My Journey to Embracing my Curls

My hair allows me to stand out unintentionally. I was born with a head of uncontrollably curly hair that has only grown more uncontrollable as I got older. 

Growing up, I was surrounded by girls with naturally straight hair. I had friends who could wake up after a good night's sleep with perfectly straight hair. In fact, their hair was so straight that they didn’t even need to brush it in the morning and you couldn’t even tell. 

I, on the other hand, wake up with my hair shooting out in every which way. It is nearly impossible to get a comb through it, and I never dare leave the house in the morning unless my hair is completely pinned back or I have washed it. 

Woman laying in bed Photo by Kinga Cichewicz from Unsplash

I grew increasingly envious of the girls with low-maintenance hair. I couldn’t help but be jealous. It was something unattainable. I couldn’t change my hair, but I desperately wanted to. I even spent the entire seventh grade straightening my hair, hopelessly trying to be like the rest of the girls at my middle school. 

I get my hair from my mother. She has been rocking the 80s inspired perm for as long as I can remember. And let me tell you, she definitely does rock it. She always told me when it comes to your hair, “the bigger and more volume, the better.” I ignored this guidance for a very long time. It only took 21 years before I finally began to follow her advice. 

While in middle school and high school, I always wanted to blend in. My curly hair made this difficult. I was accidentally standing out when I desperately wanted to blend into the grey and bland high school walls. 

When I got to college, this mentality shifted. I no longer wanted to just blend in and hope the day would go by quickly. I made it my goal to be unapologetically me and not to let anything hold me back. And I held myself accountable to this mindset.  

Instead of trying to hide behind my hair, I began to embrace my curls. I quickly found out that all girls covet hair that they don’t have. Girls with straight hair, want curly hair and vice versa. Everyone is a little insecure about their hair and wishes it was different. I was incredibly surprised to learn that people actually wanted my hair. 

I started to fault my hair with pride. I took my mother’s advice and “fluff” up my hair whenever I get the chance. I actually like the 80s look. That’s my goal every morning when I do my hair. 

My curls make me different. They set me apart and make a statement. I will never again feel ashamed about my curls. After all, I wouldn’t be me without them.