I did the unthinkable. After almost seven years of trying to grow my hair as long as it could get, I cut most of it off. There was a time for about a year after my son was born that I was cutting my hair to get all the red dye out, so essentially within the seven years I’ve been natural, I’ve grown my afro twice. My first big chop the initial big chop in which I went natural. I transitioned for a few months and then cut it off leaving me with a TWA (tiny, weeny, afro). This big chop was different and similar. Both big chops were done for the same cause; I was tired of dealing with my hair.
When I first decided to go natural I was going to transition and slow trim away my relaxed hair. I was getting corn rows, doing braid outs, twist outs, and roller sets to blend my natural and relaxed hair. The thing you have to understand is that I have a lot of VERY thick hair, so I was getting tired of all that work all the time. So the day before my birthday December 16th, of 2010, I did the big chop and became completely natural.
Fast forward to present time. I’m working, married, and a mother. Once again the maintenance of my hair was becoming overwhelming. Styles that were easy for most naturals to achieve were nightmares for me because a have entirely TOO much hair. I know it sounds crazy, but I have never come across someone with hair as thick as mine. It pretty long too, not the longest, but the length combined with the thickness creates a wash day hell. I just no longer had the time and patience to deal with it. Even the quintessential puff was difficult for me. There is no pony tail holder alive that can hold my hair, I used a tightly wound stocking to make my puff, which results in a headache within 2 hours. Braids were ok, once they’re in but its still time and/or money. Plus, because of the thickness of my hair I was left with so many braids that my only style options were low pony, all out, or half up styles. I could not do the cute buns that everyone does with their box braids and twists. Something had to give.
I thought I figured out a solution. I would get locs. That would mean I could easily wash my hair and go. But this dream fizzled as began to think once again about time and money for maintenance whether they were professionally done or not. There was also the braid issue again. With locs I would have the same issue once they grew out. I’d have a ga-zillion locs on my head I could do nothing with. The loctician I was consulting with suggested interlocking which would reduce the density of the locs and make them more manageable. But this seemed risky as research showed that it could be potential unhealthy, and I was not prepared to deal with the price of getting and maintaining them.
The biggest question I’ve been asked since cutting my hair is “what did your husband say?” Actually this was all his idea. He heard me toiling over this for days on end, when one morning during our pillow talk he said, “why don’t you just cut it?” I asked “do you really think I could pull that off?” He replies, “of course, you’re the most beautiful person I know, and you have a perfect shaped head.” I really didn’t think so, but I trusted him, and it turns out he was right. I really love this look. We joke about it now, because around the time I did it I starting watching “Orange is the New Black”, and my favorite character is Poussey (RIP😢) . I currently have a tapered fade, but he says I should cut it all the way low like her. I’m not opposed to the idea, but for right now I think I’ll keep at least a few curls at the top.
I plan on playing around and having some fun with it, something I could not do with my long hair. I’ve gotten some parts on the side, I want to get a design in the back next. Maybe I’ll keep it tapered but grow it out on the sides for a couple months before fading it down again. I’ve watched you tube videos about how to do easy finger coils with a brush. Earrings have a whole new meaning now! The possibilities are endless. The best feeling in the world was the next day when I took a shower, co-washed my hair, and just went. I could literally do a true “wash and go” again, like when I first big chopped my hair. Its crazy how a feel like a have more freedom with less hair on my head, its completely liberating.