So You Big Chopped Your Hair...What's Next?

Since we have been quarantined for the last eight months, many black girls and women have taken this time to learn more about their hair. While learning about our hair, we have acknowledged that the years of biweekly pressing curls and perms have damaged our curl patterns. Therefore, some black women and girls have resulted in transitioning their hair or the big chop…so what’s next?

According to Curl Centric, the big chop is the act of cutting off all your relaxed hair, leaving only your beautiful new growth, which is natural hair. In January of 2020, I received my very own big chop. The first few months after my big chop, I was totally confused because I had no idea what to do with my new and very short hair. After months of practicing and learning what my hair likes and dislikes, I have compiled a list of tips that can help you appreciate your new mane.      

As a retired product junkie, I was very excited to experiment with products to see which products worked best with my hair. Even though this process can be a bit pricey, it is worth it in the long run. When I watched product reviews, I took in consideration that every youtuber does not have the same kind of hair as I do, so at the end of the day their opinions were invalid until I tried the specific product for myself.  I used YouTube videos to introduce me about new products that were not sold at Target or a local beauty supply.

YouTube videos also helped with learning how what routine best helped my hair growth. Before quarantine, I rarely deep conditioned my hair; but now I am a deep condition stan. I deep condition my hair every wash day because it leaves my hair soft and more manageable. When I began deep conditioning, I noticed that my curls became more defined after I rinsed out the conditioner. In addition to deep conditioning, I recommend deep conditioning with heat because it really saturates the product into the hair. So, grab your favorite deep conditioner and a heating cap, and let your hair receive all the pampering it deserves 

As you try new products, I also suggest trying new hairstyles that can protect your new mane. Protective hairstyles can give your hair a break from all the new products you have been trying. My favorite protective style is box braids because it does not take a lot of time to maintain and style in the morning. There are a multitude of different styles to try such as faux locs, passion twists, weaves, wigs and more. These styles require little to no maintenance and promote hair growth because you do not constantly have your hands in your hair.

A month after my big chop, I got kind of bored with my everyday fro; therefore, I decided to spice it up with some fun accessories. Even though my hair was not long enough to go into a puff, I found styles that best suited my teeny-weeny afro. My new obsession with hair accessories has forced me to have an amazon obsession. You can spice up your twa with butterfly clips, colorful hair clips and headbands. Accessories can give your hair a little more pizazz to an everyday look.

The big chop also took a lot out of me mentally. I have always equated long hair to beauty, therefore when I chopped my hair there were some days when I felt less than. Through my many hair stages, I realized I am not my hair. My hair did not define my beauty. However, I do encourage that you big chop when you are ready. It is a life changing step that requires a lot of confidence and patience. As you begin to learn and accept your beautiful hair, you will never understand why you despised it 

As quarantine went on, I began to appreciate my hair more and more because I never really understood the versatility of black hair.  After years of despising my hair, my confidence shot up when I learned how to properly take care of it. Even though quarantine has been pretty dreadful, I hope you have time to learn more about your hair.