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Teyonah Parris hair

Source: Joe Scarnici / Getty

Teyonah Parris is hair goals. Ever since the former Man Men actress hit the Sag Awards red carpet rocking her natural hair in an ornate pompadour in 2013, people haven’t been able to get over her afro and protective style choices. The volume, the healthy sheen, it’s something plenty of people would love to covet.

But Teyonah made it clear on her Instagram this week that before she was on everyone’s Pinterest “hair ideas” board, she like everyone else, was trying to figure out her natural hair, too. It was a frustrating process.

Posting images of herself getting her hair steamed, treated and blown out, as well as old photos of her with a perm, she shared what it took for her to get her hair to this luxurious point. She also talked about not putting heat on her head often and only letting people who are knowledgeable about her 4-level texture “and have a passion and love for nurturing natural hair” touch her strands.

“I dont like putting heat on my hair often. Usually only a light blow dry for a trim or a braid down. In the past I would relax my hair every 3 weeks. Then I moved to wearing my natural hair and only flat ironing once a year but even that I dont do regularly anymore,” she said.

“I didn’t always have the know how and it took years of learning, tears of frustration, practicing, and fruitlessly following YouTube tutorials of women whose hair texture was nothing like my own before I would truly love every kink, nap, and curl that adorned my head,” she added. “That brought me to a place called- HERE!”

“I’m grateful for the transitioning of not only the way I wore my hair but the transitioning and evolution of my thoughts, my mind,” she continued. “The way I viewed beauty. My own beauty. Stepping out of the very narrow box that trapped my self worth and opening up to a definition of beauty that allowed me, in my natural state, to include my own image as significant and worthy and beautiful- just as God created me.”

As you can see, her regimen and overall appreciation of her hair has helped it to flourish to amazing levels:

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Bout that life. 😈

A post shared by Teyonah Parris (@teyonahparris) on

If you’d like to see how far Teyonah’s hair has come over the years, and the unique, fresh ways she’s cared for it, hit the flip:

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