Natural Hair Dictionary: Words you should know while on your Journey

So you have decided that you want to become natural. You decided that the best start is to look at blogs, vlogs and forums to get some information on how to take care of the new you. One problem: THEY ARE SPEAKING IN CODE!! What is WNG? HIH?  BC? APL,BSL,NL? and why is everyone using these acronyms like everyone knows them?

Well I also felt that way when I first started my journey and I learned them all on my own but you are in luck. I have put together a list of common terms that are used in the natural community and the definition. so lets get started.

BC – Big Chop :You cut off any relaxer that you may have. even if you transition for months or just chop off your permed hair 1 month after new growth. its still considered a BC

TWA – Tenny Wenny Afro: Your natural hair when it’s very short

Transitioning: The period of time when you have new growth between your last relaxer

Braid-Out: This is a method of styling when you braid all of your hair in sections to create a curl pattern. you will be able to see the pattern when you un-braid your hair and you will see a crimped style.you can separate the strands further to make your hair have more volume.

Twist – Out:This is method of styling when you twist all of your hair in sections to create a curl pattern. You will be able to see the pattern when you un-twist your hair. you can separate the strands further to make your hair have more volume.

Wash and Go (WnG and W&G) : Simply co-wash your hair, add your styler (in sections for more curl definition) and you can let it air dry or use a diffuser (the name is deceiving you can’t literally wash and go you have to take a few steps to ensure your hair is moisturized)

Co-Wash: Using a conditioner to cleanse the hair instead of shampoo (if you use products that cause build up on your scalp you should use a shampoo to cleanse your scalp)

PJ: Product Junkie. When a person has enough products to style an entire salon full of people and yet they continue to buy new products.

JBCO – Jamaican Black Castor Oil

HIH – Hand in hair syndrome. When you HAVE to touch your hair constantly i.e. making sure the voulume is still there, you want to touch it, making sure the part is gone.( The less you have HIH then your curls will last)

Low Manipulation – You want to chose styles that will allow you to leave it alone. over manipulation can cause your hair to stress and not retain growth. Protective styles are a good way to achieve low manipulation for your hair.

Protective Styles – These styles have low manipulation and protects your ends from damage (twists, flat twists, braids, roll tuck and pin) this also allows you to regularly moisturize your hair

Dusting–  trim of 1/4 and inch or less.

CG– Refers to the “Curly Girl” method explained in the book by Lorraine Massey. It is a philosophy for curls that involves, no or low shampoo, cone avoidance, and conditioner washing.  These are just a few of the basic ideas.

CBL– Collar Bone Length. If a strand of hair can be stretched out to reach your collar bone it qualifies as CBL.

BSL– Bra Strap Length. If a strand of hair can be stretched out to reach your bra strap, it qualifies as BSL.

APL– Arm Pit Length. If a strand of hair can be stretched out to reach your armpit it qualifies as APL.

MBL– Mid Back Length. If a strand of hair can be stretched out to reach the middle of your back it qualifies as MBL.

NL – Neck Length. If a strand of hair can be stretched out to reach your armpit it qualifies as NL

2nd, 3rd, 4th, day hair– Describes the amount of time your hair has gone since you last styled it. Hair styled today would be considered 2nd day hair tomorrow etc…

Sealing- Sealing moisture in the hair, specifically the ends. So you would wet your hair, then use your leave in conditioner, then SEAL with an oil and lastly use whatever styling product of your choice.

These are just a FEW of the words that are used in the natural hair community. There are MANY more but I hope that this is a great start for you on your new journey :)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These are a few of my favorite things…

For the month of September. I am a product junkie, I am not ashamed to admit it :) and I just started doing videos in August for my favorite products for the month.

For September I have a few beauty and hair favorites. I usually use HairRules conditioner it’s one of my staple products but I ran out and I was waiting on my order to be deliverd and I went to target to pick up some conditioner( I was looking on the cheaper side and something caught my eye) Nourishing Coconut milk conditioner(price was 5.59) and it is something that I will use ALWAYS now. the smell and the slip that it gave me was GREAT!

One of my beauty favorites was the Rimmel London(brand Kate in #04) it’s a deep purple and perfect hue for the fall. I can’t wait to rock it out and about again.

Curious to see what else mad my faves list in September? check it out here.

September Fave

FALL into a protective style

FALL is just around the corner, cooler weather means wash n go’s can be tricky and you may not have time to do your hair everyday. Protective styles are a great way for you to just throw on some clothes and head out the door without worrying about your hair. You can get a 1-4 weeks out of a protective style. Just remember that its really important the way you set your hair depends on how long you can wear it in a protective style.

what are some protective styles that you can wear? there are a lot but I will name three. you ALWAYS want to start on freshly washed hair, make sure to use a GREAT moisturizer since you will have it in a protective style. Make sure that you’re hair is detangled, you don’t want to set your hair in ANY style when you have small knots or tangles.

Style 1. Faux Bun with a bang

This is a VERY easy style and can last a week, to keep this style just wrap your hair up with a silk scarf at night and you are ready to go the next morning.(you may have to shape the bun again if worn like this) but if you have the bun braided or twisted you can just go.

What you will need for this style is Marley Braiding hair (it cost me 4.99 for one pack at the local beauty supply store)

Gel of your choice( I used Ampro Olive oil gel $2.49 at local beauty store) and bobby pins.

You want to make sure to use your leave in conditioner, moisturizer and oil of your choice(I used JBCO for mine) Comb or brush your hair up into a high bun(use an ouchless band)

You also want to use an ouchless band to in the middle of the hair so you can attach it to your bun.

 

Once you attach the marley hair to your bun then you just wrap it around (One side to the left then bobby pin it in place then the other side to the right and bobby pin it in place) then you can place bobby pins all over to make sure that it’s secure to your head.

You can also add a little more texture to your bun by either braiding the hair or two strand twisting it. make sure to secure the end with a rubber band.

Style 2 : Mini two strand twist

These will take you some time, but if done right the first time they will last you anywhere from 4-6 weeks. I have not made a video of these yet but Naptural85 on youtube has these down to a science and you can check out her tutorial on how to achieve this wonderful protective style

Style 3: Roll, Tuck and Pin

This is an AMAZING style and so cute and you can do it MANY, MANY ways

Kinky Curly Coily Me has a great tutorial on this style that I am wearing and it’s a very easy protective style that you can rock in the fall.

I hope you enjoyed this and it has inspired to you wear YOUR protective styles this fall or even come up with some of your own.

What inspired you to become natural?

When I decided to do a giveaway I didn’t know where to start, I was giving away a hot commodity :) a FREE CurlBOX to one of my YouTube subscribers. Where would I start? would I make them jump throuh hoops to win this amazing prize?

I couldn’t do that.. So what would I do to get people to enter? I thought about it and decided to just keep it simple..What inspired you to become natural? I just have to say that I was amazed and honored at the response I received from so many naturals about what had inspired them to go natural. I really can’t thank you enough for sharing such a person detail about yourself with me and letting your guard down.

There were so many great stories that it was very hard for me to narrow it down to the top three. One thing that was constant in almost all the emails was that everyone felt like something was missing and that they needed to make a change to stand out as the unique individuals that they felt they were.
Some met obstacles on their natural journey weather is was family not supporting them, significant others not wanting to be with them, loss of job or even trying to find their self worth.

But through the struggles that all of these ladies faced there was strength. Some went natural because they felt this is how god made them and they no longer wanted to conform to what society’s view was on beauty, some transitioned out of necessity to save money because lets face it 4 to 5 trips a month to the beauty salon will put a big dent in your wallet. Some were just tired of dealing with all that went with taking care of your hair after applying the creamy crack! Whatever the case may be it was nice to see that after all of you decided to go natural you spoke of a confidence that you never had.

Pam Grier as Foxy Brown

I have a secret for you all…it was in you the entire time! you just had tap into it :)

I was the same way and I transitioned because I felt invisible I felt like I had to fit in the mold that society had set out for me. whenever I noticed a natural women it was looked at as UN-tamed and wild, you never saw a natural women in the work place she was always fighting against the MAN and she didn’t take mess from anyone.
I have to admit I did like the confidence that exuded from this women but I didn’t think I could handle the taunts from friends, family and even strangers the never ending questions about why I didn’t comb my hair.

Me June 2012

When I turned 22 I got married and my husband told me from day one “I think your natural hair is beautiful why don’t you wear it like that for a little while and see how you feel about it.” I was shocked! I sadly believed that you had to have relaxed hair so that everyone around you would be RELAXED!! I was natural for 7 months and then I scummed to the creamy crack! it was a vicious cycle that went on for 6 years finally October 2010 was my LAST perm. I decided that I wanted to give my hair a chance to show me who it was! it was perfect timing My husband was creating a website for a business that sold Jamaican Black castor oil( stay tuned for a blog post about the benefits of castor oil) and my husband was like look you haven’t really tried to go natural I hear great things about this product. I want you to be natural you seem more confident when you have your natural hair. He was right, I had so much damage from perms I didn’t feel beautiful anymore. so I started using the castor oil and looking at YouTube tutorials and slowly my hair started growing where it had broken off and I was begging to feel confident again. Become Natural has been the best choice for me, now I am not going to spew hate at anyone who perms their hair, just like I have learned with products, one thing does not work for everyone so to each his own. I just know that this past year and a half has really opened my eyes and I look forward to learning more about myself and I thank all of you for sharing your journey with me as well. So what has inspired YOU to become natural

You’ve decided to go natural..Now what?

I have have to admit that I have been on my natural hair care journey for the past 7 years now. However I didn’t fully commit to it until December of 2011, I was one of those people that would decide to go natural and then 7 months later after my perm I didn’t have a clue what to do with my hair and I would just chemically treat it again. This was an ongoing cycle for 7 YEARS!!

taken 12/9/08 Transitioning
Taken 8/15/09 transitioning
Perm on 2/11/11

It is so hard to commit to natural hair at first because we are so used to conforming to the “norm” and there was a time when natural hair was considered “nappy” and people thought you just didn’t do your hair. I could remember my friends and family saying to me..”you need to comb your hair before you go out in public with me” that as so discouraging and I really had no where to turn too. I didn’t know that there were sites like curlynikki.com or naturallycurly.com or even YouTube video tutorials out there to help me through my transitioning phase.
I was so grateful that when I decided to chop off all the perm I had left on my head in December 2011 that I decided to look at YouTube and get on the internet. There was a plethora of information at my finger tips and it helped me see women that were in my shoes talk about the products they use and tips on how they were going natural.
It has now become a movement of women who are embracing what god has given them, some are transitioning because of cost (hey I moved to the country because of my husband and I originally started transitioning because there was no one out there to perm my hair) there are some out there transitioning because they want to see what their natural hair looks like. whatever the reason is that you are transitioning I just want to say stick to it! there will be hills and valleys just like any life changing decision that you make. but remember there are plenty of people out there that you can turn to. I stumbled across this website and I REALLY wish it was available when I was transitioning its called
www.transitioningmovement.com
This is a wonderful place that you can go to and place questions on forums and learn how to work with your natural hair. So you’ve decided to go natural now what? Just remember with natural hair there are no “bad” hair days you can rock whatever you want and just keep MOISTURIZING! :)
Deciding to become natural was one of the best decisions of my life I have never been happier and my hair it the healthiest it has ever been.