You’re finally hitting puberty and are becoming a woman! Welcome to a world of bodily changes that’ll be different from anything you’ve had up until now. In addition to the changes you might have been expecting, there’s one more thing that could change that you might have never expected: your hair!
That’s right, the hair you were born with and have had for the past decade or more will often start to change around the pre-pubescent stages of life.
Straighties often become wavies and some curlies turn to kinkies! Don't worry though, this is a GREAT thing! We promise.
What Changes Can I Expect?
Do you remember when you had super fine hair when you were younger? It may have even been stringy, yet soft most of the time. In many cases, there were actually signs this might happen when you were an infant and toddler — not that you’d remember that far back! If your hair had a little curl at the ends when you were a toddler, you probably kept those “baby curls” as you got older (unless you sported an above-the-shoulder ‘do all these years).
Once you hit puberty (around ages 10-12), it’s very possible that your straight/mostly straight hair will go wavy, which will require a new hair care routine. Some of the straighties-turned-wavies I know have had to adapt to NOT brushing their hair after it dries; otherwise, it gets poofy. First rule of curly hair care — put that brush DOWN!
My own daughters always had straight hair that curled at the ends until they turned about 10. Suddenly, we started noticing some major waves when they got out of the shower. It took some getting used to, but now they really like their curls. They especially like putting their hair in bantu knots!
Others I know, including myself, were former wavies and turned into kinkies. As a child, I didn’t have to put much effort into caring for my hair; as long as I kept moisture in it, it was manageable. Somewhere around puberty, though, my waves turned into an afro. While as a child I had some soft curls and waves at the hairline, that quickly turned into a big puffball of bangs as I hit the teen years. I experimented with tons of different hair care products (from the infamous Pink Lotion to “S-Curl” for Jherri curls. Um, yeah. I have nothing more to say about that other than, “Remember, it was the 90s.”). Pretty much the only thing I could think to do with my puffball bangs was to go sky-high with hairspray. Again, let me remind you of the decade (the 90s)!
Why Does this Happen?
Consider it a gift! Okay, maybe “gift” isn’t exactly the term you’d use, especially if you’re still trying to figure out what to do with your new texture. DolphinCurls, a user on our CurlTalk forums, said that she didn’t like it at first, but once she learned how to handle her curls, she came to love them!
“My hair was straight until I hit puberty and then it went crazy. It started off wavy and then got curlier. I have waves and ringlets, especially underneath. I hated my new waves and curls at first, which was ironic since I grew up wanting curls and waves. But I discovered this site (CurlTalk) and learned how to work with my waves and curls and now I love my hair!”
Physiologically speaking, a few specific hormones have been identified as having an effect on the way your hair changes. These are thyroxine, triiodothyronine, androgen, and insulin. Hormones are responsible for all of the changes in your body during puberty (and later in life), including changes in hair texture.
Will it Happen Again?!
Well, the answer to that is, “It depends!”
Do you plan to have babies? Pregnancy (and the breastfeeding that follows) can absolutely change your hair texture. Again, it’s hormones! The good news is, your hair tends to grow faster during pregnancy, so if you struggle with hair growth, this could change once you get pregnant!
In addition to pregnancy, menopause (which happens much later in life, usually when you’re in your late 40s to early 50s) brings on some hormonal changes that very well may change your hair – again! Welcome to womanhood!
Join the CurlTalk convo: Did your hair go curly at puberty?
If you’re finding that your hair texture is changing during puberty, try to stay positive about it! Don’t dwell on what you used to have. Instead, learn to care for your new curls and you may end up loving it!
Looks like the saying, “Watch what you wish for,” is true here; if you wish for straight or curly hair as a kid, you just might get that once you hit adolescence!