Ask The Experts: Transitioning 101

Celeb stylist Anthony Dickey tells us everything we ever wanted to know about transitioning from relaxed to natural hair.
ESSENCE.COM Feb, 10, 2015

1 of 10

According to celeb stylist Anthony Dickey, you must go cold turkey. “Stop all chemical enhancers, texturizers, relaxers now,” says Dickey, who also owns Hair Rules salon and product line.

2 of 10

“Seek out information about your hair’s unique texture,” says Dickey. “Talk to professionals that can educate you from a texture-specific approach — not an ethnic-specific approach.”

3 of 10

“Don’t do the “Big Chop” unless you’re comfortable with short hair,” he says. “In the meantime, smooth your roots with a comb attachment on your blowdryer, and style the relaxed hair however you like!”

4 of 10

“Just because a product is ‘all-natural’ doesn’t mean it’ll deliver great results,” he warns. Experiment until you find the perfect product cocktail for your tresses.

5 of 10

“Avoid shampoos containing sodium lauryl sulfate, ie soap; they dry out your curls,” he says. “Instead, use a cream-based shampoo like Hair Rules Daily Cleansing Cream ($22, hairrules.com).”

6 of 10

“Don’t judge your natural texture until the relaxed portion is totally gone,” says Dickey. Be patient — while transitioning, your God-given curls haven’t had a chance to shine yet!

7 of 10

“If your natural texture is kinky, avoid roller sets,” he says. “They require too much blowdrying afterwards to smooth out, resulting in breakage.”

8 of 10

“Try 2-strand twists to marry your natural roots to the straight ends,” he says. “Apply Hair Rules Curly Whip to wet hair, twist, and sit under a dryer or dry overnight. Unravel, fluff and go!”

9 of 10

“Try getting a transitional weave with a kinky or curly texture,” says Dickey. “This way, you can become familiar with a texture similar to your own.”

10 of 10

“Not all Black women experience the same transitioning process,” says Dickey. “We come in many shades and hair textures. Its your journey, find out what works for your specific texture.”