Being a nappy-headed beauty can be both a wonderful and challenging experience. Many African Americans have chosen to embrace their natural nappy hair. A more positive name for nappy hair is natural hair, and this article is about my own three-year journey as a natural haired college student and what I learned.
Natural hair is indeed beautiful. Your hair can be kinky, curly, or knotty, and the best thing is that it’s all yours. There is absolutely nothing processed about natural hair. If it looks great, you were born with it. If it looks bad, you were born with it.
Natural hair is healthy. As mentioned before, no chemicals are needed to produce naturally kinky hair. It grows right out of your scalp. You can wash it every day if you want to, and you may not need to get many trims because natural hair is rougher and tougher than chemically processed hair.
Natural hair is trendy. Out of all of the hairstyles around today, natural hair is one of the hippest amongst the African American community. With the advent of various hairstyles such as locs, braids, and twists, natural hair salons are popping up in all of the major cities across the U.S. It’s hard to walk down a diverse city street without seeing at least a few natural heads. If you have natural hair, your hairstyle is guaranteed to be hip.
On the other hand, there are some negatives to having natural hair. Some of these negatives may outweigh the positives. It all depends on your perspective.
Natural hair appears to grow slowly.
One reason many people leave perms and turn to natural hair is that they believe that without the chemicals, their hair should be healthy enough to grow and start showing some length. Ironically, with natural hair it takes years and years before you start to see length that is any greater than the length you had with permed hair. Natural hair is often tightly curled. Therefore, it springs back to a very short looking length after being pulled out. If you do not look good with short hair, do not hold your breath, you will have to wear a short natural hairstyle for quite some time.
Natural hair may never actually get long.
How many women do you see with long natural hair that is not braided or loc’d? There are not many women who have tightly coiled hair that have been able to maintain it so that it acquires a great amount of length. I’m not really sure why a lot of unloc’d natural hair does not get long. Mine never did, and I washed and moisturized it for three years.
When twisted, natural hair shows parts in your scalp
The most worn natural hairstyle is the twist. People take sections of their hair, break it into two pieces and begin to twist. This natural hairstyle can last up to two weeks. However, this style looks nothing like hair that is twisted or braided with synthetic hair. When hair is twisted using solely one’s own hair, parts show in the scalp, making it appear as if the person has thinning hair. The parts make this style unattractive when compared to other types of hairstyles worn by African American women.
Natural hair is not accepted in the work place
Most supervisors and coworkers will not tell you that they cannot stand those little peas and carrots they see poking out of your scalp. If they do like your natural hair, they may not tell you that they wish you would hide your individuality just for today while guests are in the building. The fact of the matter is that you never know what people are thinking. You do not know why your interview did not go well–again. All you know is that when you walked into the interviewer’s office you saw someone’s eyes look at your outfit and then pause at the top of your head.
With natural hair, you often become an exhibit; a showcase for the latest new trend. If that’s what you want to say to your boss, fine. If you would rather be known more for your intelligence than your cool hairdo, you may have a problem.
Well these are the pros and cons of having natural hair. Chose your hair journey with the help of this information.