That Magic Moment: Does One Haircut Mean There’s A Change In Your Life?

August 11, 2013  |  

I consider myself to be a Beyonce fan, so it was not hard for me to catch wind of the “news” that she cut her hair. Not just a trim – a CHOP. Some were like “what’s the big deal,” while others were like, “Whoa, that’s a bold statement!” While I think the look is cute on her, it wasn’t earth shattering news; I mean, women cut their hair off every day. I even did the big chop a year and a half ago, and I “discovered” is that…it grows back.

I remember when I first cut my hair off, my dad said, “You know what they said about a woman who cuts her hair…she’s about to change her life.” I didn’t give much thought to what he said because, if I’m being honest, it wasn’t my idea to cut off my hair and go natural. If you can believe it, my husband played a huge role in it. He, along with all of my naturalista friends, had been encouraging me to go natural. I’m not a “hair person,” and if it involved more than pulling it all back into a ponytail and/or wearing a cute hat, I couldn’t deal with it. I kept telling them that I’d “transition” one day, but I also knew that taking care of natural hair seemed way more involved than taking care of relaxed hair…no thanks. It wasn’t until my husband took me to a natural hair salon in Harlem where the stylist broke down all the pros of going natural that it happened. After his little speech he asked me what would keep me from cutting it all off and starting fresh. When I answered, “nothing, I guess,” he took his scissors in hand and promptly cut off my ponytail. I thought I would catch a case that day.

He proceeded to swiftly cut off ALL of my hair down to my scalp to the point where I immediately felt the breeze on my head. I had maybe a half an inch of hair. I was traumatized. Everyone, including my husband who should have been running away at this point, was trying to convince me how nice I looked and how lucky I was to have a “nice shaped head.” Meanwhile, I just wanted to cry. It took several weeks (and several friends talking me off the ledge) to come to accept – and now love – my short, natural hair.

I say all that to say that not all women have a deep, profound reason for getting a drastic haircut. I was hoodwinked, but I will admit to later feeling beautiful and empowered. Some women also admit that cutting off their hair was their way of reclaiming their power. Some say it’s in conjunction with a shift in their sense of identity, something major happening in their life like a breakup or a divorce. Who knows, maybe Beyonce, now a mother, is feeling stronger or more liberated. Maybe her new look is corresponding to something magnificent in her life that we cannot see. It’s hard to imagine her wanting to feel more powerful than she already is, but it could also be that she wanted to see if she could be as smolderingly hot with short hair as she is with long, flowing tresses. It could all simply be for vanity’s sake or maybe she wanted to change the way she saw herself…and how we saw her too.

At the end of the day, I don’t think we should read too much into it. My own feelings about why women cut their hair vary from woman to woman and circumstance to circumstance. I didn’t have a clear motive for cutting mine off,  but others do it to look older, younger, to look like Halle Berry or simply because they think it’s easier to care for short hair while they work out. There could be many reasons, or none, and every woman doesn’t have to explain their reasoning for their changing hair styles. Growing your hair or wearing a weave is no more an indication of beauty than having short hair. By the way, having short hair doesn’t make you less feminine or more “sassy.” A makeover could mean you’re not the same person you were a year ago or that you’re happy exactly where you are now…with a new ‘do.

Regardless of what your hair looks like, when you’re happy with who you are on the inside, that is the image that will be reflected to the world. That is more important than anything.

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