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Transitioning to Natural Hair Part One

Updated on November 16, 2012

Transitioning to natural hair is becoming increasingly the most popular way to go natural.

It allows you to go natural and keep your length.

It was the first choice for me when I decided to go natural because I just was not comfortable with chopping off the majority of my hair.

Transitioning to natural hair is a process is not one that is easy.

Transitioning is the process of growing out your natural hair without cutting off the hair that has been chemically processed.

For African Americans, transitioning includes dealing with two different textures.

This difficult because usually the natural texture is very curly and kinky and the chemically processed hair is straighter.

Two textures will make washing, detangling, and styling a much longer process. Due to its difficulty not many people transition for long periods of time.

Personally when I made the decision to transition to natural hair, I originally planned on transitioning for 2 years.

I ended up transitioning for only a year because it was very time consuming and I was anxious to see my natural hair without the weight of the chemically processed ends.

I obtain quite a bit of growth but not as much as I would have liked to if I would have held on for 2 years.

I have a few tips that will help you in your transition to natural hair and allow your natural hair to flourish once you are completely natural.

Tips for Transitioning

One of the biggest things I have learned during my transition journey is to be gentle.

When your natural texture begins to grow out there will be a line of demarcation.

This is where your chemically processed hair and natural hair meet.

This point in the hair strand is very fragile and must be taken care of.

If you are rough with your hair, as far as combing and styling, you could potentially damage your hair and cause it to break off. This is why it is important to be gentle.

All you need to do is take your time while detangling and keep your hair saturated with water and conditioner, so that there is less friction between the hair during the detangling process.

Water and conditioner together are great because they allow more slip between the hair and comb so that detangling is easier.

A great slip conditioner is Vo5 conditioners. They helped me out a great deal while I transitioned to natural hair.

Great detangling tools for naturally curly hair include: the denman brush or a goody shower comb.

These are great tools that help get rid of shedded hair and they glide through the hair nicely.

Another important tip is to use protective styling.

This is very important because you will be able to retain length by putting less stress on the hair.

Your natural hair will also be healthier in return.

Protective styling includes wearing buns, wigs, braids and braid outs.

A braid out is a style where all you have to do is braid your hair in a few individual braids while you hair is wet, you let the braids dry overnight and then you take them down.

Your hair will be wavy and match the texture of you natural hair. This can also be done with twists in place of braids.

It is critical to note that you should try to get your relaxed or chemically processed hair to match your natural hair.

This means that you need to limit the use of heat, such as, blow drying, and flat ironing because these products can and will damage your natural hair and will cause breakage.

This is why the protective styles described above are important. I have been natural for two years now and I have only used heat twice.

I now no longer use heat and my hair is at its fullest potential.

Don’t get me wrong you can use heat but you just need to know the consequences and proper ways to go about using it safely.

Another tip that I have for you is to keep your hair moisturized and sealed at all times.

This will prevent your hair from becoming brittle and breaking off at the line of demarcation.

The way to do this is by deep conditioning after every shampoo and sealing in the moisture with and oil.

Popular natural oils that people like to use are extra virgin olive oil and unrefined coconut oil.

There are many natural oils out there to try to! Find out which ones you like best!

Also keep your hair tied up at night by using a satin or silk scarf. These types of scarves will protect your hair and eliminate friction against your hair.

My last tip for you is to document your progress by taking pictures or making videos.

This way you can see your growth from month to month.

That was a huge motivator for me!

Also share you journey with others and form a group of people to transition with you!

You can do this by going to websites such and,, or natural hair forums.

By joining these websites you can be inspired by people who have already taken the journey or are currently on the journey.

You can also be an inspiration to other people. I transitioned with my twin sister and it was a lot of fun!

Transitioning to natural hair is not easy but if you stay motivated and look towards your bigger goal you can do it!

My name is Kyndall Smith and my passion is to help people grow their hair long and strong.

For part two click here!


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