Natural hair is quite beautiful, but the “natural hair community“…. Ehhh, not so much.
I went natural 4 years ago. And in that four years I have seen some crazy stuff!!! Between the forums, the YouTube gurus, and the ridiculous amount of products I have acquired in my bathroom, I can say that sometimes tapping into the natural hair community really hasn’t been a good thing.
At one time I was one of those people. If CurlyNikki even whispered about some serum in her sleep I bought it the next day on Amazon. I tried it all- henna treatments, Kanechom and Silicon mix, Shea Moisture EVERYTHING, genie locs, Dr. Miracles, Mrs. Jessies, the Bagging Method, Carol’s Daughter, Talib homeboy-whoever, ORS, even some Blue Magic and Aphogee throwbacks. Don’t even get me started about the BROWN GEL I threw on the back!
I had YouTube for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. LOC method. Apple Cider Vinegar Rinse. 4C hair hair typing. Shea butter. Bantu Knots. The Magic of Jamaican Black Castor Oil. The OVER THE TOP LENGTH CHECKS and SLOW MOTION (and in your head you see that and go “Really?! All that?!”). Big Chop journeys. DC. BSL. Flat twists. Co-wash regimens. I could go on and on and on about all of the natural hair lingo. It’s like a secret language.
But what’s worse is the tension and hatred for no reason! Going natural can be a #struggle but that doesn’t mean is has to be for everyone. I see chain after chain of Natural Hair Nazi’s arguing about who is “natural” and who is “not”. Conflicts about curl typing, and how “if-you-wear-weave-then-you’re-self-loathing-and-have-no-soul!” How straightening your hair during your journey is assimilation into white society?!??!? I #clearly missed the Mein Kampf Guide for Kinks!!! WTF?!? WHO MADE THESE RULES?!? Why discredit someone else’s “journey?” What community can be built if we (yes, we brown people of all races) are so uncomfortable with each other’s successes? I just don’t understand how there are powerful women reaching for these healthy hair goals BUT THEN become so judgmental about what everybody else is doing. Stop shoving your natural hair down people’s throat! Thats why I’m ranting today.
Going “natural” shouldn’t feel like joining a cult. If someone chooses to chop off all their relaxed hair then wear weave stop bashing them. If someone needs to resurrect their edges because they wore weave toooooo tight- let them rock their fro’ however they choose (Teyana Taylor or Django up-do, HOWEVER!) If someone gets a texturizer after the natural hair gamble is too time consuming, then let them enjoy those extra hours of sleep this weekend. AND JESUS- if they have a relaxer at all- LET THEM LIVE. (Some people don’t need to justify their “Black-ness” with natural hair!)
The most disheartening thing that I see (and honestly felt) was that there are soo many women that watch these YouTube gurus, feel suckered into buying these products, try out ALL these concoctions and fruit salads in their hair, knowing darn well their hair will NEVER behave like anyone else’s. Those people who feel “stuck” because they don’t have “good hair”. Just watch the Chris Rock documentary Good Hair if you haven’t already.
I’m here to tell you- “It gets better.” LOL
Today I can confidently say that my hair is nappy. But for a looong time I was insecure about my hair because it didn’t look like the #NaturalHairPorn I saw on Instagram and Youtube. Somedays I was so torn up about it I refused to leave the house. I had to be realistic about my hair and stop measuring my expectations against anyone else’s head of hair. I had to accept what I had and embrace it and whatever my hair was doing on any given day.
Nowadays, I take NO offense to the term “nappy.” My edges will probably NEVER slick down flat no matter how much Hick’s Edges I slap down my face (and no the “baby hair” & toothbrush trick didn’t work either.) I will never have tendrils of any sort, so “shingling” and “wash & go’s” will never work for me. And I am ok with that. My hair IS what IT IS (and yours IS too.)
You should be happy with whatever grows out of your head because it’s yours, and you’re beautiful. (See what I did there?!)
It’s not even about the hair anymore. Let’s take it further. YOU have to LOVE yourself. You have to be happy with yourself, your hair, your health, and your life. Surround yourself with people that support you. And be honest- If your hair regimen consumes more fruits and veggies than you do, then you need to reconsider your lifestyle. If your Heutiful Steamer isn’t making it work then maybe you should go to gym and get the blood flown’ to that scalp guuurlllll #LetsBeReal.
When you know, understand, and respect yourself you can find something to appreciate in all things- hair and all. No hatred necessary.
We have to take care of our bodies AND our business (and stop being Natural Hair Nazi’s.)
That’s something to rally the troops about.