This is for all the curly, kinky, coily, nappy, textured women and men out there. Many of us naturally textured people understand that talking about our hair can be fun, exciting, and greatly informative. We may even receive uplifting compliments and pieces of advice that keep us moving along on our journey toward healthy gravity-defying hair.
Sometimes, talking about it be annoying, angering, and stressful. The things that are said to us, what we read, and overhear can disappoint, discourage, and disturb us to the point of feeling defensive and possibly inadequate about our literally outstanding mane.
Before I begin the list, I need to state that there is nothing wrong with some of these comments. However, depending on the circumstances of when they are said, to whom they are said, and why they are said can be contradicting to that love that exists for naturally textured hair. Many of these comments may come from people who claim to have love natural hair and may have natural hair themselves.
Natural Hair Is Beautiful But…
10. “Why Does Your Hair Look So Nappy?”
UhErrrrmm… Okay. Riddle me this, Batman. How else is my hair supposed to look?
The word “nappy” isn’t as offensive to me as it was when I was seven years old and had relaxed hair. Back in the day, “nappy” was an offensive term and too many people it still is. It’s used to say that one’s hair is matted/ unkempt, unclean, and lacks definition and style.
From my understanding of coily hair and what nappy really means… there’s nothing wrong with it. Let me further explain. My hair is washed, conditioned, moisturized, detangled (only to re-tangle), healthy, and when left un-manipulated, becomes a nappy looking Afro. Which is A-Okay with me.
However, don’t ask us as if something is wrong with our hair being nappy and not defined enough for you. Just appreciate it as it is. If you can’t, just leave us to do that for you.
9. “You Should Put Something in It to Make It More Defined.”
This one is annoying if your hair or your child’s hair is defined already, defined enough to you, or just fine as it is. Natural hair isn’t always defined. It may look like just a big puff ball of Afro-y Goodness. Okay? Or may have some defined coils among the forest of frizz.
There is nothing wrong with wanting to define your coils. I want to define mine more too. However, I never stress about it because I first need to accept and take care of my hair as it is. With that, the definition may show more and more over time. For me, it has… a little.
Also, constant manipulation of the strands may cause frizz and breakage. Which is counterproductive to your hair journey and to the reason why many went back to natural in the first place.
8. “When Are You Going to Do Your Hair?”
For some, it may have been put as:
Them: “When are you go’n’ do somethin witcho head?!”
You: Well damn! I did somethin with my head!
To those who have said this, that is a rude and an UN.FAIR.QUESTION!
It’s an insult to possible injury and a slap in the face in the same breath. Just because it doesn’t look “done” to you. That doesn’t mean that their hair isn’t done at all. Natural hair comes with the territory of late nights, sore arms, failed style attempts we saw on YouTube, products that didn’t work, damp twist-out, et cetera. Then, here you come.
To my fellow coilies, just remind them that your hair is done, turn, and walk away like a boss!
7. “It Would Be So Pretty If You Straightened It.”
So, it’s not pretty now? Do you think it’s prettier when it’s straight? I just bet you do.
Mind you, there is nothing wrong with straightening your hair if you want to. However, most of us know what our hair looks like straight. Most of us were relaxed from kindergarten to college. Maybe we should carry around photos of us when our hair was relaxed just to satisfy the curiosity.
6. “I Bet You Miss Your Relaxed Hair.”
Some of us actually DO miss our relaxed hair. I have at times, but it quickly dissipates after a couple minutes. Some of us try not to think about our relaxed days because relaxers are known as “Creamy Crack”. We are trying to stay sober from addictive relaxer and it doesn’t help to remind us of our old habits. Would you say to an alcoholic, “I bet you miss your drunk self, huh?” would you?
Encourage our kinky hair sobriety, please!
5. “You/She Could Have Laid Them Edges”
I don’t know about everyone else’s edges, but I have tried a handful of products and MY.EDGES.WON’T.LAY. Even when I apply a bit of water, the extra hold gel/jam, then apply the scarf, they won’t stay. My strands are fine and they won’t lay. Even my baby hairs are rebellious! I am beginning to make some peace with it because I don’t want to lose my edges.
There is nothing wrong with laying your edges… But there is something wrong with stressing as if it’s life or death. Some are willing to risk hair loss for the sake of constantly having smOOth edges when the rest of the hair isn’t even smooth. Then, there are some who will mock a person for their edges not being smOOth enough
If the roots aren’t laid, the edges probably won’t be laid either.
4. “Do You Wash It?”
No! Oh gosh! Not at all. This is actually years of mold and mildew. Shampoo will kill it. It’s pretty much like a kombucha SCOBY.
3. “Natural Hair Isn’t Professional.”
Why not?! Why can’t we wear our hair the way it grows out of our head? Those with straight hair can wear their hair the way it grows out of their head. No one should have to wear a wig or a weave just to be employed and treated as someone who is capable of doing the job. Straight hair doesn’t give anyone special abilities or superpowers to make them more professional.
2. “Natural Hair Isn’t for You/ Everyone.”
Usually, this is said when someone doesn’t think natural hair isn’t working out for you. The truth is, it’s not making sense to them on why you are SO confident with every bit of yourself, even on a seemingly “bad hair day”. Natural hair is most definitely for those who can grow it out of their own head.
It’s also for those who have it in their DNA to grow it but cannot because of reasons such as health issues and medications. It’s also for those who can appreciate it and understand what it means to us to connect and go back to being ourselves from our head to our toes, inside and out.
1.”I Want My Hair to Be Like Hers/His.”
NOOOOO! NO! Nope! I’ve been there and I’ve had to practically shout “NO” to myself.
I want you to rebuke those words starting today. To embrace your naturally textured self, that means embracing every single strand. To speak those words is still saying that you are unsatisfied with yourself. Going back to natural is supposed to help you be satisfied with yourself as you are today right now. I don’t care if the hair you are wishing to have is natural too. It’s not naturally yours. Want, wish, or pray for your crown to be healthy, shiny, and resilient to match your personality.
What comments have you heard, read, or have been said to you about natural hair? What have been your responses to those comments? Let me know in the comments.
Talk to you later!