Mind Your Own Hair

Like many Black women, my hair is deeply personal. It is simply an extension of my identity in the world. Each coil that rebels against applications of a copious amount of edge control reminds me of my own resilience maneuvering through the world. Just like my beautiful natural kinks that stretch towards the clouds, I too refuse to remain unheard or be forgotten. When my natural hair is receptive to new regimens and products, my curls are reminding me to be myself, but to also be flexible and open to the world around me. It’s quite romantic actually, tending to curls that I once had no idea how to work with. Many wash days were spent emotionally and physically frustrated by the tedious upkeep of my locs.  Like a relationship that starts out rocky with a significant other, it took patience, care and a whole lotta love to get where I am today in my natural hair journey.

I guess that’s why I take it so personally when I receive unsolicited commentary on how I choose to wear my hair. Assumptions that Black women who wear protective styles like weaves or wigs hate themselves is irritating. Or if I don’t wear my hair naturally that I must be ashamed of it, or even my entire identity. On the flip side, I also abhor wearing my ‘fro out and someone acknowledging their approval of another hairstyle instead. Most of the time their opinion wasn’t invited to begin with. As it can be imagined I constantly feel like people around me feel some sort of entitlement to my hair.  

I change my hair multiple times a year because I love a good old fashioned switch up. Kinky hair is extremely versatile and can hold styles like braids, weaves and locs in a way looser hair textures can’t. I also appreciate the ritual of choosing a new style - scrolling through my perfectly curated IG explore page for inspiration, then hauling new ideas to my favorite beauty supply store in town to buy supplies. Switching up my hair is a process that I am dedicated to, and the outcome is always worth it. Protective styles allow my curls a well-deserved break by being tucked away in neat cornrows or buns while rocking another ‘do.

Regardless of how others may feel, I’m completely and utterly enamored with my ‘fro in the present day, and my devout appreciation extends to every moisturized strand that springs with exuberance from my scalp. However, I will always love diverting hairstyles. I have nothing to prove to anyone, but I feel the desire to share my story to educate those who haven’t been introduced to the culture and pride of hair in relation to Blackness. In other words, if you don’t understand it, then mind your own hair.