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Self Love: Embracing My Multidimensional Hair

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

Throughout my childhood, my mom was very selective about how often she manipulated my hair and what styles would work best for my hair. I do not recall her doing too much combing and brushing my hair. Therefore, my hair remained healthy at a decent length. As I became older, I was certain I could take charge and begin styling my hair. Being eager to get creative with a luxurious piece of me, I, unfortunately, began to damage my hair. Not combing my hair as gently as my mom did lead to split ends and hair loss; I ripped my hair out.

In the mirror, I witnessed my hair shorten in length as time passed. At this point, I recognized my lack of skills in natural hair care.

Of course, my mom provided demonstrations of how to protect and take care of my hair. Despite that, I did what I wished until it was time to suffer the consequences. 

Eventually, I slowly but surely began to lose confidence in my hair, so I asked my mom could I get braids. No, not any regular braids. I wanted box braids: weaving kanekalon hair into my hair. I wanted the length that I saw other young girls with. I wanted a new look: weave.

Considering my mom did not encourage or allow me to wear weave prior to my interest, I knew it would be hard to convince her. 

Any opportunity I had, I mentioned my wanting for braids. I shared with my mom my knowledge of someone who could do them in our neighborhood; plus, he did not charge an arm and a leg.

My mom soon agreed to pay for me to get the braids. 

My appointment came around the corner fast. I was excited. A new Mia was in the works.

Time passed and the braids were not fulfilling my wants how I thought they would. The braids were dark brown box braids that weighed heavy on my head. The tension in my hair was hard to disregard. I could not handle it. This is not what I asked for. I asked to look good and feel good. The hairstyle was not worth my scalp being irritated; I should not have had to carry the weight of artificial hair. 

“I’m cutting them out of my hair. I do not want this”, I would say in my head.

Sharing my concerns with my mom, she gave me that “I told you so” look. A few minutes after, she told me I could take the braids down. 

Back then, I did not understand the context of the situation. I merely knew that the braids were what I wanted. I never had weave before, so I wanted the experience. My experience seemed more like a nightmare.

I wanted a hairstyle that I saw other girls with. I did not care to have it because I was familiar with it. I wanted to achieve a look that would make me gorgeous. I despised not feeling confident in my hair. Thus, I was sure the braids were the perfect solution to my lack of confidence. 

Now, I am more confident than I have ever been about my hair. 

It took me nearly six years to appreciate my hair. Six long years of coloring my hair, trying numerous styles, giving extended braids a try one more time, and understanding the needs of my hair.

Because my hair is a finer grade, I know that I cannot achieve the same style as someone else with a different texture of hair. More importantly, I know my hair is more fragile than others. Sometimes, it is not best to wear my hair in tight ponytails or slick back buns. Additionally, I have to be gentle as I comb and brush my hair. 

Lately, I have experimented with various styles that do not cause any tension in my hair. I have attempted to wear the hairstyles out for a week straight or longer. I am familiar with numerous twist-out methods, but I tried different products underneath my go-to company, Miche Beauty. I have enjoyed wearing flat twists because this is a low-maintenance hairstyle that keeps my hair protected and moisturized. Flexi rod sets have also been trial and error for me. On my first attempt, the curls were pretty but not fitting the look I desired. After trying again on somewhat dry hair, I achieved the curl, shape, and look I wished for. 

Realizing that my hair has so many characteristics has made such a difference in how I view myself. 

I have witnessed myself grow throughout my hair journey. No longer do I prefer my hair to be blown out or hidden under braiding hair. My hair is golden and deserves to be shown off. My hair is a flex. My hair is a person on its own, and she is that girl. 

Today, I have an adoration for my hair that previously never existed. My hair color is unique; My hairstyles are gorgeous; My hair is multidimensional. My hair is everything that it wants it to be. My hair holds a crown that will never be knocked.

My hair is me.

Mia Booth

Hampton U '25

Mia Booth is a first-year Broadcast Journalism major from Chicago, Illinois. She aspires to become a television anchor post-graduation. Mia is a member of the social media committee for Her Campus at Hampton University. In Mia's free time she enjoys preparing new dishes, going on an adventure, and devoting time to her spiritual life.
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