Daily Archives: January 21, 2013

Happy MLK Day and Congratulations Mr. President!

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Watching the Inauguration footage of our President for his second term. Regardless of how one feels about his politics, I think that, as a black person, we have to acknowledge the significance of what it means for a black man to be elected to the ¬†highest office in the country, not once, but twice. I swear, after that first debate, Michelle pulled Barack aside and said, “Listen. I know you’re tired! I know you’re sick of fighting! But this isn’t about YOU!! It’s about every little black child out there watching you and seeing the possibilities!! Now, get it together and get ‘er done!!”

Oh, and on another note, black people didn’t elect Barack, everyone did. And, my personal feelings? The POTUS isn’t playing anymore. He doesn’t have a second term to worry about and he has an agenda that he will do his best to get accomplished.

That being said, as I watched the post speech footage, I remembered watching this video shortly after his first election and had to share.

Bwahahaha!! Muhammad Ali was a smart, SMART man!! ūüėČ

Happy MLK Day!!

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January 2013 Length Check: Post December Haircut

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The Wednesday before last, after my Katie Show outing, I had my sister take a few quick length check pics. I hadn’t taken any after my haircut in December, Wei was out of town and they are difficult to do alone. So, I took the opportunity of having another set of hands present to get a few quick shots.

If you recall, I wore my hair in a braid and curl (BnC) for the show’s taping, so my curls were stretched. As of 1/9/13, the shortest layers around my face are about armpit length, the side and crown layers are around bra-strap/mid-back length and my longest layer is waist length. So, my hair is back to where it was after my haircut in June 2012 (see here).

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That was a really good BnC! Gotta go refresh my memory about what I used and do it again ;)! *lol* Anywho, I’ll be sticking with stretched, low-manipulation, protective styling and search and destroys for the next 6 months or so to see if I can gain/retain an additional 2-3 inches all around. Working my way towards that tailbone/hipbone length hair ;). Need to get my diet and exercise game right first though :(.

 

Fairytale vs. Blunt Ends

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Last month, I straightened my hair and, though I was pleased with the length I attained, I was disappointed that my perimeter wasn’t fuller. You see, ever since I entered the Curly Nikki presents Kim Coles’ Grow Out Challenge in early 2011, my goal has been to have waist length hair with a full perimeter. I dreamed of having a “hemline” that looked like that of one of my hair crushes, Courtney Natural Hair.

*le sigh*

*le sigh*

Although I’ve surpassed waist length a couple of times since then (I’ve had one trim and two haircuts since January 2012) … my slower growing and more breakage prone crown, low density nape, propensity for search and destroy (S&D) missions, and a layered cut have prevented me from achieving a full thickness perimeter.

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December 2012: Prior to 12/16/12 cut.

As I mused over the elusive, full hemline that kept evading my grasp, I happened to end up watching Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers one evening. It was shortly after I had my hair cut and specifically requested that more length be taken off of my longest layer and less off the shorter layers so that I could thicken up my perimeter. But, as I looked at the women in LOTR and their long, flowing, wavy hair, it struck me that their wavy locks were also not blunt or full at the ends. And, you know what? I kind of liked it!!

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I then remembered that this type of perimeter is called “fairytale” ends. I think that I came across the term a couple of years ago on The Long Hair Community forum in thread like this one here. As I started perusing the pages of the post, I began to think about how many of us equate a thick, full perimeter with healthy hair and a wispy, thinned one with damaged, unhealthy hair. But, as I looked at the pictures on the thread, many of the women appeared to have very healthy, shiny, long hair despite having wispier ends. As I read the comments, I noted that the fairytale ends were attributed to varying hair growth rates and employing S&D trimming versus overall trims/cuts to make the ends even. The thinner ends weren’t frowned upon as unhealthy, damaged, broken or “dead” (I love that one — all hair is dead! *lol*). It really was interesting to see how this type of hemline was celebrated, and even coveted, in this forum as it is viewed as more natural looking and enables easier updos due to the tapered ends. Also, similar to Chicoro’s “Lead Hair” ¬†Theory,¬†it is espoused as a way to achieve longer lengths as one is not constantly cutting hair that grows unevenly (due to varying growth rates) even, which results in the loss of healthy hair length.

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Sources: left pic; right pic

In contrast, when I attempted to find a similar thread in the Long Hair Care Forums (the black counterpart to The Long Hair Community) I didn’t have much luck. The only thing that I found was this thread: Girl, ur ENDS are JACKED UP. LMBO (I’m sorry, that subject is HEE-larious to me!) In this thread, one young lady references fairytale ends and how she thinks they look nice on longer hair. A couple of others essentially said the same. And a few commenters did state that thin ends did not necessarily mean damaged hair. However, the overall consensus was that thinner ends look wrecked, they need an “aggressive” cutting and “hanging onto thin ends” for the sake of length is pathetic. I think in the black hair community in particular (though this does seem to be a universal view), thin ends are typically seen as a sign of broken, damaged, unhealthy hair and we’ve been conditioned to think that there is no way that wispy ends can be healthy. If someone insists that their thinner ends are healthy and their hair isn’t damaged or excessively breaking, we give them the *side eye*. And, don’t get me wrong, in many instances, thin ends are a sign of damaged hair. But, I’m discovering more and more, that may not always be the case.

As I continued to think on this, I realized that, generally speaking, I had never been too concerned about even hair. Over my 12 1/2 years of being natural, I generally only wear it straight twice a year. As long as it hangs well when curly (which can be a challenge given my multiple curl patterns) and feels healthy, I’m good. And, when I do wear my hair straight, I have never gone for the pin-straight look. I always curl it in some fashion to give it volume, body and bounce as my hair is so fine and would be very flat if I wore it bone straight. Finally, I thought about how even long, wavy or curly weaves or wigs often don’t have a blunt perimeter and usually have fairytale ends to make them look more natural.

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So, all this being said, I’ve started re-thinking my two year goal of achieving a full thickness perimeter! I mean, I still love a full hemline and I still want mine to be thicker than it is above (think I’m on the right path with my last cut). And, of course I want my ends to be healthy, which is why I cut off any split ends and SSKs that I feel or see regularly. But, now, I don’t know if I’m worried about my hemline being blunt anymore. I’d like to get to tailbone/hipbone length as my ultimate goal. But now, I think I’ll be happy with, and may even prefer, a healthy fairytale hemline on me versus the elusive blunt one that I’ve been seeking for the last two years. Go figure!

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Please feel free to expound upon any of your answers and/or add your thoughts on this topic in the comments below!