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View Full Version : Someone please stop me...



Smokie
March 11th, 2008, 09:24 AM
The more I read about terminal length and artificial terminal length... damage caused by chemical haircolor and -cones, etc... And the more I compare my length to my henna-only roots...

It makes me want to chop... Like.. major chop.

My henna-only hair is two maybe three inches long. It feels wonderful and I haven't had my hair very short since I was in kindergarten.

The thought of chopping off all of the previously chemically colored, bleached, flat ironed, seriously damaged length crosses my mind several times a day and seems to get more and more tempting every day.

I'm so scared that with the current damage to my length I won't be able to grow nearly as long as I'd like to. It seems like the entire process would be made so much easier if I chopped and started with strong healthy hair.

I'm not sure what I would look like with very short hair or what I'd think of it. It would, at the very least, be interesting to go through the entire process and see myself as an adult with every length from 2 - 40?".

DBF would hate it, I know that. Every time I've mentioned the idea to him the conversation goes something like this:
Me: "I'm thinking about cutting all my hair off and starting fresh."
Him: "Noooooooo."
Me: "It'd all be healthy and strong then."
Him: "NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO."
Me: "No?"
Him: "NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!"
Me: "Why not?"
Him: "Noooooooooooooooooooooo."

I just keep thinking about the quality of my hair. How damaged and fragile it is. That's not to say I haven't noticed tons of improvement since learning how to take better care of it. It's much softer and shinier than I can ever remember it being. But my roots feel soooo thick and strong and my length so whimpy...

I'm at a loss here. I need some guidance. Someone please stop me.

ETA: I just told DBF all of this and his response was "Awwww, baby not your hair. :("

girlcat36
March 11th, 2008, 09:32 AM
No, no---don't cut!! You might like it at first, but I bet you'll regret it in a month's time. Why don't you wait until you get to a length goal, BSL or waist, to trim and maintain?

Nightshade
March 11th, 2008, 09:34 AM
Oh, sweetie, hang in there. I promise, it gets better.

P R O M I S E.

I was exactly where you are now, but it wasn't flat ironing, it was dye damage, bad enough that my hair broke off from hips to BSL. It felt like velcro, like cone-coated plastic doll's hair. It was split, it was disgusting, and I hated it.

And I kept it.

I honestly recommend trimming off either half your growth per month if you still want to gain a little length, or all your growth per month if you're happy staying where you are. Trimming keeps the worst of the ends in check. I won't lie, they're going to split again, and that's why you do a little at a time, just to keep the ends as nice as possible.

Some people have done drastic cuts and loved it, but if you take all your hair to 2-3 inches, you're going to have a lot of awkward phases to grow out all over again.

Why not start with trimming once a month, which will make you feel like you're "doing something" to make things better (which is a very important feeling), and then in 6 months see if there's enough improvement to continue along that path, or if you still want a major chop. :)

lora410
March 11th, 2008, 09:36 AM
Don't do it! We have a 2 week rule around here and if in two weeks you want to cut then I suggest a SMALL trim. I often want to go snip snip but then I think of the anguish to start all over again. I suggest get it up and out of your face. I wear my hair up almost daily. Alot of people do microtims every few months so you dont lose alot of length. That way your hair can catch up and you don't lose length :flowers:

FrannyG
March 11th, 2008, 09:41 AM
Two week rule! Two week rule!!!!!! :bigeyes:

Seriously, don't do a thing, except baby your hair for the next two weeks. Put it up, do a deep treatment, soak it in oil, just don't cut!

I went through this myself not too long ago, and the sweet folks here helped me see reason. Today I'm feeling really good about my hair, and believe me, I would have regretted it if I'd chopped.

Put. The. Scissors. Down.

It will all be okay. Honest :flowers:

Smokie
March 11th, 2008, 09:44 AM
No, no---don't cut!! You might like it at first, but I bet you'll regret it in a month's time. Why don't you wait until you get to a length goal, BSL or waist, to trim and maintain?

That's what I was planning originally. To get to at least BSL DRY and then maintain before trying for the ultimate goal of TBL dry. For some reason it seems like starting with a healthy head of hair would make it all a lot easier. And I wouldn't have to fuss about demarcation at all.

I'm invoking the two-week rule. Just told DBF who assures me he'll think I'm gorgeous no matter what.

And working with a stylist to find something that suits my face and removes most of the damage is, of course, on the table. No matter what I'll lose a ton of length if I do it. 'cause I'd like it to take no more than two cuts (one in a few weeks and one a couple months later) to remove all of the damage.

Gaaaah...

Edited to respond to more people:

Nightshade: Oh, it's a ton of dye damage. You've seen my pre and post henna pictures. I've still got a massive line of demarcation. Y'all may not notice it in the pictures, but I certainly do. Every time I look in the mirror. What's odd is I really don't have much in the way of splits. I've found one recently and it's on one of the stupid broken hairs from the hairline on the side of my face where my headset breaks them. The hair is just incredibly fine and weak compared to the virgin roots. This is the longest I've let them grow out in many years. And while, yes, there would be a lot of awkward stages, they're stages I don't remember ever experiencing.

I also remain concerned that I'll get close to my goal and still want to see what this really short hair thing is about. Because I've always been to chicken to try it.

Lora410: Absolutely. I will adhere to the two week rule. Consider it invoked. And I've been wearing my hair up for the last two months. Every day. I'm on day 62. Most days I even have my bangs pinned back.

Frannyg: What's strange is I've actually been feeling good about my hair. But I'm realizing that I've never gotten to experience the very short hair thing. And I've wanted to give it a shot for years. My hair has, for the last fourish years, floated between chin and shoulder length when dry. Right now it's softer and shinier than I ever remember it being. So strange. I've also been doing deep treatments and playing with henna on my days off lately. Did an overnight SMT last night even.

Cichelle
March 11th, 2008, 09:51 AM
Please don't do anything hasty. But if you think about it for a good long while and still decide to do it, I completely understand why. A few years ago, I wanted to start fresh after years of using chemical relaxers in my hair, but I waited until I had enough new growth to put in a small ponytail...then I chopped it. If I had cut it too short, it would be even harder for me to adjust. But ultimately, cutting was the best thing I've done for my hair. Still, it was quite an adjustment getting used to short hair and all I wanted it to do was GROW. And of course, it did. Just realize what it's going to be like while it grows back. You know, those in between stages and such. As others have said, consider doing it gradually.

squiggyflop
March 11th, 2008, 09:56 AM
dont cut it.. only about 5-6 inches of my hair are henna only... the rest has been bleached multiple times (manic panic flashlighting done at home) its been dyed every color of the rainbow... it was bright fusia pink for months.. i never really learned how to do the roots only so everthing got bleached over and over... after a bunch of henna applications the ends seem less damaged.. however i did cut off 2 inches in the beginning because the ends were horrible and scraggly.. also camellia oil has helped me to lessen breakage. im not planning to cut my hair at all until i cant stand it anymore, then ill trim off a couple of inches myself... i dont trust hairdressers after my last cut... it looked like a mullet as it was growing out...

Cricket
March 11th, 2008, 10:00 AM
I'm in the middle of trimming right now to get rid of bleach damage. I've been through the 'start over' phase about three times, and each time I've decided against it. I had short hair for a long time and liked it...nostalgia makes it easier to think of cutting it.

But seriously, trim trim trim. I do small trims throughout the year, and recently, when I hit a bad patch, I trimmed from waist to BSL. Its odd losing that much, but I'm happy to keep some length.

Think of it this way... if you learn to take great care of your hair now, when its damaged, you'll have lots of experience by the time all of the damage is grown out. You'll know what your hair likes and dislikes without too much experimenting on virgin ends.

spidermom
March 11th, 2008, 10:23 AM
I say go for it! If it were me, I'd wait until shoulder length to cut off the damage. But I've had short hair before and know that I don't want it again.

Guenever
March 11th, 2008, 10:35 AM
It's much softer and shinier than I can ever remember it being. But my roots feel soooo thick and strong and my length so whimpy...

Okay, THAT's creepy.. you just described MY hair!! O.o -- I'm in the exact same situtation, unfortunately.. :( so I understand your dilemma..

I dyed for more than 6 years (red, blonde, red AND black, brown.. you name it =)
In August 2006 I joined LHC and said "stop!".. I started a very, very awkward phase of growing out dye which I'm still in of course.. (dark blonde/light brown roots and a reddish brown length.. not exactly pretty :wink:)
- Now I have 8" of virgin hair with a 3,1-2" ponytail circumference, but already at APL it's no than 1,5" and it just continues aaaaall the way down to my ends where it's less than 0,5" thick.. I was pretty rough with my hair during those 6 years as well.. blow drying, a LOT of teasing to get volume, washing in hand soap, using rubber elastics, hair spray etc, so I guess that didn't improve the situation much =)

- Every day I look in the mirror and can picture what my hair would've looked like if I hadn't mistreated it all those years.. and I'd do anything to get rid of the dye and the thinness it caused - but that would mean a 30" chop.. and as a longhair not only on the outside, but the INSIDE as well, that would be too much for me to bear.. I know that I couldn't go through all those stages again..

And the thing is - some days I really do like my hair! I can't wear it down -I'm too conscious about the whole dye-thing and thinning ends.. and because of the fact that my ends are color treated they don't stay nice that long either..
But it doesn't bug me that much, really.. I love updos, and I'm growing and keeping track of it to make myself happy, and since a chop wouldn't do any good for me -- I just won't go through with it..
In stead I trim when I feel like it and treat my ends very, very gently in general..
So, now I'm done rambling..

In general, keep your locks if that's what you really want.. :flowers: Treat them gently, trim once in a while - and watch the dye/damage travel down your length..
On the other hand - if losing your length wouldn't be as disasterous to you as keeping it as it is now - maybe a fresh start would be the right thing for you.. It's all up to you, but stick to the 2-week rule..
You said that you're scared that it wouldn't grow as long as you wanted if you kept the length.. it will grow whether you cut it or not, but if it's breaking off at the ends due to damage you may not notice it there.. But you'll see it by looking at your henna roots =)

Wow, long post.. have to stop :wink:
Do what you think will be right for you in the long run.. :flowers:

Smokie
March 11th, 2008, 10:52 AM
Thanks everyone for being so supportive. Oh, and scratch the comments about not finding any splits. I got to looking through my ends just now and found quite a few brand new splits at the very very tips... Grrr...

I'm so glad to know I'm not the only one with damaged length.

Cichelle: I'll definitely consider doing things more gradually. Perhaps waiting until I can make a ponystub with my henna only hair before a big chop. Or cutting all my new growth every month or two after I have a couple more inches.

I think if I'm not wholeheartedly behind the giant chop idea in two weeks I'll go for a mini-trim to help with the newfound splits.

Squiggyflop: In the last year and a half my hair's gone from chemical red to black to very dark reddish brown with tons of platinum highlights to strawberry blonde to carrot top red to a very unnatural shade of red back to strawberry blonde to brown to new penny color to the current henna. There were several steps in between each color mind you. And all chemical until my recent henna experiments. It does feel healthier since the henna, but I can't help but notice a huge difference just in the way my roots feel versus the length. The length is incredibly fine and weak whereas the roots feel so strong and thick and amazing. I also had a two inch trim just after joining LHC thinking it would be my last until May. Now I'm beginning to wonder.

Cricket: You have a valid point. Though I'm not sure I'm learning much about what my real hair likes and dislikes. Definitely learning what my damaged awful hair likes. It likes tons and tons and tons of moisture and requires a ton of aloe gel mixed with some glycerin and MORE oil to look remotely decent. It feels decent most of the time, but the frizzies are ridiculous without my daily cocktail. It seems figuring out what my scalp likes is the hardest part right now and that's where the good hair is!

Spidermom: <3 Good to see support for both options here. I'm an experience junkie so half the appeal of cutting out all the damage now is getting the full experience of growing long hair. Starting with next to nothing and going through all the inbetween stages.

Guenever: Soooo glad it makes sense to someone! And yes, breaking off at the ends definitely. I just measured my ponytail for the first time at 3" and was very surprised. I always thought it was smaller. That is, of course, without my bangs. I might be in the iii category when my henna only roots get long enough to be in the ponytail. I think no matter what I'll be making a trip to the person I trust with scissors (but not color! Bad experience that one.) in a couple weeks. Either for a microtrim, a bigger trim, or a giant chop. We'll see. Thanks for the commiseration. Call it some shade of schadenfreude, but it's nice to know I'm not the only one going through this.

Madam Librarian
March 11th, 2008, 11:10 AM
Do I remember correctly from a thread at TBB that your BF is overseas? If not, I apologize for what is going to be a crazy sounding post. :)

If so, please consider keeping your hair long for him, at least for when he returns home. I know someone will swoop in to say, "We aren't here to decorate anyone's world!" but I think this is a special case. I certainly don't think that all women should kowtow to men just because, but I do think that we should all do nice things for one another as a show of love and respect. I see this as one of those nice things you could do for him.

Clearly, your boyfriend likes your long hair. He probably carries pictures of you and your long hair with him. In his head, he is missing all that he left at home, including you and your long hair.

Leaving home and going to a strange place is hard enough without adding the military stuff he is also doing. Soldiers cling to their thoughts of home. Those thoughts are a real rock for them; something to help them through whatever difficult times they face. I'm not saying you have to change absolutely nothing about yourself (because we all change, it's just how life works) but if he protests over cutting your hair, throw him a bone on this one. You can always cut later. Maybe you can even butter him up to the idea once he gets back and settled. ;)

Just another way of looking at the situation.

Lize
March 11th, 2008, 11:21 AM
First of all, as others have said: Two week rule. You don't wanna do anything like this and then regret it.

My suggestion would be to get a small trim first, like half an inch or and inch. A trim like that can make a huuuuuuge difference!

Also, have you thought about maintaining your hair at your current length and trimming once a month or so until you think a lot of damage is gone?

If you really wanna do it go ahead (but not until after two weeks! :)). But I kind of doubt that you really want to since the thread is called "Someone please stop me..."

Smokie
March 11th, 2008, 11:38 AM
Do I remember correctly from a thread at TBB that your BF is overseas? If not, I apologize for what is going to be a crazy sounding post. :)

If so, please consider keeping your hair long for him, at least for when he returns home. I know someone will swoop in to say, "We aren't here to decorate anyone's world!" but I think this is a special case. I certainly don't think that all women should kowtow to men just because, but I do think that we should all do nice things for one another as a show of love and respect. I see this as one of those nice things you could do for him.

Clearly, your boyfriend likes your long hair. He probably carries pictures of you and your long hair with him. In his head, he is missing all that he left at home, including you and your long hair.

Leaving home and going to a strange place is hard enough without adding the military stuff he is also doing. Soldiers cling to their thoughts of home. Those thoughts are a real rock for them; something to help them through whatever difficult times they face. I'm not saying you have to change absolutely nothing about yourself (because we all change, it's just how life works) but if he protests over cutting your hair, throw him a bone on this one. You can always cut later. Maybe you can even butter him up to the idea once he gets back and settled. ;)

Just another way of looking at the situation.

Aww! Now that made me tear up a bit. Yes, he is overseas. He's never seen me with long hair though. At least not with what I consider long. My hair was chin length when we met and touched my shoulders occasionally when he came home for midtour. It's currently the longest it's been since high school. I'm amazed it's grown this long. I went a year without trimming and it was barely touching my shoulders from being slightly longer than chin length at one point. I worry that it will turn out I have a very short terminal length like my mother. Hers was to her waist or longer in college (with chemical relaxers in it! Eww!) and now won't grow even to APL. Though I think if I could get her to put away the velcro rollers, flat iron, and blowfryer and embrace her wurls it would. Le sigh.

And yes, the boy does love long hair. I once asked him how long he thought I should grow it and his response was "Ankles!" with no hesitation. Scared me a little. He doesn't carry a picture of me with him, "Only in my head" he says, and I can think of one big reason why he doesn't as well as a couple silly reasons like being afraid it would get damaged.

You do have a really good point though. About not shocking him too much when he comes home. Though we do have webcams and digital cameras and things to keep the pictures fresh and recent.

Also, Lize, you're right. I'm not sure what I want to do. I posted the thread because I suddenly had an overwhelming urge to go cut it all off right now. And the idea has been growing more and more tempting over the last few months. I do think that I'll be seeing the hairdresser in two weeks definitely. But I'm beginning to think a microtrim is all I'll want. If I'm going to do something drastic I need to be 100% sure of it. Looking at pictures of all the inbetween stages is helping a bit right now. And thinking about how often I'll have to go to an actual stylist for a trim and reshape while it grows out is making my wallet cringe already.

Also, if I'm going to maintain I want at least two or three more inches first. That way I can make a few more buns and things.

Hypnotica
March 11th, 2008, 11:42 AM
I've still got a massive line of demarcation.

Demacaration lines are sexy!

Smokie
March 11th, 2008, 12:27 PM
Demacaration lines are sexy!

Bahahaha. That made me laugh much harder than it should have. Quick derail of my own thread to explain. I work in tech support for a communications company. So, cable, internet, and phone. The wire that runs from the pole to your house is called a drop. And where the drop meets your house (there's usually a box here) is called the point of demarcation or, simply, the demarc. Now, while I do use the term demarcation to describe my hair, I have to think really hard about it. Because every time I see or hear the word demarc or demarcation I instantly think of the point to which we guarantee service without extra fees (inside wiring vs our wiring) and whatnot.

/derail

And thanks for the comment. I don't feel like mine's sexy at all. It's much better than being a brunette from the front and a coppertop from the back, but I still don't love it. If there were a hairsafe way to make it blend better I'd do it. But all I can think of is adding highlights (with bleach! Phooey!) to my roots. And I don't want to do that.

alys
March 11th, 2008, 01:13 PM
The 1st thing 'they' say to do when starting on a path of growing long, healthy hair is to cut off the damage. I found myself following that advice a few times in the recent past and it sucked. However getting the damaged hair off was nice, in it's own way. Of course this being a Long Hair site, we are encouraged not to cut :) But sometimes its just necessary...

Mahars
March 11th, 2008, 01:21 PM
Ooh I did that and I have to say I regretted it. I cut to a little below chin length a little over a year ago and it drove me nuts. I hate having hair in my face, so those awkward short times were a pain. After a big break-up, I went and got blond hi-lights and damaged it all over again. Ack!

I have to say that it's improved a lot since I joined LHC though. Other than the very ends, the length is much healthier. I just have to baby it a lot and put on deep treatments at least once/week. I say just cut off the very most damaged ends - the parts that are hard and unredeemable. The rest may improve if you just give it some time and take good care of it.

Ruadh
March 11th, 2008, 01:36 PM
Last May I went for layers to get rid of the damage. Not my best decision. My longest layer is thin with many splits while the other layers are healthy & splitless. I decided to do micro trims on the longest layer until the other layers catch up. I just couldn't cut off all my hair after having it long for the last 10 years.

Soraya
March 11th, 2008, 02:30 PM
I used to have APL-BSL hair with three inch LCH-roots. They felt soo much better than the rest of my hair. Well, I cut it back to an inch (now I'm up to 5"). You have no idea how much I hope had just trimmed a couple of inches; I probably would have noticed how horrible it was to lose even that much length and never gone for the huge chop.

So, if I were you, I'd take max. 3" off first, then give it another two weeks to see how I felt about cutting some more. And if you decide later that the trim was a bad idea, you can always remember that you were about to cut off a whole lot more (all I get is "thank goodness I didn't shave my head, my hair would be 4" long instead of 5"!).

Kirin
March 11th, 2008, 02:36 PM
Definately wait it out. Do other things with your hair thats good for it, deep treatments, oilings, whatever floats your boat, but dont cut.

I wish i'd found henna before i cut off 10 inches of hair and ended up with a near buzz cut. I could have dealt better with trims every few months, than that short short hair! I'm growing now, still some damage, but only a few inches, still..... i'm waiting until i hit my goal of waist until i EVER trim again.

I find myseld daydreaming we coudl be like those dolls, you cut the hair then pull a string and it all grows back LOL

Nightshade
March 11th, 2008, 03:46 PM
Nightshade: Oh, it's a ton of dye damage. You've seen my pre and post henna pictures. I've still got a massive line of demarcation. Y'all may not notice it in the pictures, but I certainly do. Every time I look in the mirror. What's odd is I really don't have much in the way of splits. I've found one recently and it's on one of the stupid broken hairs from the hairline on the side of my face where my headset breaks them. The hair is just incredibly fine and weak compared to the virgin roots. This is the longest I've let them grow out in many years. And while, yes, there would be a lot of awkward stages, they're stages I don't remember ever experiencing.

I also remain concerned that I'll get close to my goal and still want to see what this really short hair thing is about. Because I've always been to chicken to try it.

You know, if you hate it that much and you're still curious about short hair, give yourself some time to think about it and then maybe just do it. It may be the best oppertunity you have to have short hair without cutting of years of healthy growth.

I still kick myself for never bleaching my hair in college and dying it green... that was 5 years ago and I'm STILL wishing I'd done it. :rolleyes:

Ria
March 11th, 2008, 08:10 PM
I still kick myself for never bleaching my hair in college and dying it green... that was 5 years ago and I'm STILL wishing I'd done it. :rolleyes:

You have a point there Nightshade. When I was in high school I promised myself that I would dye my hair metallic blue if it ever got to waist length but it never got close. I used to joke 'watch it get that length when I am 40 and mother of a few kids' and here I am, with waist length hair and a few kids even if I am not 40 yet and not feeling that metallic blue is quite the right choice at this point in time :p

So if you want to do something drastic to your hair do it while you have the chance.

On the other hand I agree with the idea of welcoming home you BF with long hair since he loves it.

I chop my damage 3-4 inches at a time, once or twice a year. Enough to make me feel I am making a noticeable difference but not enough to make my hair feel much shorter which works for me on both fronts.

I just see that I am of no help whatsoever, I can see both points of view again, sorry :rolleyes:

wintersun99
March 11th, 2008, 08:16 PM
..............

tiny_teesha
March 11th, 2008, 08:16 PM
i was in the same stage as you. I occasionally get the urge to cut it off, but i won't.
Photo shop yourself a picture of your hair healthy and long where you like it.
then right out a timeline, if you started now, how long it would take if you never trimmed.
Then write a new one adding in where you trimmed. Write your ages near it too. It opens your eyes.
Write a new one if you had the big chop.

Keep in mind it can only get thicker and better, yes starting from the roots.

Perhaps if you look at my blog or photo journal you can get an idea of my hair history? It was shocking.

CONTINUE HENNA monthly.

I startd henna, my splits have greatly reduced, i S&D about monthly as with the henna. I did find my hairs are thicker and coarser (so less soft) and stronger, but they are healthier. Try out a routine and products that work for you.

Your hair looks good i don't know what you are worrying about!
If in the end after trying everything. Then cut. Maybe not that short, try out a sholder length cut or something, not toooo short. But if you want to shave your head- go for it. Seek advice from Lamb maybe,...it is a long frustrating journey.

Elfling
March 11th, 2008, 09:03 PM
Man, we all get cut it off urges now and then. I had one when I had the flu last month and was laid up looking at beauty magazines all day. ::)

My vote is to wait it out, and then start trimming a bit every month. You'll still be reducing/eliminating the damage but it won't be as much of a shock.

plus I think your hair looks stunning with the henna. I'd start doing more regular treatments and I'll bet it will improve drastically.

Good luck whatever you decide <3

AmandaPanda
March 11th, 2008, 09:12 PM
Ok, I haven't gone through and read every post, but I recommend the 2 week rule from experience. Please don't go chopping off your hair all at once. I can't tell you how many stories I've read about women who cut their hair on a whim and immediately regretted it afterward. Sometimes two weeks isn't enough (I thought about cutting mine a few years back, ended up doing it, then regretted it a few months later)

JennQ
March 11th, 2008, 10:35 PM
My $.02: Only cut your hair short if you are 100% sure you want short hair. I think being unsatisfied with the condition of the length of your hair is still better than being unsatisfied with the cut. If you still feel in a couple of weeks that you want short hair, and you are sure that a short 'do will be flattering to your face and will work with your hair type, then... Well, then wait another two weeks to be absolutely sure. :)

Also, I'd ordinarily say don't worry too much about what your BF wants if it's contrary to what you really want, but given the situation, I think his opinion should carry more weight than usual.

Good luck!

Myeka
March 11th, 2008, 11:01 PM
I think you should do what you can handle. If you really hate your hair shorter, than just keep trimming. Or cut it as short as you can handle. You don't need to get a pixie cut. Maybe just a couple inches would make you feel better. I'm still growing out a bit of bleach damage I have. I cut it up to my chin, as that was as short as I could take it. I'm glad I did... it was a lot cuter than I thought it would look and it was fun. My hair was very grateful for it too. It became super soft.

Then again, I was dead set on the idea so no wonder I have no regrets. I would often look at my hair in the mirror and wonder what all those white dots all over my head were. Product build-up? When I discovered LHC and learned what they were... wow, the horror. I had thousands of these white dots visibly all over my head. I cried and cried... I almost chopped it all off myself but waited the next day for the hairdresser. lol

I'm sure your hair is no where near as bad as you think.

nowxisxforever
March 12th, 2008, 02:34 AM
NO CHOPPING.
Not allowed.

Microtrims goooood. Stable length gooood. :]

Smokie
March 12th, 2008, 11:05 AM
Okay, it's almost bedtime so I won't be responding to everyone individually because I'm tired. But I want to thank everyone who's posted in this thread offering support and alternative ideas. It really means a lot to me to have somewhere to turn for advice, ideas and support.

To those who mentioned my DBF and sent well wishes in his direction and suggested keeping my hair for him, he thanks you also. He really does love my hair, but he wants me happy more than anything and is one of those truly amazing people who... I can't even describe it. But he's my hero. He did say "you longhairs are sweet" at one point during our conversation about my hair and this thread yesterday. "Longhairs" has infiltrated his vocabulary. Hehe.

I've been rather down and very stressed lately. I've always made drastic changes to my hair when down/stressed/completely broken/etc. I may put on a strong face, but having DBF so far away is... well, it's a lot harder on me than I usually let on.

At this point, I've decided this much. That if I'm not 100&#37; sure I want a major cut, I will go get a microtrim. Should I decide to go the maintain where I am route, I'll try for a couple more inches (Would be nice to be able to make a decent infinity bun) and then make with trimming all or most of each month's new growth. This would all be much easier if my hair were long enough to trim myself. But it's not.

Most likely I will wait until DBF comes home before I consider anything more than a trim. Looking at my face and pictures of short curly hair, I'm pretty well convinced the shortest I can pull off is a chin length bob anyway. Which is what I had when DBF and I met.

I plan to do some more investigation in the way of splits to see how far up they go and whatnot. All I've noticed so far are at the very very ends of my hair (<1/4" up the strand) so I may not need a major chop just yet and may be able to maintain where I am or even try for a bit longer to maintain. Should I or the hairdresser find the splits to go up much farther, I may come home with a bob again. This would remove about 5" of damage. And if I continue growing 3/4" or more each month, it won't be too horribly short when DBF comes home. I still have a couple months of growing time.

I think the massive chop crisis has been averted for now at least. And by the time DBF is home the damage will be grown out another inch or two at least (provided I stick with the MN and vitamins and things).

Le sigh... I just want the damage to go away so it can grow long and strong. :(

ETA: Most recent (taken yesterday in the sun 'round noon) shot of my demarcation:
http://i124.photobucket.com/albums/p4/smokierose/S6300941-1.jpg

Think I need to henna again for color buildup. I'd do it tomorrow, but it's my birthday, I have to work, and I will probably want to be lazy and just enjoy the dinner my mother plans to make. Wait. My schedule's weird. I'm awake at night. I've got tomorrow night off and my birthday doesn't start till midnight anyway... Maybe I will henna again tomorrow...

Xandergrammy
March 12th, 2008, 12:39 PM
Please don't cut it!! I've been growing out my natural colors for almost 2 years and before that I dyed my hair and permed it and was very mean to it. I haven't cut. Some TLC will have you loving your hair again. Put down the scissors and go do something nice for your hair. :flower:


P.S. Smokie, I just saw the picture you posted of your hair. It's gorgeous. Please don't cut it.

Delenn
March 12th, 2008, 01:08 PM
The last 6-10" of my hair is very very very damaged. My routine at that time was wash/condition/blowfry/flat iron daily. Not only that, my hair had been bleached and chemically dyed twice. I'm estimating the amount of damage left because frankly you can't tell from looking at it, but it's still there. I've only done the rare micro trim since late '05... fact is I'm too lazy to do it, so most of my old over processed hair is still on my head. (Pretty much at hip length now)

Enter LHC: went cold turkey into a CO routine, threw out my heat stylers and alcohol based styling products. Started deep conditioning with coconut oil and (when I can remember) I use jojoba on my ends. My "styling product" is CB's Shea It Ain't So for when I want to wear my hair down, the stuff makes awesome curls. And I henna.

I was in a dilemma to chop off the bad stuff for a long time, now I'm glad I didn't. Coconut oil is your friend, that's my miracle product. :)

salamander
March 12th, 2008, 05:41 PM
I don't think you'd be begging us to stop you from cutting if you really, really wanted to cut. How do you feel when you think about cutting? What part of that feeling made you come and ask us to stop you? Do you think that part is going to take your brain over and make you simmer in remorse if you cut, or do you think it's just nervousness that will go away after you do it? Don't cut off your hair until you understand the motivation behind wanting to do so, is what I'm saying.

Poolsoflaughter
March 12th, 2008, 06:01 PM
I used to dye my hair like crazy...When I joined here, I started doing SMT's, and that helped soo much! I stopped dyeing completely, and began getting a couple medium chops of a few inches here and there; now I have completely virgin hair. What I'm getting at is, that I can relate, and want to chime in to second the 2 week rule. With a little pampering, or mini trims, you'll be really happy with the results.:)

Smokie
March 15th, 2008, 04:50 AM
Please don't cut it!! I've been growing out my natural colors for almost 2 years and before that I dyed my hair and permed it and was very mean to it. I haven't cut. Some TLC will have you loving your hair again. Put down the scissors and go do something nice for your hair. :flower:


P.S. Smokie, I just saw the picture you posted of your hair. It's gorgeous. Please don't cut it.

I strongly dislike my natural color. It matches the mud in central Texas. I prefer a nice East Texas mud red. So the goal isn't to grow out my natural color, but to remove chemical dye, bleach, and heat styling damage. I'm so frustrated because despite dropping the brush, dropping the chemicals, dropping the cones (my hair hates them apparently), and giving my hair TONS of TLC, I'm finding absurd amounts of splits. If I don't trim at all and it grew another inch or two, I'd be in for a four inch chop just to get rid of awful ends. :(

I'm happy with the current color (did another henna for my birthday and I think my virgin roots actually took the color this time, the difference in porosity is ridiculous), but not with the quality of my hair. It makes me sad to look at the ends. Thank you for the compliment though. :)


The last 6-10" of my hair is very very very damaged. My routine at that time was wash/condition/blowfry/flat iron daily. Not only that, my hair had been bleached and chemically dyed twice. I'm estimating the amount of damage left because frankly you can't tell from looking at it, but it's still there. I've only done the rare micro trim since late '05... fact is I'm too lazy to do it, so most of my old over processed hair is still on my head. (Pretty much at hip length now)

Enter LHC: went cold turkey into a CO routine, threw out my heat stylers and alcohol based styling products. Started deep conditioning with coconut oil and (when I can remember) I use jojoba on my ends. My "styling product" is CB's Shea It Ain't So for when I want to wear my hair down, the stuff makes awesome curls. And I henna.

I was in a dilemma to chop off the bad stuff for a long time, now I'm glad I didn't. Coconut oil is your friend, that's my miracle product. :)

Oh, I've definitely become a coconut oil junkie since joining up here. And am definitely treating my hair much better. But my ends are still breaking and splitting and continuously getting worse. My hair had a good deal more damage than yours I think. Primarily from chemicals, though it did see a blowfryer every few months and a very hot flat iron a bit more often than that.


I don't think you'd be begging us to stop you from cutting if you really, really wanted to cut. How do you feel when you think about cutting? What part of that feeling made you come and ask us to stop you? Do you think that part is going to take your brain over and make you simmer in remorse if you cut, or do you think it's just nervousness that will go away after you do it? Don't cut off your hair until you understand the motivation behind wanting to do so, is what I'm saying.

Baha. No I wouldn't. I want long hair. I want curls all the way to my hips or tailbone. The thought of cutting out all of the damage right now makes me sad, but also a bit relieved because I'd be able to grow completely healthy hair with fewer steps. I came to y'all because I need the support not to do it as I think I'd look awful with hair shorter than jaw-length when curly and I love being able to pull my hair up. I'm not sure whether I'd be relieved or simmer in remorse. Likely remorse as, again, I think I'd look rather horrific with hair shorter than a jaw-length curlybob. Thank you for the advice. I think I did need to answer those questions.


I used to dye my hair like crazy...When I joined here, I started doing SMT's, and that helped soo much! I stopped dyeing completely, and began getting a couple medium chops of a few inches here and there; now I have completely virgin hair. What I'm getting at is, that I can relate, and want to chime in to second the 2 week rule. With a little pampering, or mini trims, you'll be really happy with the results.:)

My hair does feel better since learning to treat it kindly. Except for the ends. I do fear, however, that if I were just to microtrim, my ends would immediately start splitting again and I'd wind up even shorter.

All those responded to (yay for multiquote!), I think I've come to a bit of a decision.

I'm going to talk it over with DBF, of course, but I think I will cut back to that jaw-length curlybob after my next measure (trying to keep track of how quickly my hair grows). That is if DBF approves of this action. If he decides that he'd rather enjoy my hair at it's current length (or a bit longer if I can grow it without splits and breakage) for awhile when he comes home, I will go for a microtrim and see if I can get two or three more inches before the splits run rampant again. Three more inches would open up a few more updo's for me I think. If DBF still loves the curlybob I was sporting when he met me and doesn't have a problem coming home to it instead of "long" hair, curlybob it is.

I estimate that if I chop to curlybob, grow back to wear I am now, and repeat, it will only be two or three curlybob chops (plus or minus an extra trim) to remove all of the damage.

What do y'all think?

Oh, and here's a picture of me with a variation of the curlybob I keep mentioning. This one's a bit longer than I think I'll be cutting to, but you get the idea.
http://i124.photobucket.com/albums/p4/smokierose/me/7673.jpg

tiny_teesha
March 15th, 2008, 05:18 AM
Smokie, your hair is gorgeous!!!

I don't see any damage. My ends are thin but the way i see it, the less i trim now, the thicker it will be when it is longer (coz i may be cutting off at the longest length the hair can be when it is in the resting stage)

I S&D, it really helps. I'm in need of one now and my monthly henna which i am late for ( i try to do it in the first week) But i've been really busy. Me and mum are henna-ing together this week sometime. Should be good fun!

Smokie
March 15th, 2008, 05:32 AM
Smokie, your hair is gorgeous!!!

I don't see any damage. My ends are thin but the way i see it, the less i trim now, the thicker it will be when it is longer (coz i may be cutting off at the longest length the hair can be when it is in the resting stage)

I S&D, it really helps. I'm in need of one now and my monthly henna which i am late for ( i try to do it in the first week) But i've been really busy. Me and mum are henna-ing together this week sometime. Should be good fun!

Aww, thanks Teesha. Thing is, I know my hair. If I can see a million little splits now (it's like every third hair is splitting at the end), and don't do anything about it, it will keep growing and get long, but I'll have to chop a LOT in a few months. Splits don't stop when they get started in my hair. And not all of my hair is long enough to pull round where I can see it. Need more length before I can S&D and self-trim effectively. :( Hehe. I cassia'd my mom's hair when I did my first henna. It was fun!

Shanarana
March 15th, 2008, 08:16 AM
I was reading through all the posts until I came across the picture you posted, and from the looks of it, it really does not look bad at all to me.

Smokie
March 15th, 2008, 08:39 AM
I was reading through all the posts until I came across the picture you posted, and from the looks of it, it really does not look bad at all to me.

The ends are tucked in. And at present, most of the breakage and splits are in the lasts quarter inch of hair.

Elfling
March 15th, 2008, 11:11 AM
So why not pick something in the middle? Keep getting regular trims. You don't have to sacrifice the length you do have, and you'll still be getting rid of the damaged parts that bother you.

GlassEyes
March 15th, 2008, 11:35 AM
If my hair were that fried, I'd try to salvage before cutting.

But if nothing works, I'd probably chop.

Smokie
March 15th, 2008, 01:21 PM
DBF vetoed the curlybob. Well, he said it's my hair and I could do whatever I wanted, but he wants me to keep as much length as I can. And I love him and respect him enough to want to make him happy. Decision made. Microtrim it is.


So why not pick something in the middle? Keep getting regular trims. You don't have to sacrifice the length you do have, and you'll still be getting rid of the damaged parts that bother you.

Sadly, I can't afford regular trims. Not as often as I think I'll need them. It's been two months since my last trim. And that was a 1-1.5 inch trim that I badly needed. So I'm not sure what to do in the way of trying to maintain.


If my hair were that fried, I'd try to salvage before cutting.

But if nothing works, I'd probably chop.

You're right. I totally should try harder to salvage first. I think I just needed some support about it and DBF to tell me what he really wants to see when he gets home. I'm going to go for a microtrim in a week or two. And after my conversation with DBF I'm curious to see if I can get more length without horrendous splits....

We'll reevaluate everything after he's home. But for now, microtrim and attempt at more length.

truepeacenik
May 24th, 2008, 03:08 PM
in 1997, I got a spiral perm.
in 99 I cut off all the "damage." back to above BSL.
I hated it, and therefore did not take adequate care of my hair.
(why bother? it'll just get nasty again" have those thoughts? evict them from your head like a pair of crack-smoking leeches)
only now do I feel like I've "gotten beyond" the cut...and my hair is classic.
so: one cut, almost a decade of dislike.

ajr
May 24th, 2008, 03:20 PM
OK I don't mean to play devils advocate at all, and of course you should wait 2 weeks, but it sounds like you are curious about what it'd be like to have short hair. If you'd like to try it and think you can deal with the awkward growing out phase maybe you should cut it. I started growing when my hair was above my shoulders and to this day I still regret not shaving it all off and getting to experience truly short hair for once in my life DO NOT do anything you think you might regret, just give yourself time to think about it.

Blueneko
May 24th, 2008, 05:46 PM
I am a CHOP IT girl myself, just to get it done. But be prepared to hate it in about a month. Then be prepared to really hate for the first year of getting it to a decent length. Then be prepared to be really impatient and weepy in year two to get back to goal.

I would do a compromise. I would take it half way to the whole chop, whatever that is. Then baby the damaged ends with olive oil.

Riot Crrl
May 24th, 2008, 05:50 PM
Since the thread is over 2 months old, I would assume the OP either chopped or came to terms with not chopping, by now.

n3m3sis42
May 24th, 2008, 06:36 PM
I still kick myself for never bleaching my hair in college and dying it green... that was 5 years ago and I'm STILL wishing I'd done it. :rolleyes:

I actually ended up doing something like that when I was 26 years old. I bleached all my hair and dyed it blood red with brigt yellow streaks in front. I already had an office job at that time, but it was a "casual dress" workplace, which meant that it wasn't technically against the dress code. I knew it was frowned upon, but I was seriously considering leaving to go back to school for another degree, and I knew I was close to an age where I might not be able to get away with it again later if I waited.

It was so worth it, even though my BSL hair was so fried that I ended up cutting most of it off after a few weeks. It was worth it just to say I had done it.

...And Smokie, I am in the minority here, but I think that if it's really driving you crazy you should chop it if you want to. I agree with waiting 2 weeks to make sure it's *really* what you want to do, but I don't think cutting off damage is always a mistake.

In the situation above, it wasn't a mistake for me to cut my hair drastically after I damaged it with bleach. I just wouldn't have been able to deal with continuing to grow my hair with the condition it was in. Other people might have been able to deal with it, but it was too fragile for me and I don't regret cutting it then, and then keeping it short (between ear- and chin-length) until all of the super-fried parts were gone. Granted, my "chop" was only to ear-length, which is still longer than 2 inches, but I can't stand short hair and me and I was still happier with it than I think I would have been with the fried hair.

Edited to add: I just noticed Riot Crrl's post mentioning that this thread is pretty old. So I'm pretty sure my post is kind of pointless now, but I don't want to remove it since that's frowned upon here. Sorry!

Nightshade
May 24th, 2008, 07:48 PM
That seems so permanent, I think I would go for the electric colored wig! :D

In keeping with the idea of photo-shopping long hair onto your photo, maybe you could try a very short 'do as well? Perhaps you wouldn't even like the look...


I actually ended up doing something like that when I was 26 years old. I bleached all my hair and dyed it blood red with brigt yellow streaks in front. I already had an office job at that time, but it was a "casual dress" workplace, which meant that it wasn't technically against the dress code. I knew it was frowned upon, but I was seriously considering leaving to go back to school for another degree, and I knew I was close to an age where I might not be able to get away with it again later if I waited.

It was so worth it, even though my BSL hair was so fried that I ended up cutting most of it off after a few weeks. It was worth it just to say I had done it.

.

I'm actually having Beldaran make me a head full of classic-length green rope braids (always wanted a head full of microbraids too). I figure that way I can just tuck the red away and have long green minibraids whenever I want :D

Smokie have you see photos of AlleyCat? Her two-toned with the henna before she evened it out reminds me of yours. Perhaps it's worth looking into :)

Smokie
May 25th, 2008, 08:54 PM
Since the thread is over 2 months old, I would assume the OP either chopped or came to terms with not chopping, by now.

Yes it is. And as it's been suddenly resurrected, I s'pose I should make with the update.

More henna. More DTs. More babying hair. And my hair's been up for 138 days. I'm 2.5ish inches away from BSL (wet) and am much happier with my hair. The demarcation is still there but only incredibly obvious in horrible office lighting.

So yes, waiting and much talking with the boyfriend definitely kept me away from the scissors and I'm glad of it. I'm currently at a friend's place and she and her live-in mother have both been drooling at my recently henna'd hair. The shine, softness, color, and smell. They've decided to both join the ranks of hennaheads and learn more about hair. Teehee.

At this point I just wish I could make it dry as long as it actually is. And I'm definitely glad I decided not to chop. DBF will be able to express how glad of it he is fairly soon. I think I would have wound up regretting chopping significantly more than I might regret never having absurdly short hair.

Thanks again for all the support and opinions.

tiny_teesha
May 26th, 2008, 09:41 AM
I, believe it or not am going through the same thing!
MY initial aim was to grow regrowth to sholder then chop. Then i changed it to grow to waist and maintain. I will do just that until i make my decision because i still think at times i want to chop it to sholer! :)
HTH

LuXious
June 19th, 2008, 10:20 AM
Ha ha, Smokie. I had this EXACT same conversation with my husband once. Nope, actually. More than once. I don't have time to read over the whole thread, but I'm sure it's full of, "How about a nice trim to quench the urge to cut?" So I agree with that. By the way, it's June, and I'm not at BSL. A full 3" short of the goal thanks to a couple of "nice trims" which did save me from being at probably chin length and regretting right now.

sipnsun
June 30th, 2008, 10:45 AM
Don't chop, just do micro trims every few months and eventually you will get rid of all the damage!

brok3nwings
June 30th, 2008, 11:13 AM
I think that really short hair is something that only works with some people.. My face is long and i had my hair shaved almost and i hated it... it made my face super long. But, i liked it with 2-3 inches long. The problem is, to grow it. You will have to pass wierd stages...and you will be tempted to cut it again, or to do something with it (things that damage the hair).. but it is possible.
I know one thing...ive had my hair long until my 17 years old and then i cut it extremely short. I knew i HAD to do it. I think that most of us who love hair have tried it once or at least wondered how would that be. If you think that you will continue to have that urge to try short hair maybe yes this is the right time (because of the damage hair...).
Once i had extremely damaged hair, about shoulder lengh and i really wanted to let it grow...but then i was sad evryday to toutch my hair, to look at it. And i have to confess it was GREAT to have my virgin soft hair again, even if i only had 3 inches of it.
So...its up to you
:)

Gladtobemom
June 30th, 2008, 11:46 AM
I swear, if you stick it out. I did blow drying, cones, dying, and straightening with a flat iron. If you keep conditioning, and do some little teeny trims, it will get better.

I clarified 3 times before I got out my cone-addiction buildup. My hair felt much less crunchy, but very fragile. I stopped all heat and cones for a while, oiling alot with coconut oil and doin deep conditioning treatments. I trimmed about 1/2" off every couple of months and did endless s&d sessions.

I did go back to using some cones, it seemed to make my hair stronger and less "witchy."

My big turnaround came with starting to use daily oiling and religiously wearing my hair up or in a braid every day. If I braided, I oiled my tassel again too.

And . . . .drum roll please . . . what finally got rid of that straw feeling . . . Jason Henna Hilight conditioner. That stuff seemed to just make my hair feel soft again. (Thank you Nightshade).

I stuck it out till the damage line was at BSl, then I cut back to there. Now I'm back at waist again and it only took a year!

So I swear, it gets better if you treat your hair gently.

Oh, and the Ursula version of the SMT, Oil the night before, then do an SMT to clean . . . worked (and still works) wonders. If I do that with Jason Henna Hilight (I don't warm it much in the microwave) then I put a wool hat over my plastic disposable shower hat and leave it on for about 3-4 hours. My hair looked and felt its absolute best.

Nightshade
July 1st, 2008, 02:16 PM
And . . . .drum roll please . . . what finally got rid of that straw feeling . . . Jason Henna Hilight conditioner. That stuff seemed to just make my hair feel soft again. (Thank you Nightshade).

Anytime! That stuff is still my holy grail of conditioners :D