By choice, my hair hasn’t fallen past the top of my neck since 8th grade. Short just does it for me. Almost any woman can appear to be beautiful with a head full of hair. But not every woman can rock a short cut, caesar or fade and be stunning. After a bad break up in 2006 I cut my hair Halle Berry short. Shaved in the back, tapered on the sides and spiked in the front was my look for nearly three years. Fast forward to the summer of 2010 I decided to go natural.
As I transitioned from relaxed to natural, my hair was the longest it had been since 1999. I was absolutely terrified of doing the big chop (BC), which in the natural hair community is cutting all your relaxed ends usually leaving you with a teeny weeny afro (TWA) depending on how much new growth you have. My fear of having little to no hair wasn’t at all logical, as I had worn my hair super short before. But short and relaxed is the exact opposite of short, curly and natural. There was a mountain of excuses of why I couldn’t wear a TWA- a ‘fro is unprofessional, I’ll look like a boy (read: unfeminine) I won’t be pretty and I’ll hate my hair.
Despite my biggest fear of not looking feminine, after six months I was beyond frustrated with the two textures. On New Years Eve I walked into the barbershop and had my hair cut off. When the barber swung me around to face the mirror, my relaxed ends were gone and I knew I had made the right decision. My ‘fro was beautiful. Cutting my hair, once again, dispelled the notion that after women cut their hair short they are instantly ugly.
I cannot count the times I’ve heard men say they prefer women with long hair or that a woman with short hair looks like a dude. Unfortunately, some women have psychologically been brainwashed to also believe our hair is our “glory” referring to 1 Corinthians 11:15. We subconsciously attach our beauty to our hair because of the importance society has placed on it.
I’m all for women rocking whatever they want. The fact that Black women can wear their hair short, curly, long, relaxed, natural, straight, weaved, wig, ‘fro or braided is what makes us unique. But I do want to encourage women with short hair or who want to cut their hair, not to worry about losing their femininity. You are still feminine with short hair.
Research was a major part of my transitioning period. I read threads on hair forums, watched hours of YouTube hair tutorials and visited numerous natural hair websites. One commonality among most of the women transitioning was the fear of going through with the BC. And the reason most didn’t want to do the big chop was because they thought they needed long hair to look feminine. Despite how beautiful (and feminine) Chrisette Michele, Solange and Amber Rose look with low cuts, women hold on to that notion of short hair meaning more masculine.
If you are feeling unfeminine with your new cropped ‘fro, accessorize. Have fun with experimenting with makeup. Try a new eye shadow or lipstick that pops. Add a dash of blush to your cheeks. Another trick is to wear jazzy earrings. Whether they hang long, are big hoops or studs, your earrings will add flair to your hair.
But honestly confidence is key. Knowing you are beautiful already without makeup, sans earrings and minus the gaudy accessories. You are a fabulous woman whether your hair is 1” or 12”. Rock your short ‘fro with pride!