I have always been a lover of the 70's, with their big beautiful afros and expressive, ethnic style.
I know black people, and all people of color faced a lot of racial injustices, as we still are, but i really would like to know when our hair stopped being good enough?
When did we go from wanting to keep the perfect fro to feeling like we "need" a relaxer? Don't be ashamed girl, let Your Africa Show!
I mean, even back then we were relaxing and using things like the "blow out kit" but we still kept texture in our hair, we were not perming to the bone straight, lifeless looking hair i see girls walking around with today. As a professional hairstylist, i really had to think back and wonder why there are so many girls with broken off, lifeless, over processed, relaxed hair. Looking back at pictures from our parent's generations and just a few years before and after, women of color never had hair that was just falling out, breaking off, lifeless...
When we had short haircuts it was because we wanted short haircuts. I have never seen a picture of my mom or any of her friends with missing edges or uneven, thin, broken off hair and yes, they used to relax their hair. Every old picture i've seen in a "colored" person's house of their older family members, the women were always beautifully dressed and their hair was always beautiful, full, and well kept, whatever the style.
It's so sad now to hear stories of girls who want to go natural but their mother won't let them, or girls who have never even seen their natural hair because they have basically been relaxed from birth (i have 2 little cousins in this situation now), even girls who have been forced to perm their hair or had their hair permed against their will
I really commend mothers who chose to stay natural or at least keep their children natural, as it is truly a beautiful thing.
What's even more sad is how little they educate you in cosmetology school on "ethnic hair" types, unless you go to a more ethnic school, but even then, its rare that they would teach you about natural hair and hair care, as our hair in cosmetology textbooks is referred to as "Coarse, kinky, or overly curly"
WTF! (excuse my lingua) No one looks at an asian and says their hair is "overly straight"
I am in no way (as Curly Film Chick would put it) a natural hair nazzi, as i have been through every hair styling option imaginable, but i do believe in hair health and let's face it, hair is always healthiest when in it's most natural state. My point is, love the hair you were born with, and if you decide to alter it in anyway, do it for a change, not because you hate your hair or think it isn't good enough, and whatever you do, please take care of it :)