Ebony – Does Going Natural Mean Going Broke?

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Does this have to be you?  No!  Is it you?  Maybe, but it damn sure ain’t me!  I was a product junkie when I FIRST started this Natural hair journey but once I got the hang of my hair and found out what worked for me I slowed down the purchases and didn’t believe all the claims new product brands touted.  Here’s an article on Ebony that I really don’t agree with but wanted to be fair and post to get your feedback.

“You can either pay your electricity bill or afford to have natural hair.” These
are words quietly uttered by Black women at most natural hair events
I’ve attended lately. Going natural is not for the weak, but it’s not
for the financially timid, either. Making the switch from silky strands
to glorious kinks—comparable to swapping that hearty burger for an
organic smoothie—costs a pretty penny for a female demographic who just
so happens to spend the most.


Let’s take a look at the products. Curly girl favorite Miss Jessie’s Buttercream,
a thick, luscious moisturizer, retails for $58.00 for a 16oz jar. Why?
Because it works. The natural hair community has longtime praised the
mixture for its superb moisturizing abilities, and the one thing that
unites all textured beauties is the endless pursuit of hydrated,
frizz-less hair. Kinky Curly Curling Custard, a coveted gel
that gives definition to the most unruly of curls, will cost you $30 for
its largest size (16oz). The fairly simple formula contains a base of
aloe vera—and you’ll struggle to mimic the styling aid. According to
recent consumer reports, Black women with natural hair spend the most on
conditioners and styling aids. Why? Because these happen to be two
products that can make or break your ‘do. Curl expert and celebrity
stylist Anthony Dickey’s Hair Rules Quench Ultra Rich Conditioner costs
a whopping $42 for its widely known detangling powers, and according to
the Hair Rules addicts I know, it’s quite the magical potion.

There’s also the matter of ingredients. After ridding
their follicles of relaxers, a substantial quantity of Black women pay
closer attention to everything they put in and on their bodies.
Sulfates, alcohol, parabens and known cancer-causing agents are out.
Along with the concern over synthetic ingredients, there is also a
desire for products containing the trendy must-haves like olive oil,
coconut oil, shea butter, mango butter and argan oil—along with exotic
botanical extracts and strengthening essential oils. These rare
combinations can be found in products like Jane Carter Scalp Nourishing Serum, which costs $14 for a 1oz dropper.


On the styling end, natural hair bloggers are cleaning up in brand endorsements and appearances. Natural hair aficionados like Natural Chica and Afrobella are in high demand because there’s a lack of trained hairstylist
working with textured hair. Most cosmetology programs don’t have a
natural hair curriculum, so aside from seminars and local events with
natural gurus, finding hair care professionals that can style kinks,
curls and waves is like striking gold. And the professionals that have
gone the extra mile to understand this new clientele are winning. Curly
cuts like the almighty C-cut or Deva Cut (personalized multi-textured
haircuts) will run you upwards of $100…

You can read the rest of the article here:  Does Going Natural Mean Going Broke?
Not feeling the vibe from this article nor do I agree with many of the statements.  I know many women who don’t spend tons of money on their natural hair and they either become masterful DIY’s or ultra careful with purchases and don’t buy every new product on the market.  I save tons of money by using products in stores instead of buying online and paying shipping as well as sticking to what works and not trying new products often or ever! Yea, there are expensive brands out there but for one, you don’t have to buy them and for two there are newer brands coming out with more than reasonable prices.  

Denver’s salons are expensive as hell so I KNOW I’m spending less by not getting a relaxer every six weeks.  I know I’m spending less than touting a weave and I KNOW I’m saving tons of money by not getting my hair washed in a salon like I was doing a few years ago.  Yes, I will be going to the More than Curly Salon here in Denver for the Carve and Slice cut that costs almost $100, but that will only happen about three times a year and that will be the ONLY service they get outta me! That is still cheaper than hitting up a salon for the touch-up for a relaxer. 

To each her own, but I don’t feel this is a fair depiction of the Natural hair movement unless you are a seriously struggling college student who can’t spend much on her hair anyway.   Most women I associate with (especially through this blog) are not in that category so I’d love to know what you think about this article as well as what I’ve said in rebuttal to it.  Are we both too extreme in our thoughts? 

Gotta step away from BS Naturals,
Sabrina  

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11 Comments

  1. November 1, 2012 / 2:51 pm

    I agree with you Sabrina. This article is going all the way to the left. Natural hair does not have to be expensive unless you choose to make it expensive. Natural hair sisters spend less money than our Relaxer & Definitely Weaved up counterparts. Yes people have a tendency to constantly buy product even after they find something that works because we all like to have options and we are always looking for a even better product. A lot of college campuses are full of our Natural Sisters that are swapping product and meeting to learn to take care of their gorgeous locks without spending enormous amounts of cash. I would just love to do a campus tour on caring for natural hair. Yes I am a product junkie a wee bit of one anyway but I definitely know what works. I do like variety due to how our hair can get used to something and then stop working for us…just like in the relaxer days. So I mix and match between products that I know that work for me. I think no matter whether we relax, weave, or go natural, there will always be someone around to take a negative perspective.

    • November 7, 2012 / 3:08 pm

      Well said! Just adding negativity to an area that gets a lot of it unnecessarily.

  2. November 1, 2012 / 8:54 pm

    I agree with you. I'm a natural that's on a budget and I don't spend tons of money on my hair. I make my own products and sometimes I use Shea Moisture's line. I really don't see myself spending 30 and up on one product for my natural hair. I didn't spend nowhere near that much for one product on my hair when I had a relaxer. I think that some of these companies have seen the desperation from most, not all, naturals. That they are willing to spend their last dime on the next thing that's hot and ran with it.

    • November 7, 2012 / 3:09 pm

      Yes, there will always be some who are PJ's as well as some chasing the curl dragon and willing to use the latest and the greatest to get it. I feel that most Naturals spend less or the same as when they were relaxed or weaved up.

  3. Anonymous
    November 2, 2012 / 12:16 pm

    Wow … Amazing… So it was better to weave some other texture on my head or pour highly toxic chemicals on my hair. Where was the outcry then?? Where was the "Black Women" are losing their homes getting that next REAL HAIR WEAVE! REALLY!? I find this article another push to say to black women your really don't like your self and look how much you have to pay to make that not so great hair of yours look better…. And again it is coming from within our own. WOW! I am just blown away. It does not cost more in fact I am saving TIME and MONEY. And time is something you can NEVER get back. Our hair does not require the 52.00 bottle of cream but if that person wants to buy it still will last a heck of lot longer then that toxic relaxer touch up. Sorry but this makes me so mad. Guess you could tell 🙂 Peace

    • November 7, 2012 / 3:12 pm

      Love your rant. It is so deserving as we still have to fight the negativity being thrown at the Natural hair community as a whole.

    • January 4, 2013 / 10:52 pm

      Thank you! So sorry for just now responding but during this time I was knee deep in the election work.

  4. November 7, 2012 / 3:21 pm

    Straight BS to get people to continue to buy perms because relaxer companies are their main sponsors/advertisers!!! Curl activator $3, Herbal Oil $3, ACV~$1, conditioner $1- up. No, going natural has been very budget friendly!!!

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