Every morning (since taking out my dreads), I wake up and tackle the same routine concerning my hair. First I wake up and drag myself to the bathroom mirror. I’ll pull at the center of my silk bonnet, lazily tugging until it finally slips off and reveals my pillow-smushed kinks. Then I’ll douse my tresses with water, spraying counter clock wise at least twice, before diving my fingertips inside the small mound of hair. I fluff some… I pull some. After oils and leave-ins, I go for curling gel and make sure my springy coils are present for the day.
But two days ago, I decided to skip the curling gel and simply let my hair just be. Without that addicting gook, currently something in a famous Miss Jessie’s squeeze tube, my hair likes to ‘fro. I have quite amazing shrinkage, and without any manipulation I’m reduced to TWA.
And for some reason, that was ugly to look at in the mirror. I wanted people to know my hair could do other things than be in a typical afro, that it was different and worthy. I’d never judged women who decided to wear afro’s, I actually usually liked it, but on myself it felt like my hair was ‘not done’ or simply unattractive.
But why? I realized that although I was embracing my natural hair at the same time I wasn’t. I was happy to be natural, but not that natural. I was allowing my ideologies and concepts of natural beauty to be misconstrued. Everyone wants to define their curls, everyone is buying products for it, everyone wants that poppin curl pattern, so why shouldn’t I?
And this is nothing against those who live by defining their curls, I myself will most likely continue to do so, but it is also important to love your natural hair the way it naturally is. Before anyone could tell me my hair looked a certain way as a ‘fro, I was already in the mirror tearing myself down. I didn’t want others to see it, I didn’t want them to think less of me, or say I was less pretty.
All of this a bunch of crap I was giving too much energy too. I’d been around people who openly said the ‘natural look’ was ugly or that women with natural hair needed their hair done, and without noticing it I had sucked it all into my subconscious. I was like everyone else, allowing separation to once again taint an expression of liberation. Because that’s what being natural is all about, freeing yourself to love what your hair naturally does.
And while my subconscious was ingesting one thought, I was telling myself I was pro-natural hair and pro- black women loving themselves. But was I really?
What is the big deal if a woman decides to wear an afro? Why are we so pressed to immediately want it to be changed or ‘done’ or dealt with? Why don’t people see just as much beauty in curls that aren’t defined as they do in curls that are?
Maybe it’s assimilation. Or self-hate. Or maybe it’s because there aren’t many black women on TV sporting afro’s proudly. Maybe there aren’t enough role models. Maybe we’re too busy looking for someone to lead the way when we should just do it ourselves. Maybe defined curls are simply better for others.
I could speculate all day, but still can’t precisely answer that question for other people. But I can try to answer it for myself.
And two days ago that quest for an answer began. I’m on a journey to see beauty in what is truly effortless, in what is my natural beauty. It is one thing to appreciate and to stand for loving natural hair on others, but a whole other thing to really appreciate and love it on yourself. But I’m willing to do so.
So may day two multiple and be recurring. I want to really challenge myself to love all that is this bundle of joy on top of my head. Hopefully this inspires others to do the same and take a much needed break from manipulation. It honestly feels good to wake up and not really do much to myself everyday. And even though I’m still not completely comfortable all the time, I’m going to continue to try to be my same confident self regardless.
So I leave with this: ALL hair is beautiful, ESPECIALLY that which is most natural to you. So embrace and love it! As long as its healthy be happy, who cares what everyone else thinks? There’s nothing wrong with not using products or having perfect curls, take some time to get used to your naked self!
Thanks for reading! Please leave your comments and tell me your views!