Big chop 700

Image: @janibellrosanne

You were probably drawn to this article, because you are either considering to transition your hair or you are already transitioning your hair. The transitioning process is both challenging and rewarding. It is a phase filled with hurdles and achievements. One of the decisions all transitioners must make is whether you will do a big chop or if you will let the relaxed grow out of your hair. The difficulty lies in the fact that both options require a trade-off. When doing a big chop, you will lose your length. On the other hand, your patience will be tested.

Let the Relaxer Grow Out

Personally, I had difficulties with doing a big chop. I was not afraid of losing length; however, I cared too much about the opinions of others. I was following beauty ideals instead of making the right decision for myself. Moreover, I believed that I could not rock short hair. Hence, I decided to let the relaxer grow out of my hair.

I'm not going to lie: letting the hair grow out was frustrating to me. At some point I became quite impatient because I felt that I had bad hair days daily. After my hair grew more than 5 inches, my hair looked quite awkward. It looked like I had been trying to straighten my hair, but got tired along the way. Eventually, I always stuck my hair in a bun and I did not invest much effort in my hair care. There were some things I could have done in order to make the process of growing the relaxer out easier.

Protective Styles

For instance, I should have taken advantage of the length and experimented with protective hairstyling, such as cornrows, box braids and faux locks. There are so many different types of protective styles, I'm sure they would have kept my impatience at bay.

Find a Routine

One advantage of letting the relaxer grow out of your hair is that you will gain loads of knowledge. At some point you will have to find the perfect routine, which will meet the needs of your relaxed strands, as well as your natural roots. Finding the right routine will trigger your creativity in finding ways to define your curls.

Even though the process of letting the relaxer grow out was challenging, I waited for the hair to grow 13 inches before doing a semi-big chop, this way I would retain some length.

Why Big Chop?

Doing a big chop is a big step, but it is the only way to get rid of your relaxed strands quickly. Some of my friends have done a big chop; a few of them shaved their hair. Most of them indicated that they have mostly struggled with getting to know their hair. It was not only challenging to find the right hair care products, it was also difficult to find the right hair care routine. Often the hair is too short for finger coiling but eventually the coiling sponge was invented, which took care of that issue.

Doing a big chop can be overwhelming as well and this is not surprising as your appearance changes quite lot. But doing a big chop enables you to get used to your hair texture much faster. Moreover, you will feel empowered when you see your hair in its natural state. Lastly, in contrast to those who transition their hair, people who do a big chop have better product results.

Which one do you prefer? A big chop or naturally transitioning? Let us know in the comments.