Thursday, October 28, 2010

How Natural Hair Is Percieved

I'm just going to make it plain: having natural hair doesn't make you the best person on the planet. It doesn't make you better then someone who relaxes or texturizes or simply wears their hair straight. It may look nice on you, but it doesn't make you a better person.

I know that people tend to make assumptions about women who sport the natural kinks and curls including the type of music we listen to, how deep and "Afro-centric" we are. Even our eating habits are looked at closely (we're vegetarians or vegans, apparently). While I don't want to get too much into my identity (check out my other blog for that) I will say that as a woman of color who sports her natural hair, my music choices are random, from M.I.A. and Santigold to Michael Jackson and Sting; although I'm college-educated with a broad vocabulary, I can be crude and curse like a sailor; while I do identify with being a black woman, I don't really embrace being afro-centric and man, do I love to eat hamburgers and the steak tacos from Chipotle. Just saying.

I have encountered some nasty women who happen to be natural. It was shocking to me, because I somehow expected more from them. But in the end, the woman with the long beautiful locks doesn't know how to talk to people. And the young lady sporting a TWA rolls her neck when talking to someone. The girl with the beautiful puff in my freshman Anthropologie class is being a smart-alleck to a well respected professor. It's just the way the people are and their beautiful kinks and curls don't hide their ugly attitudes.

Women with natural hair are awesome, don't get me wrong. When I see one of us walking around I wonder about their journey, about how they became confident enough to wear their hair the way it is. But I've let go of thinking that they were somehow more conscious or somehow more enlightened. My fellow co-blogger SP had relaxed hair and I always thought she was fly. And now that she is natural I am amazed at her journey and how she's redefining her awesomeness =)

I'm turning it over to you guys; what are some misconceptions about women with natural hair or relaxed hair? How were you treated when you were relaxed vs. being natural?

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