Is Your Natural Hair Good Enough To Claim You're a Natural?
Isn't it kind of crazy how we live in a world where everything that we do is analyzed and judged? Is there ever going to be a judgment day since, well, every day people are judging?
Many women of color, not mixed with another ethnicity, but fully "black" or African-American women seem to be fed up. From Pepsi commercials to Shea Moisture out here selling their soul. The world is in a corrupt, can't get it together, messed up situation. Clearly.
So I came across this photo. Well, actually, this photo was sent to me by a friend with the caption "Crazy!!!"
Mixed Women w/ Curly Hair
2nd Back Story:
I am Italian and Trinidadian. I am what they call a Mulatto. My mother is a white woman and my father is a black man. I have tanned skin and curly hair straight out of the skull. I'm not fully white. I'm not fully black. I am a mix of colors.
Let's carry on.
So, when Shea Moisture put out their commercial of women stating that they didn't accept themselves because of their hair aka Hair Hate, it caused a lot of controversy. For the most part because Shea Moisture is a company that caters to the ethnic woman and a company that has grown primarily because of the ethnic woman. However, they decided to put their first commercial out using mainly, the Caucasian woman, or--a mixed girl. Ouch.
When I saw that commercial, I tried to look at things from all different perspectives. I guess being a "Mulatto" it's natural for me to try to see views when it comes to racial and cultural appropriation issues from all angles. In a sense, I felt that I was more open to this commercial, initially, than the other women of color who I spoke with.
But, for me to see this post about mixed women hijacking the natural hair trend-- I, for the first time, felt targeted. Now, don't take this as me being oblivious to the things that happen in and outside of the culture. I've been affected by plenty of things before.
This simply felt like a push to me, especially that my friend decided to forward it to me. It caused to me think, or as if to say "Are you actually a natural?"
I feel like social media has given a lot of people a platform to speak on things that maybe they might not have necessarily been able to in the past. It's a beautiful thing.
However, I also feel like a lot of the times as women, whether women of color or bi-racial women, we tend to find means to separate ourselves and cause a line of isolation where it is not necessary. Of course, there is history when it comes to women of color who have faced much tribulation with their natural hair in the past. And now, it's an extremely major thing for women to embrace their natural hair. With that being said, that does not take away from the fact that just because you see a woman whose hair came out of her head "naturally curly" that she embraced, loved or even accepted her natural hair all of her life.
See, one thing that I was able to take away from the Shea Moisture commercial was that Hair Hate is a real thing. For some people, I feel like there was a bit of confusion with that term. Hair hate doesn't only come from the outside, but also, which is way more effective, it comes from within. When you hate your own hair (as I have hated my curls in the past), there is power in that.
I was hurt by this females post. I was hurt because she is on her own journey but she felt it was necessary to come down on a group of women who too are experiencing their journey. Yes, maybe there are a lot of mixed girls who are spokespersons for these products. A lot of these "curly hair" products, like gels, curling creams and such, were being used by mixed girls before the era to embrace your natural hair came about. I was hurt because instead of empowering your fellow woman who is showcasing her natural self, who isn't indulging in self-hate but is empowering other women while carrying on with their own natural hair journey, you tell her that this natural hair life had nothing to do with them. With us.
It's actually sad. We need to be better for the women around us. We need to promote love and good hair--no matter HOW your hair is or how others perceive it. We need to stop criticizing others for trying to love themselves.
Lastly, I went from hating my natural curls--straightening it ALL the time, putting it into a pony-tail(an extreme attempt at making it look presentable), dying it to make it look better, wanting to get a relaxer to keep my hair straight forever. It took me MANY years to LOVE my curly hair and the last thing I am willing to accept is another woman trying to examine my life history and my purpose and reason behind me EMBRACING my NATURAL curly hair. Yes, it's natural.
Deal with it! Love yours and Love others.