After wearing weaves for several years I decided to start wearing my own hair. My real hair when flat ironed falls a little past my shoulders. I stopped flat ironing my hair a couple of weeks ago because I was getting frustrated with going from straight to frizzy in a matter of a couple of days because I work out on a regular basis. When my previous stylist wasn’t able to help me because she doesn’t do natural hair I found a new stylist and a new look, which I love. It shows off my natural texture and curl, it low maintenance and I don’t have any harsh chemicals in my hair. I have received overwhelming support from my husband and friends about my new look. Any negativity that I have received has been from a few AA women who have given me a disapproving look or mumbled something loud enough for me to hear. And since I have decided not to share my new look with any family outside of my husband and kids anytime soon the negativity is minor.
Having natural hair has thrust me into a couple of interesting conversations. Last week when I was getting my nails done there was an AA woman who kept staring at my hair off and on. Her looks didn’t bother me because I know my hair is different and people look at what is different. While I was waiting for my nails to dry another AA woman walked in with natural hair, she said my hair was pretty and that started a conversation. After a couple of minutes the other lady joined in and said something that I found that I shocking and sad. She said she had always wanted to wear her hair natural but she couldn’t because she has “bad hair” and we could because we didn’t have “Bad hair”. Needless to say that we spent the next fifteen minutes trying to convince her that “Bad hair” is a myth and that her hair is just fine. I tried to explain to her that every woman of every race has had a God-awful hair day, hairstyle, haircut, etc.
It always bothers when women of any race but especially AA women say disparaging things about the characteristics that are unique to them and/or their ethnicity. At the end of the day I believe that as women we need to start embracing our unique physical attributes and stop running from them. We were not all meant to be a size zero with hair down to our butts. (and if you look like that’s great if not it’s okay) The reality is that if we were all meant to look that way, we would have all been created that way. As women our diverse features are part of what make us so beautiful. We can’t allow ourselves to fall prey to society’s narrow view of what is beautiful. Any woman can dye her hair, sew in a weave, or put on a wig. Any woman can put on plenty of make-up, nip that and tuck this to give the illusion of beauty but a woman who embraces herself knows that her true beauty comes from within and radiates out and all those other