Ch-Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes: The Big Chop (And Why You Should Too)

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If you follow me on Instagram and saw Thursday’s blog post, then you probably noticed I chopped off all my hair—more than ten inches worth! I’ve been known in the past to secretly plan a hair appointment and then show up to school the next day with all my hair gone; something about the shock of such a big change is thrilling to me. Some people say I’m brave and that they could never do the big chop like I do, but I’ve always disagreed. While they feel super attached to their hair and protected by it, I, in contrast, associate chopping my locks with freedom and positive transformation. So if you love my hair and want to hear about my specific cut (or even if you hate my new ‘do), I’m sharing all the deets below, along with some reasons you could use a fresh hairstyle too.

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I first decided I wanted to cut my hair again back in April, but I wasn’t quite ready to let go of my long locks—I promised to save my dramatic chop as part of a makeover right before heading off to college. When I binge-watched “Pretty Little Liars” throughout June and the start of July, Aria’s short ‘do at the end of the series got me really excited to shed my tresses. I finally scheduled the appointment for last Tuesday morning. Before any major hair change, I recommend making a Pinterest board with pictures of what you want so your stylist knows exactly how to create your desired look.

I made a Secret Pinterest Board to keep my haircut a surprise, but now it’s public for you to see here. While not all the same, a lot of the inspiration pics were a little longer than chin-length with some wave and an A-line slant. I just kind of showed my stylist the pictures and trusted her to do the rest. In the end, we decided to go with a very slight A-line, a few subtle layers (unlike the blunt cuts of my inspiration pics), and some asymmetry in the front—my right side of the part is longer than the left! I absolutely LOVE how it turned out, and so did everyone else in the salon. The asymmetry in the front was a fun and edgy twist to keep my bob super fashion-forward.

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Whenever I cut my hair, it’s almost always to donate it to a program like Locks of Love or Pantene Beautiful Lengths. I hardly ever go in just for a trim. In fact, I got my hair cut for split ends back in May and my hair stylist even asked, “What’s the deal? Why aren’t you chopping it all off?”

In order to donate your hair, it has to be at least ten inches long, clean, and put in a ponytail before cutting. You can read more about the Pantene Beautiful Lengths donation requirements here. This was my fourth time donating my hair! I’m sharing ponytail pics from each time below.

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Here I’m donating to Locks of Love back in 2010.

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Here I am in 2013 donating to Locks of Love again.

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This was my first time donating to Pantene Beautiful Lengths back in 2015.

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One reason I think it’s a great idea to take the plunge and chop your hair is because the act can hold a lot of meaning to someone else. Your hair and your ability to grow it is most likely something of which you take advantage—I know I’ve complained about a bad hair day too many times to count. But think of all those suffering from alopecia or the children who lose their hair due to chemotherapy during cancer treatment. You can be the force of change that gives them the gift of confidence back. There are a lot of ways to help those in the cancer community, but what I love about donating your hair is that it takes no money. Any person, from any kind of socioeconomic background, can give back in this way. All it takes is a lot of hair and a willingness to sacrifice it to someone in need of it more than you. Unfortunately, Pantene Beautiful Lengths will stop accepting hair donations after December 31st, so your opportunity to make a difference in someone’s life is running out!

If altruism and feeling that warm fuzziness inside that comes with doing a good deed isn’t for you, then there are certainly plenty of selfish reasons to cut your hair also. Oftentimes hair seems like just some unimportant thing that grows on our heads (or that pesky thing that grows in unwanted places, like those embarrassing chin whiskers!). But what a lot of people don’t consider is the subliminal power we grant to our locks. Hair can be closely tied to a person’s confidence: used as a shield to cover up our faces when feeling self-conscience, used with crazy up-dos or unnatural colors to distract from our true identities, used to blend into the crowd instead of uniquely shine…

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But hair can also help us feel our most beautiful and confident. It can empower us, inspire us, and fill our fashionista hearts with joy. I understand that a lot of girls fear chopping their hair because it took them so long to grow it out to that length. But the truth? Hair will grow back! I never feel attached to or worried about donating my hair because I know that even if I hate my shorter ‘do, it will always grow back. It may require patience and a lot of time, but it won’t be the end of the world. That’s why if you’re going through a quarter-life crisis and are craving some major change, don’t automatically turn to something as permanent as a tattoo or something painful like a piercing. A dramatic haircut can get the job done just fine without the risk of living with it forever.

So if you’re the type of person who would never consider parting with your long hair, I dare you to ask yourself why. Do you use your hair to hide behind? Does your hair provide a safety net to mask your insecurities from the world? Do you fear change? Is there some deeper, psychological reason to your attachment to your locks, or do you simply think your face shape isn’t right for a bob?

Meaningful crap aside, here are a few more non-thought-provoking yet practical reasons to sport a shorter ‘do this coming fall:

  • You’ll shed less hair all over everything. I hate finding long hairs and clumps attached to my furniture and clothes!
  • You’ll spend less time in the morning brushing through all those knots, which means less pain and more sleep (always a good thing for everyone involved).
  • Short hair is easier and less time-consuming to style. So if you’re like me, you’ll be more likely to curl your hair and make it look pretty when it’s short. I was always too lazy to do that with long hair so I’d just throw it in a bun day after day.
  • Your shower time will be cut in half, as will your shampoo and conditioner usage. You’ll buy less products and therefore save money!
  • Chopping your hair can be the perfect fresh start to begin anything—a new school year, a new diet, a new attitude. When I left the salon last Tuesday, I felt like a totally different person: extremely confident, bold, and outgoing, exactly the person I want to be as I start college this week.

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I’d love to know alllll your thoughts about today’s post. Do you like my new hair? Have you ever donated or gotten a dramatic haircut? Do you think your hair is holding you back in anyway? Write to me in the comments below, as well as any hair-related questions you may have for me.

Have a wonderful Monday!

 

Miles of smiles,

Grace

 

Green Military Jacket: Nordstrom Rack, $30 // Red Dress: JCPenney, $28 // Beige Fringe Booties: Sam Edelman via DSW, $90 // Aviator Sunglasses: Icing, $16 // Tribal Belt

2 thoughts on “Ch-Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes: The Big Chop (And Why You Should Too)

  1. Thiswifestyle September 3, 2018 / 7:23 AM

    So cute! I also do the pinterest board thing whenever getting a haircut! Also, love that you donate to Locks of Love! I did that once as a child, and it brought me so much joy!

    Like

    • Graceful Rags September 6, 2018 / 10:42 AM

      Thanks so much for the comment! Yes, making a Pinterest board is always super helpful, and donating your hair is so rewarding!

      Like

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