Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Interview with a Fine-Haired Natural: Session II

3. What styles do you prefer to wear?

Currently my preference is for styles that have a lot of volume and texture because like many naturals, I prefer 'big hair'. Therefore, I usually am wearing a 'quick dry' braid-out, a flat twist-out/bantu knot-out combo, or a wash n' go bun. In the summer when the humidity does not allow me to stretch my hair, I prefer mini-twists since I can still enjoy the volume of my hair, and then unravel the twists after a week or two for a fuller twist-out.


4. How has being fine-haired affected you? What are the pros and cons to being fine-haired?

One con of having fine hair is that the density of your hair in its natural state does not always translate into fuller styles outside of an afro. Many of the styles I see may look great on the person wearing them such as medium twists, box braids, and twist and braidouts, but when I try them, they do not come out with the same lushness. I am now more critical of whether or not I decide to try a new style that I see on another natural and I consider if and how I can recreate it on my own hair. Another con is the problem of tangles and split ends. Most naturals have to pay special attention to their ends because afro hair is fragile, but it is at a different level of care when you have fine hair that is fragile and the ends can break and thin out easily. Finally, I find that my fine hair prevents my styles from lasting very long. My hair tends to frizz quickly in protective styles and styles look fresh for a maximum of one to two days before I need to re-set the style. However, this has been helped by using better styling aids and silk scarves to minimize frizz.
Some pros of fine hair are that the density is not the actual thickness so a daunting task such as detangling, putting my hair into braids after washing, or the drying time for a large mass of hair actually takes half as long as most naturals with coarser strands. Another pro is that I can achieve both a sleek look and a voluminous look with one style, such as my mini-twists before and after unraveling for a fuller twist-out.

5. How do you manage with fine hair?

I've learned my hair over the years and found some tricks and shortcuts to manipulate it into certain styles, but at the end of the day, I've found that working with my hair gets me the best results. I take advantage of my hair's shrinkage when styling for volume, frizz when going for a textured bohemian look, and lack of volume when I do not want 'big hair,' but would prefer a sleeker style.

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