My natural hair transition: one-year post-relaxer

natural hair transition

Hello guys! I hope you are well. In this new article, I will share with you my hair update after a year of natural hair transition. I will explain to you how this process was during these 12 months and I will also share with you a few pieces of advice. However, before going through all of that, I will first start with a little bit of theory.

What does “natural hair transition” mean?

A natural hair transition is a process when you are transitioning from relaxed hair to natural hair without doing the big chop. It means that you are transitioning to natural hair without cutting all your relaxed hair at the beginning. When you do a natural hair transition, you can either progressively cut your relaxed hair over time or you can either cut all your relaxed hair at once after a certain period of time of your choice. A natural hair transition doesn’t have a time limit. You can decide the duration of this process. It can be 3 months, 6 months, a year, 3 years… It is up to you. Therefore, transitioning to natural hair is a good option for those of you who are not ready to do the big chop, and if you like having a “minimum” of hair length.

My one-year natural hair transition

Now that you are familiar with the process of transitioning to natural hair, I shall move on to my one-year post-relaxer hair update. Here is my personal experience in few points:

  • November 2014, I decided to start my natural hair transition. Because of numerous stretching that I used to do when I was relaxing my hair, I learned to appreciate my natural hair. For those who don’t know what a hair stretching is, it’s simply the fact to stretch the time period between two hair relaxations/perms.
  • Transitioning to natural hair is definitely the best hair decision I ever made in my life. I have never had my hair that strong, with volume and in good health like this since I was relaxing my hair.
  • November 2015, a year later, my natural hair transition went very well. I didn’t experience that much hair loss. I did my best to not over manipulate my hair in order to minimise hair loss.
  • My natural hair is not that kinky, so I wasn’t forced to always hide my hair under braids or any other protective style. I just alternated between high buns and box braids.
  • I really learned to love my hair and taking care of it. I didn’t think one time about relaxing my hair again. I’m simply not interested anymore.
  • I found out that I have 3 different hair types; it goes from 3C to 4B hair type; however, it is mainly 4A.
  • About the last months of that year, I had to do 4 braids before washing my hair because it would make knots otherwise.
  • I have been “heat-free” this entire year. No hair dryer, no flat iron or any other heat tools.
  • At the end of these 12 months, I trim about 2.5 cm (1 inch) of my hair because I didn’t trim my hair for more than a year before that.
  • My hair length reached between SL (shoulder length) and APL (armpit length). I never achieved this hair length since I was a child.

Is a natural hair transition easy to manage?

Although a natural hair transition is a perfect alternative to the big chop, it can sometimes be difficult to manage it for a few reasons:

  • You deal with two hair textures completely different that require diverse ways to take care of.
  • If your hair type is particularly kinky, the difference between both hair textures becomes obvious, which is sometimes seen as an issue for a few of us.
  • The mix of both hair textures needs a very special care, whether for your hair moisturising or the way you style it.
  • You are most likely to experience more hair loss than usual.
  • You need to be extra careful when you wash your hair because it’s often at this moment that you can have hair loss due to the formation of knots if not washed properly.
  • The longer your natural hair transition, the weaker your relaxed hair becomes.

It’s often for one or plenty of these reasons that a lot of us prefer doing the big chop rather than transitioning. However, you can definitely have a good natural hair transition without struggling too much if you build a good hair routine.

Few tips for a successful natural hair transition

Here are a few pieces of advice to successfully transition to natural hair:

  • As you are transitioning to natural, it is important to pay attention to your hair. You are currently rediscovering your hair, so make sure to closely watch what your hair likes or not.
  • Be gentle with your hair. Don’t forget that you are taking care of two different hair textures in every single hair.
  • Favour low manipulation hairstyles. Avoid combing your hair several times in a week. I know it’s easier said than done, but it’s really important, especially if you would like to do a long successful natural hair transition.
  • Favour protective styles that you can keep for one or several weeks. It can be braids, twists, cornrows, or others. This will help your hair grow.
  • Once you have been transitioning for a while, be careful when you wash your hair. Try to make 4 or more big braids/twists. It reduces the risk of making knots in your hair while washing.
  • Moisturise your hair daily. I won’t say this enough, but hair moisturising is one of the keys to good hair growth. Be generous with your ends because it’s the “oldest” part of your hair.
  • Be careful when you massage your scalp. After a certain time, you won’t be able to massage your scalp with no structure without facing consequences. You should massage your scalp in one direction to not cause knots in your hair.
  • Don’t hesitate to progressively cut your ends if you have a hard time with your natural hair transition, but still not ready to do the big chop.
  • Don’t forget to adjust your hair routine.

With all these tips, I believe that you are now ready to start your natural hair transition without losing your mind. You can also read the article about my hair routine to find out what product I did use for my hair growth.

Don’t hesitate to leave a comment if you have any question and don’t be shy to share my article. It might help someone 😉

See you in my next article!