Sorry, but not EVERYONE is is going to be happy you are going natural. It may seem like the entire world of black women are embracing their natural roots, but in reality we are still in the minority. I often forget about this as most of my family is now natural and I've been natural for over 11 years. Despite my rose-colored glasses I have to remind myself not everyone is on the natural hair bandwagon and far too many women are still feeling the weight of judgement by their relaxed counterparts.
Despite the negativity one may face from work, friends and even family, there are amazing ways to celebrate and enjoy your natural hair and stay on a positive path. Here are six ways to celebrate your natural tresses.
Reward your hair (and yourself) at milestones
There is nothing like rewards to keep us going. When you advance to natural hair milestones like six months natural, a year or when it is time to BC, reward yourself with pampering that make you feel special. Whether it be a mani/pedi or buying that plush hair product you've been eyeing; give yourself the treat of encouragement for staying the course on living a better life for your hair.
Stop to enjoy the journey
There are so many steps, how-to's, products, advice and opinions about going natural that it can clutter your mind and turn your hair into a chore. We don't want that and neither should you. Sometimes you just need to step back, reconnect with your purpose and remember why you took this journey in the first place. Close your mind to the naysayers, skeptics, and those who judge, and just enjoy your new path to healthier hair. Turn off the noise and stay focused on you.
Share your love
The is the world of the selfie and they really do make you feel good. I say ham it up and take some selfies of your natural tresses. Share on IG (used tag #naturalhairforbeginners for feature), Facebook and twitter or just keep them to yourself and admire your gorgeous mane. Love your hair and share that love and watch how lovely you feel about your hair.
Ignore the hate
There are overzealous naturals just like there are overzealous relaxed haired women. They love to profess their dislike on what others may be doing differently from them. Ignore them and yes, even your friends and family too. Steer clear of conversations that lead to battles on which path is better as there really is no right or wrong path to take because there are scores of women who have healthy hair relaxed or natural.
Now, no one says to allow others to berate you and your choices so if it gets disrespectful or unbearable let them know you are not here for them and their ugliness. They need to do them and you need to do you.
Photo courtesy of BGLH
Connect with other naturals
This will be one of the best ways to celebrate going natural because other newbies are just as excited about it as you are. From blogs (like this one) to vlogs to magazines, you are surrounded by women embracing their natural hair and their positivity is infectious!
Meetup.com is full of natural hair groups around the country you cannot go one week without hearing about a natural hair meetup piratically around the globe. Facebook has hundreds of natural hair groups like Natural Hair and meetups that create a safe space to ask questions and to share. They will solidify your desire to keep going and the women in there are amazing.
It wasn't for your friend or family or even your job. It was for you and you just need to remember that and remember it often! We put ourselves on the back burner too often so apologetically stand firm on your choice and revel in the knowledge that you are doing what's best for you and that is more than OK.
Going natural is one of the best journeys I have ever taken and I want that to be the same for you. Celebrate your path, enjoy the lessons and new ways of caring for your hair and remember to love you and your lovely natural hair.