A coworker asked me the other day, "why do you shave the bottom of your hair?" I was taken aback by the question and realized it's not something I really talk about. Why not give a little insight on it? When I researched female undercuts there was a hilariously small amount of information online for those of us that weren't going full Furiosa under there.
I LOVE undercuts. On men, they look absurdly handsome, and on women, they look SO badass. I am glad they've made a comeback (on men) and are a new trend for the ladies. But it's one of those "things" --- even though I think it looks great, I'd never shave off a huge chunk of my hair on the side, or sides. It's just not me, and though everyone says "it's hair, it'll grow", it's not that simple when you have hypothyroidism. For me, half an inch of growth is a damn miracle and to get that half inch without it all being split ends is twice the miracle.
A Small Jump
So I thought I would just have undercut envy forever, until I saw a post on /r/fancyfollicles where a girl had taken a small leap, like an Alex sized leap, and got a tiny little triangle nape of the neck cut. From there I spoke to a few others who sang praises of the wimpy undercut and I was sold. Went and got it that day. I've now had my undercut for over a year. Here are my thoughts--the good, the bad, the ugly!
1. It's supposed to help with tangled hair. It didn't, for me. Not sure why, but what a bummer, because this was a huge selling point for me. I have fine, thick hair and it tangles like a barbie doll's hair. I wear collared shirts at work and this just won't do if I choose a down-do, so I was pretty disappointed when the shave made absolutely no difference in the amount of rat's nest my hair can produce in half an hour. However, other girls on reddit said it did help with their tangles. Believe who you will, maybe it has to do with different hair textures.
2. It's supposed to be cooler. It's not. I don't notice much of a difference, to be honest. This is another selling point that other girls on reddit claimed worked. Maybe it has to do with thickness of the hair shaft, but my hair is superrrrrr thick, with a very fine shaft, and this didn't help one way or the other. Thick, fine hair is prone to tangling anyway, so maybe we're just cursed.
3. It looks pretty nifty. I have to admit I like the look, when I wear my hair up. It gives me incentive to wear it up more often and it shows off my neck tattoo. Me gusta. As a fashion statement, it's very appealing!
4. It caused ingrown hairs. Is this something that's common for everyone who shaves their head? I never have had a problem with acne on my scalp, but after getting this it got rampant. But it wasn't pimples, it was all ingrown hairs. That was frustrating and gross. I still have them now and then when I get it trimmed.
5. It requires upkeep, frequently, and it's not something you can do yourself. Maybe with a double mirror, but especially when it comes to keeping the shape up, I wouldn't trust myself to do it. If you let it go too long, it gets soooo aggravating. Again, I can't imagine what men go through with short haircuts their whole lives. What a pain! (Maybe that's how they feel about heels and makeup) I originally wanted one of the cute little designs like in the above photos, but honestly I would never see it and I am too lazy/busy to spend time in the salon for something like that. If it's you to be more high maintenance than me, go for it!
6. It might give you the courage to go full throttle. If you're one of those badasses who wants a real Mad-Max apocalyptic 'do, maybe try this first and see how it feels. Honestly, mine was very small when I started and I've gradually enlarged the surface area of the undercut (in the hopes it would help with detangling, but nope.) So do consider that, feisty peeps!
All in all I keep the undercut because I really do like the bit of edge it gives my look (despite being a conservative, Mormon-looking beauty minimalist, I am still a tough bitch dammit) and I would rather deal with the issues above than wait for the shit to grow back out. So there you have it. Hopefully this helps anyone looking for answers, and if anyone has other experience or details (or questions) about undercuts, please let me know!