Monday, May 26, 2014

The Thing About Natural Hair

Throughout my journey I have met many people who’d ask me if my decision to reverse my hair to its natural stage was based on some form of political ideology or a reinforcement to the symbol of radicalism. Up to this point in my life I never took the time to truly analyze what is it that my hair symbolizes to me. 

Growing up I remember admiring a portrait of my mom sporting a huge fro and wondering if my hair would look like that one day. As a child I always wore my hair in braids or twists and when I was finally allowed to make minor decisions about my appearance I begged my mom for a perm. So I never really understood the true potential of my hair in its natural stage.

As I evolved into a woman, the image of my Mom’s fro kept popping inside of my head. Still I stayed faithful to my monthly perm although I struggled many times with the thought of finally following my heart. “How was I to begin with the transformation? What would my hair look like? Besides no one wears their hair that way”. Having self identity issues was inevitable, because from where I come from, the majority of women had kinky or curly hair. Yet getting a perm around the age of 12 was an almost must. It would be a true exception to bump into someone passed their childhood years with natural hair. But my whole perception changed when I moved to the Netherlands. I saw women of all kinds and backgrounds boasting with their hair and embracing it as it is. And then, I got acquainted with “The Movement” ; the shift from relaxers to natural hair. I was stunned, I have landed in some sort of unknown world that shared the same ideas as mine. But what was it that kept me from taking the step? I guess growing up with beauty perceptions of long, uncoiled hair still had their way through my head. It took me a year and a half, a severely irritated scalp, hair breakage and irreparable damage to finally get a big chop. It was almost as if I didn’t really had another choice, I was pushed to edge. But since then I have learned to love my hair unconditionally, embrace it and accept it as an extension of me.

So if you ask me, I wasn’t exactly partaking in some sort or kind of political movement, but in a way, I was glad that the movement even existed. In this age it is great to see women acknowledge the fact that beauty comes in a variety of forms and styles. We are able to embrace diversity and discover new ways of identifying ourselves.

For me my hair is a form of self expression. It allows me to say something about my style. My natural hair is versatile, so I am able to try so many different looks and make all kinds of statements. I love variety and my hair; in its natural stage; gives me the opportunity to show that. 

In no way does it mean that I am better or less than someone who opted to relax their hair or wear a weave. In my opinion the movement was meant to emphasize that natural hair is beautiful TOO and there’s no need to manipulate hair that you were born with to get a sense of acceptance in society. Whether you wear it relaxed, natural or in any kind of protective style it is up to you. We were all born with a free will to choose and fortunately wearing your hair naturally is a great choice that has been embraced by many. Your hair will always remain your crowning glory, no matter which style you choose to wear it. It is what makes us as woman special, it is what differentiates us from each other. We are all beautiful in our own way.

I am very open to hear your thoughts and I don't mind starting a healthy discussion, comments are welcome!

Pictures were taken by Ramses Clements
All Pictures are property of My Personal Experience and are not meant for personal use. If you desire to do so, please contact me


1 comment:

Share your experiences, thoughts and ideas, I would love to hear!

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