Natural hair growth: What you should know before you transition

Time to put down the relaxers and embark on your natural hair journey.

Natural hair has found a firm place in the spotlight and more women than ever are shunning chemical relaxers in favour of their natural manes. But nobody likes the sight of their strands breaking or, equally, having to deal with them being excessively dry and fragile all the time. So if you’re ready to put down the relaxers and promote your natural hair growthbut don’t know where to start, you’ve come to the right place!

We understand that transitioning from relaxed hair to your natural tress texture is a daunting step – but it doesn’t have to be difficult when you know what to expect. Here are 6 things you should take into account before taking the leap.

natural hair care
Relaxed hair? Get ready for the transition. Credit:

1. You don’t have to cut everything off straight away

When you’ve sported long, relaxed hair for a while, the thought of going super short can be quite worrying – especially if you never tried it before. While going for the ‘big chop’ (cutting off all of your hair in one fell swoop) is the fastest and boldest way to transition, rest assured and know that you don’t have to take this route.

So if you’re not comfortable doing this, transitioning is your only option. For those of you who aren’t sure what this really means, it simply is the process in which you keep your length but gradually trim the ends of your hair as it grows.

So to kick-start your long-term transition, begin with a trim to get rid of split ends and follow this up monthly or every other month – it will make all the difference.

2. Expect a lot of breakage (but don’t panic!)

Nobody likes the sight of their strands breaking, but it is something you’ll experience a lot during the journey. As your natural hair growth comes through, dealing with two textures will start to become a challenge.

The line between these two textures (relaxed and natural hair) is often referred to as the ‘line of demarcation’ (where your hair is at its weakest and extremely prone to breakage). In order to reduce breakage as much as possible, you’ll need to build up your mane’s strength by keeping it in tip-top shape and following a strict natural hair care routine.

3. Change it up

All the products that you’ve used on your relaxed hair won’t benefit your natural mane as much, so you’ll need new ones that specifically target the needs of your brittle, dry, and dehydrated strands. It’s easy to get carried away and become a product junkie, but generally, sticking to the same products will help your hair in the long run.

Try the Dove Advanced Hair Series Quench Absolute Supreme Crème Serum, which is specifically designed to moisturise curly and natural tresses on-the-go.  

natural hair
Natural hair means less hair damage caused by heat. Credit:

4. It’s all about moisturising

When you relax your hair, all your protein bonds are broken down and it loses its moisture. So the aim of the game is to restore both moisture and protein with weekly deep conditioning treatments. And it’s all about balance. If you add too much protein, your hair will become brittle while too much moisture will make it go limp. If you want to know more about deep conditioning, read this!

Try: TRESemmé Platinum Strength Deep Conditioning Treatment, which will help to strengthen your hair against breakage.

5. Heat doesn’t have to be the enemy

Using a hairdryer or a straightener every so often for a change of style isn’t sacrilegious. Just make sure to always apply some VO5 Smoothly Does It Heat Protect Spray to help protect your hair before styling!

6. All it takes is a little faith

Transitioning is a timely process that will involve a lot of trial and error, but it will be so worth it once your stronger, natural hair growth comes through. So don’t give up! Trust us, you’ll have beautiful, healthier-feeling and less damaged-looking hair in the end. Besides, it also gives you time to perfect these protective hairstyles and become a hair care expert.