Natural Hair Will Never Go Out Of Style
Dear Young Black Sistaz,
I hope this message finds you well. It is the year 2017 and the start of Black History Month. By the time you read this, I hope you’re old enough to understand how important this month is to our heritage. For centuries, African Americans have made breakthroughs in various industries and have rightfully earned a month to be celebrated (although in my opinion, 1 month is way too short). At this point, you might be a little confused, you may even be asking yourself why I am writing to you. So, I figure the best way to express my thoughts would be in a short story….
See just like you, I am a young black woman. I grew up in the early 2000’s. From as far back as I can remember, I recall my mom perming my hair. I couldn’t wait for school to start so I could go to the salon and get that fresh perm. For centuries, the act of black girls and women straightening or perming their hair has been a typical practice.
Now I’m not going to lie, I too enjoy having long tresses that blow in the wind and make me feel unstoppable. I mean if you think about it, most strong women that people look up to right now DO wear their hair straight daily from Michelle Obama to Beyoncé. Don’t get me wrong, there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. But I guess my message in all of this is….. Don’t Let Society Make You Feel Like You Have To Conform To It’s Standards, Create Your Own! Which is something our ancestors have been telling us for decades.
Being in my early 20’s, I wish I had more people telling me that every twist and turn of my natural kinks were beautiful. I want you to help in this change for your generation. Don’t let people try to tell you that you’re less than, incompetent or worthless because you were born with beautiful locks. Embrace your natural self. I find that as I started to transition out of my perming phase, a lot of people were surprised at how my hair could go from a curly fro to bone straight. That’s the beauty in all of this! We can do so much without the need to use excessive chemicals and we are still beautiful nonetheless.
I just felt the need to share this short story with you. Hopefully something in it resonated. This is by no means meant to shame those who do get perms or weaves. This is purely a reminder that the natural you will always be enough.
Your Ambitious Big Sista