View Full Version : Going short, not by choice

January 14th, 2014, 07:46 PM
Has anyone ever lost their length due to an unwanted circumstance?
extreme tangles, gum in hair, burned hair, chemical damage, job restriction?

how long was it? And how much did you lose? And how did you cope with it ?

I went from BSL beautiful curls to bald once and it was quite life changing in many ways.
Looking back it all worked out but it was quite an experience. From the reactions of others to how felt about myself inside. Also learning to let go of something I felt a lot of identity with.

It was so hard, yet freeing in its own way. Almost a shedding of the skin. It also changed the course of my future. I had taken a semester off school as I was too embarrassed to go show up bald, and during the time off found a different school and changed my career path. I guess it was meant to be for me but I will never forget all the emotions that came with the unexpected loss of hair.

January 14th, 2014, 07:50 PM
I had a pixy once because I bleached my hair so badly that it wasn't salvageable. I didn't regret it and I loved the super short haircut. I also learned the limits of what my hair could handle. All in all, it wasn't overly traumatic, just a surprise.

January 14th, 2014, 08:44 PM
I lost my waist length hair almost a year ago to chemical damage. If you want the honest to goodness truth on my reaction...

I cried over it for days like a baby!!!

I'll never dye it again. EVER!!!

Then, 3 months after the chemical pixie cut that I kept short to get rid of the color and grow out natural, my husband was in a very bad accident and from then on, I ignored my hair because he needed me and his care took all of my attention and focus off my hair which meant nothing in the grand scheme of life. I've not cried over or belly ached over my hair since because it's just not that important when it comes to living and breathing. It's growing though so that's good. lol

January 14th, 2014, 09:18 PM
My hair was to the bend of my legs , when in October of last year I was with my BH at a hotel for a convention he was to be speaking at . . . And I had an accident with the drain . I was washing my hair like always . . . Leaning over the tub while on my knees . Well , to keep the story short . . . My hair ended up going down the drain , and got cought in the trap . I freaked out , and didn't want to wake my BH up , because he needed to rest , plus he couldn't have done nothing . I grabbed my hair with both of my hands , and pulled until it I was free . When I finally dried my hair , and looked in the mirror to see the damage . . . I tried my best not to cry , . . . My hair was where my butt met my legs . I had lost almost a foot . It is growing , but very slowly . I hated what happened , and so didn't my BH , because he loves my hair as much as I do , and helps me with the it .

January 14th, 2014, 09:21 PM
I had hair that was hip length and had to cut it back to grazing shoulder because of something going on with my shoulder. So I just enjoyed the shortness for a while but concentrated on growing it out long again.

January 14th, 2014, 09:26 PM
I was a science major before switching to education. One day I was in the o-chem lab, leaned over a mantle and my braid grazed the metal surface. It burned a break in my hair and I had to cut off 11 inches. It was almost to my goal length of waist, too. :( But at least I was able to donate the un-singed bits to locks of love. I was sad, but very thankful it didn't start my whole head on fire. :doh:

January 14th, 2014, 10:02 PM
You know my story already. I'm lucky I haven't lost much, and in the grand scheme of things - who cares? If I want it extra-long again, it will grow (probably). Right now I have to manage it with one hand, and that's all there is to it.

January 14th, 2014, 11:50 PM
I used to heatstyle every single time I washed (which was also far too often) and it was always on super high heat without any sort of protection. I fried my hair up to my shoulders (it was between BSL and waist at the time), so off it went. I don't regret the drastic cut, I just regret doing the things I did to make me have to cut it.

I definitely felt less attractive when I had shorter hair though. I was growing into my looks and, with long layered hair, I felt conventionally attractive for the first time in my life. And then, with one haircut, it was gone. I knew I could grow it out again and it would look lovely once I had more length, but man... that was a rough year for my ego.

January 15th, 2014, 12:30 AM
My hair ended up going down the drain , and got cought in the trap . I freaked out , and didn't want to wake my BH up , because he needed to rest , plus he couldn't have done nothing . I grabbed my hair with both of my hands , and pulled until it I was free.

Oh my... shudder: :bigeyes: I literally cringed when reading this, its truly a horrible story! What a nightmare getting stuck like that and having to break free by ripping the hair off.

January 15th, 2014, 04:30 AM
I've bleached out indigo. *rolls eyes* Twice.

The first time I didn't know it would shred my hair (almost BSL) and turn it khaki green. I was totally gutted and became horribly obsessive about it. I had awful hair for a long time because I was determined to repair it not cut it. But I had to go short not by choice in the end :(

The second time I did it deliberately - I have taken a lot of life's frustrations (and major depression) out on my hair. This time (March 2013) I started with about 2 inches of natural root growth and the length was indigoed. It was only to shoulder - since the first mess up, I've never been longer than 23 inches. I ended up with a pixie which was under 2 inches at the longest point. Again not by choice, as I was job hunting and my hair was a total mess. But this time around I kind if enjoyed it being short and spiky, and promised myself I'd see how I felt about my natural colour when it was all shoulder length. (I always hated my natural colour when the roots came in against whatever colour dye I was using at the time.) plus I've had no job for over a year and not cutting or dyeing has been very freeing financially. I've got 2 friends who get me to colour their hair (one with permanent dye and one with henna) so I still get to 'use dye' just not on my own hair.

The best part is that after years of calling myself dark mouse brown, I've been able to learn to appreciate my natural colour, level and tones, and have reclassified (see member title above avatar. Also, I need a new avatar, that's still indigo.)

January 15th, 2014, 07:46 AM
My then almost WL hair caught fire on a medieval event a few years ago. The HORROR! I turned my head too quickly too close to a candle. :rolleyes:

Fortunatley, I reacted fast and was able to put it out before there was any horrific damage done. I was quite shocked for the rest of the evening, though, I had to get bangs and layers, but didn't have to take too much length off.
Now I NEVER wear my hair loose at events. Ever.

January 15th, 2014, 07:57 AM
Sadly I have atopic eczema (an aggressive kind), and thus I felt I had to cut away my bra strap length hair, as the quality was suffering... Very frizzy, dry hair. When one has extremely itchy eczema on one's scalp and one scratches there repeatedly for months... You lose hair, and the hair gets really frizzy as you lose lots of hair (from the root, leaving hair in all kinds of lengths all over your head) from scratching too intensively. It was really sad, and I cried when I cut it off, but I didn't want to walk around with hair like that. I almost felt embarrassed. Now I'm growing it out again, and it's still frizzy (albeit not as bad as then... yet), but right now I won't let it bother me, my passion for long hair is stronger than my dismay for long, frizzy hair.

January 15th, 2014, 08:00 AM
Yes. I had BSL length hair, and because of many henna's and many chemical dyes, the last chemical dye was just the last straw. My scalp got burnt, my hair got chemically cut off and the color absolutely turned soot black (not a natural looking black) instead of light brown. So yes, lesson learned. It's been years since my hair has seen dye. I went to a chin length bob back then, BTW. I didn't feel I had the right to complain. It was my own damn fault. My mother warned me, but put the dye on at my request anyway. Oh well... stupidity happens, I guess. :lol: It's a good thing I can laugh about it now. Back then my scalp needed a specially prescribed cortisone lotion to get better.

January 15th, 2014, 08:26 AM
I had hair that was very close to WL. It was dark brown/black and I decided I wanted to be blonde. I should have known better since I've tried this a couple times before and it never worked out. So, after my bleaching attempt I had tonnes of hair break off, in HUGE chunks. The chunks were mostly behind my ears and the nape of my neck (for some reason), and they broke from WL to shoulder length. The stylist said the rest of the length was pretty mangled as well, so she'd have to cut it. She cut the rest of it to just above APL, and it masked the broken chunks, although the ends of my hair looked pretty thin. And of course, I wasn't blonde. I had neon orange roots with brown, yellow, and orange splotches through my hair. She said I couldn't touch it again for at least 8 weeks, and it'd be a slow process to actually become blonde.

There was no way I was going to look like that for 8+ weeks. So I dyed my hair very dark again to cover the mess and that's the last time I haven't dyed it since. I'm just trying to grow it back long now and baby it. I learned my lesson the hard way. What a waste! I ended up with the same hair color I had before, minus my long hair :(

January 15th, 2014, 08:40 AM
I've never had to go short all over unwillingly (unless you count forced haircuts when I was a child) but I had a few chunks 'chemically cut' when I used to bleach (weekly, I used to dye the streaks different rainbow bright colours every week for gigs and re-bleach when I wanted to change, the horror :lol:). I also once lost most of my bangs/side fringe, I used to be a smoker and accidentally used a rigged lighter (you pop the cap off and turn the gas restricter thingy, so the flame is like 6 inches high). That wasn't fun!

January 15th, 2014, 11:40 AM
I haven't lost lots of hair every time I've had to have a chop to just above shoulders (as my hair has not yet ever been super long), but every time it's happened it's been because of bleach damage - first when I decided to go blonde when I was 16 and I bleached my hair four times in one month, I had to cut about 4 inches in the end, and my hair was still falling out so much that after a few months I had to say good bye to blonde hair and I just coloured it brown then spent a year trimming and growing all of my own colour back.

Then I've done similar things again where I've bleached my hair and it's ended up horrible and had to go to above shoulders again. My hairs abit longer now as I've only been colouring it black for the past couple of years. Now I'm back to growing the dye out and I'm hoping to not have to have any big chops in the future as short hair doesn't really suit me much and has only really happened out of necessity.

Wow I feel like this is a long text post haha

January 19th, 2014, 02:42 AM
great readings people's experiences, although emotional reading too

I'm just about to lose hair. Its between APL & BSL but it is so bleach damaged that I need at least 5/6 inches cut off to start with and it wont be healthy until all the bleach is gone. I'm dreading it but it has to be done. I really have learnt a tough lesson here and have realised my hairs limits. Its bringing back the awful childhood memories of when I had my TBL length hair cut to my shoulders and handed to me in an ice cream tub. I really dislike having hair as short as my shoulders, I feel really different about myself but hey ho, its my own fault

January 19th, 2014, 03:48 AM
Happy to know that I am not alone in "bleaching wonderland" ;)

In October I had to cut my BSL hair to just under chin length. I have pretty strong and thick hair and I had tried bleaching it before to get from black to brown without noticable damage. This time around I wanted to go from black to a lighter red, and I bleached it about 5 times over 2 months. What a mess! :( It was fried!! I am NEVER going to use bleach again!
I have a dark red color now and layers that I have to maintain for a while, but it looks a lot healthier now.

I feel really bad and stupid about what I did. I don't feel as myself with shorter hair, I feel naked somehow...
Indeed an identity loss, sigh. But it will grow back stronger. I don't use permanent color anymore, but still use red color to do the roots every 6 weeks. Someday I may not want/need to color anymore... yay!

Hmmf, so... we know that it will damage our hair, but we do horrible things to it anyway... why? ;)

January 19th, 2014, 03:04 PM
Happy to know that I am not alone in "bleaching wonderland" ;)

Not at all :laugh: See that starting length of chin? That's because I was bored with my dyed level 2 brown mid back length hair that I'd kept the exact same way for years and decided that platinum blonde would be awesome. It wasn't awesome, and I had to keep it at chin while I trimmed off every scrap of dye since it was in such bad shape. Oh well, the silver lining is that I discovered I quite like my natural colour after all :)

January 19th, 2014, 03:27 PM
I went from having almost waist length hair to having a chin length bob. Even though it was all virgin, it was very damaged from 7 years of straightening and having my hair cut with a razor comb. I liked it for a few months. I even had about 3 trims to keep it short, but about 6 months ago, I chose to grow it back out. I'm taking care of my hair now. I've not touched a flat iron or blow dryer in six months and I've gained about 4.5 inches or growth.

January 19th, 2014, 04:28 PM
The last time I went 'short' was when a stylist cut off 8 inches instead of the 4 I'd asked for. That was the last time I went to a salon. :mad: Thank goodness for self-trimming.

January 19th, 2014, 04:58 PM
sadly, i can think of at least four really dramatic (or should i say traumatic) incidents where my hair had to be cut short. 2 involved perms and the other two involved bleach and dye. one of the many reasons i'm happy i found LHC is that i've learned to appreciate and work with my natural hair color and texture. my friends and family don't get it. most of them tell me i should go blond again and a couple of girlfriends keep trying to put a curling iron to my hair. i check in here regularly to help me stay strong and motivated. :guns: i also go through my pinterest hair albums for inspiration (see my signature).

January 19th, 2014, 06:21 PM
I was abou 10 or 11, my hair was mid back and I got head lice from school. Once we got the lice completely out, my mom chopped my hair to chin length.

January 19th, 2014, 10:11 PM
Several years ago I was growing out my hair, then one day on impulse got a perm. Yeah. No.

After not being able to handle just how curly it was, I cut it into a pixie again. I kept it that way for a long while, I loved it :) But now it's back to growing for me, and I'm only about seven months in. No more perms, lol.

May 26th, 2014, 04:23 AM
The last time I went 'short' was when a stylist cut off 8 inches instead of the 4 I'd asked for. That was the last time I went to a salon. :mad: Thank goodness for self-trimming. Exactly! Once I lost almost 14 inches due to the clumsy stylist. That was the last time I went to the salon too, and it took me, let's say, 15 years to get rid of the shorter length trauma!

May 26th, 2014, 05:04 AM
I've been coloring my hair in every color under the sun since i was 13 (i'm 21 now) and it was always a little damaged but not too bad, because i never bleached it.
Then a few years ago i decided i wanted to go blonde again, but i had henna on top of countless chemical dye-jobs. I went to a hairdresser and we talked it through (she made me swear i knew what i was getting into, but she was willing to do it) and after 4 hours of bleaching and toning my hair was a gorgeous platinum blonde. Of course i knew it was going to be fried, but i did it anyway. After a few months i got sick of how many products and styling i needed to make it look presentable, so i went back and had it cut from waist to chin length and i started hennaing again to avoid damaging it more.
Now my hair is a little past APL and i'm still dealing with the damaged bottom part. The henna made it blend in with my 'new' hair really well but really, i wish i let it grow out instead of bleaching. It breaks, it splits and i will be doing a lot of microtrimming to slowly get rid of it while i'm growing my henna out (yes, i'm officially tired of spending time and money on my hair color and i really want to see my virgin hair again).

chen bao jun
May 26th, 2014, 09:27 AM
I've never really had a hair disaster (well, I don't count the time I burned the front of my hair off because I only had to have bangs from that) but at least twice I went to the hairdresser and came out with hair cut traumatically shorter than i asked for/wanted. Once was just before my wedding.
I can't tell you how much I cried.
I avoid not only hairdressers now but anyone who sees long hair as 'raw material' waiting for an (unwanted) fashionable hairstyle.
Its amazing how many people know how I 'should' wear MY hair.

May 26th, 2014, 10:19 AM
I've had this happen many, many times. It's the reason why I've never had long hair most of my life. A lot of my unwanted cuts have been due to chemical damage....I know my hair can't handle being blonde since I have naturally dark mouse brown hair but once or twice a year I get a bug up my tush and have to try to go blonde again. I have been dying my hair all colors of the rainbow since I was 12 years old. Also, having been a hairdresser caused me to be around scissor happy stylists all the time. They would always insist on cutting my hair because of all the damage and give me short, choppy layered mullet cuts. It was awful. I no longer trust anyone else to cut my hair and have been trimming my own. Last "professional" cut I had was 10 months ago. Although, I would like to interject here and say not ALL stylists are scissor happy crazy people. Since I understand what it is like to desperately try to grow your hair long and attempt to maintain it, I never take off more length than asked. Sometimes I even take off less just in case. :) anddddd I also promoted the use of natural oils and co washing! ;)

May 26th, 2014, 06:11 PM
KaleidoscopeEyz that is my story too. Always going shorter to correct a bad cut of chemical job. It is hard because one time hair will look great, then when I go back to do it again something goes wrong. It is such a cycle with me. I just started doing my own roots. It is nervewracking but I am really nervous to go to a stylist tight now after all my mishaps.

Chen I would cry if my hair was cut badly or to something I did not like right before a wedding. You are so right about the "raw material" comment. A lot of stylists see it as a canvas to showcase their work. All they see in their mind is the before and after photo. The always forget we must wear and style it later.

EmmAutumn I cant tell you how many times I wish I had just left mine alone in the past.

May 26th, 2014, 06:12 PM
I had tail bone hair that was a solid ii thickness, and had to take a medication which was known for hair loss. There was no way around it - I had to take it. My hair fell out in chunks, so that I'd have TB length strings right next to empty patches. I had it cut to just above shoulder (the shortest I'd been at that time as an adult) and kept it there until I was done with the meds (a year).

They told me it would all grow back once I quit taking the medication. Nope. I have a decent size bald patch right where your bangs would start, and my pony has never grown over 1.75" since. Plus it came back in slightly wavy! (I'd always had stick straight hair).

How did I handle it? Sick as I was, that was still one of the very worst parts of it for me. It. Was traumatizing, and I cried off and on for days.

There's always a chance I'll have to take that drug or similar again. If I ever do, I'm cutting to a pixie at the first sign of hair loss.

May 26th, 2014, 06:41 PM
Aww rags! How heart breaking. In fact this whole thread is heart breaking! :grouphug:

May 26th, 2014, 06:55 PM
Well, maybe there was a way around it. I just didn't know at the time. I had my last pixie cut in May 2008 and it was prompted by lice. I didn't have anyone who would pick the lice for me, and I couldn't think of how to do it myself, so I chopped it to a pixie and was able to pick my lice myself. The joys of having a large family... everyone shares EVERYTHING.

I rocked the style, though, and it was okay. I had pixies at age 9 and 15 as well, and so it was my one and only pixie cut as an adult, and it will never happen again. I found out afterwards that olive oil will really help smother the lice, and if I was patient and had lots of clips, I could have sectioned my hair and picked them out myself. I just didn't know, and had very little imagination. I had MBL hair then. I could have been at or close to knee length by now. The good thing is I was reminded of how my hair was when it was short, and was able to give myself a final short hair experience before I decided to get serious about growing my hair long.

I knew that short hair wasn't for me when I had it short and ran into an old acquaintance from high school who had only known me with short hair. I felt like screaming, "This isn't really my hair! For over 10 years I kept it between BSL and MBL! You aren't seeing the real ME!" It was then that I knew I wasn't going to keep it short, even though I was told how cute and young I looked by so many people. I knew then that I *had* to grow it long. How long, I wasn't sure, at least TBL or classic. Then I found LHC and decided on the goal of knee length. That will be a truly phenomenal length, and I believe I will feel that it is definitely ME.

May 26th, 2014, 08:40 PM
My hair had just reached knee length when my health worsened & I started losing hair. I was very upset & didn't know what was wrong as I watched my length become thin & get shorter as the longest hairs fell out. By the time I found the problem (gluten induced gut damage caused nutrient deficiencies, including low ferritin) my length was barely there from shoulders down to the few tough hairs that were still down near thigh length. I had severe trouble with tangling after my hair became that thin, but I couldn't bear to cut shorter than BSL. So, I cut to BSL & have been working on improving my health & regrowing my hair since then. It is finally getting back to it's former growth rate, and it's been a long time since any major sheds, so I'm seeing improvement. The regrowth is now at BSL (but I still have the thinner hair below that... marked by a bleached streak I put in when I discovered the reason for my health problems).

I had an earlier big cut due to a bad perm when I was a young teen. I had my then BSL hair permed, & it turned out looking very bad. I waited for a year to grow it out (because I didn't want to be the only girl in school with a pixie cut), and then cut it off to just about chin length. With my poofy wavy hair that still left me with triangle head! :)

May 26th, 2014, 10:48 PM
My youngest daughter joined the Navy right out of high school and asked me to cut her hair above shoulder length. She had always had long hair. We were both crying during that cut.

May 27th, 2014, 08:58 AM
I thought the rule for military women's hair was short enough to not touch their collar or long enough to put up in a bun or braid? Has it changed?

May 27th, 2014, 09:05 AM
I cut my hair from waist length into a pixie because I got sick and all my hair fell out. It felt great at first because I love changing it up, but once I started looking back at what my hair used to look like before I started losing it was really hard. Even now, it's not nearly as thick as it used to be!

May 27th, 2014, 09:08 AM
Years ago when I was 16 I had bsl permed hair, and that was after the curl shrinkage!!! I went to a different stylist for a re perm and told her only trim a tiny bit off as I'm growing it long. Unfortunately at the time I had a lot of naturally sun bleached hair from a sunny holiday the year before and it did look dyed from the shoulders down. There was no damage as it was a natural colour change. Next thing I know she said we'll have these bleached bits off and started cutting at shoulder without even asking!!!!! I was mortified as I had a hot date that evening and turned up looking like a poodle, instead of the lovely long blonde shaggy hair I was used to. I was not happy!!!