Transitioning is simply growing out your natural texture while retaining your relaxed ends. A big chop, on the other hand, is shaving off your relaxed hair and growing your natural hair from scratch. Transitioning allows you to ease into the natural hair lifestyle because, let’s face it, you will find that it is a major change. Most naturalistas go the transitioning route because it gives them the option of testing the waters before diving in.
You may be wondering if it wouldn’t be simpler to just cut the hair and go natural since growing natural hair is the goal, right? Well, this is not a decision to take lightly for some people, hence, their desire to grow the hair to a certain length before cutting off the relaxed ends.
Most women began using relaxers when they were kids, and they grew into adulthood with the only knowledge of their natural hair being the periodic relaxer touch ups they get 3-4 times a year. Transitioning allows them to get used to their texture before committing to becoming full-time naturals. If you are considering the natural hair lifestyle, a few months-worth of growth should help solidify your decision, or you could decide to go back to your relaxer ways if you think the journey is not for you.
Those super cool YouTube styling videos will convince you to take some scissors to your hair. While those online hair inspirations are great, you may need a few trials to perfect your hair styling game and to decide which styles are perfect for your texture. Transitioning is wonderful for this trial and error phase. By the time you are fully natural, you would have learned what styles work for you.
There are so many products in the market, and as a newbie, you might be tempted to try them all out. Be cautious, though. Read up on the active ingredients in these products and find out how they affect your hair. Transitioning allows you to learn about various products like shampoos and conditioners and all the other products out there.
Admit it, your relaxed ends serve as a cushion. Not only do you retain new natural growth 100% BUT it cuts down the ‘growth watch’ that comes with doing the big chop. You may not really feel the need to track every inch of growth and measure gains with a ruler like most newbie naturals. You get to grow your hair out for a few months or a few years, either way, you’re cutting off your relaxed when you are satisfied with the length of your natural texture.