On the Couch with a Retired Natural Hair Police

Via Curlynikki.com

Is it Really That Serious?
by Jarmelia of DIY Hair Care Blog

When deciding to go natural and join the natural hair community many of us unknowingly get signed up for the natural hair military! Sometimes, it can feel like an all out war among relaxed hair ladies and natural hair ladies… with many natural hair ladies being referred to as Natural Hair Police. Just scroll Youtube or Twitter and you will see instantly what I’m referring to. At the end of the day, the question we often ask these women is; “Is hair ever that serious?”!

When I went natural years ago, I had no idea there was a “natural community”, heck, I didn’t even know I had went “natural”! Truth be told, it was comforting to find women who also shared a common interest in curly hair care. I would be on hair care forums for hours a day and go around educating my friends on “natural hair”. Before long, I was touting all kinds of “facts” about how harmful relaxers were, how black women got relaxers to try to be white, how black women were ashamed of their hair, and so on. I had become the Natural Hair Police!

I was literally brainwashed and truly felt bad for relaxed women! Thinking that because I had accepted my natural hair, I was somehow above other women even though, I still suffered from low self-esteem in certain areas. No other word can describe my state of mind but, delusional. I was delusional!

Point is, having natural hair does not make someone more accepting of themselves no more than a relaxer means a woman is ashamed of her hair. Yes, a lot of black women (white women alike) may not like their curly, kinky, highly textured or (whatever we are calling it now) hair we still can’t assume anything about the hair care choices an individual has made. A lot of women use relaxers out of habit and some do like the ease of maintenance that comes with it. But, to say some women relax because they want to be white, or have low self esteem, is degrading and shows a large amount of ignorance.

Having been natural for a few years, I can say with certainty that there are many natural hair ladies with low self esteem. I guess some think that going natural would change that, but it obviously doesn’t. That’s all I’m going to say about that!

True confidence is when you can make a decision for yourself and not need any outside approval or feel the need to put others down. This is why I am always hesitant to state I’m a part of the “natural hair community”. I don’t knock anyone for using relaxers, while they aren’t for me at this time, everyone is entitled to do with their hair as they please. (just please leave the relaxers alone when it comes to the children!) Sometimes, we all need to eat a piece of humble pie, it does the brain well!

SEE ALSO: How I Helped My Client Regrow Her Edges In 6 - 7 Months!

 

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  1. I think most of the people who claim, “people get relaxers because they want to be white.” or “they hate their hair.” etc… are more so projecting their OWN reasons onto the rest of the population forgetting the most of the black women who do relax, do so because either they don’t know they have a beautiful texture without the chemicals (i know i didn’t… i never knew why i had to relax.) or other women who have already were natural most of their lives and simply wanted a change. Hair is hair and the way we wear it is a choice we of how we as individuals would be most comfortable and how it’ll fit our own lifestyles.

    1. Elizabeth says:

      This is very true. I totally agree

  2. I don’t think it’s ignorant to say some women relax because “they want to be white.” The STATEMENT is erroneous but the fact of the matter is, a lot of black women DO believe that “natural” hair (particular of the “nappy” or “kinky” variety) is ugly/messy/unkempt and WILL relax their hair in an effort to rid themselves of their curls/coils. Now to LABEL every single woman who relaxes into that category is obviously ignorant but given the history of relaxers and hair straightening techniques, it’s really obvious where these ideas came from. Still, that doesn’t make EVERY natural better than her relaxed counterparts. I think there’s a level of knowledge and balance that comes with identifying what natural hair means and how relaxed hair compares to it.

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