It’s been almost two years since I went natural. More and more women are going natural or considering it. I did the BIG CHOP and its been such a revelatory experience as I got to see most people’s reaction to a woman going back to hair she was born with. 

I had transitioned for about a year and gave my head to Twist n Locs salon to do the deed one weekend. I made twists which I twisted out on Monday for work. 

 Me and my hair going places!
Me and my hair going places!

People’s reactions were mixed! I am talking about Ghanaians who have seen their mothers and sisters in kinky and coily hair all these years. Some expressed disbelief, 

“You cut your hair!”

Some got confused as to what my hair was 

” what do you call this hairstyle?” asked one male colleague of mine.

” Err…African hair?”

Some women looked at my head in fascination and expressed desire to cut theirs. 

“I have always wanted to cut my hair and go natural but I am afraid. My natural hair is too hard.” This was a similar statement i heard from most of them. The difficulty of managing their kinky hair and the childhood memories of painful combing and braiding. 

It was such a rollercoaster of emotions which run through the whole office. 

The Men Found It Attractive! 

One of my fears before deciding to go natural was what a man i would come to meet would think of it. I don’t know why i had that thought. Was it because most Ghanaian men have become used to seeing their women in relaxed hair and any change might be met with resistance? What kind of men like natural-haired women also? The creatives? All these questions plagued me. But then guess what? When i went natural, every guy i met was fascinated by my new look. They wanted to touch it and seemed mesmerised by it. Some of them said they were only attracted to women in natural hair. Who would have thunk it!

Empowerment, Confidence Boost

Emotionally i felt confidently empowered and i wasn’t even perturbed by the stubbornness of the texture of my coily. I don’t really know how this article came about on how natural hair women have low self-esteem. They should come and see how we rock it!  I have read how African-American women had more of psychological blocks to wearing their hair natural via Curly Nikki’s book ‘Better Than Hair’. An Aunt of mine who has been a hair stylist in New Jersey for years; told me how they hated being called nappy some few years ago. Yet today, they rock it like nothing else. I think back to my childhood and just remember the difficulty my Mom had in managing my hair. Thats why she had it relaxed after several painful combing and braiding sessions. According to my Mom, some years back, women in natural hair were seen to be poor because it was assumed that they did not have enough money to buy hair relaxers. But today, its a trend in Ghana and other African countries where women are shorning off their relaxed hair and going back to their roots of kinky hair. 

Huge Savings in Hair Maintenance

I have saved huge in the cost of hair maintenance since i went natural. During my relaxed years, I would buy hair relaxers and have my hair shampooed and blow-dried every week. I decided to make my own natural hair products to keep down the costs of buying natural hair products which of late are rising because of the hair revolution. I made my own shampoo, hair lotion using all natural products from coconut oil, olive oil to castor oil. 

I made my own whipped sheabutter body Cream today. I have been using raw shea for some time now (8 years or so) and it's a struggle sometimes to use due to its not too smooth texture. So I went to a natural products store grabbed an essential oil and went home to whip some goodness. This is going to last me for the next six months! Sheabutter is in abundance in Ghana, let's move away from processed skin creams and what nots to our homegrown organics. How I Made it 2 knobs of Shea butter broken up 3 tbsp spoonfuls of coconut oil 15 drops of lavender essential oil Tiny bit of olive oil Whisk I broke up the sheabutter and added the rest of the ingredients and whisked my life away. Took about 10 minutes. I now had this beautiful creamy soft heavenly goodness! I kept it in the fridge to harden just a bit. Dumsor could worry my handiwork. Looking forward to more beautiful moisturised skin. Want some? #diy#sheabutter #organics #skinproducts #skincare #naturalproducts #homemade #bodyworks

A photo posted by Naa Oyoo (@oyooquartey) on

The World Compliments You for You.

The compliments i have received from strangers on my hair has been humbling. I was crossing a street somewhere in Manhattan when an Afro-American woman coming from the opposite direction said in passing, ‘i love your hair!’

‘Love yours too!’ as i looked up and saw her Bantu knots.

Afro-American men greeted me as i walked up and about in my Twist out . ‘Have a good morning, Sista!’

I was blushing everywhere! Being me as me since i was born made me feel naturally comfortable. I wasn’t worried about new growth and styling my hair. 

I have never regretted one moment of going back to my natural hair state. It has even given me opportunities to model for some brands. Thanks to my kinks and coils. 

This after all is how God made me. Its how I was born why be somebody else?

Why not share your experience on going back to your natural hair in the comments below? Had any challenges in doing so? Are you afraid of doing so? 

19 COMMENTS

  1. Hello Naa, thanks for your article. It’s a beautiful experience. I’ve had my natural hair for the past three years and I am super super proud of it. Keep up the good work.

  2. 5 years for me now! No regrets…..
    I remember once I was told by a much older lady that my face looked "heavy". I still don’t get what she meant but I feel more confident now and more beautiful. It would be nice to see more women go natural! After all we are Africans!

  3. I love natural too ..last week I went for a program and a guy whispered in my ears.."lady u r the only beautiful lady here hahah love ur hair" as for world’s compliment and men finding it attractive have experience a lot and I love natural hair thanks for sharing this ma’am and you rocking it your self cute😊😘✌🏼️ #naturalhairrocks

  4. Ooh it was difficult for me bt I had to make that decision. And my girlfriends ask why. I hv not regretted. Being natural since November 2014 am loving it.

  5. I transitioned in November 2013 and had the big chop in June 2014. Honestly I get pissed at my hair anytym i have to treat n twist it following my usual hair regimen..but trust me after styling i feel some unusual level of confidence enter me when i walk the streets of South Korea… n i never get tired of the ‘i love ur fro’s’… ‘wat do u do to hair’ etc comments.. its an amazing feeling girls! #ijustluvmynaturals

    • i can just imagine the sensation! I have a wedding tomorrow and i can’t wait to style it to see my new look!

  6. It’s been two years since i decided to go on natural hair and it was not easy at all. few months to my wedding i decided to go on natural, so i just went to the barbering shop and shaved off my permed hair without telling anyone. everyone got surprised, especially my then husband to be, he was in a great shock. A the people around me complained but i was very happy with my decision. I got married in some months later and still keeping my natural hair and i’m sooo proud of my hair.

    • Wow! Thats brave! Be happy with you darling Irene! would love to feature you on my blog about this story? care to email me with some photos of your beautiful hair? me@naaoyooquartey.com or tweet at me @oyooquartey

  7. After constant worrying about how it will pan out, I just had the big chop – by myself. It’s been nearly 8 weeks and I have loved every single passing moment! The complements are endless – black, white, men, women! Luckily I’ve got high cheek bones and a good height to compliment it. I usually feel the glare of people trailing behind me as I pass. I love that I can immerse wholly into th shower, enjoy a downpour of rain or swim without fretting over blow-dries and what not. My dandruff is in check and my hair is growing really well and fast! My scalp can breathe and i don’t wake up worrying about what to do with my hair because there is always something to do! I’m definitely trying your homemade shea butter recipe! I could write a whole article on my natural hair journey (though it’s just under 8 weeks)😊.

    • I can feel your joy in your comment Brigitte 🙂 happy for you.
      I remember one time i removed my braids and went to work the next day without even touching a single strand because it looked exactly like twist outs! I rocked it for like three days before washing it! hihihihi!

  8. Natural since 2010, deadlocked since 2014…. If only I had a dollar for every compliment and attempt to touch my hair!! #naturalhairisbeautiful

  9. i did the big chop somewhere in 2013.in the beginning my hair wasnt growing so i didn like it..but now,i work my hair..well,kinda..lol

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