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Big Chop Hair Tips

big chop

I did the big chop back in 2018, and have had short hair ever since.

It was one of the best hair decisions I’ve made in my life, and I wish I would have done it sooner!

Now, before we get too deep into this article, I want to make clear that I am incredibly low maintenance.

Don’t get me wrong. I like to look good.

But, after my shower, it takes me about ten minutes total to get ready in the morning.

And that’s brushing teeth, hair, dressing, and all. 

big chop

That “low-maintenance” trait is a small piece of what led me to want to cut my hair off, but it wasn’t the main reason.

And to be honest, you still have to do your hair, even if it’s short, to keep it healthy.

Why I did the Big chop

Eight years after I had my first child, I had another one. Yes, I’m one of those moms! 

There was a lot about pregnancy and postpartum that I had forgotten about nearly a decade later.

I definitely remember the morning sickness and insomnia, but totally forgot about the hair loss and edges thinning.

A lot of women suffer from postpartum hair loss, and I wish we talked about it more often.

My edges, after both pregnancies, were completely gone. I was way too busy with my first child to  be concerned, but after the second baby, I had more help.

That gave me more time to stress out about my hair falling out and my thin edges.

And, listen. I stressed, okay! 

After a few weeks of watching my edges disappear before my very eyes, I decided to take matters into my own hands.

Without consulting anyone, I walked into a beauty salon, sat down in a chair, and had the stylist cut all of my hair.

Between the hair loss, thin edges, and just feeling blah, I needed a change. After years (decades, really) of contemplating a big chop, I finally did it. 

big chop Hair Tips I wish I would have known

Okay, so here’s what I wish I would have known the first day of my big chop. I felt good because I had the weight of my hair off of my shoulders. I also thought I looked better than I had looked in weeks.

When I look at old pictures, though, my confidence shines through, but I definitely wish I would have known more about styling my hair.

I didn’t tell the stylist that it was my first big chop, and I was in a time crunch. 

I wish I would have had a shape in mind for my haircut. Then I could have instructed the stylist on a look that I was going for.

Like every other Black woman who goes in for her big chop, I did have earrings and lipstick. But I wasn’t prepared with products and tools to be able to style my hair at home.

I wish I’d have known about the twist sponge, and using the right amount of gel, and how finger coils help to add texture and flavor to hair.

these are my favorite Big Chop Hair Products

I used to have a bunch of natural hair products. Not anymore, though. 

I wash and condition my hair just about every day in the shower. Believe it or not, I don’t use oil very often anymore. 

Jennifer Rose, owner of The Fro Haus in New York, is a master hairstylist, and shares natural hair tips on social media. 

She educates folks on the importance of keeping hair clean and moisturized, and really only advocates for a few products.

Rose suggests using shampoo and conditioner, of course, and gel or foaming lotion to style.

Once I got rid of all of the oils and greases, my big chop curls really started to pop.

Okay, so here are the products that I use for myself and my children who have much thicker, longer hair than me:

  1. Head and Shoulders Itchy Scalp Care Shampoo – I use this dailyish and it works!
  2. Tresemme Curl Hydration Conditioner – This is super affordable, but it’s really effective.
  3. EcoStyler Gel for coil sets. I use this pretty much every day.
  4. Nairobi Foaming Lotion to do a soft coil set or wash and go. I use this mostly on my kids’ hair for braiding.
  5. Mielle Edge Gel – I use this when I want to do something a little more dramatic with my baby hair.  

That’s it, y’all. And my hair, and my children’s hair, is thriving.

The tools you need with short, natural hair

Okay, so in terms of tools, you don’t need a lot of stuff for that, either.

I love not having drawers filled with a bunch of combs and fancy natural hair tools that I don’t ever really use.

Instead, I use a comb, a couple of brushes, and a bonnet.

Here are the exact tools I use to style my big chop, short, natural hair:

  1. Curling brush – This is how I get my curls in the back and middle. I finger coil the front if I want more definition, but the brush creates plenty of curls easily.
  2. Edge brush – I don’t like my baby hair to be popping too much, but this brush helps to give a little pop. 
  3. Bonnet – You should wear a bonnet every night, even with short hair. Click to check out my friend Roni’s shop to support a Black owned business, AND get a custom bonnet made. 

The big chop is a big deal, but the truth is…your hair will always grow back if you don’t like it.

When my hair is in the in-between stage and I’m having a tough time styling it, I just throw on a scarf.

I’ve also gotten braids, and that was a fun way to switch things up.

As I said in the beginning of the post, though, I have no regrets about cutting my hair and I would absolutely do it again and again!

Other posts you might like:

How to wash a little Black girl’s hair

100 ways to connect with your tween daughter
5 mom and daughter self care ideas
5 ways to build trust with your tween daughter