September 13, 2009

When are they too young for…….? Pt. 1

Filed under: hair care — danasloft @ 8:33 pm

dreamstime_littlegirls2In my years of doing hair, I have heard plenty stories of when my clients got their first relaxer. I’ve heard stories as early as 4-5 years old (that blows my mind). I also have a lot of new mothers asking me when is the best time to start relaxing their daughter’s hair. So here is my whole take on this subject:

When I was a child my mother use to send us to the neighbor across the alley to get our hair pressed, now Miss Charlotte could press the hell out our hair! My sisters and I all had different hair types: my oldest sis Dianne’s hair was a finer, looser curl (similar to my mother’s), Joan, the middle girl, had an ultra thick, medium curl texture and I had a thick super tight curl. But Miss Charlotte could get us straight with a little grease and a straightening comb. Now mind you, it was only on holidays that my mother would do this, any other time we would have our hair in pony tails, usually 3 or more. At this time my mother was a single parent, my father died when I was 5, who worked during the day and went to school at night; but every day she would comb our hair and put it into pony tails. And once a week she would wash and condition our hair, with a lot of fighting and crying from yours truly. My mother did not relax our hair not once, and she never made us feel as if our hair was “bad hair”. As a matter of fact, I put my own relaxer in for the first time when I was 13. I guess I was destined to be a hair stylist.

When I did become a stylist some 10 years later, I learnt a lot more about our hair and our different textures. One very important thing that I have learned is that our hair does not come into its own until we are about 12 years old. This means, that just like our bodies are developing until we reach a certain age, so is our hair. So if you as a parent who decides to put a chemical in your child’s hair before they are of 12, you are altering the texture of your child’s hair, which in most cases is for the worst! Not a good thing. Also what are you putting in your child’s head at an early age about their hair texture? As well as promoting low self-esteem early on. I am aware that a lot of black children have had their hair chemically altered at a young age, some as adults, don’t even know what their natural hair texture is because they started so young with chemicals; but the cycle has to stop at some point.

Now don’t get me wrong, I am not against relaxing your hair as a means to styling or maintaining a look. But I do believe that relaxers are not for every one and first let’s start by knowing and loving our hair before we start the alteration of our texture. And if you are putting chemicals in your child’s hair before it has grown into its own, your starting a pattern of issues that they will carry with them for the rest of their lives, and we all know what that is like.

So I beg all you mothers out there who have yetto  put a relaxer in you childs hair, but have though about it because you feel that you “can’t do anything with this hair”; think about you child and what she will have to deal with growing up. She might learn to hate what GOD has given her and that can cause many, many damaging hair issues down the road. Do you want to be responsable for that?

Hit me up Sweeties and tell me your early hair stories! d

If you have any question, concerns or need advice about your childs hair please feel free to write me at info@danasloft.com , also look for up coming classe on how to manage and take care of your child’s hair.



  1. Good stuff D… Its all about education over mis-concepton… To many give in to the portion, our hair is to diffiicult to manage and deal with, rather than re-educate themselves on how, for something that should be 2nd nature to us. 🙂

    Comment by Olanre — September 14, 2009 @ 2:15 pm

  2. dana, i am so grateful for your article! my mother relaxed my hair before i was 6, and it took me a minute to forgive her for that. my daughter, has beautiful, tight, kinky, thick hair like me, and she fights and cries too, and i’m learning all the tricks to make it a more pleasant experience for both of us…and that does not include the … Read Morepossibility of relaxing her hair. that is not something i would do or encourage her to do at any age, but when she’s much older i will try to be supportive and talk to her about what it means to relax her hair (after 20?! lol) it saddens me that i will never know the TRUE texture of my hair as a result of having it processed at such a young age. thank you again for this article, and i am SO happy you decided to be a stylist…you are truly a gifted artist! see you thursday! i’m so excited to know in three days i will have a FUNKY new cut!!!!!! ;-o

    Comment by meredith danielle — September 14, 2009 @ 3:31 pm

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