We caught up with the gorgeous and incredibly stylish Berline to talk about her hair journey, which includes an unexpected Big Chop and a reclamation of control over her hair and her look. Read her full hair story below.
So I’ve always kind of had a very interesting relationship with my hair. As a kid my mom did my hair every single day and I had really long, kinky curly hair. But at a certain point she kind of got tired of doing it so I stared relaxing my hair in middle school. Four years into relaxing I started developing scars on my scalp from the burning. And at a certain point, my sister looked at my head and was like your hair is *damaged* — we need to work on that. So one day I took out my braids and she shaved my head. I was like 15. It was a lot to go natural at that time, especially at the school that I went to. It was big blow to my self confidence to lose all of my hair, but it started growing out and then people started complimenting me, saying like ‘I could never have the courage to shave my head.’ It was a very snap decision, and guess I was kind of up in the air about it but once it was done I was like *oh my god* I didn’t know what to think. But I think it helped me kind of ground myself and what I thought beauty was. And it helped me get comfortable with my facial features. I used to try and hide through my hair in a way. And having my hair not be there anymore, it helped me confront things about myself, like why did I let relaxing go on for so long? I had always kind of delegated to my mom to decide what to do with my hair. But shaving my head was the first time I ever had to make my own decisions about my body in some sense, so it was really big. It was the beginning of me watching youtube videos, like how to grow out your hair, what to do with the teeny weeny afro, leave in conditioner, the lock method, and it kind of built a community within myself and with my family. After I shaved my head my whole family went natural. And people try to say you, its just hair, but I feel like for black women it’s never just hair. Like good hair vs bad hair would never be a discussion if it was just hair. I want to do something different. My whole life has been marked by transformation, and my hair has always been a part of that. Wherever I go, my hair gonna demonstrate where I’m going.