Being a woman means that we value our beauty and our outward appearance significantly. The reflection we see in the mirror can affect our entire day if we’re not happy with how we are representing ourselves to others. Our mood can change seasonally with how we want our style to reflect our mood. We may purchase new pieces of clothing or change shades of nail polish occasionally, but the major factor that pulls it all together is our hair.
It’s not enough though for most women to feel beautiful for themselves, no. Even if we don’t admit it, we want gratification from others and if you’re a single woman you want that gratification from prospects. You want to be seen as attractive and wanted. Many may not admit it, but they fear to do a “Big Chop” thinking that they’ll look like a boy or masculine. Or maybe they fear that they won’t attract the opposite sex…I’m here to set the record straight.

It was Winter 2013 when I decided to start wearing my hair in a short nineties Toni Braxton bob. I kept getting the itch to cut it shorter and shorter. I kept switching up my hairstyles, but the maintenance and upkeep of short relaxed hair were not only wearing on my pockets but time-consuming. I had enough of sitting for hours in the hair salon and decided one day just to walk into a barber shop and have it all buzzed off. By Winter 2014 I had a new lease on life, and it was the most freeing decision I’ve ever made.

big-chop-datingEveryone told me I looked great with it, and I fell in love with the new look immediately. Looking back on those pictures, I did have some work to do; learning my curl pattern, products for my natural hair type and what cuts worked best to frame my face. The ultimate test though was finding out how this new “me” would affect my dating life.

As my hair started to grow in, I began to receive more attention than I’d ever received in my relaxed hair state. I can’t say it’s because I looked better natural, although I believe I do, because I felt more like myself and my confidence had gone through the roof overnight without me even knowing it.

I’d get messages here and there online from men asking me what made me decide to cut off all my hair. (Not that they had any clue whether or not I’d been short all my life) I tell them that this is who I am, and I don’t feel I have to hide behind mounds of hair to feel good about myself. I also get messages, glares, or even stopped by a gentleman in the street who address me as confident, beautiful, and assertive. I’ve received far more compliments from males saying that they admire the boldness that a woman has to pull off a look that many are afraid to risk than criticism.

All in all, it has been a struggle, though. There haven’t always been good days. I did try to grow out my natural hair twice in an attempt to see its true length potential and also to gauge if I would receive more attention from prospects. I saw no difference. I can say though that the most attention comes when I feel my best, and that’s been a fact.

I have found that I’m happiest when my hair is lowly buzzed, and my face is free bearing to the world. I have been with partners who have appreciated me either way, but a real partner will enjoy your beauty when authentic and not forced. So at the end of the day be yourself, find what makes you happy, and love will follow.

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Posted by Carla Ashley

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