As a 4C natural, one of the biggest issues I have with my hair is that I do not always know when my hair is growing or not.
Being a 4C natural hair girl, the condensed curly nature is not always reflective of the hair’s true length. That’s why you see tons of Facebook and Instagram photos of natural 4C hair women and girls doing “length checks.” It is a manner of determining that their hair is indeed growing.
However, if you are like me and simply do not have the time to take back selfies of your curls, you don’t always know how well or not so well your 4C hair is growing.
I recently was telling another natural curl friend about what I suspected was a lack of growth. I’ve been two strand twisting the same length of hair since December (or so it feels like!)
She told me I was simply being impatient and that as long as my hair is not excessive shedding or breaking off at an alarming rate, it’s very likely that my hair is indeed growing. It’s just hard to tell within the deep kinks of 4C hair.
So, fellow 4C chicks, before you big chop again or dive into some creamy crack, answer several questions honestly before you think your hair will never grow long:
1. What is more important to you: Healthy Hair or Long Hair? If it’s the latter, you may want to rethink your attitude about your hair. Think about the crazy decision T.I.’s wife, Tiny, made to go overseas just to permanently color her eyes.
What would be more important to you: healthy eyes or the color of your eyes?! Promoting a healthier attitude about your hair will propel you to be more proactive about promoting healthy hair. The length will come in time.
2. Are you washing your hair? I know many naturals who have this anti-shampoo attitude about their hair? Um…why? How else can vital nutrients from jojoba oils, coconut oil or even water and sunlight get into your scalp pores if your 4C hair and scalp is cluttered with gunk? I do not recommend shampooing often. I try to do a good mud wash towards the end of every month and trust me, you will feel a difference!
3. Are you trimming? I know many 4C hair naturals get scissor-happy when it comes to trimming. I am almost convinced many naturals do not know the difference between shedding (which is normal) to breaking (which is not):
4. Are you moisturizing often? Natural 4C hair NEEDS constant moisture, even if it’s just a bit of water from a spray bottle. I keep one at my work desk and one at home. I actually love spritzing my hair with water at work because there is a convenient walking track nearby and it is the perfect time to allow sun light to work on those moisturized opened pores on your scalp.
5. Are you co-washing? I’ve found that a co-wash at least once a week helps keep the shedding and breaking to an extreme minimum because it provides lasting moisture for several days.
There are other questions to ask yourself as well, like how much heat are you using, are your doing hot oil treatments or what type of products are you using.
Bottom line is, there are many questions you have to answer honestly to ensure you are not preventing your 4C hair from growing.
If you can answer these questions honestly and still feel like you are not experiencing the growth you want, have patience and know that healthy hair is far more important than long hair.