By the time I got to college, I’d not only morphed into Freshman Class President, I was a also the worst kind of natural hair snob. My best friend and I would stalk and shame any black girl we saw whose hair was not what we deemed to be Afrocentric: braids, fro, curls, twists or dread locs. Looking back, that time in my life makes me a little sad. It wasn’t fair for me to be so judgey. People are from different cultures and hair has different significance to everyone.
In grad school I was finally back to rocking my big, beautiful Afro. The Afro dress was long gone but I was in Vermont so it was too cold to wear it anyway. People were so obsessed with petting my head as if I was a dog or pet that I did an art project called “Don’t touch my hair!”
Today I might rock my luscious Afro one week and a Farrah flip wig the next. Curls, twists, locs, flat iron, weaves–I love it all. It’s fun to play and experiment with hair, and nobody should be judged for what they do or don’t do with theirs. I love myself and I love my hair. My love for me does not increase or decrease because of the way I choose to express myself on a given day.
For some black women, their hair is almost like a religion. They only hang with other women with similar hair philosophies and judge anyone who sees things differently. It’s almost like there are separate churches, The Church of Natural, Church of Weave, and Church or Relaxers. It has been said that our hair issues are the equivalent to white women’s eating disorder issues. Unfortunately, all women battle with both body and hair image challenges. On TV, I’d bet that 99.9 percent of the women of all backgrounds have dyed hair and/or extensions.
I love the versatility that my gorgeous kinky hair allows me. I am a goddess, queen and bombshell. Yeah, I said it! Why should I have less style options than Lady Gaga?
Love your hair–whatever it is and however you choose to wear it. As with anything concerning your body, it is your right to choose.
What is your hair like? Do you have African American hair? What’s your favorite hairstyle? Tell me everything in the comments!