Tuesday, May 12, 2009

LIFE || talkin' 'bout good and bad hair. . .

I've been trying to get this or something like it out for days:

I've given into the myth that straightening my hair makes it more "manageable". Reality: When I wore my hair natural, it took about as much time or less to make it cute as it does with this relaxer. I've been guilty of wanting my hair bone straight, and have endured the burn of the relaxer to get it so. (It's funny now, because I'd prefer my straightened hair, now, to have some 'kink' in it) And ultimately, the time when I had the most "gorgeous hair" was the time I did not use chemicals on it.

I wouldn't call myself a slave to my hair. I don't judge other people (or their worth, or their blackness) by how kinky or straight thier hair is. I've worn my hair naturally and loved it, and worn it relaxed and loved it. But the point of all of this is that I watched Tyra a few days ago and was so saddened by the self-hate black women still have. If it's not about skintones, it's about hair texture.

When women will refuse to date men of thier own heritage in fear of having a child with "bad hair", there's still a problem. When a little girl wants to wear only the straight "Hannah Montana" wig, instead of her cute little kinky ponytails and barretts, my little heart aches. There was a mother who permed (relaxed) her little girl's hair at three years old and another mother who avoided introducing her daughter with a natural haircut out of embarrassement that her hair was no longer straight.

What is up? I mean I know what is up. In America, beauty is anything that is close to whiteness: light skin, straight hair, svelte figure, slight features. I know that. It has been this way forever: good hair, bad hair, black women being afraid of the sun (and not for health reasons), brown paper bag tests.

It sucks that beauty comes in so many different packages, but we're too busy being blinded by the wavy texture of someone's hair, than to look at the real beauty that lies in the dark face staring us in the mirror.

It's so sad that this thing is REAL. That girls are still being brought up to find themselves ugly because their hair kinks up when wet instead of curls or waves; That they are dark chocolate instead of caramel. Most, if not all people want to feel attractive; little girls, big girls, grown girls want to feel pretty. It's so hard when everyone is telling you you're not.

This is so just the tip of the iceberg of my rambling thoughts. Please share any of yours. . . Need inspiration: The classic good hair/bad hair, light-skinned/dark-skinned battle from Spike Lee's classic joint: School Daze.

In the words of Dap: We need to "WAKE UP!"

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