Tuesday, December 16, 2014

My Sew-In Story, Part 4

The Aftermath of My Matted Hair

I know y'all are wondering what happened next, so I'm going to skip the suspense and get right to it.

The way my head looked in Part 3 of my story is exactly how my head looked when I walked into the salon. I'd twisted the hair that had been untangled and left the matted hair as it was. We jumped right on it when I got there. The only parts of my hair that needed detangling now were a few rows in the back half of my head. I told her exactly what I did, and didn't do, and she said: "I knew that's what happened!"


I followed that video to a tee and that's where I went wrong. What the girl doesn't say or show is one of the most crucial steps when taking out a sew-in. I should have done a serious detangle (with a comb, not just a praying hands detangle) to loosen the shed hairs that had wrapped themselves around the "new growth". Anyone who's had a sew-in knows exactly what I'm talking about.

The outcome of my matted hair after taking out my sew-in
When I unbraided the cornrows, there were groupings of shed hair (which is the hair that would've normally fallen out if my hair hadn't been cornrowed and netted) along with my hair's natural oil and dirt collected up under the net and braid. When I shampooed my hair without combing the shed hair out, it created a line of matted hair where each corn row was. My boyfriend and stylist were detangling those shed hairs that had gotten even more tangled during the shampoo process, while trying not to break or pull out my hair.

After a couple of minutes, my stylist had worked her way through the last bits of matted hair. My original intent was to wash my hair, wear a twist out for a few weeks, then get my hair straightened for Thanksgiving. If you remember this post then you know a trip to this salon automatically equals straightened hair. After all was said and done, the picture to the left is what I was left with.

As you can see, I didn't walk out of the salon bald headed! Lol. I didn't have to get a major cut but I did have to get a small trim because of some of the tugging my hair endured. I never got around to blogging about my hair cut before the sew-in because I hated it!! However, I sucked it up because I had to get my split ends cut off so the growth from my sew-in would be healthy length. Below shows my straight hair before the sew-in and my straight hair after the sew-in:

Comparing the length of my hair before and after the sew-in
This is only 10 weeks people!! LOL

To be honest, when I left the salon after the matting situation I wasn't too happy with my hair when I first saw it. I thought it had thinned out a lot and didn't grow as much as I expected it to. I had completely forgotten about this drastic cut! Once I saw this, I calmed down significantly.

I was in such a hurt place that I was ready to give up blogging! I thought, who am I to be blogging about my hair journey when every time I touch my hair I destroy it (dramatic, I know). My boyfriend was right when he said I needed to share my story. I know I'm not the only person this has happened to so I share this with the hopes of letting you know what to do and what NOT to do!

AFTER TAKING OUT YOUR SEW-IN (OR ANY OTHER PROTECTIVE STYLE THAT COVERS YOUR HAIR FOR WEEKS AT A TIME), PLEASE DETANGLE YOUR HAIR (WITH A COMB) BEFORE WASHING!
Or see a professional who knows what they're doing!!

Lessons Learned
1. In hindsight, I remember the sew-in girl telling me to condition my hair for a day before washing it. To be honest, I didn't know what she meant. I heard her but I didn't pay that advice any mind. Since starting this series, someone told me that's what they do and it made much more sense when they said it.
2. I definitely should've combed my hair to detangle it. I have it in my mind that you never comb dry natural hair, so I thought the praying hands would be sufficient until I was able to comb and detangle my wet hair with conditioner. THIS WAS A MISTAKE!! Some people are able to do their hair at home and I really wish I was one of these people but I know I'm not and that's okay. I need to be more aware of my limitations. I can do day-to-day hairstyles which is enough to get me by, but I really need to let the professionals do the big stuff (for me)!
3. I started taking Hairfinity while I had my sew-in but I'll talk more about that in my next hair post.
4. Looking at all the growth I've had during the 10 weeks makes me want to get another sew-in immediately! Lol...I know, I know.
Since my customer service experience with this sew-in wasn't too positive, I worry about giving it another try with someone new. I didn't get exactly what I asked for and I wasn't pleased with the price, but I worked the 'do when I needed to.
I've done some better research this time and I've found a shop I want to go to. I've also decided I want short hair this time...a bob. I'm unsure if I want it wavy or straight...so the jury is still out on the type of hair I'll need (which is an important factor in my decision making this time around).
I'm sure I can work another sew-in whether I like the way it turns out or not. I know that's not any kind of way to go into a hairstyle, but I'm being realistic. Picking a new stylist is like shooting in the dark. I can look at pictures of people's work all day long, but that doesn't mean they'll do an A+ job with my hair. I'm very picky about what I like, so there's a chance that I won't like the finished product. I'm prepared for whatever!
Again, my main goal is healthy length!! Look at the growth I got in 10 weeks. Can you imagine a year's worth of healthy growth? I put together this picture to show what I think my hair would look like if I would've never had the trouble I had this year:

What my natural hair would look like if I wouldn't have had so many hair issues

Lol. I know the what-if's aren't important at this point but these are just my thoughts. I want to work towards never thinking about this again but doing all I can from here on out to take care of my hair the best I can! I haven't made a complete decision about when I'm getting another sew-in but another sew-in will be had!

Now that we're at the end of the series, what do you guys think of the results?

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10 comments

  1. Your natural hair is beautiful and has grown by leaps and bounds. When it comes to protective styles and its care...We live and we learn. I have a few disaster stories myself. #BLMGirls

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    1. Thanks Kim. It has done a lot of growing. You're so right about living and learning. That's all I can do. I'm not a cosmetologist and I'm not all that great with my hair (apparently) so I'm learning as I go! Thanks for stopping by!

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  2. We all have setbacks in our journeys. The good thing is that it's just hair and will grow back but I definitely feel your pain. At least you have some beautiful even tresses to care for now.

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  3. Whew! Well, you survived this sew-in and now you know more than you did before. I can't wait to see what the short bob will look like. Maybe you should invest in straight hair that looks good worn straight or wavy.

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  4. Oh wow, what a story! Thanks for sharing, I've considered sewn-ins before, this was great info in case I ever get one. #blmgirls http://www.thejmichaelproject.com/kasiperkins

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    1. Hey Kasi! Thanks for stopping by! It's nice to run into another NC/DC lady! I've had a few sew-ins before, but this was my first "professional sew-in". My hair always seems to grow quicker when I don't have to style it daily. I can't wait for the next one! I really hope this information helps somebody out there, because it would have been nice if this was made clear to me up front!!

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  5. Mi, I think your story can and will be very helpful. The end result looks healthy and lovely! Great share :)

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  6. Wow, looks like you had a tough time with this, I'm glad it all worked out. Your hair looks great! #BLMgirls

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