The Co$t of Being Natural

Today someone asked me if having Natural hair was more or less expensive than maintaining weave, wigs or a relaxed style.  This question motivated me to consider the evidence of Natural hair being a more frugal option.  Of course, investment isn't just measured monetarily.  There is a considerable amount of time and effort that goes into transitioning to Natural hair.  Not to mention the mental and emotional moments you'll go through seeing yourself looking completely different and dealing with comments from friends and family.  But, for the sake of this article, we will focus on cold, hard ca$h!  This is a loose estimate of what you'll need and how much it costs to maintain clean, healthy, Natural hair:

Cantu has some of the most affordable products for Naturals on a budget.  Pictured are the basics needed to maintain clean, healthy, manageable Natural hair.  Grand Total: $22

Cantu has some of the most affordable products for Naturals on a budget.  Pictured are the basics needed to maintain clean, healthy, manageable Natural hair.  Grand Total: $22

  1. Shampoo: Average Cost $10 (Lasts 2-4 months)** Washing involves rinsing and repeating so you will go through this much faster than some other products.
  2. Conditioner: Average Cost $7-$10 (Lasts 2-3 months)** Since this doesn't need to be rinsed and repeated, conditioner lasts much longer than shampoo.
  3. Leave-In Conditioner/Detangler: Average Cost $5-$10  (Lasts 1-2 months)** .This is an essential part of wash day and cannot be left out. 
  4. Oil: Average Cost $3-$5 (Lasts 1-2 months)**  These oils (coconut, shea butter, jojoba, etc.) are used to seal in the moisture and are used liberally.

**Depending on how often you wash your hair and how much hair you have!  Obviously shorter hairstyles will use less product and vice versa for longer, thicker hair.

Grand Total: $35

Now, as you become more familiar with your hair, you well spend less.  You will no longer need to experiment with what works and what doesn't.  You will go from trying to find products that work, to trying to find your favorite products on sale.  The learning curve is a different time frame for each person, however, once you figure out what works, you'll have extra money to splurge on products you've been meaning to try or just to put in the bank!  Either way, you will be saving money in the long run.  

This has been my 'go-to' shampoo for years!  This lasts me 3-4 months and is easy to find in almost any store that has a half-way decent selection of shampoos. 

This has been my 'go-to' shampoo for years!  This lasts me 3-4 months and is easy to find in almost any store that has a half-way decent selection of shampoos. 

Leave-In conditioners, curl creams and daily moisturizers average out to be around $10 each and have also become easier to find in stores that carry hair products.

Leave-In conditioners, curl creams and daily moisturizers average out to be around $10 each and have also become easier to find in stores that carry hair products.

Once you've been Natural for a while, you'll go from searching for products that work, to trying to find your favorite products on sale!

Once you've been Natural for a while, you'll go from searching for products that work, to trying to find your favorite products on sale!

For a detailed list of my personal favorite products, see my "Favorite Products" page or visit my YouTube channel for more hair regimen details!  Shopping for products is daunting in the beginning but time, patience and experience will make that task much easier.  Bottom line: Natural hair is (hands-down) a cheaper, more affordable option!  Leave a comment below if you have any tips on making product shopping any easier and thanks for reading!