Hair is Not Magical

As most women I have a love/not so love relationship with my hair. I know many black women have that also, we have a sad and tragic history regarding our hair and instead of breaking from that history and defining these strings that come out of our head on our terms many of us have decided to give hair magical powers, so not only does it have destructive tendencies when it comes to our self-esteem and self-confidence we have now assigned it magical powers. You know hair can’t be as much as we’d like to pretend it can be. My own personal hair has been lots of styles, the only styles I’m not particularly comfortable with are sew and glue in weave and wigs. Nothing personal to the women who wear them, it’s just not for me. I know part of BWE is helping black women feel better about themselves and their right to make decisions on their own terms. I applaud that but I cannot stand by and applaud all the weirdness about hair and it’s magical or destructive powers. I know we all feel better when we look better and ‘look better’ is really objective to me. What I think makes me look better, may be totally abhorrent for someone else and vice versa. When I ended my marriage I had natural hair and I didn’t have it because I wanted to show people how proud I was of my natural beauty but because I was so fucking depressed and panic and anxiety ridden, cutting off my hair was way to have control it also released me from having to deal with my hair which at that point I couldn’t do. Once I left my ex-husband I started to feel better but not because my hair was natural, no, but because I’d let a burden go, my ex-husband, I felt free, I was gaining back the self-confidence that he’d ripped from me. The hair didn’t matter, it was the inner me that mattered. I’ve heard talk that having natural hair is letting people know you love yourself, listen at the end of that marriage I wasn’t loving myself and my hair was natural. I’ve had it natural before and I was feeling good about myself but it wasn’t because my hair was natural it was because I was doing something in my life that made me feel good. I think that exuded from me regardless of what the hair was looking like. Now my hair is relaxed I’m very happy with who I am, I don’t want to be accused of hating myself because I relax hair, I don’t want to be praised for loving myself if I go back to natural. Because I’ve seen black women with natural, nappy, straight, curly, weave, braids, wigs, locs, and afros who loved and hated themselves in each of those hair states. The reason was not due to magical hair, it was due to who they were on the inside. The talk that non-black men will come running to you depending on what type of hair style you have is just bunk and too much damn thought goes into this. I’m not hating on naturalistas, do what makes you comfortable it’s your hair and I’m not trying to promote that you get a relaxer, that’s for me, that’s my thing at this moment. At this point in my life if I had nappy naps or straight weave down to my butt, I’d still feel good about who I am on the inside because of the of my self-confidence and that is what matters. That also shows in so many other significant ways besides my damn hair. As much power as we give hair, yes we give it power because it has none on it’s own, we need to take it back and give ourselves power to be proud of whatever is on our heads. I’m sick of this discussion, I’m sick of women with relaxers hating on naturals, I’m sick of naturals trying shame women with weaves and relaxers, I’m sick of all the false superiority that a bunch of black women are having because they style their hair a certain way. It’s just hair, it is not the be all, end all of all time. And for God’s sake whatever you have on her head figure out how to take care it that’s my pet peeve. Let’s please get some perspective.

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4 thoughts on “Hair is Not Magical

  1. beautiful post, hair is such a hot political topic for us black girls and women that we forget what matters goes much deeper. My hair is just there, crazy curls I wash and let it be with few natural products. Hated it when in high school ppl would say: you have good hair or what you showing it off for, as if thou being born with particular hair texture is something to defend.

    • That’s nothing we have control over, work in the way that suits you with what you got. As bw who want to be accepted for who we are, that’s one of the reasons we start dating IR, I find it odd that we then start to try to contort ourselves in other ways thinking that will us the approval of wm and non-bm in ways we wouldn’t have contorted ourselves for bm. I’m conservative in the way I do everything, my clothes, my hair, my jewelry, even when I was natural it was done in a conservative way. I wasn’t trying to turn into the funky chick b/c I thought wm would like that, that’s not me. Why would I do that? So this insistence that if you aren’t the funky chick with natural hair no wm will look your way is just another box bw are putting themselves into for a set of men. It sucks and we don’t need to do it.

  2. This is true.
    It is how you feel on the inside that determines the aura you project.
    If it just happens that wearing your hair a certain way releases positive and confident feelings within you then this will reflect on the outside.

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