In a society that values long flowing locks, it's a statement to cut your hair so short that it doesn't hang. It's a statement to even wear you hair in its natural kinky state. My statement is that I love the hair I was born with, how it looks, how it feels, and there is nothing un-respectable or un-beautiful about it. And with time and the right tools (and YouTube tutorials) I can manage it well enough without having to use chemicals as a crutch.
Everyone has their own reasons for how they wear their hair. Perm or no perm, the choice is yours; I'm not here to judge. I got my first perm at age 11 because of manageability (when Grandma is trying to comb and slick that hair back, having it straight makes the process more bearable). After 10 years of trying and failing to grow it long, and countless expensive yet unpleasant hair appointments, I was done. A detailed look at my reasons for going natural can be found in the video above.
After almost a year and a half of transitioning (17 months) I finally did the deed - I big chopped! I was getting to the point where having two textures of hair seemed like more of a hassle than having to deal with the naps. I had massive tangling going on at the line of demarcation (the point where the relaxed hair meets the natural hair), styling was a challenge, and I was ready to move on. The timing was perfect for the end of the school year, right before by final film screening, and just as I would be marching off into the world as a newly minted college-educated adult.
Moving from the back of my head to the front, I took my hair down, wet it to see the line of demarcation, and cut about a centimeter into the curly hair. Starting from the back seemed intuitive because most of my relaxed hair had broken off in the back anyway. Cutting into the curly hair ensured that I got rid of the damaged ends and was starting fresh and healthy. I used only the line of demarcation as my guide, but it seems like I got a pretty even cut.
I am thrilled with the results. My hair is so soft, and although I do love my flat twists, it will be fun to rock a different look for a while. I was even featured in the Huffington Post as one of 36 hairstyles that are "a cut above the rest" (I'm #6 check it out!)
I had been worried about whether a short cut would look good on me. But in the end, it's just what I needed. Fresh start, fresh hair.