The Mestiza Muse

Be Beautiful. Be Natural. Be You.

Be Beautiful. Be Natural. Be You.

A Brief Look Into My Healthy Hair Journey

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

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It’s been a long road, but my hair is finally healthy! I remember the day I decided to go natural. This has been a profound and transformative journey, marked by both personal loss and growth. The catalyst for this journey was the heart-wrenching loss of my beloved mother, my closest friend and confidant. In the wake of her passing, I found myself reflecting on the unfulfilled aspirations in my life, with the longing to embrace my natural curls prominently among them.

This period of introspection brought me to the realization that life’s brevity demands action on our dreams without delay. Motivated by this insight, I made the commitment to nurture and reclaim the health of my hair—a decision that has since unfolded as one of the most rewarding chapters of my life.

In this blog post, I’m eager to share the pivotal steps I took to revitalize my curls, transforming them from damaged to healthy ones.

Embracing My Natural Curls: A Journey to Hair Health

Choosing to Go Natural: A Personal Decision

The decision to embrace natural hair is deeply personal and varies widely among individuals. For me, the choice was rooted in a desire to take charge of my hair’s health.

I had grown weary of the discomfort and damage caused by lye relaxers, which left my scalp burning and itching. The convenience of clip-in hair extensions and the simplicity of a bun became my go-to solutions, not out of preference, but due to the lack of time and energy to invest in proper styling.

Years of relentless styling attempts, including relaxers, bleaching, heat styling with flat irons and curling irons, as well as Dominican blowouts and keratin treatments, left my hair in a state of constant breakage and loss. The situation had escalated to the point where I was facing significant hair loss, relying on clip-in extensions to mask the damage.

This turning point illuminated the need for a change—a shift towards embracing and nurturing my natural curls, away from the harmful practices that had compromised my hair’s integrity.

The Turning Point: Taking Charge of My Hair Health

A Personal Declaration: Enough is Enough

In May 2016, I reached a pivotal moment of clarity and determination—I decided that enough was enough. It was time to prioritize my well-being and take definitive action towards reclaiming the health of my hair. This decision was more than just about hair; it was about choosing to do something profoundly meaningful for myself, to rekindle the joy and vibrancy I had lost.

Faced with years of damage and dissatisfaction, I found myself yearning for a change. “There has to be a better way,” I thought. With that, I embarked on my journey to go natural. I was curious and eager to experience the freedom and beauty of healthy, bouncy curls—a stark contrast to the struggles I had faced for so long. This marked the beginning of a new chapter, one dedicated to nurturing and celebrating my natural hair.

Perseverance on the Path to Healthy Hair

The Resolve to Keep Going

Embarking on my journey towards healthier hair began with dedicated research into the most effective natural hair care practices. At this stage, my hair was in dire condition, teetering on the edge of what seemed irreversible damage. Despite the ominous outlook, the thought of giving up never crossed my mind.

Positioning my mindset towards positivity and hope, I encouraged myself by thinking, “What if this works?” My initial aim was modest—simply to see any improvement in my hair’s health. Unbeknownst to me then, this journey would transform my hair and equip me with a wealth of knowledge about hair care.

This newfound understanding ignited a passion within me to share my learnings, offering guidance and support to others on their own paths to healthy hair. My experience stands as a testament to the power of perseverance and the possibilities that unfold when we dare to believe in change.

Embracing Your Natural Hair: Beyond the Basics

Navigating the care of your natural hair extends far beyond a simple online search. Achieving optimal results requires discernment in choosing trustworthy sources, those with a deep comprehension of the unique needs and nuances of natural hair.

As a natural hair blogger, my mission is to empower you with comprehensive knowledge about natural hair care. I aim to equip you with the insights and confidence needed to embrace your natural beauty fully.

Remember, your natural hair isn’t just another part of you—it’s a distinctive asset, your crowning glory, symbolizing both your identity and heritage. Let’s embark on this journey together, celebrating the natural beauty that is uniquely yours.

Reflecting on My Hair Journey: From Struggle to Empowerment

Growing up, navigating my hair’s texture was a formidable challenge. With its thick, coarse, and kinky nature, my hair presented a problem that my Asian mother and I struggled to solve. This lack of familiarity with my hair type led to many a dreaded wash day, etching memories of discomfort and frustration into my childhood.

I vividly remember the struggles of those early years—my face contorting in discomfort as my mother attempted to tame my thick, kinky, curly hair with a metal brush, a task so arduous it once resulted in a shattered brush.

The day I received my first relaxer marked a significant turning point. It felt like an initiation, a moment of relief for both my mother and me. Wash days suddenly transformed, becoming more manageable. Yet, this solution ushered in a new era of chemical treatments and ensuing damage, setting me on a quest for restoration and health for my hair.

These experiences were the catalyst for my journey towards understanding and caring for my natural hair. They taught me the importance of knowledge, patience, and self-acceptance in nurturing one’s true self.

2015: A Turning Point in My Heathy Hair Journey



By the time 2015 rolled around, I had reached my limit. Despite my efforts, my hair refused to grow beyond a certain point, and its health seemed to be in a perpetual state of despair. The quest for healthier hair became urgent, propelling me to seek out solutions that could turn my situation around.

In my search for answers, I turned to the digital world, specifically YouTube and Instagram, hoping to uncover the secrets to restoring my hair’s vitality. It was here that I encountered the individuals who would become my guiding lights in the curly hair community: @sunkissalba and @gigibolman. Their insights and personal journeys with natural hair care were nothing short of revelatory for me.

The guidance and inspiration I found through their content were transformative. They showed me practical steps towards healthier hair and inspired me with the confidence to embrace and celebrate my natural texture. Their impact was so profound that I was motivated to start my own Instagram page to share my journey and discoveries with others navigating similar paths.

My gratitude towards these community mentors is boundless. They have aided me in achieving healthier hair and inspired a passion for sharing this journey, fostering a space of support and encouragement for others embracing their natural hair.

2016: The Start of a New Chapter in My Hair Care Journey

May 2016 marked the beginning of my journey towards achieving healthier hair. Initially, I harbored a fair amount of skepticism, questioning the potential for real change in my hair’s condition, which seemed beyond hope then.

During my final silk press appointment, I shared my intentions with my stylist, confiding in her about the new path I was about to embark on towards healthier hair. With a mixture of hope and uncertainty, I set a tentative timeline for myself—I would dedicate six months to this journey, promising to reassess and possibly return to her care if I didn’t witness any significant improvements.

This commitment represented a leap of faith, a willingness to give my hair one last chance to recover and thrive under a new regimen of care and attention.





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Embracing Change: The Role of Mental Preparation in Your Hair Journey

Combining the aspiration for healthy hair with the discouraging reality of damaged strands can often lead to frustration and disappointment. However, equipping yourself with smoother transition strategies can significantly alleviate mental and physical challenges.

The adage about the importance of mental preparedness for any challenge didn’t fully resonate with me until I embarked on my journey to embrace my natural hair. This process was my real introduction to the concept, revealing just how crucial a positive mindset is when facing personal transformations.

Indeed, the initial phases of transitioning to natural hair were full of mental struggles. Yet, despite the difficulties, a singular vision propelled me forward: the anticipation of achieving a full head of healthy, naturally curly hair. This goal, albeit challenging, was a beacon of motivation, affirming that the journey, with all its highs and lows, was undoubtedly worth the effort.

Navigating the “Awkward Phase” in Your Hair Journey

Embarking on a journey toward healthier hair, the initial months will likely introduce you to newfound thickness and shrinkage. The restoration of your hair’s moisture balance often manifests as an increase in thickness before any noticeable changes in length occur.

During these early stages, I experienced what I’ve come to refer to as the “Awkward Phase.” My hair wasn’t shaping up to my expectations, neither quickly nor effectively enough to satisfy me. It was a period marked by feelings of demotivation, unattractiveness, discouragement, and frustration.

In a society that often idealizes straight, flowing hair, deviations from this norm can feel particularly challenging. The societal value placed on hair’s appearance can unjustly influence how we are judged and perceived. Yet, it’s important to remember that hair’s true beauty lies in its unique diversity.

Embracing this variety is essential, as every texture and pattern contributes to the rich tapestry of natural beauty. This realization inspired The Mestiza Muse’s tagline: “Be Beautiful. Be Natural. Be You!” It’s a call to celebrate and own the natural beauty inherent in every strand of hair, recognizing that the journey, though filled with challenges, is a path to self-acceptance and love.

Embracing Change: Learning New Hair Care Skills

With the mental groundwork laid, your journey to healthy hair will also demand an entirely new arsenal of styling skills, methods, and techniques. This shift requires not only gathering fresh information but also mastering the art of caring for your hair in ways that cater specifically to its texture, health, and current length.

Adapting your care routine becomes crucial as your hair evolves through various stages. You might find yourself reevaluating practices you once considered standard, making necessary adjustments to better support your hair’s needs. Healthy, moisturized hair enhances its elasticity, which is crucial for retaining length and preventing breakage.

My experience transitioning from relaxed to natural hair taught me that the products once effective on my chemically treated hair fell short on my natural tresses. This led me to experiment with different product combinations to discover what truly benefits my hair’s unique condition.

Moreover, I learned the importance of incorporating various techniques and styles into my routine to maintain moisture throughout the week. Protective styling became a key strategy in my regimen, aiding in moisture retention and length preservation.

Adapting to these changes means being open to a new way of managing your hair, embracing the learning curve with patience and enthusiasm for the healthier, more vibrant hair that lies ahead.




Let Your Hair Be Your Guide: Trusting Your Hair’s Instincts

In the fourth month of embracing my natural hair, I made a bold move driven by a daring impulse—I decided to add color to my hair, well aware of the risks given its still-transitioning state. Fortunately, my hair withstood this adventurous experiment without any dire consequences.

Reflecting on this experience, I advise you to wait until your hair is fully healthy before considering any chemical treatments, including hair dyes. It’s crucial to exercise caution and discernment, especially when applying techniques or advice you’ve gathered from various sources.

The abundance of hair care information available can sometimes be overwhelming and even contradictory. However, it’s essential not to let this deter you from pursuing your hair care goals.

Instead, I encourage you to adopt a principle that has become my personal hair mantra: Let your hair be your guide.

Learning to attune to your hair’s unique responses and needs is invaluable. While there’s a wealth of excellent advice to be found, including insights from other hair bloggers, remember that your hair is unique.

Its needs may evolve, and the most effective way to understand what works best is through personal experimentation, assessing how different practices affect your hair. Trusting your hair and learning from its reactions will lead you to the most suitable care routines and choices for your journey.

2017: A Year of Challenge and Recovery for My Hair

By the year 2017, I had successfully achieved healthy, fully restored hair. In March, in a moment of confidence and readiness for change, I opted to lighten my hair. While my hair was in prime condition for such a treatment, an unexpected turn occurred—my stylist used a new, stronger bleach that almost devastated my curls.

The aftermath was disheartening; my hair became brittle and began to break off. What wasn’t visible in photographs (shown in the 2017 photo below) was the severe dehydration my hair endured. The setback was a crushing blow, seemingly undoing all my hard work and care.

In response to this crisis, I intensified my hair care regimen: deep conditioning twice a week, adding weekly protein treatments, and starting pre-poo treatments with Righteous Roots Oils. During this recovery phase, I also discovered the Roux Porosity Control Corrector and Conditioner, a product that significantly improved my hair’s porosity. Additionally, rice water rinses became a cornerstone of my routine, their benefits proving indispensable to my hair’s health.

Dedication and consistency over four months were key to reviving my curls. I remained diligent, never allowing myself to become complacent with my care routine. The result of this perseverance is evident in the transformation seen in my hair—proof that recovery from bleach damage is not only possible but achievable.

So, to anyone wondering if they can bounce back from bleached, damaged hair: Yes, you absolutely can!








Cultivating a Long-Term Perspective on Hair Health

Mixing a mindset of damaged hair with aspirations for healthy hair yields what I like to call a long-haul mindset. Much like the often-quoted perspective that “life is a journey, not a destination,” a similar philosophy applies to our hair care journey.

Every day presents a new chance for growth and improvement, even amidst the challenges of dealing with damaged hair. Embracing a long-haul mindset, coupled with unwavering dedication, sets the stage for transforming damaged hair into a vibrant, healthy mane, one step at a time.

The Unique Path to Healthy Hair

The journey towards healthy hair is as diverse as we are, often marked by learning how to care for new textures, mastering different styling techniques, and experimenting with new products. Adjusting to these changes requires time, patience, and a steadfast commitment to the long-term health of your hair. There’s no shortcut to achieving your hair goals—success lies in consistent care and a proactive approach to overcoming hurdles.

Embracing Results as Lessons

Viewing every challenge as an opportunity rather than a setback is crucial. Mishaps aren’t failures but rather outcomes from which valuable lessons can be learned. Each time a product or technique doesn’t yield the expected results, it’s a chance to reassess and refine your hair care strategy, eliminating ineffective practices and focusing on those that offer genuine benefits.

Adopting this mindset transforms setbacks into valuable learning experiences, contributing to a deeper understanding of your hair’s needs. Remember, attempts aren’t failures; they’re steps towards acquiring knowledge and achieving your ultimate goal: healthy, resilient hair.

Laying the Foundation

Just as an architect values a solid foundation in construction, establishing a robust base is essential for your hair’s health. Building upon this foundation with proper care and informed choices is the first step towards lasting hair health.

Embracing each step as an integral part of your long-term commitment to hair wellness is key to embarking on your healthy hair journey with confidence and clarity.

To learn step-by-step how to begin your healthy hair journey, click here.

Finding Your “Why”: The Key to Perseverance in Your Hair Journey

In moments when the journey feels overwhelming, it’s crucial to reconnect with the initial reasons that propelled you to start. Although it might seem like a well-worn piece of advice, there’s profound truth in the encouragement to keep moving forward and never surrender to discouragement.

The path to healthier hair is punctuated with varying challenges; some days will naturally feel more manageable than others. It’s during these times that reminding yourself of your “why” can serve as a beacon of motivation, guiding you through the tougher days.

Furthermore, dedicating yourself to expanding your knowledge about hair care is essential. This isn’t a one-time task but a continuous endeavor that leads to gradual enhancements in your hair’s health and, eventually, significant milestones in your hair care journey.

Certified Health Coach @moms.can.be.fit on Instagram eloquently captures the essence of this process, emphasizing that it’s not just about the outcomes but the journey itself—comprising education, shared recipes, and uplifting messages. These components collectively form the blueprint for achieving your own transformative before-and-after moments. Embrace the journey, armed with knowledge and inspired by your personal reasons for starting, and watch as your hair flourishes over time.

HI,I'M VERNA

I’m just a girl who transformed her severely damaged hair into healthy hair. I adore the simplicity of a simple hair care routine, the richness of diverse textures, and the joy of sharing my journey from the comfort of my space.

My mission? To empower others with the tools to restore, and maintain healthy hair, and celebrate the hair they were born with!

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