Hello, beautiful people! I hope you’re all doing well. I was inspired to tell a little story so here we go!
Me (with the afro) with my two sisters.
Today, I was in Walmart doing a little shopping and a fellow African American woman walks up to me. First of all, I have to say that she was beautiful. She had an afro and was probably around 55 years old. This woman actually stopped me and asked me, ” does my hair look crazy?” I was half day dreaming when she was first speaking to me (not on purpose but sometimes I don’t process what I hear right away) but the gist of what she was telling me was that she was a bit paranoid that people might be looking at her hair funny….as in, it doesn’t look right.
I knew right then and there that she was what I like to call an, “afro newbie”….or at least someone who hadn’t worn an afro since she was a child, if ever.
I told her, “No, your hair looks great! I’m noticing more of us wearing afros these days, it’s really cool.” She started to second guess herself again and I replied, “that’s exactly the problem…some how, we’ve been brainwashed to think out natural hair doesn’t look good but it does. Your hair looks beautiful, wear it out more often.” She smiled, thanked me and walked away.
I don’t know when it happened and I don’t know why it happened but some where along the line, black people were some how brainwashed to not appreciate how their hair looks naturally. I’ve been guilty of having this way of thinking towards myself as well. My hair is so thick you could probably make an afro wig out of the hair that sheds from my head. Haha. It probably didn’t help that I grew up with two beautiful, biracial little sisters who each had hair I could put a comb through with ease and create the cutest hair styles with. It took me until I was in my 30s (I’ll be 34 soon) before I was 100% comfortable with wearing my hair out naturally. Whether it be an afro or afro puff pony tail hair styles……years back I would have been embarrassed to let my hair go free. Not any more, honey! I embrace it proudly.
Something awesome is happening these days, though. I’m seeing more and more women like myself wearing afros! I think that like me, they’re starting to learn that their hair is beautiful just the way it is and if they have days when they don’t feel like putting a flat iron through it then damn it, they don’t have to! I can bet that they’re also learning that compliments on their hair is on the rise. People love afros!
My favorite style to do in my hair is the, “frohawk.” I get the most compliments on it because lets face it, mohawks are awesome and look great on anyone. It was this video tutorial by Mr. Kate (one of my favorite DIY artists) that first inspired me to put five ponytails down my head in a straight line, top to bottom and comb those suckers out. It looked awesome!
The theme I was going for today is no matter who you are or where you come from, please learn to love something about you that maybe you haven’t allowed yourself to love before. As human beings, we all have our insecurities and have different things that we need to work on but hey, at the very least, we can start with loving our natural hair! Natural hair comes in many different textures on many different people, of course :-). I once met a young white guy who had an afro that I envied so much. It looked fantastic. Maybe he was someone who got teased as a child or maybe not but he definitely wore his afro proudly when I met him. We need more of this! By allowing your natural hair to fly free, you will learn to love it more!
Remember Ashley Tisdale who played, “Maddie” on The Suite Life Of Zack & Cody? She’s a curly haired brunette. For the show, they made her a straight haired blonde. Heaven forbid a curly haired child watch their favorite tv show and see someone that has hair like theirs, right? I know they’re actors and it’s part of their job to play dress up and become someone they’re not but come on! How about we start allowing the actors to represent people that we may not always see as main characters and allow the actors keep their own hair or skin color for cryin’ out loud (Oh, yeah, Raven-Symone’ had to tan for her role of, “Raven Baxter” on That’s So Raven because apparently a lighter skinned black girl isn’t dark enough to play a black girl).
Paragraph full of sarcasm aside (I could have gone deeper into that rabbit hole so I cut myself off), I hope I made at least one of you smile or laugh. I had a bit of a rough night last night and wanted something positive to come from my hours of tears. LOL. So, I thought, “Why not tell a bunch of strangers that their hair looks nice?” 😉
Until next time, folks….