Naturally Honest: The Trials and Tribulations of Having Natural Hair

We are kicking off Hair Week here at Eye Opener.

Recently, natural hair has been a hot topic in the news.  Last month, an appeals court ruled that banning dreadlocks in the workplace is not discrimination.

Schools in both Louisville, Kentucky and South Africa have reversed their policies banning some natural hair styles.

So why is natural hair often controversial? What does it say about you? Should it matter in the workplace or in schools?

These are the questions we're asking this week.

For Eye Opener's Laila Muhammad, the subject matter hits close to home. Muhammad decided to wear her natural curls on TV for the first time in 2015 while she was working in Virginia.

She had been wearing hair weaves on and off on television for about a decade.  During 6 years of that time, she decided to go chemical free and grow out her healthy, natural hair.

But Laila soon learned natural hair wasn’t easy.  Over time her hair started to experience problems, like breakage due to over-styling.

It was time for an intervention. Laila teamed up with Lamonica Williams, a natural hair expert and stylist in Dallas, Texas to address her hair headaches.

"You were over manipulating your hair, “ Lamonica told Laila. "People think I’m natural, I can do all this with my hair, and you really can’t do a lot of over manipulation to our hair because even though it’s stronger it’s fragile at the same time.”

If you are, or have ever been, in a situation like this what are some steps you can take to start to get you hair healthy again?

"The biggest thing I tell my clients to do is protective styles, “ said Lamonica. “You want to make sure you’re doing a protective style so you can lock in the moisture, tuck your ends so you can protect your hair.”

Lamonica added that protective styles include sew-in weaves, braids, and wigs, to name a few, as long as they are applied properly and without adding excessive tension to the perimeter of the hair.

She also advised that you must remember to still take care of your natural hair with routine washing, deep conditioning, steam treatments, and trims. With a proper hair care regiment, it’s not too late to restore your healthy, natural hair.

"I would say within a year, year and a half, you will see your hair is making a comeback and it’s healthier and starting to look like the hair I knew before,” Lamonica said.


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