To transition: A definition. . .
As recently as four or five years ago, the word “transitioning” was a niche, online term, the preserve of the early adopters of a growing, but still underground trend. It was a new, highly visual way to describe the process of slowly cutting off your relaxed hair, as your natural roots came in, with a view to forever bidding farewell to the chemicals. Sounds simple enough, but back in 2008 or so, if you weren't a member of a natural, curl-focused hair forum, chances were, you hadn't a clue. Fast forward to 2013, and the concept has entered the mainstream.
No longer are those who congregated on online threads, exchanging their experiences and burgeoning knowledge of hair that hovered somewhere between helical roots and tips stretched straight by creamy, alkaline potions, the only ones in the know.
And no longer do they have to provide a definition for those outside of that corner of social media dedicated to all things naturally curly. Partly because it's no longer just a corner – the number of people looking beyond the reach of the relaxer has swelled so much that the term “to transition” has entered general parlance.
To transition: From the grassroots up. . .
A few months ago, Yahoo! featured its first home page story on black hair care. The topic of choice? Why, transitioning, of course. That article, produced in conjunction with Essence magazine, was one of the most popular features on Yahoo!, with over a million recommendations and over a thousand responses. While the milestone is actually the change itself – the groundswell of people choosing to embrace this element of themselves – events like this certainly provide a watermark of how high the wave towards natural hair has reached.
As it turns out, transitioning is a lot more complex than a simple style shift between wearing your hair straight to wearing it curly.
As your roots continue to push their way up through your scalp, they bring with them a world of experiences and ideas, from the technical issues of dealing with hair that is straight and curly at the same time, to confidence issues about your new appearance.
Then there's acceptance by family and friends, reactions in the workplace, and even the resurgence of old notions about “quality” and “grade”.
Many issues lurking beneath the surface poke their head up during this interesting, insightful, sometimes a little white-knuckle ride.
Enter The Transition: is a series of themed posts around transitioning. Each one will tackle a topic typical to the transitioning experience, serving as guideposts along the journey from chemically straight to naturally curly. Let's get started!
Pro tip: If you start moisture training your hair at the beginning of your transition from relaxed hair to natural, you can avoid many of the most common transitioning problems. Use this free Moisture Training Guide and expert tips to lay the groundwork.
DHA Hair Care Experts