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Big Chop Journal Entry #1


I had thought about going natural for some time now; years to be honest, but never had the courage to make such a drastic change. Cutting my hair meant removing everything that I hid behind and who I thought I wanted to be. Hair to me was always an equalizer. As a young black female, I always feel like I am competing for positive attention and respect; and I found it easier to get both, by wearing long weaves. My years of insecurities had spread throughout me: from my toes to the tips of my relaxed tresses. My insecurities were personified in the hairstyles I mirrored from TV and magazines that up until recently I believed was my only way to get ahead. I discussed the idea of doing a big chop with my husband, family and friends and consulted hairstylists and beauty blogs for months. While I wasn't sure of how and when I wanted to go natural, I was sure that I did not want to relax my hair anymore. My hair was completely dead and broke off every time I put a comb or brush to it.


After 3 months of new growth, I was ready to do my big chop on a random Monday where I just couldn't stand styling my hair with two different textures. I called my hair salon when they opened and booked an appointment for that evening and also convinced a close friend to witness it. Post-big chop, I honestly feel like more of a woman than I ever have before. It forces me to stand up straight and wear my hair with confidence. I've had both positive and negative responses, while I go about my day. And to be honest, the negative responses empower me the most because it means that I'm different. I am noticeably being my true self and I love that. -Shazmin Big Chop Diva Pins & Needles jacket via Urban Outfitters / Sporano dress via Century 21 / Rue Gembon necklace / ASOS clutch You can also find me on
Photography: Toni Smailagic
Makeup: Dre Brown
Hair: Valerie Price, owner of Valerie Signature Salon for Natural Hair in Harlem
Stylist: Joy Adaeze, co-founder of

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