As I contemplate overall health, fitness, image, and spiritual changes for the new year, my Sisterlocks have become a part of the equation – to color or not to color? I’m 4.5 years in, and my grays (especially along the sides/temple areas and on the very tip top) are becoming more prominent. At 52, that’s no big surprise…we tend to gray as we age. As I scroll the pages of social media, the loc groups have me wondering, “Should I color my Sisterlocks?” How will coloring my Sisterlocks change me?
I’ve (drastically) colored/bleached my hair before. Back in the late 90’s and then again in 2014. Both times, I had lye relaxers and visited my stylists just about every week for hair maintenance. Both times, I leaned toward the old adage that “blonds have more fun,” and I had some length on my hair. I don’t remember much about any textural changes over 20 years ago when I was blond-ish, but for the 2014 blond-ish color, I do remember how light and how dry my hair looked and felt. Toward the end of that hair cycle of change, I wore braids to cover the blond. I was going through perimenopausal phases and thinking that the hormonal changes were affecting the condition of my hair. I, also, big chopped with blond, relaxed ends almost five years to the day, December 22, 2015.
I don’t have a “head full of gray,” but the gray I have is pretty wiry…and it likes…correction, loves to be seen! It just won’t stay (hide) within the confines of tiny locs. I’m concerned that coloring my Sisterlocks will weaken them, but when I consider how I lifted my hair with bleach AND harsh relaxers twice before and lived to tell the story, perhaps adding only color now won’t be so harsh. After all, I don’t have to worry about the double-process since my hair is natural.
Truth is, having locs, in general, makes you a bit…lazy. Once you discard the combs and brushes, the thought of having to do something extra to my hair causes me to pause. Sure, I’ll spritz the occasional rose water or loc oil on my scalp after shampooing, but will coloring my locs “force” me to add another step to my loc care? I’m thinking that I may have to add a leave in conditioner to protect my locs from dryness and breakage. I may have to increase my daily hydration. I imagine that sleeping, year round, with a humidifier will be a non-negotiable.
Another concern is my edges. 🥴Every black woman is concerned about her brows and her edges. ☺️ As my locs lengthen (and I have no plans to cut them anytime soon), I wonder will the color add stress to the fragile locs around the edges of my hairline. Those frontal locs, by design, are smaller. The locs in the back, along my neckline, are vastly different than the locs along my frontal hairline. The hair in the back is curlier and softer; not nearly as coarse and dense. While I rarely pull my hair up in styles to expose the back of neck or neckline, I’m acutely aware of its fragility on the rare occasion that I do. My neckline heaves a collective sigh of relief once I remove the hair tie, “Ahhhh, I can breathe.” My neck muscles can finally relax.
Now that I’m still wavering, because I’m usually quite decisive, I’m thinking that a temporary color may give me the flexibility of change without the commitment of the upkeep. Could a semi-permanent rinse be the answer to my dilemma? I used to get rinses when I wore relaxers, and the one thing that stood out to me was how shiny my relaxed tresses turned out after a fresh relaxer retouch and fresh rinse. The colors were always very subtle since my natural hair color is so dark, but the conditioning properties of the rinse made the temporary red, brown, or blue-black edges worth the trouble. I’m not quite sure how a DIY rinse would turn out though…I’d probably have color EVERYWHERE! All over my brows, lashes…yes, I’d probably make a big mess.
The year, 2020, has been a phasic cycle of great stress and turmoil for me. March through September 2020 will go down in my history book as some of the more transformational months of my lifetime. But not for all of the traditional reasons one would think. I crossed the 50 year old dash a couple of years ago, and my evolution just continues. Not that I thought the magic number would come and go, and I’d be stuck in a proverbial place of “contentment,” but where I am now (spiritually and physically) was simply unfathomable to where I was this time just a year ago. Thankfully, how 2020 started is NOT how it’s ending for me. More important, how 2021 will start – filled with anticipation, peace, tranquility, controlled exposure in every single aspect of my life – is exactly what I’m looking forward to in the days, weeks, and months to come.
Happy holidays to you and yours! 2021, I see you!! I can just feel the best is yet to come!
Until next time,