Bailey’s Big Chop | Toddler Regimen 1


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We all have a niche or two, right? Well, hair has always been mine…

 

I started doing my own hair sometime around the tender age ten. Yes, ten. It was the best decision for our household as I did not like my mom doing my hair. Kids know so much, don’t they. I did my best to stay fresh. Especially my bangs. I always put a little water on them at night and wrapped a pink sponge roller on them so they’d be set for the morning! I could show you dozens of pictures with that doggone pink roller. 🙂

I would go to a beautician every 4-6 weeks, or when my mom had it to spare in the budget (usually for a touchup on the relaxer) but in between I was a kitchen beautician. I even colored my own hair for the first time around seventh grade. I’ve cut off several inches more times than I can count during high school and college, and I opted to do my big chop by myself so I could cry alone in the bathroom (2010). See this clip to see how short I cut it! Eeeeek!

I’ve blogged and vlogged for the likes of NaturallyHappyHair.com and NaturallyCurly.com and have several posts here on this site and on my YouTube about hair (I got away from it in the fall of 2014).

So hair is my thing. I definitely don’t know all but I know what has – and hasn’t – worked for me. I know how to research that of which I need more knowledge.

Needless to say, having a daughter caused everyone to be like, “Oh I know her hair will be fly!” And it is; even after what I decided to do to it the first weekend in October 2017. (Bailey was around 15 months old.)

With the exception of bacon and ice cream, I am not a fan of unhealthy. Relationships. Lifestyles. Presidents. If it’s unhealthy, it’s gotta go!

Dead / split ends / rough and scraggly strands are no different.

 

Bailey was born with a full head of hair! The wives tales are true y’all. I had heartburn so bad I just knew I was dying. I’m not laughing. After her birth, I never felt that kind of pain again. As with many African American babies, her hair was silky and shiny for months and months after birth. It was super thick as well. I kept her routine simple, as I do now. I wash every 7-10 days and cowash once or twice in between.

Her texture threw me for a loop and I’d always tell my dearly departed cousin, Brittany, that if Bailey kept the texture which was similar to hers I was bringing Bailey to her home to raid her bathroom cabinets.

Over the months leading up to the big chop, her hair spiraled downhill with thinning sections and coarse ends. I used castor oil on the thinner sections and whether it was the oil or not, I don’t know, but some sections grew in thicker and in a texture unlike the longer sections. She and a balding section from ear to ear that I could mask at times with ponytails. But it eventually grew in and was about an inch long at the time of the chop.

So I knew her hair was capable of great things!

 

Black women notoriously have many textures. Mine is more coily at the top of my head and loose near the front, all in the 4a and 4b range (if using the well-known natural hair numbering system). Well Bailey has curls in the 3s. All the 3s. Each section has a different kind of curl. I think she retched back (use an Arkansas accent to say that phrase) to ancestors who came before her because she didn’t get this hair from either parent.

 

I’ve been paying attention to and taking great care with her hair. But things happen that are often beyond our control. Black baby hair is known to change over the course of their first years of life. Genetics just is what it is and regardless how moisturized and clean and low-manipulation I am with her hair, it just is what it is. The changes with her hair, in my opinion, fall into that category.

 

Her texture very well may change even more, but it’s going to do so with healthier ends attached. Many probably disagree with cutting a child’s hair but MANY don’t have to do it. *insert sweet smile*

 

Thin but-oh-so-cute-and-full-of-personality ponytails be gone!

Her TWA just as adorable as it was when she was a newborn. Good hair is growing hair. If you or your child are holding on to hair that won’t let your head be great, consider making that change. Consult several stylists (as I did), pray (that you don’t cut too much), and then move on. It’s hair. It’ll be back soon.


UPDATED January 2018

I get a lot of questions about the regimen I’ve created for Bailey. Regimens are important in my opinion because you need to know what’s working and what to scrap. On a regular basis, each morning or every other day, before we head out for the day, I use the LOC Method. Because Bailey is still rocking a TWA (teeny weeny afro), I can spritz her hair with water before adding a leave in, oil, and cream.

These are the main products I use:

Leave in by Miss Jessie’s or Shea Moisture (Detangler)

Oil by Qhemet Biologics, coconut oil, or local retailer SweetHead Naturals oil for kids

Cream Moisturizer by Bask and Bloom

Butter by Natural Sis 72 (I use the first on her hair at times and body everyday)

 

I keep it simple. These products sit on her dresser by her changing table so I can easily grab it each day. An honorable mention is the Tangles No More – Leave In Refresher spray by Natural Sis 72. I use this sometimes before we walk out the door regardless if I did the LOC method already or not. It’s a quick moisture boost for her curls.

While the LOC method can be for daily (or every other day) use with super short hair like Bailey’s, I only soak her hair in water and condition it every 3-4 days. I wash it every 7 or so days. And I detangle it each time conditioner is on it. I can do this because it is short and dries quickly, but as it grows and we begin doing actual styles, I will more than likely alternate with a co-wash one week and a shampoo wash the next. Below are products I like to use for conditioners and shampoos.

Elasta QP Olive Oil and Mango Butter Shampoo

Uncle Funky’s Daughter Richee Rich Moisturizing Conditioner

And I also use some type of Shea Moisture shampoo but I can’t recall which one is in her tub…I own most of their line but think it might be THIS ONE that I use for her.

I did start out using the baby shampoos for her hair, worried that products I use might be too harsh. But I quickly learned those are 1-not necessarily made for most African American hair textures and 2- dried her hair and left zero moisture. So I scrapped those after just a few months. See Baby Hair and Afros for an early account of what I was using for Bailey’s hair, as some of what’s mentioned above is mentioned there as well.

Ohhh lest I forget….the winter weather may bring about changes in hair. I try to be mindful of what goes ON her head when we go into the bitter temps. The picture above is a good example while the one below is not. The cotton of the Peppa Pig hat is NO GOOD for black hair. Cotton sucks out moisture. Her hood in the picture above is a polyester material that will absorb oil but won’t leave her hair dry and brittle. Even under my hat (below) I have a scarf on my head…so I need to begin doing the same with her.

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