We want you to take a moment to think about where you started learning how to care for your natural hair. Some of us learned from a friend or family member. Maybe some of us learned from a stylist, or have always been natural and didn’t have to learn in the same way as those of us who big chopped or transitioned. Most of us, however, have learned from the internet.
It's no surprise that the internet has taught many of us everything we know about natural hair care. The Internet has allowed for new naturals and natural hair vets alike to build community, trade tips and tricks, and celebrate one another. This has been super helpful and makes information about natural hair more accessible. However, while a lot of good information has been shared, there has also been some misinformation. Here are a few misconceptions about natural hair care that we’d like to clear up.
Misconception #1: Long Hair Equals Healthy Hair
Since a lot of us started our natural hair journeys in pursuit of waist length curls and coils, it makes sense that over the years, long natural hair has become synonymous with healthy natural hair. The truth is, not only is long hair not always healthy, and healthy hair not always long, oftentimes whether or not your hair will grow to a certain length has more to do with genetics than any particular hair regimen. So at the end of the day, hair length isn’t necessarily an indicator of how healthy your natural hair is.
Misconception #2: Your Curl Type Is The Most Important Thing To Note
Similar to the first misconception, this one likely has its roots in the beginning of a lot of our natural hair journeys. The hair typing chart (3a-c, 4a-c for example) offered a lot of us some clarity when we were looking for answers, trying to get to know our natural textures. It has helped us find representation in the natural hair community, which is helpful in learning to love your hair as it is. However, many of us have overestimated how crucial our hair type is to how we form our hair care routines. The truth is two people with the same curl type can need completely different things. What’s actually more crucial is your hair’s porosity, which determines how easily moisture gets into your strands. You can learn everything there is to know about porosity in this Miche Blog article.
Misconception #3: Heat Styling Will Always Result In Heat Damage
Have you ever heard the joke about how overly cautious first time moms are with their babies versus second or third time moms? Well, a similar joke can be made about certain new naturals. And for good reason. A lot of us started our journey’s extremely wary of anything that may lead to damage. One of those things is heat. A lot of us have sworn off heat all together, fearing one use would lead to heat damage. The truth is heat can be a very useful tool. Particularly for moisturizing low porosity hair, or drying your hair to avoid moisture damage. It’s all in how you use it!
Misconception #4: You Have To Lay Your Edges
This misconception has a bit to do with texturism, which warrants its own article entirely. Nevertheless, the pressure to have your edges perfectly laid everytime you go out goes against the whole philosophy of the natural hair movement. Most of us set out to love our hair the way it grows out of our heads, and feeling like your hair is unkempt if your edges aren’t laid is a hindrance to that love. So lay your edges if you want. If you don’t, leave them as they are. Both can be equally beautiful.
Misconception #5: What Works For Someone Else Will Work For You
This one may be the most damaging misconception of them all. And it’s the hardest to dispel. We use the internet to follow natural hair influencers in hopes that they can teach us something new about how to care for our hair. Sometimes we can get really helpful tips from them, but sometimes what works for them just doesn’t work for us. And that doesn’t mean your hair is bad or that you didn’t do it right. It just means you need to keep experimenting until you find what works for you.
What are some other misconceptions about natural hair care? Share with us in the comments.