By Apryl-Joi of

When it comes to nat­ur­al hair, there’s a lot to talk about—products, hair reg­i­mens, wash­ing tech­niques, mois­ture reten­tion, and many oth­er things, but one thing that seems to shoot to the top of the con­ver­sa­tion charts is achiev­ing and main­tain­ing long hair. Before you give the infa­mous deep sigh and skedad­dle over to anoth­er page, let me advise you that this isn’t your typ­i­cal post about how to grow your nat­ur­al hair to BSL (that’s bra strap length, in case you’re new to this) and 10 dif­fer­ent styles you can rock with your 18 inch hair. Nope, that’s just not about to hap­pen.

I will say that many of us drool, hoot, and holler over Tracey Ellis Ross’s big, bold curls, Ledisi’s lus­cious locs, and Corinne Bai­ley Rae’s amaz­ing mane, but for many of us, the road to hav­ing these beau­ties’ hair length is extreme­ly long. The ulti­mate ques­tion is why should you sit, dream, and wait until the day that you can rock amaz­ing styles, when you can enjoy it now? I know, I know….you’re rock­ing a TWA…there couldn’t POSSIBLY be any­thing more than a wash-and-go on your hair styling menu. Well I’m here to tell you that you’re wrong. Let’s take the 31-year-old Lupi­ta Nyong’o as a prime exam­ple.





86th Annual Academy Awards - Arrivals



This Mex­i­co-born Kenyan actress sheds a whole new light on short nat­ur­al hair. By rock­ing a side part, 2 mid­dle parts, a brush cut, a tiny curly fro with tapered sides and lots in between, she proves that short nat­ur­al hair can be just as ver­sa­tile and fly as any long coif­fure. Her hair­styles are proof that sexy comes in all dif­fer­ent shapes, lengths, col­ors, and it doesn’t need anyone’s per­mis­sion to be fab­u­lous. How­ev­er, no mat­ter the length of your hair, it can only be as fab­u­lous and fly as you allow it to be. Let’s face it….we’ve all seen a nat­ur­al or two with a head full of long tress­es who does absolute­ly noth­ing funky or excit­ing to it. You wish it were yours and she’s total­ly dis­in­ter­est­ed in it and won­ders why you’re so pressed to have long hair. While you’re sit­ting there wish­ing, wait­ing, hop­ing, and dream­ing about styling your long hair, you’re miss­ing out on the beau­ty of hav­ing short hair and the amaz­ing things you can do with it.

I encour­age all my short nat­u­rals to take the breaks off. Let it roll! Let your imag­i­na­tion and cre­ativ­i­ty take your hair to all new heights with­out hav­ing to wait until it grows. Have some hair con­fi­dence NOW…don’t wait until lat­er. You don’t want to look back and regret pass­ing up the oppor­tu­ni­ty to rock the most amaz­ing TWA you could’ve con­jured up. Embrace your hair NOW and get on the Lupi­ta flow to rock­ing miles of sassy styles that punch the idea that short hair isn’t ver­sa­tile right in the face. Check out all of the ways But­ter­fly Lupi­ta has styled her hair. Can you still sit and say you can’t do a thing to your hair at its cur­rent short length? As many praise But­ter­fly Lupi­ta for her out­stand­ing tal­ent, beau­ti­ful skin, intel­li­gence, grace, and over­all beau­ty, we can’t deny that she is a great exam­ple of rock­ing your nat­ur­al hair and styling it no mat­ter the length.

Have you made hav­ing short nat­ur­al hair a deter­rent to doing amaz­ing things with your hair? How have you jazzed up your TWA in the past? What do you do to get over your “long hair dreams”? Leave your com­ments below—we promise we won’t judge you.

But­ter­fly Apryl-Joi has a true pas­sion for nat­ur­al hair and fit­ness. When she isn’t craft­ing up orig­i­nal con­tent for, she’s train­ing clients on new fit­ness work­outs and knows how to meet the demands of both the body and hair with hard work and ded­i­ca­tion.

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75 Comments on "Are Naturals Blind to the Versatility of Short Hair?"

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I have long hair past bra strap length. I start­ed cut­ting my hair short before I went nat­ur­al. Now that I am nat­ur­al, I have just had a sec­ond big chop. I love my twa and have plans on keep­ing it..

Nappy4C Rocks

Jacque­line you are a RARE nat­ur­al


“This now means we get a mixed bag of folks who don’t real­ly like nat­ur­al hair but are ” suf­fer­ing” through just so they can grow it long and flat iron it to death.” Absolute­ly Jen­nid!! You ae speak­ing the absolute truth!!!

I’m of the opin­ion that short twa don’t real­ly look good on every­body BUT nei­ther does long hair. My biggest issue with grow­ing long hair is that sad­dley many have went nat­ur­al just cause they think that’s the quick­est and best way to do it. This now means we get a mixed bag of folks who don’t real­ly like nat­ur­al hair but are ” suf­fer­ing” through just so they can grow it long and flat iron it to death. This is a hard top­ic to do because many will feel attacked for their pref­er­ence. My thing is pref­er­ence doesn’t mat­ter… Read more »
kaila P

Might I just add that the whole long hair thing isn’t as fun as it seems, my hair has grown a lot and I’m not sure if I like it which is weird cause I’ve been cov­et­ing long hair all my life

Naturally Lovely

Yeah, if you have the face for short hair.

The Natural Haven
I do not know why Nat­u­ral­ly Lovely’s com­ment was thumbed down because it is the real­i­ty! Not all faces suit TWAs, mine includ­ed! If you want to tran­si­tion fast, then you do have to get com­fort­able with a TWA for a while but this does not mean that you will think that a TWA is for you and this is fine! I think to me the core mes­sage should be that short hair should be some­thing that you arrive at because you inten­tion­al­ly cut your hair. This is as opposed to think­ing that your hair can­not grow past neck length, so… Read more »

Oops, I missed that one, lol. All right, I’ll bite:

Would some­one care to explain or demon­strate what the “right” face for short hair looks like? Pic­tures, though not nec­es­sary, would be appre­ci­at­ed. (Lupita’s pics don’t count.) :)

Also, pig­gy­back­ing on Jenni’s com­ment below: Is there a “wrong” face for long hair? keep­ing in mind what “long” rep­re­sents when we’re talk­ing about nat­ur­al Afro-tex­tured hair ver­sus nat­ur­al hair of oth­er tex­tures, of course.


Loved your response!

The Natural Haven
LBell — Actu­al­ly YES there are faces that do not suit long hair or sim­ply look sig­nif­i­cant­ly bet­ter with short hair. An exam­ple — Halle Berry. She can wear long hair (and she has worn long curly hair) but short hair empha­sis­es her facial fea­tures, so she is much more suit­ed to short hair (MY opin­ion, empha­sis on MY) In my eyes, a face which is round with full cheeks and angu­lar at the chin, suits big hair. Gabrielle Union (not a nat­ur­al but her face match­es my descrip­tion) sim­ply would look much cuter with a big afro. It would work… Read more »
Just as some peo­ple don’t have the face for big hair, some don’t have the face for a twa. All faces & bod­ies don’t go with all styles ! Why else do you see ads for eye­glass­es /hairstyles for round faces, heart shaped faces,long faces, thin faces,etc ? And styles made to bring out your best fea­tures & fash­ions for women who are top heavy,bottom heavy, boy­ish fig­ures, plus size, very thin,etc?? I’m one of those who DOES NOT have a twa face. When I did the BC & saw how it looked, I got a wig imme­di­ate­ly. My BFF… Read more »
should i con­tribute my face under: wrong face for short hair lol. i can’t think of celebri­ties for whom this would apply but i know my face would be a sure con­tender. I have a longish, angu­lar face. not a soft, baby round one. I think soft baby round ones are the most ide­al, but the person’s fea­tures play a part too. i don’t have sculpt­ed brows (kin­da sparse and uneven) and i don’t have any oth­er fea­tures that would play up the hair cut in a flat­ter­ing way. if i had a short do’ i’d feel like i had to com­pen­sate… Read more »
*gasp* I can’t believe BGLH is actu­al­ly address­ing the pos­si­bil­i­ty that short hair needn’t be a style death sen­tence… :) Women will give every excuse in the book to avoid wear­ing short hair. – “I don’t want to look like a boy” (what are those two puffy things on your chest, exact­ly?) — “I don’t want to be mis­tak­en for a les­bian” (because all les­bians wear short hair *rolling eyes*) — “I have a big head” (trust me, it’s not near­ly as big as you think) Etc., etc…and of course the top­ic this arti­cle address­es, which is “I can’t do any­thing with it!”… Read more »

“what are those two puffy things on your chest, exact­ly?” *DEAD*


I know this arti­cle is about her hair but can we take a minute to admire her LUSH FLAWLESS skin. OMG!