So you’ve finally decided to avoid using chemicals and start growing your natural hair? Welcome to #teamnatural!
Beginning a natural hair journey can be a bit scary; okay, maybe not a bit. This is because somewhere at the back of your mind, you know that your relaxed or damaged hair has to go off! Hair means a lot to we women and imagining that precious hair go down in a saloon waste bin can cause heart ache (lol, but seriously though) The goodnews is “there are two ways to go natural” but the bad news is “the big chop is still one of them” (don’t roll your eyes if you don’t know what the term “big chop”means, I’ll get to that soon) there is no right or wrong way to go natural, what matters is that your end product is still natural hair.
Now there are two basic ways to go natural: The Big Chop and Transitioning (don’t worry, I’ll explain now)
The big chop is a term used when most or all of your hair is cut off in order to begin growing it from scratch in it’s natural state. Most women dread this method but that was the only choice for most who are natural today but a saviour came along – The Transitioning!
Transitioning simply means avoiding relaxer while slowly growing out and trimming off the relaxed or damaged ends until they are all gone. Mind you, its not as easy as it sounds. The image above has thick coily hair beneath (new natural growth) and a relaxed end, so as the new ones keep growing out, the damaged ends keeps being chopped off.
Wondering whether to transition or Big chop? here are some pros(advantages) and cons(disadvantages) of each to help you decide how best to start off your natural hair journey.
THE BIG CHOP
- Less Struggle with your hair since you’re dealing with just one hair texture. With a big chop, you start learning how to care for your hair as it grows and only have to worry about one texture. Your hair care knowledge increases as your hair grows.
- Want something new? Want to be dramatic? Want something dynamic? However you want to put it, cutting your hair is the boldest move. It snaps you back, makes you look like you’re reborn and leaves you with a whole new hair look to play around with ranging from different styles to accessories while your hair grows to different lengths.
- There seems to to be a super fast hair growth with this method.
- Less Stress is acquired since you don’t have to keep cutting off the your relaxed ends.
- No Long term Patience of growing out relaxed ends required.
- Mature and unique look is achieved. Since most girls wear their hair long, you tend to look out of the box and sometimes I think that guys love that “lady on low cut look” (winks). I feel its a good way to spice things up.
At the initial stage, your hair might be difficult to style; especially if you’re used to styling longer hair. Sometimes, It can get frustrating but learning to style your hair gets easier with time, and eventually becomes fun (most a times)
Most people’s initial reaction to The Big Chop is complete shock. This may be followed by feelings of sadness, regret, or even anger.
- Gradually getting used to your natural hair is one of transitioning’s greatest pro. Transitioning is more like getting your feet wet, while big chop is like jumping into the water. Here, the shock of getting your hair shorter than an inch overnight is avoided.
- you have total control over how much length to take off at a particular time. Some people decide to cut off a huge amount of hair every 4 months while some cut off just an inch of hair every 4 months. How much hair to cut off and when is totally dependent on the owner of the head. You also to experiment with different styles as your coils grow without a big commitment and trust me, time flies, One day you’ll look in the mirror and discover you’re natural.
- Dealing with two textures can be a real bitch! That is one of the most dreaded part of transitioning. While your natural is coily and shrunken, the relaxed hair remains straight and thin. This makes manipulation and styling difficult. The hair lacks uniformity and is prone to looking untidy a times. Extra kind of manipulation is needed and this means more stress.
- You would also have to keep trimming your damaged or relaxed ends. This could be time taking.
- Your hair can have more chances of breakage since you’re dealing with both relaxed and natural hair especially at the part where they both join. This point is always fragile and should therefore be handled with extra care. Constant breakage can stunt hair length.
Being a naturalista means embracing who you we’re born to be, your original self. The choice of how to go natural isn’t for anyone to make for you, simply weigh the pros and cons and choose which is best for you and your hair, diving into it or going in slowly pretty much gives the same end product; like I said earlier, there is no right or wrong way, All that matters is you!