One of the first steps in making the switch from relaxed to natural is the “Big Chop.” Every afrobella has to go through it sometime. I’ve heard arguments that black women with short hair look unattractive or masculine. That’s so far from the truth, ladies. For inspiration, take a look at legendary jazz chanteuse, Sarah Vaughn.

They don’t make ‘em like that anymore.

No wonder they called her Sass: Sarah Vaughn always rocked her short hair with confidence and style. Those jazz beauties knew how to create drama with a few simple elements. Banging earrings or cute hair accessories, perfectly sculpted brows, pretty skin, and a little eye makeup help to play up your femininity to delightful advantage. Short hair and dark skin go perfectly with dangling earrings in bold colors, so if you’re making the big chop, I advise you go out and treat yourself to some cute new jewelry. I’ve found super cute stuff at Target and my beloved Claire’s. For Christmas I want to splurge on these earrings, which are made by my husband’s aunt. She’s an incredible jeweler. They would look gorgeous with my curly hair.

The ‘do aged well on Sarah, as you’ll see in this amazing video. Talk about musical superstars! They are few bigger than Ella, Pearl, and Sarah.

Sarah’s the one in that vibrant yellow. Oh, love the Eighties for the glittering caftans. So wonderfully Golden Girls. Her hair is still short and always sassy. Even if your current style is a TWA (Teeny Weeny Afro), you should sport it with pride and work it to the fullest.

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L-dizzle says:
September 11, 2006, 3:06 am
ah yes...the big chop. i have locks and i have on many occasions toyed with the idea of it, but i'm simply too scared to to it!
Nichelle says:
September 11, 2006, 7:21 am
WOW @ the Divas! I swear that term is used far too often and far too loosely today. Can you believe that not one of those ladies could get a record contract if they came out today...
70ssoulchild says:
September 11, 2006, 11:51 am
Lovely, simply divine...Miss them all..
pt says:
September 11, 2006, 12:30 pm
Do you realize how much I love your blog!!!?? You have filled a gap in my magazine lust, and now I am addicted to Afrobella, and quite a few of your reccommended links. Love you for telling it like it is, and for being honest enough to cover the gamut. Thanks for being there. Much more success.
Julia_Claudine_Deveraux says:
September 12, 2006, 9:53 am
Another great post Bella! I did the big chop back in Feb. 2006. I'd always had long hair, whether it was mine or store-bought so the idea of losing my identity scared the hell out of me. But my desire to wear a short cut was stronger than my fear. Although I'm not natural yet, I LOVE it short..even if others are not so appreciative of it. I would get so many more looks and stares when it was longer, now I still get attention but not like I used to. It took a while for me to get used to and now it doesn't matter as much. I'm in love with the way I look. I have a short, edgy, spiky 'do and I'm proud of it. Now instead of people wondering whether or not my hair is real, I think they admire my courage to rock it this way. I LOVE the video of Ella, Sarah, and Pearl! You find the most amazing videos.
keena says:
September 12, 2006, 2:23 pm
i disagree, not everyone needs to do a big chop, its purely optional if you dont have the patience to grow it all out using a protective style (i.e. braids). i grew out my perm twice (once in jr high, again in high school) so its possible and i had some cute transition styles. but everything requires PATIENCE!
jerseybred says:
September 12, 2006, 4:28 pm
Isn't YouTube amazing. You can find anything on there. Thanks for the footage on three LEGENDARY WOMEN.
sha says:
January 30, 2008, 2:50 am
Thank you for keeping the timeless image of the afro alive. It is a legendary hairstyle to be celebrated and honored.


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