When Bubba was born, she had thick,jet black,and bone straight hair. I was surprised at the texture because it was silky soft,unlike my more wool textured hair. I was so glad that she wouldn’t have to deal with relaxers,blow dryers,or flar irons. I enjoyed endless hours of washing and combing her “perfect” hair into mohawks using only Johnson’s baby oil as a styler.
Then,she turned four months old. All of a sudden,I was dealing with tighter curls,and a coarser texture. Despite what many think about African American women, I can NOT braid hair. I started noticing that when I blew out her hair,she had a lovely afro so most days I did that or combed it out and put a little barette in the front. She looked cute with or without the barette, I just used it to make it clear to everyone else that she was a girl.
Bubba at 4 months old
When Bubba turned two years old,her hair texture changed again. It was similar to mine. Since I had no braiding skills,I kept her hair in ponytails. When she developed folliculitis (a scalp irritation caused by pulling the hair into tight ponytails/braids) I became more concerned about the overall health of Bubba’s hair.
I texturized Bubba’s hair when she was three. The hair at the back of her head had gotten a little matted because it was a constant struggle to comb her hair on a regular basis so I thought texturizing would help unravel the hair and make it easier to to comb. It did help a little but I still had concerns about the constant dryness and unmanagability. She dreaded getting her hair combed and I dreaded it just as much. I knew there had to be a way to solve our problem.
Bubba’s infamous ponytails at age 2.
When I made the decision to go the natural route, I figured alot of the things I learned about my hair would also apply to Bubba’s. So now that I am.armed with knowledge about her hair texture and what works well for it,wash day goes alot smoother and the results I’m seeing is hair that stays moisturized,has started retaining length,and is much more manageable. Plus, I’ve learned to style it in cute bantu knots(my favorite) and twistouts.There’s also been a change in Bubba. She loves wash day now because she knows that after it gets washed,conditioned,and moisturized,I’m going to turn it into a lovely brunette creation. She loves her afro which to me translates to she loves her hair. Eventually,I’ll tackle braids,but right now I’m content that Bubba doesn’t feel self concious about her hair the way I did when I was her age and still am now. To me, getting Bubba to accept herself for what she is is the most important thing.