Is colored hair natural?

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I went natural December 16th, 2011. It was the day before my 22nd birthday. I had intended to transition and slowly cut the relaxed hair out, but I got impatient and decided to do the BIG CHOP. I wanted to go natural because it seemed like the healthiest thing for my hair. I was on a quest to make my body the healthiest it could be….from my head to my toes. Before I went natural I had relatively long hair, for a black girl. So my hair dresser was not happy when I was prepared to cut 10 inches of hair off. I was getting my hair done by her while I was transitioning, but maybe she didn’t believe I’d actually do it. But, as you can see, I did. I went back to get a roller set in my hair for Easter that following March or April whenever the heck Easter was that year. On that day she convinced me to get my hair permanently dyed red.

I’m not sure if she had motives other than just wanting to introduce me to a cool new look. Part of me feels like she wanted to keep me as a consistent client, because since going natural I had not been making my regular 6-8 week appointments. I can’t blame her though, its good business to try and keep customers. I thought the red looked really good on me. It was a dark, kind of burgundy red. I probably wouldn’t have liked my short afro as much without that brilliant color. It never dawned on me that I was doing anything out of sorts until one day I saw a Facebook status from a friend that said “how you gonna be natural and dye your hair, doesn’t that defeat the purpose?” This person was also natural, so I began thinking “I’m a natural hair sell out?”

I continued to get my hair dyed red for 2 years. I had always been the type to not judge others, so I was making my own decision for what I wanted for my hair and that was to keep it red. I LOVED the red look, especially after one of my colleagues said it made me look like a superhero ( I’m thinking Jean Grey or Black Widow)! I even got my eyebrows lightened a little so it didn’t look so obvious that they were different colors, although I didn’t go red all the way with them. It wasn’t until after I had my son that I decided not to color my hair anymore. I got my hair dyed for my Superhero Wedding (that I will highlight in another post), but I did not tell my hair dresser that I was pregnant. There is a theory that the chemicals in the dye can seep into your scalp, and then body,
harming the baby. After some research I deduced that it was just a myth, but I didn’t want to risk telling my hair dresser and her not put in my superhero red color. It seems kind of silly that I’d even risk something like that. If there was a question for the baby’s safety I should have just not done it, but that just shows how vain our society is. I could not have brown roots at my wedding. After that I did not dye my hair the entire pregnancy. After I had my son I decided to go completely natural and not add any chemicals at all to my hair. I slowly cut my ends each month and in about a year I cut the rest of the color out of my hair. So now it is my natural brown color.

Does being natural mean that you have NO chemicals in your hair? Or is it just, not having a relaxer? What about people that get texturizers? Its kind of like when people question what it means to be a virgin. I guess it something you have to decide for yourself. Why did you decide to take the journey to become natural? Was is it purely a decision for cosmetics and you just like the look of your curly hair texture? Or,is it part of an all-natural lifestyle? People will always have their opinions about natural hair. Even within the natural hair community there is some judgement. I just try to be comfortable and work what I’ve got and hope that others do the same.

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