, sleet or snow! And the summer impromptu swimming! 😉

Healthy Gym Time

Along with wet weather, sweat pretty much gave me the same problem. I often found myself having to choose between hair or health, which is unacceptable. I need to be able to go to the gym! Even when I did go to the gym, if I had a fresh wash, I found myself not working my hardest. Now I can go to the gym and wash my hair when needed without having to worry about the time it took me to straightening my hair and whether or not I should style it again or use heat in it (again).

Thicker and Healthier Hair

This is not to say that you cannot have healthy, thick relaxed hair. I have had relaxed hair and it was healthy and for the most part thick. It wasn’t until I became natural that I found that my hair could be healthier and thicker. Relaxer chemicals cause some form of damage to your hair that’s just the way it is. No relaxer, no relaxer damage.

Versatility

I have way more versatility with my natural hair! I can pretty much to anything I could when I was relaxed when my is straight and do all the same styles and more when my hair is curly. I never get bored and my buns are so much fuller!

 Self-awareness

It’s nice to know who I am in my unapologetic entirety. I was relaxed at an early age so I never knew what my natural hair looked like. There is something empowering about knowing every part of yourself. Even if I relaxed my hair tomorrow (which I’m not planning on doing) I would be happy that I went natural and had this experience.

The Cons

Straight Hair isn’t Always Possible

I don’t even bother with straight hair in the summer. It is a waste of time, money, and a heat card if you’re keeping track. Side note: a heat card is a set amount of times that some naturals plan to put direct heat on their hair a year. In any case, it’s hot in the summer and even though Colorado is a dryer state, sweat from my scalp alone is enough to mess up my style. Not to mention the gym.

Perfectly Sleek Hair is Hard to Come By

Sometimes you want your hair perfectly in place. Whether it’s a bun, ponytail, or some other style. The problem is natural hair does what it wants to do. As you learn your hair, you learn tricks to help you achieve differently looks but those tricks like tying down your edges won’t always work. Sometimes my hair won’t corporate and I just have to let her be.

Dry time

Drying takes forever! It takes a full 24 hours for my hair to air dry. A blowout takes more time than it did when I was relaxed. Drying just takes longer. I might be the only one but wet hair really bugs me but it something I have to deal with now that I’m natural. Whomp.

Extra Steps to Every Hairstyle

I can no longer just put my hair into a ponytail now that I’m natural. It was so simple in the past. It might partly be due to the fact that I like my hair to look a certain way but I think it’s more than that. My edges never just look nice like they did when I was chemical processed. If I want them to be laid, I have to take the time to lay them. Which means not only adding edge tamer, gel or water, I also need to wrap them and then let them set. I need to refresh my hair with water or leave-in in order to make it more pliable and not cause excessive tangles or damage. There is more brushing so I have to worry about preventing more damage. Don’t even get me started on whether or not an average ponytail holder is big enough for this thickness! Ponytails are just not as simple for me anymore and this saddens me.

Takes Time to Maintain

On top of the extra steps to other styles, natural hair just need a little more maintenance. I could wash my hair once every two weeks with a relaxer and style it and be done. Yes, I did moisture and seal but that took no time right before wrapping my hair and going to bed. I can’t go that long without washing my natural hair or the detangling process alone would take a million years… Okay, I’m exaggerating but natural hair just requires more work.

Shrinkage

All naturally curly girls have been visited by our good friend “shrinkage” but for those of you who don’t know who he is, I’ll introduce you. He is the one that has come to rain on your parade. You have styled your coils to perfection only to have them shrink to half the length after it dries. Sure, it’s proof that you hair has elasticity, a good thing, but it’s a bummer. You can combat it with stretched styles but there is no cure.

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