First, I must define what a Natural hair extremist is to me, and then I can expound on it a little better. To me, a Natural extremist is one who doesn't use any chemicals of any kind on her hair. She uses all-natural products which do not have sulfates, mineral oils....nothing that would be considered being "bad." I don't feel a Natural extremist must use only her own creations, since there are quite a few products that are all-natural, but that certainly helps.
I tripped and fell into this natural hair lifestyle purely by accident, when we moved to Denver from New Orleans. I stopped relaxing my hair and began reading about how bad chemicals are for my hair. While I was horrible to my hair the first three years, I've made up for it in the last five; and although I have evolved into an extremist, it took some time. I now:
- Use no heat
- No hot water on my hair
- Use all-natural products
- Use no chemicals of any kind (I have colored my hair *gasp*)
- Sleep with a satin bonnet AND a satin pillowcase
- No longer use shampoo
These are my rules, but make no mistake about it: They are rules only for me. I don't expect anyone to follow my regimen -- and if you don't believe me, ask my teen daughter. She's Natural as well, and we couldn't be more different!
About two and a half years ago, I stopped using heat and began to only use natural ingredients in the products in my hair. The satin-on-satin started around the same time. But even though I am anal about my hair, I don't eat all-natural nor live all-natural. Why? Because I'm on my own timetable for what I choose to do with my life, and not anyone else's. I'll change to more natural ways of living when I feel like it.
I hear about the Natural hair Nazis and Natural police, and although I feel there are some exaggerations about them...I am not one of them. It is sad that some have to label others to make themselves feel good. Those terms get thrown around rather quickly, and I tire of the mudslinging that ensues after it gets uttered in a Natural hair group. My extreme choices does not mean I expect you to do the same -- and actually, I don't care what the hell you use in your hair. I choose to be this extreme. I like it -- no, I love it, so don't judge me and I won't judge you.
I did try a couple of natural recipes for coloring my hair that failed miserably, but at least I tried, and I'm proud of that. Does this mean I'm better than any other Natural or even relaxed woman out there? No, I'm just doing what I feel is best for me -- and what's best for me is to use all-natural products (outside of hair dye), and I do not have to explain why and what I use to anyone.
So, here I am....a Natural hair extremist bearing her extreme soul for all to see and for all to understand that this is just fine with me.
Loving the Natural that you are,