By: Amber Washington
After having natural hair for three and half years I had no choice but to cut my hair after heat damage…
This is my second big chop in the matter of 3 1/2 years. And lets just say, I was not too thrilled about doing it for the second time. But it had to be done. You see, I had decided for my 7th wedding anniversary weekend, I wanted to be extra cute, so I got it straighten as well as trimmed. I made an appointment with a stylist I had previously worked for and whose work I had seen on a daily basis. I was comfortable with her doing my hair. Let me tell you, when she was done, my hair was laaaaaiiiiidd! It was the straightest it ever been.
But little did I know, I had just experienced the worst heat damage ever!
There was no heat damage 3 times prior. So I was surprised by the extent of damage discovered when I went to wash my hair over a week later and after the first AND second shampoo it did not revert back. By the third time, it slowly started to curl but very loosely and in sections. I nearly cried when I got out the shower and saw my limp, lifeless hair. I immediately made a call to the stylist hoping for some type of cure for the damage even though I knew in my heart of hearts, the hair I had was gone. She offered no true solution, even going so far as to say that my sulfate free shampoos and conditioners weren’t strong enough. She suggested liquid dish soap and that might do the trick. Um, if I could have jumped through that phone then, I would have. I couldn’t believe this was the response from a 20 year hair care veteran. Needless to say, she was no help and I was on my own.
Over the course of the next 6 months, I pretty much stuck to protective styles because with so many straight pieces and half curls and waves, I really couldn’t wear it out. I did opt for a hair cut during that time hoping it would give me more options than pinned twists. And it did for awhile, but due to the damage, my hair had broken off quite a bit and the straight pieces would only hold a curl for a day. It was then that I began to contemplate my 2nd big chop. Sigh……
I tossed the idea back and forth for about a month to month and half. I even consulted with Tamara, my friend and the lovely owner of this site, about potentially doing a 2nd big chop. She brought up good points such as my hair would grow back healthier AND it would compliment my new hot body (I’ve lost 52 pounds since the birth of my son)! I couldn’t argue with that point. Shameless, I know. But I still couldn’t bring myself to do it. I just didn’t want to go through the TWA phase again, that is until the day of December 30, 2012. After freshly washing my hair, I looked in the mirror at the disaster that was my mane. I couldn’t take it anymore.
Without a word to my husband about what I was about to do, I begin to snip away at my hair. Snip. Snip. Snip, snip. Until it was all gone. Again. I looked at myself and couldn’t help but smile. I actually like what I saw. I felt….free. Since, this wasn’t my first go round with the big chop, I decided to twist my hair instead of the usual wash and go at this stage. The hubby saw me and didn’t say much or rather anything at all. I knew he didn’t like it, but I also know he knows it will grow back. So whatevs.
So here we are back at square one. And I’m okay with that because this time, I’m more better prepared to take care of my hair. I will be rocking more protective styles (twists and coils), the use of Jamaican castor oil for my scalp, deep conditioning, weekly of course and hennaing once a month. And NO MORE HEAT!!! At least for now. Maybe a blowout in the future, but absolutely no pressing! I’m done with that!
Too keep up with me and my shenanigans, you can find me here:
Has this ever happened to you or someone you know?