Natural Spotlight: Tazzee

9:05:00 AM 2 Comments A+ a-

I love my Twitter followers and today's interview comes from yet another one. Meet, Tazzee, another ATLien who recently big chopped (yay!). Here's her story:

Big chop day. Coil out.

1. Introduce yourself to us (are you: loc'ed, newly natural, natural-n-pressed, etc.)
 I'm newly natural. My last relaxer was January 15, 2011 and I big chopped on October 15, 2011.

2. Congratulations on your recent big chop! How do you feel?
I feel great! It wasn't until she started chopping that I realized how much value I placed on my hair. I've had long hair almost all my life, with the exception of when I got it cut for my senior prom. Even then, I wanted the top short and back long, but the stylist told me (after she cut it) that my hair in the back was too damaged so she just cut it all. That was twenty-??? years ago. Getting a major cut was liberating! It was like "Now I'm free!"

3. What prompted you to decide to go natural? 
Actually I first thought of going natural back in 2007. Back then I decided to go back to school (in the future) and said I was going to go natural when I started school.  Going natural now was by chance. At the beginning of the year I joined a workout group that met on Saturdays. I always have Saturday hair appointments and one day I realized that it had been 9 weeks since my last relaxer so I decided to try this natural thing.  Also, I try to workout regularly. My decision to chop was because I was tired of the braids and I knew there wasn't a transitioning style that can withstand immense sweat 5 days a week.
Two months into her transition

4. Tell us about your transition. 
Initially it was fairly easy. I did plenty of braidouts and ponytails. I got tree braids before my vacation at 4 months post relaxer because I didn't want to deal with my hair. I got kind of lazy so I kept them. Labor Day weekend, (almost 8 months post-relaxer) I decided I was going to try doing my hair again. What a mess!!!! My braidout (see below) did NOT work. That Tuesday, I got another set of braids and decided that I was going to chop soon. This was after I initially said I was going to transition for 2 years. I guess I'm not as patient as I thought. 

5. What was your transition hair regimen and how does it differ from what you're doing now as a newly natural? 
When transitioning, I co-washed at least once a week and shampooed every other week. I would cornrow my hair back (I called it my Cleo - Cleo from Set it Off), let it either air dry or sit under the dryer and then take out the braids. Then I started doing individual braids - I called that my Celie because my hair was plaited like Lil Celie in The Color Purple. I would put a roller on the ends of both types of braids to hold them. I tried twists, but because a lot of my hair was relaxed, the ends wouldn't stay and they would untwist. 

As I stated above, 4 months in I started wearing the braids. Now that I've chopped, I've already washed my hair twice since Saturday, trying out new styles. I have found out that my wash-n-go is more of a wash-n-fro. My hair isn't as curly as I thought it would be, LOL. I suspect I will shampoo at least every other week. I will probably co-wash at least twice a week because of all the sweat. I'm still figuring out how I will style it but I foresee plenty of twists in my future. When I was relaxed I was the ponytail queen so I can't wait until I can wear a puff.

6. Fear of being criticized for having natural hair can be paralyzing to those who want to big chop. What advice do you have for women who are considering going natural but fear the negative feedback? 
Remember it's your hair. If you are comfortable with it, rest in that. Honestly, I haven't received much negative feedback. Most people have either proclaimed how much they like it or kept silent. Also remember, it will grow. The people that may be negative will be loving your hair when it grows, so the negative comments are only temporary.

7. One of the most frequent statements I hear from newly naturals is "what if my significant other doesn't support me?". Did your significant other support your decision to go natural? 
Mastering the wash n ' go
When I was just thinking about it, I mentioned it to my husband. After that he constantly pointed out natural hairstyles - but it wasn't in a negative way. When I started the process he was all-in. Even when I thought I was having a bad hair day, he was very complimentary. When I got the tree braids he said 'it looks just like your hair.' After my Labor Day weekend debacle, I told him I couldn't take it anymore and I was cutting after the next set of braids. He said "OK, but don't complain to me when you don't like your hair." I had just shown him how short I think my hair would be and he thought it would be too short. During my 5 weeks of tree braids, I continued to prep him for my cut. When my stylist finished and my hair was longer than I thought it would be, I was giddy. But when I walked in the house, the look on my husband's face was a letdown. So while he supported my decision, I guess he wasn't ready. I catch him periodically looking at my hair - more than he ever did when it was relaxed. One day I caught him glancing and I actually had him touch it.  I'm sure he will get over it and as it grows I'm sure he'll love it. Not once has he said anything negative though.

8. The internet is full of natural hair resources. What are some of your favorite sites to visit? 
Your site and Curly Nikki are my favorites. I haven't gotten into much on youtube because the main thing I've read is that everyone's hair is different. Right now I'm just trying to learn what my hair likes.


Write comments
November 01, 2011 5:52 PM delete

Great feature, I can really appreciate a supportive man in a woman's life good for you! She is right on point with saying everyone's hair is different. Before I chopped and started watching YouTube vids, I saw a lot of hairstyles and types that I assumed my hair would mimic but not the case at all!

November 02, 2011 8:13 AM delete

Love the post! I want to see more of Tazzee as she grows her hair out...can you revist her in three months?