My 2nd Big Chop: Why I Did It

I've been on hiatus for awhile, primarily because I had nothing new to say about my hair or my routine. I've been working jobs where I couldn't dye my hair crazy fantasy colors as I would like to, and nothing drastic changed besides my roots growing in strong and my burgundy color fading into a coppery red. ...And then this happened.



Let's discuss, shall we?

About two months ago, my hair started feeling...different. It was getting quite long, a little past APL (armpit length), but not quite at BSL (bra strap length). I was trimming regularly, deep conditioning weekly or bi-weekly depending on how busy I was, and basically incorporated all the good hair care practices I had always used to maintain my curls. But suddenly they weren't reacting the same, even though nothing had really changed. My ends were tangled beyond belief ALL THE TIME. No matter how much or how gently I detangled, no matter how much slip my conditioner had, the part of my hair that was still bleached and dyed was not cooperating anymore. Instead I was getting HUGE knots which would then rip out of my hair causing breakage. I was losing more hair than I was growing, and my ends looked like crap despite regular trims.

I'm no stylist or hair expert, so I can't say for certain why my hair began reacting this way. My guess is that the ends of my hair, the bleached part, had finally become damaged past recovery. These strands were more sensitive to the environment, friction from clothing, and general dryness than the rest of my hair, and there wasn't much I could do to fix them. Even protective styling didn't stop the endless tangling and breaking cycle. I knew I should cut my hair, but was hesitant because I didn't know if I wanted to go back to a short hairstyle, I had hated the super short days post big chop when I went natural, and wasn't eager to go through that again.

But upon further reflection, I saw the situation differently. Because of my new hair struggles, and all the extra length I'd gained from being natural 2 years, wash day had become hell. What was once a fun beauty ritual now felt like a chore to be endured, and one which wasn't making my hair look or feel any better. I also knew that this time around when I cut my hair, I could be more creative with the type of cut and shape. I didn't have to lose all my length, and my wash day would be much quicker and easier. I had been eager for the last 6 months to have my hair all one color, but didn't want to dye it black. Cutting off the damaged ends would bring me back to my natural dark brown color without any more harsh dyes, and give me a clean slate if I wanted highlights at another time.

So I took the plunge last Monday. I cannot stress enough how much it helps to have a stylist who vibes well with you and knows what you want. I've been seeing the same person for about 6 years, so I wasn't nervous about the shape of the cut or the quality of the work. I left super satisfied and happy.

I think I'm going to enjoy my 2nd big chop far more than I enjoyed my first. I vowed after cutting off all my hair to go natural that I would never fear a haircut again, and I plan to keep that promise. I'm going to rock this bomb cut in all it's glory for as long as I like, and when I'm ready to grow it out, it will be as long and gorgeous as it ever was. I'm so happy and proud that  I've reached a place where I can feel confident in both looks, and that I'm past the obsession with length that still plagues so much of the natural hair community.

Oh, and speaking of that community...

Most of you have already heard what happened with Shea Moisture. I considered writing a post about it, but there are so many think pieces, videos, blog posts, Facebook posts, Instagram posts...there is literally nothing I could say about it that hasn't already been said. If you look back at my oldest blogs, you will know I rode hard for Shea Moisture and most of my haircare staples came from them. All I will say is I'm deeply disappointed and will no longer be using their products. This is a great opportunity, though, because I've been experimenting with other black owned brands as I look for new things to fill my regimen, and product reviews will be on the horizon again as I find my feet. Thanks for sticking with me, and with this long abandoned page. We'll talk soon!