Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Wake Up!

Surprising to some but common to many, hair is still a taboo subject in the African American community. Black women judge each other by their hair and single ladies wonder if a natural style is limiting their dating potential.

My freshman year in college, I came up with this half permed/half natural curly afro thing that I tied a scarf around; I kinda became natural by accident. There wasn't an epiphany one day to connect with my African roots as a byproduct of my HBCU experience. It wasn't that deep.
I wasn't confident in my new 'do and allowed certain people's comments to dictate how I wore my hair. Several times, I went from getting a virgin perm one month to cutting it all off the next. Finally in November of my senior year at Clark Atlanta University, I cut the relaxer out for good!

There are so many issues connected to this natural hair debate-
-What is good and/or bad hair?
-Have the tables been turned and now people with striaght hair are being shamed by people with natural hair?
-Are you really natural if you straighten your hair?
-Why does Chris Rock call relaxers creamy crack?
-What is a faux natural?
Too much to explore in one blog post. Stay tuned for the rest of the discussion and weigh in!


  1. That makes me sad women feel it limits their dating pool. My husband is white. He doesn't understand my hair *at all* but it wasn't a hindrance. He didn't even ask questions about it. He just accepted it. I think if a man really cares about you, your hair doesn't matter at all.

    1. It makes me sad that I feel it has actually hindered my dating life or I'm just making excuses

  2. I love my natural hair, but at times wondered how men view it, and thought it may be hindering my dating life. Now, I feel like if a man can't accept me the way I am, with my natural hair, then that is just his loss. There is more to me than just my hair. "I am not my hair...." I had a perm most of my life and I don't think it's a bad thing or look down on people that have one. Natural hair is just my preference now, and I love it. I don't care what people say. I finally became comfortable with it, especially at work. However, I have older family members that don't like natural hair, but that's their choice, and I respect that. It is sad though. Why should we feel bad about our hair? I struggled with it for a long time, but I've come to realize that all hair is good hair. God gave us our hair, and it doesn't matter if we wear it straight or curly. I think the fact that we can wear our hair in so many different styles (whether it be natural or permed, or long or short) is what makes us so unique.
    -Great topic for discussion. Keep up the good work Alison!

    1. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I was speaking to one of my friends about that phrase "I am not my hair." The phrase sounds like its something wrong with my hair. I also don't like the phrase, "I don't see color" for the same reason

    2. I wanted to put a music note at the end of "I am not my hair" but couldn't figure out how to do it. When I was typing up the comment I started thinking of the song by India Arie. We will always be who we are within no matter what we do to our hair or how it looks. I just wish that other people would realize it, and not treat us differently because of it. When I first went back to having natural hair I was so worried about what people thought of me. I was the same me on the inside, but I looked different on the outside. It just so happened that during this time I began interviewing for a new job, and I struggled with whether I needed to get it straightened or not so that I could "fit in". I didn't think employers would accept me with natural hair. Now when I go on interviews I am proud of my hair. I love that natural hair is becoming more accepted, we are seeing it more in the workplace, and we are seeing more women with natural hair in the spotlight.