Caring for Natural Hair at Colby

Everyone with natural hair understands that caring for curls is a full-time job. My days usually consist of waking up, refreshing my curls with water and conditioner, styling my hair, spending the whole day worrying about my hair, then carefully putting my curls into a giant pineapple on the top of my head and putting on my bonnet before sleeping on my satin pillowcase. For some reason, I feel like my hair routine has gotten much more stressful since coming to Colby. I no longer have space for all of my products, I can’t spend hours in the bathroom on wash day, and I’m having trouble finding places to buy natural hair products.

Since I have Type 3 curls, my wash day routine is much less strenuous than that of someone with Type 4 hair. Once a week, I wash my hair with a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner from The Mane Choice. Then, I brush through my hair with a 9-row Denman brush and the Kinky Curly Knot Today Detangler, which has proven to be my saving grace. After I finish brushing, I rake the Mielle Coil Sculpting Custard through my hair and plop it all in an old cotton T-shirt. This routine usually takes me upwards of an hour to complete, and I surely don’t want to spend all of that time in the less-than-ideal communal bathrooms. Daily, I use a cheap spray bottle filled with water and a leave-in conditioner to refresh everything. Luckily, spraying down my hair and getting rid of any major tangles can be done in my room, but it still takes a while.

When I run out of any of these products, I’m screwed. Back home, there are dozens of Black-owned businesses that carry the perfect selection of products, ranging from Mielle to AsIAm to SheaMoisture. Although that means that I’m walking out of the store with over  $100 worth of products, it’s worth it because I know my hair is going to look good. Here, there’s the tiniest “multicultural hair” section at Walmart and maybe one shelf of curl-friendly products at Sally’s. I understand that a lot of people living in Waterville don’t have textured hair, but why does that mean we have to suffer? I’m tired of having to wait on shipping and praying that everything will get to campus before I run out. What Waterville needs is a hair store that caters towards people with curls, so that we don’t have to rely on Amazon to get us what we need.