Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Tuesday Thoughts- I'm not my Hair

Where is the natural hair movement going?

The natural hair movement is sweeping the globe and it seems as if at least 75 percent of the black women I come into contact with are embracing their natural hair.  But I often wondered where is it going?  Afros were big in the 60s and 70s but quickly faded away, will it happen again this time around?  I think the movement is different this time around because it is more of a holistic approach more than a political statement. In the 60s and 70s having an Afro was political statement.  I don’t know where it is going but I would hope that it isn’t something my granddaughter will read about, but something she will live.

Is it sustainable?

When I think about the sustainability I truly think if we continue on the same track then 20 years from now it will be the norm just like getting a perm/relaxer was the norm.  We have collectively used our buying power to change the haircare industry.  The sale of relaxers have gone down 26% since 2013 and is trending to go down by 45% by 2019.

Are we our hair?

I don’t think we are our hair, I merely think our hair represents our genetic, ancestry and our fashion sense.   What I think our hair says about us it that we are comfortable with ourselves in our purest form, however that doesn’t mean that a person who has relaxed or colored hair isn’t comfortable with themselves. It merely means that we are deviating from societal norms, ideas and ideals and is saying this is who I am.  Whether I’m the pink hair girl or the woman who rocks her awesome twist out or even the woman who did a big chop and loving it, society has told us we cannot be different.

Should our hair be seen as a social and political statement?

In the past out hair was seem as a political statement and even the federal government had polices that forbids us from being in the natural state.  However, it our hair and the natural hair movement is a political and social statement, what do we intend to gain from it?  I think wearing your hair in its natural state is making a social statement, one in which we are saying we are not what you want us to be.

  India Arie said it best “I am not My Hair” powerful words. 

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