The Accidental Natural

Hair purgatory: the dreaded in-between phase

Posted on: April 27, 2010

I cut all my relaxed ends off in September 2008 and I’ve been working toward having a head full of thick, glorious healthy kinks and coils.

August 2009 -- almost a year after I transitioned

Now, one year and seven months into this natural hair journey and I’ve reached the dreaded in-between phase. My hair is no longer short enough for the cute styles that I was rocking like the Accidental Protective (actually, low-maintenance) style.

January 2010

I was trying to wear it last week and it was a mess. I did all the things I thought would work: corkscrewing two twists instead of four, wetting my hair a little so it would have more hold… and nothing worked. It was messy and all over the place.  My hair is taking longer to style and longer to dry. I can get it into an updo, which is nice.

Although my hair is now too long to do my short styles, it’s still too short to do all the cool protective styles that I would like to do. When it’s wet, it shrinks to about a third of its length and straightened I’m sure it’s full shoulder-length (length check coming this weekend along with a good hair cut).

This is reminding me very much of when I had relaxed hair and it hit that dreaded in between stage — in between ear length and chin length.  It wasn’t short enough to rock a nice short Ha.lle Ber.ry like cut, but it wasn’t long enough to do a crisp bob. It was hair purgatory. It took all my strength not to cut it back into a short style because this in-between thing doesn’t EVER look good.

April 2010

I’m not thinking of cutting my hair down to a TWA or anything like that. I’m happy with the pace of growth and I know probably by mid-summer I’ll be out of hair purgatory, but for now? I’m thinking about making an appointment for some kinky twists because I don’t know how to handle this hair.

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3 Responses to "Hair purgatory: the dreaded in-between phase"

Really? It looks really cute in that last pic. But I understand about the in-between. I’m quite liking the short length of my hair now. I’d always done the afro puff or twist or when it was longer, pulled back in an ‘afro puff’ bun, with the front twisted, but for the first time, i’m wearing it completely out, no tying back or clipping [except a decorative clip] – which I’m loving and my head loves [it can’t take the tie backs any more. I’m actually thinking right now, I’d be quite happy with it at this length for awhile :-)

Thanks! The twist out still works for me, but I was hoping to do some protective styling for a few weeks… until I realized how CRAZY I looked on Sunday. The hair was just happily doing its own thing while I was trying to coax it into doing something else. I hate in-between — it just makes styling a pain because you never quite know what’s going to work and what’s going to look a mess.

I jinxed myself on April 9 (the day when the last pic was taken) when I boldly (and foolishly) proclaimed to a group of friends, “I NEVER get bad hair days now!”

Ha! My hair said, “Oh yeah? Let’s see about that!”

It went downhill from there. Sigh.

Lol! Ya, I can see how twists at the ‘wrong’ length, can have a mind of their own. I haven’t had a ‘bad’ hair day until today.
I decided not too set my hair last night and just tied it down – thinking I’d have time to style it in the morning. Wrong! I woke up late and with only 15mins to get out the door. I had to resort to my old standby – the aftro puff – and not a very stylish one. Hmmph. Some days, ya just gotta live with it :-)

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