Much ado about hair...

The great hair debate! I have been contemplating blogging about this topic for the longest time, for various reasons, however I didnt want to strike up too much debate or alienate some of my readers who might not be able to relate to this topic. Hate it or love it but as black women, our hair is constantly being scrutinised... mostly by ourselves.  

Janelle Monae


I was reading Danielle's blog, Moda From Dusk Til Dawn, during the week and she wrote about how people often applaud her for being part of #TeamNatural. Team Natural? Really? As opposed to #TeamLaceFront? The very premise of this "team" notion is that there is an element of competition, an "us against them" mentality. Danielle expressed her frustration at how she is unsure if she wants to be on that team as well as how difficult it is sometimes to maintain natural hair. Danielle posted pictures of her hair through the years, its changes and how she is currently looking for a change.

I often hear women say that straightening your hair or wearing a weave is a sign that you ascribe to the the western standard of beauty and you are trying to run away from your roots. On the other side, I also hear some women say that kinky natural hair looks untidy or unkempt. I am really bothered by the notion that somehow your hair defines you or is the key to unlocking your "beauty". This hair issue is so divisive, as if black women need another reason to not get along! I am still trying to get my nerves to settle over the nasty comments that were made by other black women about Gabby Douglas' hair during the 2012 Olympics. This incredible young girl was making history and all people could focus on was her hair! It almost feels like the hair controversy has overshadowed the fact that she is an Olympic gold medallist. Why does it even matter?

Gabby Douglas
I personally have been through all kinds of experimental phases with my hair. I wore my hair natural for most of my childhood, I have relaxed it, braided it, chopped it up, weaved it up... all of it (as some of my posts will show). If anything I think that is the most celebratory thing about our hair, the fact that we have so many options of what we can do with it. Our hair allows us to be versatile in expressing our style. Which begs the question, why can't we just let each other be? If you want to rock natural hair, it is your prerogative, but allow those who prefer extensions, wigs, dreadlocks or braids the same liberty and vice versa.  

Lets build each other up instead of tearing each other down over a flat iron or Kankelon!

Corrine Bailey Rae

Claire Mawisa
Yaya Da Costa
Solange Knowles
Gabrielle Union



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