How To Survive The First 12 Months Of An Afro

This last year of growing a natural ethnic hair without cutting it or relaxing it, I can honestly say that I have so much respect for ladies with dreadlocks. I have never kept my hair longer than six months without caving due to the challenges that a mid-length Afro presents. This is such an awkward stage to growing an Afro. The hair is long enough not to be cute little curls, but too thick and short to be flattened and pushed back with an Alice band. Surviving this stage of my Afro and getting to a year with my natural albeit coloured Afro is an accomplishment.
 Hair lessons learned:
  • Hair loss can be an indication of iron defiance and since I am a blood donor, SANBS got me clued up and educated. Healthy hair grows on healthy bodies; I can attest to that.
  • An Afro is like a cute chubby baby. People want to touch it and my consent is irrelevant.
  • Contrary to Ms India Arie’s teachings, I am my hair. Bad Afro days do not make for sexy days.
  • I had to make peace with friends and colleagues fixing me up. It seems like I always have a woolly bobble that they have to remove. Between you and me, I think that it is just an excuse to fondle and play with my hair.
  • Strangers will approach me not to ask for directions, but to talk about my hair. A red coloured Afro has a way of getting a person noticed, that much I can tell you,
  • Don’t obsess about length, some Afros are softer and straighter thus they appear to grow faster than my coarse and kinkier hair which has a lot of volume, but tends to shrink. Focusing on growing healthy hair is the key and the rest follows.
  • Black hair salons are where Afros go to die, and that coloured girls know a lot about hair remedies that make an Afro flourish, and;
  • That no one is born with perfect hair. It is a result of trial and errors, love and patience.
I am happy to say that I am not cutting my hair any time soon. I love it, and I am looking forward to another year of hair accessories, learning and growth.

Article by: Ncomeka Mpofu

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