All Articles Tagged "teeny weeny afro"
By LaKrishia Armour
So you just big chopped—hurrah!—and after prancing around for weeks letting the wind kiss your scalp and buying tons of new dangly earrings, you may feel the newness of your crop wearing off. You know what? That’s okay. You can buy wigs from your favorite beauty supply store.
Apparently, though, if you choose to wear a Kim K inspired wig and you’re natural, it’s a problem. If you don’t know what this type of wig looks like, it’s a long, layered hairstyle with loose, face-framing curls. Some people argue that if a woman, especially one with an afro, wears a long, straight wig, she’s not being ‘real,’ because if she were ‘real,’ she’d wear her Teeny Weeny Afro as it is, unashamed.
I don’t know about y’all, but I don’t see anything wrong with a little bump and shine, especially when it comes to changing hairstyles when you feel like it. Wigs are pretty awesome, and a way to give your natural hair a quick break when you’re feeling bored, or want to allow time for your hair to grow. Here are four reasons why going from close crop to wavy Rapunzel-like hair shouldn’t be a problem at all.
You’re trying out a great protective style.
Wearing your wig for a week is smart because it helps maintain the health of your hair. You can play with styling a heat resistant wig without fear of burning your own hair off with a too-hot clampless curling iron in an effort to attain the perfect beach wave. You won’t suffer from stiff, dull hair as a result of using styling products like hairsprays, gels and mousses. Plus, you can keep your TWA moisturized underneath and keep your ears warm all at the same time. Winniiiiiiing.
You like long hair and you get the chance to see what you look like with it.
And that’s fine. Really, it is. You might not want to wait for your hair to grow back to a length you’re comfortable with. Feeling a loss of traditional femininity is what some women experience soon after 12” of their relaxed ends are being swept up by the shampoo girl and they’re rocking a super close crop. Not everyone immediately feels fierce like a ’90s Jada Pinket . Wearing a wig—straight or curly—in a desired length isn’t “cheating” on a hair journey. And, beyond that, maybe some women don’t want to get into the typical hair tips and techniques convo in the hair care aisle at CVS.
A good wig is the lazy or busy woman’s way to get to instant glam.
If you’re a new natural, it can be tough figuring out how to style your quickly (and sometimes awkwardly) growing TWA perfectly each day. There are going to be some hits and misses. And on the days that there are bad hair days or you’re dealing with product experiments gone wrong, you can always rely on ‘Avery’ in a 1B with wispy, face-framing highlights in a 33 to get you out the door on time to work, school, or dinner with the girls. There is nothing wrong with putting on a wig when hoop earrings and flowers above the ear look boring instead of edgy. Girl, put that wig on!
Switching up your style is O.K.
The best thing about wigs is trying new lengths, colors and styles in the same day. Today you’re Beyoncé. Tomorrow, Rihanna. Dorothy Dandridge on Saturday night. You get the idea. It’s fun to feel like a new version of yourself, even if it’s just for a few hours. Maybe today—or tomorrow—is the day you want to whip your hair back and forth. For many black women, our hair is an accessory we can change to suit our moods, the occasions, and our outfits. We get creative license with our hair, and putting on a wig isn’t any different than wearing a bold lipstick, or putting extra hair in that French roll you’re going to have for holiday parties because you saw Olivia Pope work the mess out of it on Scandal. It’s the same thing. It’s fake hair, no matter the purpose or level of visibility. You’re still you underneath all that ‘long hair don’t care.’ And, that’s what’s most important.
Put that new style on your head and get to pattin’ those wigs, ladies.
The Teeny Weeny Afro (TWA) has steadily been making its way up the preferred hairstyle ranks as of late, yet it is still not as widely received by the natural hair community as other elaborate hairstyles. Let’s be honest here – the TWA stage is not exactly perceived as a ‘fun’ period of one’s hair growth experience for no other reason than it often being seen as limiting one’s ability to be versatile with their hairstyles. The truth of the matter is that there is a world of possibilities when it comes to livening up one’s ‘crown and glory,’ while rocking a TWA. Who said short hair couldn’t be made to be fun and funky, sans all of the toil and drudgery that many believe its maintenance accompanies? Yes, it will require a keen eye and a bit of patience, in terms of its upkeep. Nonetheless, if you are willing to devote the time enough to transition into a natural state of hair, then transitioning through the shorter hair stages should be smooth sailing. There are many go-to style options from which to choose when it comes to sprucing up one’s TWA.
1) With a tinge of color:
Now, the color need not be shocking to the eye; your choice of color will more than likely reflect your personality’s uniquely defined palette. In other words, if your personality and wardrobe are demure, you more than likely wouldn’t be caught rolling out with a blonde ‘do. You would more than likely choose a color that runs along a spectrum of browns and bronzes. As well, for the naturalistas who are largely against the use of harsh chemicals such as dyes containing ammonia on their hair – they may opt for a natural hair-dyeing solution, namely, Henna. If Henna is not a preferred option, one can always go for a dye that is ammonia-free, such as Garnier Herbashine Color Crème With Bamboo Extract, which’ll do the job and offers 18 different shades for your choosing, save for the color only lasting for up to 28 washes.
2) Coiled Up:
Coils are a simple and easy way to achieve a fresh, new look. All you need to achieve this look is a fine-toothed, rat-tail comb, and some gel. You could use Taliah Waajid’s Black Earth product, Lock it Up. On freshly-washed hair, you would part your hair into tiny partitioned sections and proceed to apply gel to the root and upwards toward the ends of the hair. Then, gently rotate the fine-toothed comb in a clockwise motion from the bottom to the end of the hair. Allow the style to sit for about 45 minutes to an hour, in order for it to maintain its hold with the support of the gel. And, if you want to go a little funkier, you may choose to go for a ‘coil out’ look, which would just entail you gently pulling out the coils once dry. Your best bet would be to wrap your hair with a satin scarf when you sleep to make it possible for this style to last for many days.
3) Curled Up:
This is by far the quickest way to achieve an enhanced look with the TWA. The simple curl is the perfect solution for the woman-on-the-go, who has little-to-no time to fuss about what to do with her hair. For this one, you’ll simply need to sprinkle the hair with water and apply a curl enhancer of your choice. If you’re stuck on which curl enhancing product to use, you could try Shea Moisture’s Organic Coconut & Hibiscus Curl Enhancer Smoothie, especially if you have a weakness for that smelly, smelly good stuff. The trick to this ‘do is to continue to re-apply water to it, so as to keep the curls active.
4) Double-Strand Twists:
Double-strand twists are for those who don’t want a tight feel on their scalp, which is often caused by the pull of firm braids. Two-strand twists don’t require as much force, nor do they apply as much pressure to the scalp and hair follicles. The good part about twists is that with a little moisturizer applied before beginning the process – you should be good to go – unless of course you want to apply gel to ensure that the twists remain firmly in their place. You could also use coconut oil, argan oil or perhaps, even castor oil beforehand, for the purpose of allowing your hair to give off some sheen. The choice is yours to make, either way – the twists are a good style choice for any age range.
5) Accessorize, Accessorize, Accessorize!:
The amount of accolades accessories deserve is indescribable with just the use of words: somehow, someway – they always seem to save the day. Whether we’re talking about transforming an outfit from drab to fab or simply for the purpose of adding an element of originality to an otherwise regular ol’ hair day – accessories are bound to do big things. For a teeny weeny afro, you may choose to accessorize with the aid of hair pins, flowers, scarves, jewels, or a simple headband may do the trick.
How do you jazz up your TWA?
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!