Wednesday, March 16, 2011


Transitioning Tale: Bri's Story

A lovely diva named Bri, who had a long-term relationship with lye, would like to share how she got the courage to bid farewell to the creamy crack. Below is her natural hair story as told to Protecting Your Crown & Glory.
PYCAG: How long were you relaxed?
Bri: I was relaxed for most of my life. I received my first relaxer around the fifth or sixth grade.

PYCAG: What inspired you to transition?
Bri: I was fed up with not having healthy hair and I knew my reliance on relaxers was to blame. I kept getting a relaxer because it was all I knew, almost a tradition of sorts amongst most women in my community. When I graduated college my hair began to show signs of cumulative relaxer damage (e.g. breakage and thinning) and I was devastated. I did extensive research online and watched Youtube videos of other women such as yourself (DPrincess28), who made the transition to natural hair successfully. I wanted to break the cycle of damage, so I became a catalyst for embracing natural hair in my family.
PYCAG: Why did you opt to do the BC versus slowly transition?
Bri: I started off wanting to transition for a year, but six months into the process my new growth was having a serious time coping with my relaxed ends. My ends were breaking off and I was anxious to see my natural hair texture. I transitioned for a total of 7 months and did the BC on May 2, 2010.

PYCAG: How are you caring for your hair?
Bri: I try to change up my hairstyle as often as I can. I don’t like to limit myself because my hair isn’t a certain length or texture, but I do have some go to styles. I normally wear my hair in two strand twists or twist outs. Occasionally I wear my hair in an Afro, but I’m starting to wear more styles that protect my ends.

I started my hair care regimen about two months after I went natural. I want to emphasize the word ‘my’ because at first I was trying everyone else's personal hair care regimen…BIG mistake! I looked at my hair one day and asked myself what did I want from my hair? How did I want my hair to look and feel? Once I answered those questions I was able to create a regimen that specifically met my hair's wants and needs. I shampoo my hair 1-2 times a month and I co-wash 2-4 times weekly. I do a deep conditioning treatment once a week (under a hooded dryer) with my conditioner and natural oil mixture. I also do a weekly hot oil treatment and a monthly henna treatment to promote shine and add a hint of color. I trim my ends once every four months and I take a multivitamin specifically for hair, skin, and nails.

Now that I’m natural, I do everything differently. When I had relaxed hair I used a lot of heat and products containing alcohol, silicone, petroleum, and mineral oil. I’ve become more conscious, not just about what goes on my hair but also in my body.

PYCAG: What products are you currently using?
Bri: For shampoos I use Vitamin Shampoo (Mangosteen and Yogurt) or Organix Shampoo (Smoothing Shea Butter) and for co-washes I use either VO5 Moisture Milks or Suave Naturals. I love natural oils and butters so I frequently use coconut, almond, olive, vitamin e, and tea tree oil or raw shea butter. For styling, I use pure aloe vera gel, Shea Moisture Style Conditioning Milk and Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie.

PYCAG: What are your hair care goals?
Bri: Immediately after my BC all I wanted was long hair…fast! I had to go back to the reason why I went natural in the first place and that was to have healthy hair. Once I put down the tape measure and the ‘grow your hair exactly like mine’ Youtube videos, I was able to actually focus on doing the things that promote hair growth. My hair has grown tremendously and I am shooting for armpit length by October 2011. You can check out my current progress and other information on my natural hair journey by visiting me on my blog (, Facebook (, or Twitter ( accounts.

Thank you, Bri, for sharing your transitioning tale with Protecting Your Crown & Glory. We wish you much success on your hair care journey.

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