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A Phrase I Hate: “My Natural Hair.”

Yes, I probably said what you think I said: that I hate the saying/phrase/wording/whatever, “natural hair.” Do I hate naturals? No. I am one. But, saying it like that has always bothered me. I mean, think about how ridiculous that really sounds–I am wearing my natural hair. For perspective, I would never say: Ooh girl, I’m wearing my natural Black skin from now on. Like, what?

 

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My hair has been in its natural state for 4 years now, as of June 19th. I’ve cut it on several different occasions, dyed it once, and braided it up time upon time again. I love it and I would never, ever in life relax it again! But, I have always thought that having to state that I “went natural” or “am natural” was kind of silly–no one else has to say that about their hair or anything else. 

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(One week after I cut my hair in 2010)

        natural hair, twa, black hair, big chop

(One day after I chopped it all off again in 2012 because an experimental haircut didn’t go as planned! –Yes that is Nick Jonas on my door and I was def. in college. Judge all you want! Nick, knows what’s up. Lol)

When I first cut my hair, it was such a huge ordeal. Not necessarily for me, but for everyone around me. But, that’s another story for another post (if you’d like to know about the screaming, crying, yelling, and all out affair that involved me “having permission” to cut it at the age of 19, feel free to let me know! 🙂 ) Unlike a lot of naturals, I didn’t transition at all. I went straight for the BC (big chop). I cut it all by myself–and every other time to follow. People would say, Omg I didn’t know you were going natural! or What made you decide to go natural? or Omg I love your hair like that! & to that, I simply say thank you because I absolutely appreciate it. But what’s interesting is that when I got a relaxer in the 6th grade I said it once and it was never mentioned again.  

black hair, relaxed hair

(I’m thinking this was after a fresh relaxer in the 9th grade? Not entirely sure, though)

Those who have relaxed hair never have to say so. No one ever says, I love your relaxed hair (or permed hair as some say, which isn’t actually correct), or What made you get a relaxer every four weeks?, or Oh no, I’ve actually been relaxed for 7 years now! If anything, shouldn’t that be the thing that’s announced? Having my hair in its natural state is like having the brown skin on my body. It’s what I am and what I was born with, so why must I announce it as such? And you know what really trips me out? When people say:

Them: “Omg how did you get your hair like that?”

Me: “Well ,I just put water in it today, I didn’t really do anything.

Them: But noooo, how’d you get it to curl like that?

Me: Oh I didn’t do anything, I just wet it this morning. This is what it looks like. *cue nervous laughter*

Them: Oh come on girl, you had to put something in it, huh?

Me: No ma’am, this is just water. I use a few things sometimes, but I didn’t have time today and I haven’t done it in like a week. *backs away from this awkward conversation*

Like, I can’t have naturally curly hair? I have to be using Kinky Curly or something? Chill, ma’am.

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(My hair when I actually do something to it. Twists–which are worn for at least 2 weeks–and the twist out)

And lastly, my biggest pet peeve of all: “NATURAL HAIR ISN’T FOR EVERYBODY.” If I was as rude as the people who say this, I’d politely tell them to go eff themselves. How dare you? What the heck does that even mean–the hair that grows out of my hair isn’t for me? When God made me, he somehow managed to assign me the wrong hair type? Okay, thanks for that.

No! You are absolutely incorrect. My hair is mine and you have no right to say that it’s not for everybody. Personally, I’ve never been told that it didn’t work for me, but I have had people say that they wished other people’s looked like mine or that they “rocked it the way that I do,” because it isn’t for everyone. I’ve even heard women who wear their hair in its natural state say it. Shame on you, ma’am. Shame. On. You. No one tells women with straight hair that it’s not for them. Or women with weave, or dyes. Or women of other races that their hair isn’t cool. Why the freak should I be concerned about wearing my hair? IT’S MINE! & I SHOULDN’T HAVE TO ANNOUNCE IT!

But, anyway. I understand that it’s a more complicated and in-depth discussion than that. I know that everything ties back to slavery, and segregation, and changing not just your hair, but maybe even your identity to simply be accepted. I understand that it’s a “natural hair movement” because women are regaining the confidence to be who they are. I get it and I understand.

All I’m saying is that I don’t like it. Having to announce what I am is dumb. I don’t do it for anything else and I shouldn’t have to do it for this. But that’s just me.

xoxo

Lynella!