Tress Talk: Chrisette Michele Shaves Her Head

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There are many reasons why women shave their head. Sometimes, it's coming from a place of renewal (ie, women who chop their tresses after depression or illness). Sometimes, it's a practical thing (ie, a new mother who doesn't have time to fuss with her hair). Sometimes, it's a symptom of going nuts (ie, Britney). But, in Chrisette Michelle's case, it was simply a matter of being sick of all the maintenance and damage. "With all the heat damage and chemical abuse my hair went through, I just decided to go back to natural," says the Grammy-winning R&B songstress, who recently shaved her head for the third time in her life. "It doesn't need as much professional attention as my usual hairstyle...the weaves, the glued-in pieces; they're so damaging." Michele made the decision to take it all of while on a recent tour.  "I was on tour with my band for about two months," she says. "Having to style my hair every day was torture! So when the tour was over, I had the boys in my band take me to their barber to cut off my hair. Then, we went home and dyed it together. The most exciting part is that I don't have to go into a salon to get my hair texturized...it's already texturized, my texture!" Inspired by the freedom of her new 'do, the gorgeous singer wrote a poem about the experience. "It's just what I was thinking when about when I cut my hair," says Michele. "I'm an artist, so I have a craving to express myself all the time. Poetry is like walking for me." Here, Michele shares her poem, "For Freedom Not For Beauty," exclusively with ESSENCE.com: For Freedom Not For Beauty There's a beauty that lives so deep inside each of us. There's a fickle eye that doesn't believe anything it sees. There's a benefit in love that erases all doubt and believes good intentions. There's an ear that isn't free enough to give the honest man the benefit of the doubt cluttered by lies not-mentioned. Since when is creativity subject to criticism? When is honesty subject to a jury of fears who wouldn't believe rain if it fell, or sun if it shined? Sometimes a flower grows when no ones watching. Sometimes a bird sings and no one hears. There's a meadow no one runs on and a cloud no one names. And what would the sky be with out the sun? What would the earth be with out its rose? They'd still be the sky and the Earth. So perhaps there is a peace in becoming. Perhaps the meaning is in the experience and not the sight. Maybe a flower grows because it suffocates under ground. Whether or not she is always noticed, beauty must become. She doesn't look for an eye. She doesn't listen for a voice. She just becomes. --Chrisette Michele Read More: