I Shaved My Hair After 20 Years

by Monicah Wangari
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Hair is a big part of our identity. And when we change the way it looks, it raises eyebrows.

Those who’ve been there can testify. Whether it’s dyeing diverse colors, locking your hair (dreadlocks) or shaving it completely.

My hair journey has been interesting for the past three years.

Before then, it was the normal blow dry, braids or weaves – the simplest hair treats. I would receive compliments about my hair and advice too – to never put chemicals since it makes the hair fall off.

Throughout high school, I had perfectly black hair which was blow-dried every time I went home. Plaiting wasn’t allowed then like it is today is some schools. By back then I mean between 2007 to 2010. Yes, people, I left high school nine years ago.

Within my campus years, I still kept it simple – blow-dry, weaves and braids.

After campus, having played “good girl” on my hair all along, I decided to explore a bit. I wanted to shave but was hesitant at first. So I sort out to dye my hair and see how that works out.

Let the experiments begin!..

I dyed the ends (the part that hangs out after holding your hair in a ponytail position) a brown color and it was pretty while it lasted. Unfortunately, the dye used was such low quality that my hair ends soon fell off. Well, that was that.

The next thing I did was dreadlocks. I even wrote an article about it hereniaje ras.

Damn was I excited. I’d always fancied them on other people and here I was with locks. I loved them except for when I’d go for retouch because my head would look smaller ( I would go to the salon and the white-colored wax/gel would be used then I’d let dry in the dryer for about an hour. The other way which I am aware of is the use of molasses which according to some is quick and easy compared to gel). I loved my locks most when they had major growth and I’d let them down – like a ras.

Eventually, I got tired of the same old look and started plaiting braids on them. Yes, this is possible. However, it is not advisable because it leaves your locks with bumps. Locks with bumps are not pretty.

About nine months later, I finally garnered the courage to cut my hair.

Snipping my locks

I remember it was one Saturday afternoon (Saturdays are my favorite days) and my cousins had visited. They did the honor of downing my beloved locks.

It took me a while to accept my new situation and for a moment, I was so in denial that I went to the salon and had my hair plaited. Unfortunately, the braids were a case of me forcing issues so they’d down one by one. I’d wake up next to like seven of them. Then lose like three trying to hold them up. This was around my birthday this year and I was salty.

Anyway, I got the hang of it and embraced the new look amidst so many questions; Why did you shave such good hair? Who hurt you?

The ride so far with short hair is amazing. It is freeing in a way. A woman who shaves deliberately is a powerful woman.

My hair as I’ve come to learn is naturally curly. My normal basic routine is; wash and dry with a towel then apply gels or coconut oil or spray it. My barber is celebrity barber Saul Juma. Check him out; Saul Juma on Instagram

I don’t know where my hair journey leads but am open to anything. If you are hesitant to make that hair move, take your time and when ready, go for it and embrace it. Just like Violet Jones in the movie nappily ever after.

Here’s an interesting read on women who decided to shave their hair; glamour.com/women-say-what-its-like-to-shave-your-head

What’s your wildest hair wish (mine is going really close to bald) or experiment so far? I’d love to hear. Comment down below.

Side note; For collaborations, advertising space or whatever you have in mind that can grow a writer’s experience, feel free to reach out. Easily find me via email; themkare@gmail.com

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Mercy December 4, 2019 - 5:09 pm

Hi Monica ..thanks for Sharing the experience on hair..I love this “A woman who shaves deliberately is a powerful one”.I did shave and I feel so free and more powerful.. Thank you so much

Monicah Wangari December 4, 2019 - 6:10 pm

Hey Mercy,

Am delighted to hear that. May we always feel powerful and in control ❤️


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