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FEATURES Oct 28 2012 11:03PM

Learning the Ins and Outs of My Big Chop

by Rachel Francois

Happy Birthday to me! As I write this, I am also celebrating exactly 7 months since I Big Chopped. As my hair continues to grow, I find new things to love about my God given hair and also find new challenges to rocking the mane that I’ve been given.

I can’t believe how fast my hair is growing! As I’ve said before, I’ve always known that my hair can grow long but with a relaxer I really realized that my hair can grow fast. My hair, when stretched out, measures about 5 to 6 inches. When did that happen? Not so long ago, I had no more than an inch of kink to wash & go. Now that I actually have enough hair to run my fingers through (I’m lying. I couldn’t run my fingers through this if you paid me but you know what I mean), I can really style my hair. Something I’ve been waiting to do after watching countless YouTube videos. But what exactly are the styles that I, Rachel, can do?

Vloggers seem to do magic, often standing in front of their bathroom mirrors easily, neatly and quickly (this is important) fashioning their hair into 2-strand twists, cornrows, Denman defined coils and more. After watching these videos, I think to myself, “Rachel. That looks so easy. You can do that!”…Not so much. What I don’t realize, and vloggers don’t tell you, is that you need to have 2 things that I do not have: one, patience and two, upper arm strength!  This was a hard lesson I learned after attempting to use my Denman brush for the first time to define my curls one Saturday morning. Armed with freshly washed and detangled hair, 2 new Denman brushes, a jar of EcoStyler gel and my Hair Milk Original Leave-In Moisturizer, I start out in the back, following the steps that I just viewed on my laptop. As I go to section off some hair, about the same size the vlogger did, I realize that my hair is clearly thicker than hers and I have to reduce my section to 1/4th the size. This is no problem as I’m excited to achieve this look and this should take no time at all. Wrong! After 45 minutes, 4 breaks to rest my tired arms (there goes the upper body strength), 3 scrambles to catch my slippery, condition/gel slathered brush from falling in the toilet (there goes the neatness), 2 pauses to talk myself out of quitting (there goes the patience) and 1 very loud sigh, I realize that I’ve not even covered half of my head (there goes the quickness)! Yikes! I turn to the left and turn to the right and fall in love with my super shiny and super defined coils, take a few gulps of water and forge ahead. After 2 plus hours, I’m done and make a note to self: Write to vlogger and tell her lying is not ok.


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