Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Over the years...

I was flat-ironing my hair last night (yes, I do that every once in a while when I can't deal with the curls) and I noticed some grays. Those thing break my heart every time. I used to have one that I would pull out routinely. But they seem to have multiplied since having my son. So, I got to thinking about all the hair phases I've been through (staring off into space)...

My grandmother was Indian. Not American Indian, but from India Indian. I suppose her own mother used to braid her hair because that's what she always wanted to do to me.
She would part my hair down the middle and braid each side and try to make them hang down over the front of my shoulders.

I started brushing my own hair when I was about eight years old, I suppose. I thought I was doing an alright job. To help with the tangles I used Sta-Sof-Fro (you know what I'm talkin about, don't act like you don't). I used it pretty much daily. And for the most part it worked. But sometimes that brush still didn't make it all the way through. When that happened I would pull my hair back into a ponytail (at the nape of my neck) and off to school I went. That went on for about a week til my mother found out. She took my hair in hand but try as she might she couldn't get the knot out. The bad thing was, the knot was close to my head, like two inches away. You know what that meant. She had to cut it out and I ended up with my first afro! I had good friends though. They never laughed in front of me.

By the time high school rolled around my hair had grown back and I had once again resorted to the ponytail, minus the knot which gratefully never came back. My own personal twist that I added was the ponytail itself was not allowed to flow freely (not that it could anyway). I had various colors of strechy hair clips wrapped around the hair almost all the way to the bottom, so it looked like a stick. I can laugh about this now.

I can also laugh about the days of the banana clips. Remember the original cheap plastic banana clips? I tried those too but I could never get one to look quite right on my head.

Like most other black girls I gave in to the temptation to try for the 'manageable' permed hair. It turned out to not be the answer to my prayers because that stuff never worked well in my hair plus I wasn't taught how to keep it up. The ends would always split and I would end up looking like my hand was stuck to a static machine. I put in a good effort with this style. For years I permed my hair. It allowed me to have my hair out and 'flowing' or up in a french twist or even a real ponytail.

Where I'm at now is my "au natural" phase. I let all that perm grow out. Yes, I did invest in a ceramic oven and flat iron. Yes, I have a hair dryer that I sit under every once in a while. Sometimes I just twist my hair. I try to convince my husband to send me to the hair dresser once a week. That hasn't happpened but I'm not sure why. Anyway, as I did last night, sometimes I press my hair. All it does it give me some temporary flexibility with styles. What I'm really searching for is that perfect hair product to make my hair feel soft and silky. By RBG's recommendation I may try some Carol's Daughter Hair Butter or Hair Milk. Any other suggestions?


Anonymous said...

"But sometimes that brush still didn't make it all the way through." ha, ha, ha! too funny!

i loved the banana clip! of course, never worked for me! do you remeber that really cool secretary in junior high! she rocked the banana clip!

i need to try some of that Carol's Daughter stuff too!

remember this?
junior high

ShellyP said...

I would like to thank my BEST FRIEND for putting me out there like that!! lol

Anonymous said...

sorry shel! i had to! you looked so cool!

Don Tate II said...

Thanks for visiting. I enjoyed reading your posts. Tip: one word. Dredlocks! You'd look great in those. But that's six words.