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Go back to Straight: Natural hair guilt

Natural hair has become a symbol of pro-blackness for many women and having a healthy, thick afro is a crown of honour. Well, this is how wellness coach Phemi Segoe (@phemelosegoe) viewed her natural hair. But despite all that, she still went back to straight hair. This is her personal journey from natural hair back to straight – and the guilt involved.

 Photo by @phemelosegoe

Let me start off by saying, my journey to natural, unprocessed hair was an idealistic one and unfortunately didn’t take me to where I had hoped I’d end up. My hair didn’t seem to have the kind of curl I wanted and my coil wasn’t as thick as other girls whose afros I admired.

Although my afro was big and beautiful, it really wasn’t me. Deep down I knew, sooner or later, I’d go back to straight hair.

After years of tending to my afro, plating it 90% of the time to avoid having to deal with it and dismissing my inner most pressing desire to relax the it, I finally gave in. I decided to go back to straight hair and this decision brought me so much guilt.

I felt compelled to apologise to my hairdresser for relaxing my afro at home because she was one of my biggest supporter. My aunts couldn’t believe I did it when she saw pictures on Instagram and sent multiple shocked emojis my way. I had betrayed the natural hair gang and folded.

But the truth is, I couldn’t do it anymore. I finally accepted that natural, unrelaxed hair just wasn’t for me and I was prepared to wrestle with the judgement rather than my comb.

 Photo by @phemelosegoe

I have finally settled into my decision and I am so happy I made it. Straight hair also needs work and I intend to keep up a good regiment to ensure my hair growth thick and long.

A product that I have consistently used and will continue to use even with my straight hair is MPL Hair Oil. It’s thick I don’t need to consistently reapply a moisturiser into my hair and it helps will overall thickness of my hair.

This journey back straight hair has reminded me of something very important: our hair is a huge part of our identity as black people but choosing to go back to straight hair hasn’t made me any less black or proud of my blackness. Do what you want with your hair, it’s your crown after all.

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