Thursday, March 3, 2011

Natural Hair Division

I stated earlier this week as a FB status that where there are too many visions there is DIVISION* When I originally posted this I said it regarding life and the direction your life is going, however it can be applied in all aspects of life. I am going to use that quote in reference to natural hair.. After viewing a picture posted of an underaged female in a salon getting a relaxer posted on someone’s page with a caption of how they are addicted to the “creamy crack” etc I felt compelled to respond not only to the picture but to speak out about the division in the hair community.

#Truth One is NOT better than the Other, it all depends on YOUR preference. I think it’s a bit hypocritical for anyone to talk about someone regarding what they choose to do with THEIR hair. If I were to do a show of hands of how many people got relaxers growing up, very few people would stand with their hands down. The truth is we all or the vast majority received perms at an age where we could not consent to getting one. With that out the way, as we matured, we have been, for lack of a better word, “enlightened.” This means that we now know the pro’s and cons of getting relaxers in comparision to natural hair. We are aware of whatever damage we may suffer as the hair is broken down, we have also learned via youtube, natural hair boards, as well as personal experience better ways to care for your hair; this includes natural, transitioning and relaxed hair.

I am in no way, shape, or form attempting to bash anyone, but I would like to put this out there: There is nothing wrong with sharing the information you have come across in reference to your hair, it all depends on the person and their ability to receive it. One can not be forceful and should not just attempt to walk up on someone and begin discussing their hair and what YOU think they are doing wrong or what they SHOULD be doing with THEIR hair. That is why you have YOUR OWN HAIR, to do as you please, should you need more HAIR to “control” or, for lack of better words “rescue”, there is YOUR children’s hair. Behavior such as that can be seen as forceful and offensive and in MY opinion is UNACCEPTABLE. When someone wants your helps, or wants to help themselves in learning better ways to care for their hair, they will seek out information as it relates to their desires. How many of us got tired of our hair && sought out information on how to grow it longer, advice from others on how to properly manage it?? We found all the information we needed some way or another and that same opportunity is afforded to them. I understand that we have been enlightened but for many of us we were exposed to perms for most of our lives and I personally think it’s unacceptable to talk down about people who choose to do that, especially for the people who are newly natural. This type of behavior is what causes a divide in the community. TO each it’s own and if everyone worried themselves with only themselves I think people wouldn’t feel so negatively towards the natural hair community.

#Truth All hair will GROW!!!! Transitioning, Relaxed and Natural. With proper care ALL hair will grow. I have heard many times during my transition that naturals like to wear their hair straight as it is of convienence to them; well in some people’s cases relaxed hair may be of convienence to them. A pro of relaxed hair would be that it does not require the same about of time or attention as that of natural hair. Natural and or Transitioning hair requires dedication, money to find products that work and patience. I would suggest relaxed hair for the people who don’t have the time, and or money to maintain or PROPERLY care for natural hair.

Many people mistakenly think that just because it’s Natural means it’s healthy and that you can do whatever you want to it. Although natural hair may be more resilent it is NOT always the healthiest and just because it’s natural doesn’t mean it will GROW!!! When you hair is natural you still have to take the proper steps to keep it healthy as to avoid slit ends and to retain length. EXAMPLE: How many naturals have cut their hair, how many videos have been posted to youtube discussing HEAT DAMAGE?? Heat Damage as a result of attempting to Maintain a Straight Style on Natural hair.

Natural hair consists of Kinks, Coils and Curls which in my opinion is better off left alone and in it’s natural state. However, natural hair has often times been damaged as a result of the hair been manipulated in a style that it’s UNnatural for it to maintain. When you SWEAT your hair poofs up, if it’s HUMID your hair poofs up. As a result of the Poofing or swelling of the individual hair strands due to the water mollecules in the air or on your forehead, one would have to “go over” the areas with a flat iron or hot comb. Many times this step will be repeated on mutlitple occassions until the hair is washed and styled in a hairstyle more suitable for natural hair.

Most recently naturals were exposed to the harmful effects of formaldehyde found in the Brazilian Kertain Treaments also known as BKT, in an attempt to acheive straight hairstyles that would not disrupt the curl pattern in natural hair, while being worn straight for weeks at a time. This was more harmful as the chemical, formaldehye, could be inhaled by those close to you as they were exposed to it due to the treatment you received.

I have always said my hair Best holds it’s OWN curl, not the one that you get from a curling iron, and that’s why within a day the hair falls limp and the curls disappear. Natural hair provides versatility but it doesn’t make us better than our counterparts. There can be positives found on both sides and instead of focusing on the negatives how about we celebrate everyone’s freedom of choice and embrace individualism. Understanding we are all inclined to believe that our way is the right way (whichever way that is) we have to come to the realization that sure it is the “right’ way for US and that’s why WE chose it. We do not all have to do the same thing to be on the same page. We CAN co-exist, we already have similarities such as being women, and having our hair’s best interest at heart, filled with the desire to grow it as long as we can. There is Enough room for Everyone :-)

He who is NOT busy being BORN is busy DYING … worry yourself ONLY with YOURself concentrating on how to make you Better♥ Self-Worth, Self-Appreciation, Self-Acceptance.