As much as I’d like to say my big chop was a bed of roses, it was more like a bad fall into a cactus bush. Most of the big chop stories I’ve read or seen on YouTube were fun and heartfelt. I on the other hand, suffered a real life hair disaster.
For months I devoured YouTube videos on transitioning, swapped stories with experienced naturals. and even began creating a laundry list of products to try. Although I had gained a reasonable amount of knowledge, I just couldn’t get into the “natural” thing. I had gone about three months without a relaxer and couldn’t see my texture. I was frustrated to say the least.
On one particularly hot Arizona day, my boredom led me back into the world of YouTube. I was in an emotional rut and was ready to drastically change my appearance. The stereotype of women changing their hair when they’re going through something was absolutely true in my case— it was time for something new.
As much as I’d like to say my big chop was a bed of roses, it was more like a bad fall into a cactus bush.
I had never even trimmed my own ends before, but there I was, snipping and snipping until I had a (semi-uneven) ‘fro. What was I doing? Sure, I had learned a bit about caring for natural hair, but I hadn’t even been taking care of my relaxed hair that well. Was I ready for this?
After a few days, regret set in. It wasn’t that I didn’t like my hair, it’s just that I just didn’t love it. My mother gave me an earful that night when she got home, and attempted to hot comb and trim my ends evenly. She took her scissors to my head yet again, giving me the best rendition of Kid from House Party’s high top fade. If I thought I wanted to make a statement before, I was definitely making one now.
That night when I showered, I let tears roll down my face finally feeling one with my hair, and feeling beautiful. In the end, my disastrous big chop turned into my freeing my ‘fro love.
I would have loved to have a cheery big chop story, but looking back I wouldn’t trade my experience for anything else. If you’re thinking of big chopping my advice is don’t be afraid to lose the loss. Oh, and to find a stylist!