It’s been quite a long journey; 1 year and 4 months to be exact.
1 year and 4 months ago, I made the horrible decision of bleaching my hair. Yup, you heard me- #BLEACH. I have a history of being impulsive when it comes to dying my hair so when May 2015 came along, I went for it. My hair was black with a few blonde highlights and I decided to go honey brown. Of course I had to use bleach to obtain this color which I regretted deeply. I have a bad past with bleach so I don’t know why I went back. Literally.I.Don’t.Know.
After washing my hair after I dyed it, I looked in the mirror and I was very disappointed. My curl texture was definitely not the same, and the definition just wasn’t there anymore. I hoped that this was just a post-dying-your-hair-thing, but it wasn’t. When I washed my hair again, my curls fell flat. Flat, I tell you! They low-key started to look like beach waves gone wrong and my ends looked crazy! I even purchased DevaCurl products and still nothing. I even tried using my diffuser to add my volume to my curls and it wasn’t happening.
Damn. That’s where I realized how badly I messed up.
That’s not where the story ends- a month later, my mom dyed her hair a plum red and I fell in love. So guess what?
You guessed it.
I dyed my hair red.
If you know about hair dying, you would know that red is one of the hardest colors to remove and it is also one of the strongest. Being that my curls were already a disaster, I chose to go with the flow and dye my hair another color and just wear it straight all the time. Two months later, I got tired of the red and dyed my hair back to black.
Although the texture of my hair improved a little, the curls were still not active. So, I discovered this new thing (to me) called bantu knots. I watched various YouTube tutorials and I even had my mom do them for me a few times. Sure, they made my hair curly but it was definitely a hit or miss. Some nights I would knot my hair in bigger knots and wake up with a full, beach-wave look. Cool. It didn’t look like my regular curly hair, though. I forgot to mention that it would take me about 45 minutes just to knot my hair. (No I’m not a perfectionist, but yes I am a Virgo, hehe.) On a bad day, I would wake up, unknot my hair and it goes completely flat. And if it doesn’t go flat in the morning, it will definitely go flat by 5PM. This is not the life I wanted! I just wanted my curls back…
In the midst of all the new things I was trying in order to get my curls back, I was cutting my ends as my hair grew. I did this because I was able to cut off all the dead hair, and there’s nothing better than having freshly grown virgin hair.
By this time, a year and four months had already passed by and I literally just cut off the last bit of dead ends on my hair, and guess what…my CURLS were back! After a long year and four months of being depressed over my hair (yes, depressed) I couldn’t believe I finally got to this point again. Honestly, the journey was long, but I was relieved to see that it actually was shorter than I expected.
Now, I literally rock my curls every.single.day and I will NEVER make the dumb mistake of bleaching my hair again.
For those who have asked what products I use to maintain my curls- it’s pretty simple. I wash it every morning with shampoo (sometimes) and conditioner and I use this Olive Oil hair masque I bought at Burlington for $5. I also use baby oil on my hair sometimes to add shine and elasticity- it helps! On special days, I use my diffuser in order to make my hair extremely voluminous.
Here’s some quick tips in order to maintain your curls:
- If you wash your hair and plan to straighten it, do rollers and go in the hairdryer for 45 minutes to an hour FIRST! Blow drying your hair right after you wet it can cause heat damage and can result in dry, brittle hair.
- Use products that contain olive oil (leave ins, butters, puddings, etc.) they provide your hair with a lot of moisture and shine! They’re also very affordable!
- Use sulfate-free shampoos. Brands like Shea Moisture have a sulfate-free shampoo found for about $10 in drug stores. Sulfate dries out your hair and it also strips hair dye over time.