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Sunday, January 13, 2013

What's On Deck for 2013...

Happy New Year lovelies!

Yes, I know we're a good 13 days into the new year but better late than never, right?

In terms of my hair, 2012 was a big learning year for me for sure. It marked the first time, since 2009, where I was really, really into my hair. I was hiding and protective styling my hair for so long, I forgot how to do my hair.

And it showed.

If you're a faithful reader of The Awkward Stage, I'm sure you noticed that my length check pics were few and far between, perhaps even non-existent for 2012. There is good reason for that. For some reason, I was using a lot of direct heat on my hair to straighten it. I fell victim to the blow dry+flat iron school of straightening and my hair did not appreciate it.And I did this frequently! My ends looked like whodiditandwhy all the time and I wound up having to get 2 deep trims (with the most recent trim in November 2012). I simply refused to do a length check for this blog with my ends looking like hell. As a result, my hair pretty much stayed at BSL/full BSL for the majority of the year. Bummer.

But I learned a few things.

The first is that if I insist on using heat, I need to go back to my original school of thinking: use one form of indirect heat and one form of direct heat. When I first had my hair cut short, I used heat this way. I would wet wrap my hair and sit under my hooded dryer. I would then follow up with my flat iron. Obviously, my hair thrived this way and provided the least damage to my ends. Why I did not think of this before, I don't know. But I got the message loud and clear.

Secondly, I will never EVER put myself in a position where I forget what to do with my hair. Yes, hiding your hair is convenient and does aid in retention. However, what happens when you want to wear your hair again and you forget what your hair responds to? It can make for a steep and frustrating learning curve. I know now, there is a fine balance between a HHJ and actually enjoying your hair.

So that brings me to now. What do I want for my hair?

1) I want to make it to MBL
. I am currently at full BSL following my last trim and now that I know what I was doing wrong, I am in the position to remedy that. In my first relaxer session for the year (post coming soon!), I wound up wet wrapping my hair and following up with a flat iron. My hair loved it! I got much better results this way than with blow drying. My goal is to get to MBL by the time of my doctoral hooding in December.

2) Stop relying on wigs.
While I love a good wig, for a while there, they became a crutch for me. Having a bad hair day? Slap on a wig. Don't feel like doing my hair? Slap on a wig. When you don't feel like doing your hair for 3 months straight, this becomes a problem. I just think that using wigs in this way has prevented me from really getting to know my hair at this length. While I will use wigs every once and a while, I refuse to wear them at the frequency that I once did.

3) Document my journey more. The main purpose of this blog was to document my journey and share it with others since there were very few blogs that showed young ladies growing out their hair from the length that they did. To my surprise, folks actually read my blog! And liked it! Unfortunately, I fell of the blogging wagon hard and I need to do better about that. I'm constantly trying new products and finding out new things about my hair that you guys should know. So for this year, it is my goal to update this blog at least 2 times a week. That way, I'm documenting my journey and you guys are kept in the loop about my joys and my trials and tribulations.

So there you have it: I'm still trying to reach a length goal and communicate with you guys more.

With that said, it's great to be back! :)


  1. Welcome back! Great post - I can certainly relate with your point of blogging in order to keep track of your hair journey. I had a similar revelation after my last relaxer in December!

    Question - when you wear your wigs, do you only wear a wig cap underneath? I wear wigs 95% of the time and I usually wear a satin wrap underneath, but have recently only been wearing the wig cap. I'm trying to get a sense of how my hair responds. Your hair did well with wigs, so just curious about your protection. Tx!

    1. Thanks! In the past month or so, I really had to determine why I was blogging and what my vision was for the blog. Thankfully, I figured it out :)

      With wigs, I just wore I wig cap. I was far too lazy to find a satin wrap small enough to fit under my wigs. My hair had no problem with the wig cap though. No thinning or anything like that. HTH!

  2. YAAAAYY! Glad you're back! I whole heartedly agree that enjoying and "knowing" your hair throughout your HHJ is super important.

    Question: do you think utilizing wet-wraps before flat ironing is "safe" after, say, 6-8 weeks post relaxer? I am always scared to wet-wrap because I am so scared of breakage...

    1. Thanks! :)

      After 6-8 weeks post relaxer, I think utilizing wet wraps can be ok. However, I think it being ok depends on a few things. The first is using the right tools/techniques ( wrapping gently with a wide tooth comb, making sure hair is saturated, etc.). The second is amount of new growth you have during that time. For me, at 6-8 weeks post, my new growth is pretty manageable so I will continue to wrap until 12 weeks post or so. However, if at 8 weeks post, your new growth is out of control I wouldn't do it. The third thing would be how you manipulate your hair during that time. If you know you will try to rip through your hair trying to wrap it, leave it alone!

      So, I say consider those things before you attempt to wet wrap your hair and save yourself from potential frustration (or a setback!)

  3. Whooo hooooo welcome back! I also stayed the same length last year but for different reasons. I am really looking forward to seeing your different styles, I love creativity in hairstyling!