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6 Tips for Transitioning Hair from Relaxed to Natural

Transitioning hair to natural is deeper than changing your haircare regimen. So, we went to the expert. Candice Jones is a hair content creator, self-love advocate, and founder of Everything She Is Co., which is a community-driven platform for young girls and women to navigate their hair self-discovery journey. Below, Candice shares her tips and tricks on how to transition hair from relaxed to natural. Grab a pen and some paper because you’ll want to take notes!

Ease Into It

“The transition to natural hair is a personal journey and only person who is on the journey can decide when it’s the right time to go all the way,” says Candice on not forcing it, and giving yourself time to ease in. “For example, I transitioned for a little less than a year and my mom transitioned for almost two. It’s all about when you feel comfortable going all the way. I would, however, suggest that you keep a close eye on the health of your hair to make sure your routine is serving both the relaxed strands and the new natural growth because breakage, split ends, etc. are common with extended transitioning periods.”

Keep Hair Healthy

If you decide the time is right to transition to natural, there are some things to avoid. Because you’re going to be showing off your natural hair, you want it to be healthy. “If the health of your hair is important, I would say avoid damaging processes like straightening or excessive blow drying. For some, applying heat may be the only way they know how to deal with their new texture but finding more simple and protective styles will help keep your hair healthy and easier to manage.”

Don’t Compare Yourself to Others

Perhaps most importantly, mute your IG for a little while because there’s nothing that can slow down your journey like focusing on how you’re doing vs everyone else. “I also think it’s important to avoid comparing your journey to others,” says Candice. “As I mentioned before, going natural is a personal journey that requires a lot of trial-and-error. What works for others might not work for you. It takes time to figure out what products or techniques your hair loves. So keep your haircare routine simple and enjoy the process of getting to know your curls, kinks, and coils better.”

Find the Right Products/Routine

According to Candice, here’s what you need to be doing to transition:

  • Keep your routine simple by choosing one or two go-to protective styles (mine was two flat twists to the back) and sticking to a wash schedule that works for you. 
  • Stick to the basics by finding a quality shampoo, deep conditioner, and moisturizer. That’s all you really need. 
  • Even if you aren’t ready to cut all of your relaxed ends, get regular trims to make sure your ends stay healthy. 

Candice shares that some of her favorite products include “the Tgin Honey Miracle Mask, the Olaplex No.8 Moisture Mask, and the SheaMoisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie.”

Trust the Process

Don’t psyche yourself out before the journey even begins. Candice tells us that transitioning requires trusting the process. “When you’ve become accustomed to maintaining your hair with relaxers, it can be difficult to pivot. So, before you make the transition to becoming natural, give yourself time to adjust, and most importantly, keep it simple. This is new territory for you, so don’t overwhelm yourself with hairstyles that may be difficult to manage in the beginning stages. Choose a protective style that allows you to have patience with yourself along the new journey and simplifies your routine.”

Remember the Why

If you feel like you might give up, remember what motivated you to start the journey. “My advice for seeing through your natural hair journey is to remember why you started. For me, it started because I was a freshman in college and couldn’t depend on my mother to keep up my relaxers. Along the way, I started a YouTube channel sharing my journey that inspired women around the country to go natural and it still supports me. Even when I went through periods that made me want to resort back to my relaxed days, I remember that I wanted to be an example for other women. It became essential for me to show them how to easily integrate a natural hair care routine that wasn’t too time-consuming and demonstrate that it is possible. Embracing my natural hair translated into self-love for me because you can often feel the pressure from society to conform and wear your hair straight to fit a certain beauty standard. When you choose to go natural, you are going against detrimental beauty standards for women, and honestly, it’s rewarding. Unintentionally wearing my natural hair became a way to combat unfair beauty standards and practice self-acceptance.”

Need even more tips on how to transition hair from relaxed to natural? We’ve got you covered. HERE are eight tips for making the process a breeze!


Hey, mane muse! We wanted to give you a heads up that some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means that Mane Addicts will collect a small share of the sale from any purchase you make from the products we recommend.


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