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The Wandering Eye of the Tempted Transitioner

By January 27th, 202180 Comments
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The Wandering Eye of the Tempted Transitioner

by Bennii Blast of The Culture Pine

The day I jumped on the transitioning bus, I knew I had to buckle up tight. You see, it might not seem like a big deal at first, but those of us who have been there or are indeed still there, realise that it’s not all sunny skies, fluffy puppies and candy floss. So like any journey you have been on, you prepared yourself right?

From day one, I convinced myself that I would definitely take the route of a long-term transitioner to reach my destination. There is more than one reason for this. First of all, you see those cheeks up there? Yup…those babies successfully adopted us the nickname ‘Hamster Cheeks’ when I was at school. I’m ashamed to admit that it clearly left me with some sort of complex as I’m fearful of doing the Big Chop in case it makes them stand out even more. You can laugh at how pathetic that is- I know I am. The second reason is; I wanted to grow my hair to a point where I would have enough length to do more than a handful of hairstyles with, as I get bored easily. I set myself a goal of one year.

Today, I am 6 ½ months into transitioning and I have surprised myself about how I feel now. Over the last few days I have been fighting the urge to just cut out those relaxed ends. The more I see my natural hair coming through, the more I want to just chop, chop chop! Now, I reached for the scissors midweek and cut about an inch of hair off. I was so excited- a little too excited now that I look back on it. My s.o however, didn’t seem to share the same enthusiasm as I did and promptly reminded me why I was waiting for that 1 year mark, not wanting me to have regrets later on. I put the scissors to the back of the cupboard, and told myself ‘out of sight, out of mind’.

I knew from the research and preparation I did beforehand, that people often have a problem managing the two different textures in their hair physically, but I guess my difficulty with the two textures comes mentally. As much as I want to be free from those scraggly ends though, I’m not quite ready to lose any length! So for now, the journey goes on…..

Have you changed/did you change from a Long-term to Short-term transitioner during your hair journey?

80 Comments

  • Anonymous says:

    I just recently decided to transition, my last perm was Aug of this year!!! I am so excited and confused at the same time. I know that I will be doing the long term transition, but technically it will be a short one. You see before making this decision I kept a short hair style. So I had/have a tapered back, it's short on the left and about 4inches on the right. I know many of you are thinking it would be so much easier for me to do the BC. Unfortunately the TWA is not a look for me, plus I’m in the military so I don't think that would work out anyway. I know at some point I will have to cut it to make it even but I don't have the courage right now to go through with it. To successful transition I plan on braids, twist, maybe even a sow in, to cross my fingers and hope for the best.
    I am happy that I don’t have to go through this alone. Reading you all’s post makes me more excited than I was already. I have found strength and hope from many of you. Notably Annabel who stated “I’m not only transitioning my hair, but also my mind and thought patterns” and Honeybrown1976, who stated what it took to successfully transition was “strength, flexibility, and patience.” I have started a journal, and taking pictures to see my progress in this journey, but I also look forward to sharing and walking through this journey/transition with all of you.

    Ebony

  • NhaNha_Love says:

    It's been 3 and a half months since my last relaxer (which is a totally inappropriate name because there's nothing relaxing about it) I'm so excited to cut my "relaxed" ends off this December. I want to start off next year au nataurelle….At first I wanted to do the log term transiton, but after reading so many CurlyNikki blogs, along with the support of some of my friends, who are going throug it, I'e decided to fnish this year with a "BIG CHOP." I now hae my hair i braids, but every time I look in the mirror, I imagine what I would look like ith my beautiful, natural curly hair. I'm still doing the research and watching videos and whatnot…But I know this is one of the most important decisions I'm gona make and I wouldn't have it any other way 🙂

  • curly jilly says:

    I have been transitioning for 10 months now and I must say that the urge to BC is very strong. I was at the mirror with the scissors just last weekend! I wanted to take all the straight ends off but I did a 2 inch trim instead.
    I have been checking the sites for a good haircut lately because after several mini chops I love love love the curls that live under the last few inches of relaxed hair.
    I will say that this has been the best journey I have ever taken. As I grew my hair out I learned how to take care of my 7 yr old daughters hair. The coolest thing is that instead of her asking me if she can have hair like mine, I am trying to have hair like hers.

  • Pretty Awesome Penguin says:

    I was thing the same thing as you Bennii. I was always going to long-term transition. I knew I wouldn't like/be able to deal with short hair. I wanted my hair to be long enough to put into a pony tail so that put me at least at a year. I didn't mind my ends at all, I just wanted length.

  • Shun says:

    When I began the natural journey my plans were to long term transition for a year. At seven months in I flat ironed it to trim and check the length. A week later I washed it and saw that one side was almost completely rid of relaxer. So I got the courage and BC'd. After I cut it took a few turns in the mirror and my hubby telling me it looked great to welcome the new me. It has been a week today and I am LOVING it!!! So when you get the courage CUT those strands OFF. You will feel completely free!

  • Mariel says:

    I plan on doing long-term transitioning.. It's been about a month in a half and I am sooo feeling the same way you are the only difference is my ends are stuck straight from the darn flat irons lol.. but I know that patience is everything so I deal with those stinkin ends =D.. I'm just happy that I gained more self exceptance, it not only teaches me to love what I have but, it also teaches my girls to love what they have.. =)

  • Kenya V says:

    I'm actually a newbie in my long-term transitioning phase. I'm 2 months post relaxer. I currently am wearing braids. I'm not sure if I'll ever muster the courage to bc!

  • Kenya V says:

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  • Anonymous says:

    I planned to transition for at least a year. I only made it 9 months before I big chopped, and I am extremely happy with the decision.

    You'll know when you're ready!

  • Jo Somebody says:

    I was supposed to be a long term transitioner, but by month 4 or 5, I was soooo desperate to be rid of my relaxed ends. Like you, I could suddenly see how straggly my relaxed hair looked in stark contrast to my thick afro cloud. I hid my hair in braids (no attachments), but every 3/4 weeks when I took them out, I dreaded seeing the contrast again and having to detangle and care for relaxed hair I didn't want and I knew would be ending up in the bin.
    I finally cracked at 8 months post. I had just battled the 2 textures in a major detangling session and the next day I was still bothered by it. I realised that my hair was becoming something stressful and upsetting to me, so out came the scissors! It was WONDERFUL! I loved being free and have not regretted it for a second.

    Like you, I have the chipmunk cheeks (thanks dad!), but short hair suited me fine.
    If it's just an urge or on a whim that you want to chop, then I'd say wait it out for as long as you can. If you are actually starting to dislike the efforts transitioning takes or losing joy in your hair, I'd say chop. You could always wear extensions or wigs or healthy weaves while your hair grows out, but the likelihood, in my opinion, is that you'll love it once you're fully natural.

    Good luck with your journey, whatever you choose! 🙂

  • Brittany P. says:

    I was a long term transitioner. It wasn't very difficult for me because I usually only got 1-2 perms a year since my hair is pretty easy to flat iron straight. I had planned on transitioning for about 16-18 months, which I thought would be a comfortable length of hair for me since my hair has always been BSL or longer. However, this February when I was 13 months post I started hating the two textures. My hair is much curlier around the crown so I would get matting which was difficult to untangle. I finally got to the point where the health of my new hair was more important that length. I went to Hair Cuttery and got my BC done, I've never looked back since!

  • Davina916 says:

    No, I didn't transition at all. ( I had my best friend cut it all off ) Thanks! Davina

  • Anonymous says:

    I can relate to so many stories on here. I planned on growing my natural hair out to shoulder length (stretched). I am now 10 months into my transition, so my hair is not shoulderlength yet but I'm really anxious to just cut it all off. I have a similar problem as Bennii Blast, but with me the issue is my big ears. My overall confidence has been up since I lost a lot of weight though, so I've been thinking about cutting my relaxed ends of every day for the last weeks. I might just do it one of these days..

  • J.D.B. says:

    I am a long term transitioner. About 16 month post relaxer now. It's mainly a mental block on the length thing for me. I've always had long hair. I'm not having much issue now managing the two textures. I see the curls and am getting the itch to cut my remaining ~4 inches of relaxed hair. I'm thinking December.

  • cellotlhicks says:

    I never had a date when I would chop. Did not know natural lingo or anything about what I would do with my hair when it was gone. Just kept putting in kinky twists and cutting off an inch here and there. At 14 months, i did my first wash n go and LOVED it, minus the straight pieces, so I snipped off about 2 inches and was all natural. It was pretty awesome because my hair looked really cool and was past shoulder length at the bottom so I could do a lot with it. So don't feel bad, if you want to do several mini chops that can work too. My so could care less. As long as I am happy and not making him miserable by being miserable about small stuff he is happy 🙂

  • Jontrice says:

    I opted for a long term transition (2 years) for one simple reason….my head is too big for short hair, so I had to be a G and wait it out! I had no idea that flat ironing my hair throughout the beginning of my transition defeated the purpose, and I had no idea what products to use, so many nights I ended up in tears. I literally thank God for you Nikki, because I was naturally oblivious until I found your site….literally. Here I learned how to style and maintain my unruly 3c hair. Though my transition went by pretty fast (to me), I was so ready to be 100% creamy crack free, I could taste it! I am so excited to be natural, I could just dance right here (if my 18-month old wasn't good and sleep, I am no fool!). Love, me.

  • Sandy says:

    I transitioned for almost a year and it was at a time before I knew that there were people online who gave a lot of information and support for those transitioning.
    One of the best resources for those who are transitioning(for many many months) is Lisa who can be found on you tube under the name…napturallycurly…
    Hoping Curly Nikki will do an interview with her. You will enjoy her videos. She recently made it to a pony puff and she never did the big chop. She had lots of unnatural hair(permed) when she started. Check her out.

  • Tamisha H says:

    I must honestly say that I am about to be one of those people lol. I am 9 months post relaxer and it is killing me to cut these ends off! Right at this moment I have in a sew-in weave because I had to take a break. I have a somewhat busy lifestyle and I wanted something quick and easy to handle. But I'm thinking of saying bye bye to my relaxed ends when i take it out. Just seeing how much my hair has grown is enough to make me take that leap. My friends and family support me in all of this so only time will tell if I will be that long term transitioner for much longer lol.

  • msjoker says:

    I'm not even sure how long it's been since I had a relaxer, but would guess 7-9 months. Since it was sort of an off hand decision, really an experiment if you will, to see if I could transition, I didn't set a goal. Many comment about the frustration of having straight ends, frankly I've been more frustrated by the roots. Having been relaxed for 20 years, I'm not surprised by this and take it in stride. My only goal has been to just live it; ride the ride until I don't anymore, whether that be a cut or a touchup. For me this is less a journey of being natural/organic/in touch with my real curl, and more a journey of learning to try what I'd like regardless of other's opinions. My daughter has gorgeously thick natural hair that I wish I could wake up with overnight. But she loves my in between curls and wants her own hair straight. This is a journey for both of us; I want to show her to appreciate her hair but I also have to learn that there will be a time that I'll have to let go and allow her to make hair decisions just as I want my own hair freedom. To wear wigs, weave, blond hair, straight hair, a super-fro; it's my hair, not my spirit. So my comment becomes an essay lol, but I like Nicole's idea of Hair Liberty. There's enough of this regimen/do's and dont's business;why tie myself to a timeline on top of everything else?

  • Tasha25 says:

    This month marks the 6th month of my transition as well! It has actually been going extremely well but there are still times when I get frustrated with the process. The only thing that is keeping me from chopping is the fact that in the last 7 years, I've cut my hair super short twice (think Halle Berry pixie cut). Besides being on a transitioning journey, I'm also on a hair growth journey. I would just love to keep my hair on my head for once because it has actually gotten pretty long. So,the plan is to stick it out and long term transition. However, if I change my mind then that's that 🙂 I am all about doing whatever makes me happy . So, in 2 months if chopping will make me happy, then I'll do that. You should definitely do whatever makes YOU happy and will bring you joy 🙂 Good luck!

  • Kristina G says:

    I knew that I wasn't going to do a long transition, but I did plan on transitioning for longer than I did. I was initially going to transition with braid extensions for at least 6 months and I think that that was the main reason I didn't give into my impatience right away and cut my hair off (I needed some hair left to attach the extensions to). I couldn't stand the braids and only kept them in for a month, but it at least gave me some time to do some online research and figure out what type of transition I would be comfortable with. At first, I wasn't comfortable with the idea of having really short hair, so I decided to wait at least 6 months to see how I felt, but meanwhile I kept trimming my hair shorter and shorter until after only 15 weeks post relaxer I decided to just cut off the rest of the permed ends (at that time it was only 2-2.5 inches). I'm surprised at how comfortable I've been with my short hair (1-1.5 inches) since by BC (Oct. 1). I wish that I would have just cut it sooner.

  • MsAshley says:

    When I first started my transition journey (Nov. 2010), I wanted to def be a long term transitioner. However, it was a little hard (and discouraging) for me so I did what any other future curly would do…PROTECTIVE STYLES! From Jan 2011 – May 2011, I was all about the senegelese twists. In June 2011,I gave my hair a rest and did roller sets, bantu knot outs, and cut about 2 inches. When July 2011 hit, I went to kinky twists until Sept. 2011. As of last month, I cut another 1.5 inches and probably have one more trim to go before being fully natural. I thought that I would transition for at least one to two years but with only 1.5 inches left, I'm EAGER to cut it off (9 months post relaxer). However, I promised myself at least one year and I'm going to step away from the scissors and enjoy the end to a great beginning..BEING NATURAL!

  • memi3259 says:

    I also decided that I had wanted to have maximum length before I cut off my hair. My goal was 12 months.Then it shortened to 10 months, to 9 months.
    I cut my hair during my 7th month of transitioning. I had no problem blending the two textures; I was just really impatient.
    I'm glad I did cut my hair. I have no time to worry about my hair and it gave me a good shot of confidence.

  • Sasha Lewis says:

    Once I made the decision to transition, I knew that I would be a long transitioner. I would get frustrated trying to manage the 2 textures so I wore my hair in weaves and braids for the majority of a year. In between I would get my hair pressed. I finally BC'd in July 2011.

  • Afrikan Latina says:

    I anticipated being a long term transitioner but hit the 7 month mark and said its a wrap! I like many others dreaded the straight ends hanging on to the newly discovered coils that had been growing from my scalp for those 7 months. I don't regret it at all!

  • Renee says:

    I was in the process of transitioning due to health issues (what I now know is lupus) in October 2010. After six months, a girlfriend gifted me a salon visit before my college graduation. The stylist cut and permed my hair without my permission telling me it was what was best. When she cut it, it looked so bad I had no choice but let her finish it. After that, I vowed never to let anyone else disrespect my hair. Since April, I have been focused on growing out the relaxed. Instead of BCing like I had originally planned, I decided to go with the long term option struggling, yet finding ways to do my hair. As of now, braids have been easier for me, especially when being sick. However, I look forward to seeing my hair again next month.

  • Annabel says:

    Congratulations on your transition, I really enjoyed reading this post.

    I have been transitioning almost 9 months. It's been quite the journey. I thought I would transition 2 years, after watching YT videos such as LHDC and Hair Crush, however changed my chop date to 1 year due to frustration.

    My husband and friends see my frustration and often ask me why won't I just chop it off. They say I have the head for it, short hair is easier to manage and keep healthy, etc. Well, I think what it all boils down to is the fact that I'm not only transitioning my hair, but also my mind and thought patterns.

    Transitioning was a huge step for me and I have a lot of fear surrounding the big chop. I'm someone who often hides behind their hair, so to speak. I imagine at my 1 year mark, I won't have enough hair to pull it back into a bun and I will be sporting a cropped fro, however I'm mentally preparing myself for the moment now, as I know I'm just not ready today.

    I'm so thrilled to see how I adapt to me all natural. Have to be honest, I just hope I don't hate it.

  • Tonya B. says:

    I've been transitioning for only 4 months so far & I'm actually loving the journey so much I don't want to BC just yet because I enjoy trying out all the different styles and different products. Like you, I also don't wanna BC because I want the length to do different styles but still be able to bun it if I mess up or if it gets old. My advice is to do what your heart tells you no matter what your S.O. may say. We are always allowed to change our mind, anytime! 😉

  • Brittany says:

    I really don't have a set goal for my transition. when I started my intention was just to let it all grow out until my relaxed ends were gone… My hair has different plans. I am completely natural in the front and in my kitchen but the top and sides are a different story.It does get tedious at times and I'd want to take the scissors to my hair, but during those times I have to breathe and think so that I don't make a decision that I regret.For me this has truly been a learning experience. I have learned to embrace what grows naturally from my head and how to properly take care of my hair.

  • Anonymous says:

    I completely understand. I've only been transitioning 15 weeks, and its driving me nuts. I had my hair put into senegalese twists after around 10 weeks of twist outs and buns, and it was my first time in braids since I was a little girl. The scratchy, crunchiness of the fake hair is annoying, and I miss running my fingers through my tresses. My plan was to transition with braids until my BC, having them in for 8 weeks at a time with breaks in between until around February. That was the plan anyway……its getting awfully hard. AND, one of my friends on campus just BD'd and oh-my-goodness does she look fabulous.

    My SO keeps reminding me that I need to be patient, and that this whole thing is a process, and I love him for being supportive, but sometimes I just wanna put a sock in his mouth and go crazy with the scissors. I count to ten and take my hands away from my roots, and usually I'm ok. I'm so glad he's with me on this, not to mention all the support of you lovely ladies. We can make it girls!!

  • Anonymous says:

    When I decided to grow my relaxer out I never put a time limit on how long I'd transition. I figured I'd know when the time was right. I've always had long hair and the thought of rocking a short TWA was exciting to me. Right around the six month mark, I couldn't think of any good reasons to prolong the process so I chopped it off myself. I loved it and realized that it was best for me to learn how to care for my hair at a short length (2-3 inches) than long. You'll know exactly when it's right and in the mean time enjoy the learning process because it really is one!

  • RazzyYazzy says:

    I am in the middle of my planned 18 month transition. Just this month, I crossed the one year mark, and that mental thing has been wearing me out! I have 6 inches of new growth at the crown of my head, and I want to unleash my curls to the world, but (and yes there is a but) there is this thing called shrinkage. Cutting my hair now, will not give me the versatility in styling that I look for. My 6 inches could look like two inches. Not for me. Plus, my relaxed ends are weighing down my curls, and so the popping curls I see now may not be what I get when I cut away 6-8 inches of relaxed ends! So, I am going wait for more hair weight:)

    Do you! When you are comfortable, cut away. But the last thing you want to do is to cut too early, hate your hair, and run back to the creamy crack. Stay strong.

  • Amber W. says:

    I too am going back and forth between long and short term transitioning, but I think my reasoning may be a little different. I don't care much about retaining length before chopping because I know my hair grows fast and I like short hair. The main reason I am trying to prolong the BC is because I live at home (I'm 19) and I just know my mother would flip if I chopped my hair off lol. So for now I'm just trying to hold off so that my hair won't be as much of a shock to my loved ones.

    My goal is to wait 9 months because that marks the day of my birthday. I currently have in box braids and hopefully I'll be able to find an easy style once those are out. I wish you luck because when the scissors are calling your name, it is hard to say no. (Even as I type this, I can't stop touching my roots.) Stay strong girl!

  • swt_sunny says:

    I transitioned for 21 months, and just did the final chop (more like trim)3 weeks ago. When I first started transitioning, my goal was to hold off for 1 yr before chopping. After I reached a yr, I realized that my hair wasnt as long as I wanted…I kept moving my chop date, I was just really confused lol. I trimmed my hair as it grew, so it stayed the same length pretty much throughout my transition. Since I transitioned for so long, with each trim I grew more & more comfortable with seeing my hair in natural styles.

  • Anonymous says:

    When I was transitioning, I originally planned to stick with for at least a year. Although, when I reached the sixth month of my transition, I couldn't take it anymore and BC'd. My hair was extremely short and I received a great deal of stares from strangers. It really helped me increase my confidence level because I had to hold my head up high, until I was comfortable with my short hair. But, you know what? My hair grow very fast! Therefore, I don't regret cutting off the relaxed ends when I did, because the experience helped me grow as a person and made me stronger.

  • Anonymous says:

    @ Mim: I was in your boat! I wore a partial-sew in for years. At some point, I decided to stop perming the hair that was sewed in but (foolishly) kept leaving my edges out and perming them. So I had a VERY awkward transition to being natural- 8-9inches in the crown and 1/2-1 inch around the edges! Awwwwkward!

    In the end, braid extensions saved me. I just grew the permed edges out to 1-2inches and then cut- I guess this was my BC. I then braided my hair up for 11months until I was more comfortable with the length of my edges.

    So that said, to Bennii (the OP) pls just know that everyone's path to being natural will be unique to them! If waiting for a bit more length is what you feel you need to do, then do you!

    ~H

  • Anonymous says:

    I definitely know this feeling but I'm in a weird situation where 3/4 of my head is completely natural and the front 1/4 is transitioning (i wore half wigs and weaves for a couple years.) So now I have this super amazing kinky natural hair in the back, and the front has about 4 inches of natural hair, and like 6-7 relaxed inches. At the moment, cause of shrinkage, if i cut off the relaxed ends, my hair would look crazy. I have already been transitioning for about a year ( although I just recently started being a healthy natural i.e. not flat ironing the hell out of the new growth every other day ( such terrible habits)) and I think I will go for at least another year before considering what i need to chop off

    Mim

  • Shanna says:

    I'm getting close to to a year of transitioning, let me tell you in this past year I've almost big chopped a handful of times out of frustration but I always fight the urge. My goal is to transition for 2 years but now at almost a year I'm getting the itch again, I'm going to try to fight the urge and keep pressing forward but the hair shears are always within arms reach lol.

  • newlynatural08 says:

    I am 9 months into my transition and the first few months were a STRUGGLE. Prior to the 6 month mark I battled daily with the thought of big chopping as I have not worn any sew-ins, braids, wigs or other styles I consider to be "easy" for transitioners. However, since I have made it thus far I am considering transitioning for a year and half. Obviously, I am bi-polar. LOL! I am in what CN calls "the do you boo boo" club. I might chop at 1 year I might not. What I can guarantee is that it will occur on my own terms!

  • MrsDjRass says:

    I am five months in and the big chop is not an option, because like you, I am afraid of what I will look like with short hair. I just got a press, so I could get a trim. It reminded me of how much I miss the ease of a wrapping at night and shaking it out in the morning. But I am going to keep trucking because I love being free of the shop and I love learning new things about d-i-y haircare.

  • Iamsonotmyhair says:

    I did the same thing. I said I would wait a year, but got so anxious that I couldn't even go 4 months! I haven't regreted it though and have loved my hair at every stage:)

    IAMSONOTMYHAIR

  • ambyrbrittany says:

    I wanted to BC my hair so badly during my long term transition… 16 months. I didn't because like you, I wanted to maintain a certain amount of length because I have a big head. Instead, trainsitioned with braids with extensions, cornrows and senegalese twists. Everytime I took out my styles I would cut the same amount of hair that grew. That helped me to transition better. Good luck!

  • honeybrown1976 says:

    I'm 17 months and a week into my long transition. I don't plan to bc before 24 months and it looks like I'll go three years, if I can help it. Do I desire to away with my relaxed ends? Sure, I do. But, I get keep it moving by remembering my ultimate goal of a long transition.

    Strength, flexibility, and patience are the keys to my transition!

  • Caray says:

    Im a new transitioner, 6 weeks since my last relaxer and I already have a ton of new growth, I cant get a comb thru it. I also plan on transitioning a long time for several reason, but the main reason is length. I dont want to lose the length of my hair just to go natural those days are over. Woman dont have to BC if they dont want to, there are too many options besides cutting your hair. Going natural doesnt mean your hair will grow out to a big afro just 'cause its relaxed free, I already have shoulder length hair and want to keep it that way. lol

  • ...Shalaya... says:

    When I started to go natural I knew I wanted to transition for at least one year as well. Some people say I have a big head and I know for a fact that I have a big forehead so I feel as if I need some hair for that lol. I also can't really remember a time when I had ridiculously short hair. In order to satisfy my urges to cut my hair…I would do small trim every 4 months I guess. And by trim I mean just a trim…it wasn't something that I would notice because the trim would usually just bring my back or close to where I was. By doing this I actually didn't chop off all of my perm for 1 year and 4 months! I lasted my year and even went over. You can def do this if that is what you want, you just have to stay strong…you will know when the time is right! Good Luck!

  • Karee says:

    When I first started transitioning my goal was to be a long term transitioner. I wanted to transition for about a year and a half. About 5 months into my transition I gave up because it would mist, not rain mist, everyday where I went to school and my hair would bot cooperate. After 5 short months I big chopped.

  • krisluv8 says:

    I set out on this journey with a 1 year transitioning goal. I like most transitioners didn't want to BC because I didn't want to lose my length. I started my journey last Novemeber and I must say, I enjoy my hair seeing how it reacts to different styles and techniques. In the past 11 months I have used heat on my hair 2 x's to straighten it. So after 11 months and 7 days of transistioning, I cut off all those stragglers (permed ends that didn't look as healthy as my natural roots). Thanks to sites like Curlynikki, Facebook, and youtube, I'm embracing my lovely locs!!!!

  • mamacita says:

    My last perm was August, 2010. There have been times when I wanted to do the BC, but I am overly vain when it comes to length. Fortunately, the help received from you wonderful Choppers and Naturalistas has kept me strong on my fight for Natural. I have not reached the length I want and need to do the chop so this winter, I'll be back to wigs and braids and will probably BC in the sprint. I am though, getting adventurous with the scissors though. I cut about an inch off of 6 twists a couple of weeks ago. I haven't had a cut since Feb '10, and I'm so nervous about being "short."

    I'll press on though. – R

  • Ashley S. says:

    DO IT DO IT DO IT!!!!!! I too wanted to be a long term transitioner but dealing with the two textures was frustrating and after a disastrous trip to vegas and getting my hair snapped off in the club…no I didn't get in a fight just a aggressive dance partner 🙂 As soon as I got home I locked myself in the bathroom and snip snip chop chop. Honestly, it was the first time I had smiled in the mirror at MY hair with no "enhancements" or chemicals. I was free and I haven't looked back since.

  • Ms. Information says:

    I have been natural since 2006…got TIRED of perming and burning and itching and scratching…I went out this weekend and saw so many beautiful black women going natural that it makes me PROUD…Although the media and even some of us don't embrace it, I am proud that we are claiming out beauty and not being ashamed!

  • Cheekie says:

    I definitely planned to be a long-term transitioner (about a year) and I actually lasted about 4 months. I'm so glad I didn't wait! Of course it took some getting used to at first, but I suddenly gained a new confidence in my short 'do and fell in love with the way my curls bounced without the dead relaxed ends!

  • Nicole says:

    I'm SOOOO happy to see that there are others that are/have going/gone through what I am feeling. I decided to "transition" last year November (the last time I had a relaxer) My daughter has never had chemicals in her hair and has always (since she has truly understood hair ~ she's only 11 lol) given me a hard time about relaxing mines. So, with her encouragement and my curiosity, I made the commitment. Ten months later, I LOVE my natural curl and HATE the perm mess left over.

    I've been contemplating the "big chop" but talked myself out of it, from a fear of not knowing what to do and my hair being too short; never been shorter than my chin. With my transition period, I began to dabble in weaves. I got my last weave in September and took it out a moth later. Unfortunately, I had the worst time with this last… Let's just say: tangling-episode led to frustration, which led to me going scissor happy 🙁

    I cut clumps out of my hair… Thanking my lucky stars that the tangling took place mostly on the permed section. Long story, I've cut a large portion of the non-natural hair and think that I should just go all the way. But, I'm so up in the air that I just decided to give it another 6 months. I'm enjoying discovering what works me!

  • Anonymous says:

    Congrats for going this far you have done an amazing job. I so cannot wait until I get where u are at. Someone told me about this website because I wasn't sure yet if I wanted to go natural. I got so inspired by the ladies and I am so much inspired now by yor story. I feel you should do what is in your heart because at the end of the day you have to be happy. So I will leave you with a quote that inspired me to go natural—" Natuaral is beauty and beauty is me! "

    kenitrarichburg@yahoo.com

  • Redfever says:

    THIS IS ME!!!! I go back and forth from wanting to BC, to wanting to "give myself time" to figure out my texture. I'm so THROUGH with these permed ends. I've been transitioning for about 6 months and I have devoted the last 4months to doing a no heat challenge…boy has by hair LOVED me!! For now I'm going to continue to live by your motto "out of sight, out of mind" 🙂 Transitioning on….

  • Entrancing (Ebony Baskett) says:

    First of all I would like to say welcome to the natural side and congrats on ur journey so far. I to decided to go long term when I decided to go natural. My goal was to grow it out for 9 months. But as time went by and my hair started to shed and look very unhealthy. So I decided that I would do protective styles to help me reach my goal and not deal with my hair. Then about six months I took out my kinky twist and washed my hair I was so unhappy with the waybit look I drove straight to the Barbar shop and went through with my BC. I thought I would be upset after it was done but I was so in love with my hair. But I commend you for standing ur ground. I truly hope that u reach your goal. So good luck, stay positive and strong.

  • Zain says:

    This is my second time transitioning and this time I actually made a goal to transition for 2 years. The first time it just sort of happened. I was so excited to see my hair I think I big chopped around 7 or 8 months in. Next Month will mark my one year post. I have at least another year to go and I know it's going to be just as horrible as the first year. you see, my relaxed ends and new growth have become the ultimate frenemies! This time around I have no real desire to cut off my relaxed ends until I reach my 2 year mark!

  • Purp says:

    I feel exactly like you do!! My last relaxer was in March and from then I decided I would be a long term transitioner to get the length I want, but now I'm really starting to see the difference in the two textures…and now I can honestly say that I don't think my transition will be as long as I thought because I am loving my curls!! Plus it gets annoying when the twist outs are straight on the ends (yes, I know I can use the rod rollers) but I'm just ready to deal with my curls only and not the permed ends! Good Luck on the wait & CONGRATS on your journey! I just don't think I have the patience anymore to stick it out…so I know I will definitely be BCing soon.

  • Anonymous says:

    If you transition for three years and then cut the relaxed ends, is that still considered a BIG CHOP? Is the BIG CHOP when you cut your hair down to .5 inch? Can someone explain it to me? What's the difference between a BIG CHOP and just cutting your relaxed ends at some point?

  • Jacinta W says:

    I have decided to transition for the long term. I am about 5 months in now and plan on transitioning no more than 2 years total. It has been a little difficult learning to listen to my hair and learning what to do for my hair instead of just being told(mostly the wrong things) from a hair stylist. The hardest part of this transition has been breaking many the many bad habits I have picked up over the years(using too much heat, pulling hair too tight, etc). I am seeing more and more of my natural texture and I am enjoying the journey to healthier hair

  • BenniiBlast says:

    Thank you for all the advice & appreciate the compliments ladies!

    I had braids in for around a month and a half, and I am currently giving my hair a break before I put twists in. I definitely think that once the twists are in, like yourselves, I will be able to keep my hands out of my hair lol.

    @MissElaineous you have truly given me some food for thought. I can totally see how putting a date on transitioning may not be the best thing to do. It could certainly cause disappointment if I haven't reached my desired length by then. I guess you wouldn't put a date on any other self-discovering journey, which is what I believe the process of transitioning to be, so I hear where you are coming from.

    Happy Transitioning =)

  • Unknown says:

    Congratulations on going this far. I was a long term transitioner. I made.the decision over twelve years ago and I had never even heard of a big chop. It had been almost a year and a half when I realized I hadn't put in a relaxer. When I realized that I just decided not to get another. All that matters is the decision to become natural and sticking to it!!

  • CurlyChellez says:

    I am currently on a transition from heat damage hair, my plan is to transition for 2 years, and so far I have transitioned for 1 year. It seems like everyday I want to just chop off my hair, b/c I get so frustrated with those straggly ends, but I told myself that I need to keep my hair long enough so that I can put it in a bun, b/c that is my go to style when all else fails.

  • Crystal says:

    I am also transitioning and had planned to 18 months before doing the big chop. However, I have decided to "take the plunge" in December 2011 which will be the 12 month mark. I initially planned to wait because I value length. However, I am still ready to be 100% natural and free!!!

  • MJ says:

    Congratulations on your six months!!

    I totally know what you mean! I transitioned for 13 months (while getting trims every 3 months) and I finally cut off the rest of my relaxed ends (it wasn't all that much either)this past August. I was really glad I waited because by the time I was fully natural it wasn't such a drastic change for me. It also gave me a chance to learn about my hair and what it needs. I felt that if I rushed I would've totally regretted it!

  • Tutti says:

    I definitely started my journey with the idea of transitioning long-term, but once my hair started to grow I realized that I could no longer deal with the two textures because my hair is so thick and plus I wanted see to my curls! So I chopped all of my hair off after 5 months.

  • Monica S. says:

    I was a long term transitioner. I was never tempted because I did not want to lose the length.

  • Pecancurls says:

    Congratulations on your journey and for making this far! By the way, your cheeks are beautiful1 Do you know what crazy chemicals people have injected into their faces to plump up their cheeks?! 🙂 I never really set a time, but my transition ended up being one year. I did a couple of mini chops along the way, so by the end I did not have much permed hair left. I just knew I did not want to do an overnight BC. Transitioning with mini-chops helped me to ease myself into my "new look." I mostly did flat twist outs along the way. There were a few times when the two textures proved to be frustrating, but I was so excited at seeing my natural hair that I was always looking ahead to what my hair would look/feel like when completely natural. I am loving it!! I am one month 100% natural and did my first wash and go today!

    Good luck.

  • Anonymous says:

    I think I would fit in the ladies that are long term transitioners.

    I haven't had my hair relaxed in a long time, but it was damaged from the pressing comb and the plug in straightener. There are sprinkles of straight ends all through out my hair but I haven't chopped them off yet.

    I've been transitioning since March, but faithfully leaving heat and other damaging products alone since July( the last time I trimmed my ends). It's hard and I want to pick up the scissors and chop those few straight ends sometimes. But I don't. I've hidden my scissors and have been doing fine without them.

    My hair is growing beautifully. I went from maybe 3 inches of hair in March to about 6 or 7 inches now.

    Patience ladies.

    I'm giving myself until June when I'll have to stand next to my cousin(I'm the maid of honor in her wedding). I want my hair to be long and pretty. So until then me and my scissors will act like we don't know each other. .. haha( and when we do meet only me and my straight ends will go)

  • Lady D says:

    6.5 months is a long time to transition. At this point, you know you are going all the way. It's just a matter of when to actually big chop. I was one of those long term transitioners who soon shifted to a short term. My goal was a 15 month transition. My choice was mainly so that my hubby wouldn't freak out, and next because I wanted some flexibility. As I saw the natural hair come out, I got the itch. I big chopped after an 8 month transition. So I am officially a short termer (if that's a word). Next week makes two months for me. When you finally BC, just embrace it! I absolutely love being natural!!!!

  • prettyporsche says:

    I wanted to be a long term transitioner b/c I didn't want short hair, but after 6 1/2 months of transitioning, I big chopped. I'm not much of hair stylist so my bad hair days got worse as time went on so I just said screw. I'd rather have short hair that is pretty than long hair that 9 times out of 10 look looks horrible.

  • Unknown says:

    I transitioned for 15 months…this past weekend I did the BC! I didn't think I was going to go through with it, but something just came over me! I had been mostly wearing buns and every once in awhile braid outs. My hair was long…to the middle of my back and I have always said, that I have to have my ponytail. I have had my hair cut in a bob before, but even then I still was able to pull it back into a little ponytail. The stylist couldn't believe I asked her to cut it off…she said my natural hair was almost to my shoulder, but I wanted to make sure that the relaxer was out so…CHOP CHOP CHOP!

  • MissElaineous says:

    I cannot remember who offered this advice or I would credit them, but a youtuber mentioned that long term transitioners shouldn't put a date on how long they will transition (maybe LHDC?). I wholeheartedly agree. I put several dates on my transition; 2 years became a year and 6 months became a year and 3 months, became a year and I ended up chopping at 11 months because I just had a few inches to chop off at that point. I think that if you do end up chopping before your desired date, it could feel like you failed yourself and your outlook on your hair may be tainted. Instead, I think a long-term transitioner should be pre-occupied with ensuring their hair is healthy all the way to the finish line, wherever that may be. It does get easier as you go along and though at 7 months those ends may seem impossible to deal with, at 8 months your outlook may change. If you're willing to oscillate between loving and hating transitioning, you can and will be successful. Though I chopped earlier than I had anticipated I let me hair tell me when it was time to let the relaxed hair go.

  • Tianna says:

    I was supposed to be a long term transitioner but one day (6 months perm and heat free), I couldn't take it anymore and chopped all of the permed ends off.

  • Bitty Boss says:

    I have been transitioning since Feb 2010 and I am ready to cut! I have been doing mini chops and I think the New Year coming will be the time.

  • Unknown says:

    Well actually I did go from the long term to short term. I was 5 months in without the perm and then I started noticing hair breakage. So I decided to go and see my friend Bri at her salon. She washed and determined that it needed to go. So that was it, I did the BC and I am loving it.

  • MsJboogie007 says:

    I knew I wanted to do a long term transition, however, when I transitioned, I didn't think about how long it would take, I thought more of how long I wanted my hair to be. So I just did many mini chops along the way. I ended up transitioning about 15 months I believe and never did any weaves or braids. I mainly did roller sets, and bantu knot outs and twist outs. So good luck on your journey, everyone's is different, so enjoy YOUR journey.

  • kay says:

    ^^^what she said (Amanda) lol. I'm 8 months in and I had Senegalese twists for about 3 of those months. When I took them out, I hated my relaxed ends but can't cut just yet. I wore twist outs and half wigs for about 2 1/2 weeks then got a sew in. I think as long as you care for your hair under the protective styles i.e. braids, sew ins…it's a great way to pass the time if you're not quite ready to chop! 🙂

  • Amanda says:

    Hey girl, like you I have committed to a long term transition,I've set a goal of min 1 yr max 2yrs, and also like you I'm 6 mons in. Up until now I haven't been having a big issue dealing with the 2 diff textures, but I just got box braids yesterday (Solange style) and I'm hoping to keep them for 6-8 wks. I plan on getting a weave about 2 weeks after I take out the braids (Christmas) and keeping that for another 6 wks. That should place me somewhere early in Feb (10 mons)& if the 2 textures are unbearable then I'll just have two months to stick it out before reaching a 1yr! Basically my I'm keeping it protected/hidden for the next 4&1/2 months. I hope this isn't too confusing & helps 🙂

  • Yirssi says:

    I was one of this people that decided to transition, and then when I realized how different the texture was going to be (about 4 months in, after my last relaxer, so I give you props for waiting as long as you've waited) decided to just cut it all off. I didn't even tell my s.o. or anyone else (and shocked the heck out of everyone, of course).

    I understand why you wanted to wait. I was sure I would look like a boy. I'm the spitting image of my father, and in HS people would tell me I looked like a boy, and call me "little Joseph" (Joseph was my older brother's name, he was in the same HS as me). But I was so happy that my mental hangups and complexes didn't prevent me from cutting it.

    So I'm just saying, if you decide to give into impulse, and end up cutting it all off, you may be glad after the fact! You look beautiful in the pic above, so I'm willing to bet you'll look beautiful once you BC!

  • fabwtalk says:

    Congratulations for making it this far. Yay! When you are ready to BC you will know it. Just remember everyone moves at a different pace so do what's right for you. On a side note, your cheeks are adorable! 🙂

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