I’ve been thinking about the hair blogs and how great it is to see the online conversations about our hair. Just the way that we have more confidence wearing different styles and talking about it is a big change from the UK I grew up in.
Straight relaxed, braided, natural, weaved – we’re rocking our styles with confidence and knowing we don’t have to be ashamed or embarrassed about our hair. I believe that we have more confidence than our mothers and foremothers ever had.
Why should talking about our hair be such a big deal?
I grew up in the UK at a time when we were laughed at, scorned and made to feel ugly and unattractive for having tight, thick curls. White people treated us like our hair was disease. I remember the ‘Nits’ Inspector coming to my primary school and while she thoroughly checked the head of each white child, she would ‘poke’ my head aggressively with her fingers – I could sense her disgust at having to touch my head.
One of the strongest links to our black culture
A black woman’s hair is so important to her culture. From our slave past to the strength we have and just the sheer joy of being a black woman, our hair stands for all of this and more. From the days of slavery when black women were forced to cover their heads to today, where we still find that British mainstream beauty brands and shops don’t all want to acknowledge black women and sell the products we need.
Focusing on every important thing in our lives
I sometimes think that while our hair has taken up so much of our focus for so long, we need to look at our finances, relationships, careers and more. Just knowing that us black women deserve so much more in life is so important today.
I remember the ‘Nits’ Inspector coming to my primary school and while she thoroughly checked the head of each white child, she would ‘poke’ my head aggressively with her fingers – I could sense her disgust at having to touch my head and my hair.
Wearing different hair styles and enjoying our lifestyles
As us black women enjoy wearing different styles and the great blogs, let’s not forget the other areas of our lives- careers, finances, relationships and more.
So whether we’re wearing braids, weaves, natural, straight, permed, relaxed tresses or shaving our heads if we want to! If we don’t focus on these other areas, where are we going, what are we doing, what kind of futures will we have?
So yes we have to sometimes ‘step outside’ the hair conversation to create the careers and lifestyles we deserve.
Our lives do not begin and end with the strands on our heads. While we are looking so good, us black women must remember, We Are More Than Our Hair – lets keep focusing on other parts of our lives too.