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When I decided to big chop 11 years ago, I didn’t know that my hair would receive so much attention. After all, I only did it because I was sick and tired of relaxers. But that one decision forced me to become very knowledgeable about natural hair care. My loose fro has been with me through many milestones — graduations, marriage, childbirth, etc. My baby used to laugh while I shook my hair in his face and even now, he likes to rest his face on my hair. While I’m grateful for the ups and downs, the twist outs, the puffs, the roller sets, and the buns; I’m most grateful for the opportunity to share all of that online. I never thought I’d carve out my own little corner of the world and talk about hair as much as I have over the years. Believe it or not, my hair has given me many opportunities that I didn’t think were possible. Like writing on this blog.

Remember this? This was a part of my style feature on this very site. This was the feature that drew many fans to my blog and Instagram account. Since then I’ve enjoyed answering questions, rejoicing in hair victories, and emailing tips. I may only have a little over 1,200 followers on my Instagram account (that isn’t much compared to other natural hair pages), but my fans are awesome. They’ve been with me since day one and I appreciate each and every one. But I’ve got a bit of news to share…it’s time for me to move on. Not from natural hair of course, but from loose hair. Sometime in 2017, I’ll be saying goodbye to my big ball of kinks and curls.

Picture from my style feature in 2012.

If you’ve been following me, then you know that I suffer from an annoying scalp condition known as seborrheic dermatitis. It really is awful. Over the years, I’ve tried to manage the condition as best as I could, but it’s getting worse as I get older. My scalp constantly flares up with giant flakes, redness that is painful to the touch, and itchiness. Sometimes you can even see the flakes in my hair in some of the pics that I post on Instagram.

You can see some flakes in my puff.

If not treated properly, hair loss is inevitable and will sometimes happen even if you do treat the scalp properly. I’ve been blessed not to have any major hair loss…yet. In order save my scalp and hair I need to be able to wash my hair every two days with either medicated shampoo or other home remedies whenever I have flare ups. When my hair was a TWA that wasn’t a problem, but my hair is much longer now. I simply cannot get to my scalp like I need to when I have the flare ups. It’s not possible with my loose hair. I don’t have the kind of hair that you can wash n go. For me, a wash n go would still require a great deal of time, and I don’t like the idea of being a slave to my hair like I’ve been a slave to my scalp.

Additionally, female pattern baldness runs in my family. When women turn about 40 years old, their hair starts to thin. I’m trying to save my hair in my youth by locing it. Possible balding on top of my dermatitis would be a nightmare for me. We all know that less manipulation equals length retention. There really won’t be much to manipulate once I get locs.

My loc choice will be Sisterlocks and I’ve made that choice based on several reasons:
— They are lightweight so they won’t put stress on my hair when I have a flare up
— Because of their small size they are very versatile
— I can loc my hair at its current length
— I can wash my hair immediately after the locs are installed and it won’t disturb
my loc’s foundation
— I can wash my hair every two days as I need to with my scalp condition
— Applying medicated ointments to my scalp will be much easier because of all the parts
— Other women with the same scalp condition say that Sisterlocks have saved their hair and scalp
— I won’t be a slave to taking care of my hair
— Sisterlocks require minimum products
— My mother has them and they look great!

Saying goodbye to my big, fluffy afro will be bitter sweet. On one hand, I’ll miss my afro and all the memories, but on the other hand, I’ll be free from scalp irritation with my sisterlocks. I’ll also be able to cut down on my dermatologist bill (my last bill was $100 with insurance and that doesn’t include the visit co-pay!) and maintain a much calmer scalp. I’ll still post about hair care and hair styles, and you guys can still email me questions. I’ll still be able to do a twist out, roller set, and other volumous looks with my locs. I’ll still be natural ya’ll, I’ll just be on a different kind of natural hair journey this time around. In the meantime, take a look at my tester locs below.

See the flakes? They are always lurking

Have medical issues ever made you re-evaluate your natural hair journey?