When did you big chop?
I was too afraid to big chop once I made my decision to go natural, so I transitioned for six months, slowly cutting off my texturized ends myself about every two weeks. I cut off the remaining texturized hair in January 2012.
How did you cope with responses from family and friends?
My friends love my short hair. My mother’s opinion mattered most and she was apprehensive about me cutting my hair short. I was nominated for the South Florida African American Achievers Award and the ceremony was in April (after I had cut off most of my hair). My mother asked, “Are you going to go get your hair done for the event? You are going to get it straightened, right?” I reminded her that I was committed to refraining from heat and chemicals. Her response was “Oh.”
It hurt a little that she wasn’t as enthusiastic about my hair journey as I was. However, I held firm on my choice, went to Claire’s, and picked up some cute butterfly clips to jazz up my style. When we met up at the award ceremony, my mom was impressed with the overall package (suit, make-up, hair, and of course, diva attitude) and we had a great time.
I would tell anyone who rocks a TWA to stay strong and don’t get discouraged. The little digs hurt the most! The silent looks and snide remarks replay in your mind the most when you have the occasional bad hair day. But no matter what, DO NOT GIVE UP! Know that those who love you will eventually get used to your short style and your own confidence will do the most to change people’s perceptions.
What are your plans for your hair?
I plan to grow it out long (of course it will always look on the shorter side since I have tight curls).
Do you do anything to dress up your short style to feel more feminine, if that’s even a concern?
I love flowers! I get a lot of compliments when I use a flower to dress up my TWA. There are great tutorials on You Tube showing how to use artificial flowers with a bobby pin to make lovely hair accessories.
What are your favorite accessories?
Besides flowers, chunky earrings, lip gloss, and bright colored tops. These really make my TWA pop.
What do you use to retain moisture?
I use water in a spray bottle and shea butter to seal in the moisture. Coconut oil also works well on my hair.
What products and techniques do you use?
My favorite products right now are Nubian Heritage’s Shea Butter infused with Coconut and Hibiscus, Karen’s Body Beautiful Butter Love, and Shikai’s Everyday Conditioner. I do a twist out every couple of days so my curls will be more defined. I also put in mini twists in the front of my hair (because I was too lazy to finish my whole head) and this makes it easy for me to style each morning. I pin back the front mini twists with a cute clip, and leave the back of my hair in a twist out. I just have to refresh my back twist out in the morning and go!
What do you do to preserve your style at night?
I use a satin scarf every night!