Good hair – a thing we all acquire right? But what is good hair? What would you define as ‘Good Hair’? Essentially, hair is what defines our look. It transforms us in so many ways. Long, short, big, bald – our hair distinguishes us.
Being a black woman, hair is probably something we spend our days trying to maintain in many different styles. Our hair is typically corse, unless we treat it. And when I say treat, it can be anything from relaxing it chemically, texturizing, straightening and then braiding, putting in extensions, weaving, wearing wigs and so on.
When I was a young child, my mum used to plait my natural hair in 4 or 5 plaits – cute, until I started Junior school. On the odd occasion, she would relax it which made it softer, and give it a bit more flow if you like – because every girl likes flowing hair. As I attended junior school (especially in an all white school) it became uncool, or at least that is how I was made to feel. I’d relax my hair more, or I’d wear braids. Even with braids, I’d still get the silly questions asked such as, ‘how has your hair grown over night?’ or where is your actual hair in the plaits?’ ‘So are you bald?’ questions you could now, only laugh at.
I was fed up. I started longing for straight hair, not the relaxed, soft, no rhythm no flow hair that I had whenever it was relaxed, but long, flowing glossy hair – European hair as we would now call it.
I tried my first weave when I was 16, and loved the idea of having these luscious locks that blew in the wind, hair that actually moved! I mean it sounds ridiculous, but you ask every black woman! And over the years my weaves have gotten bigger and bolder, thus allowing my natural hair to really grow having not touched it.
The last time I left my natural hair out in style was around 7 years ago, so you can imagine how much my hair has grown since then! Whenever I change me weave, I’ll take it out, wash my hair, and put the weave straight back in again.
I recently attended an event at Radiant Salon London, in Bermondsey which specialises in treatments and styles for women of colour. The event was hosted by the lovely AJ Odudu and Michelle Braude – The Food Effect Doctor, who held open discussions about health and fitness. Michelle spoke about the health benefits of specific foods, and their pros and cons, whilst AJ engaged in discussions about how to maintain your natural hair whilst keeping fit, and all the other woes that black women come across trying to keep their locks intact. It really was an inspiring evening, having frank discussions with people who understand each other when it comes to hair, and there was lots of advice to give.
Having come away from the event, it really made me appreciate how lucky I am to have such good hair – all black women do and we should totally embrace it. My natural hair is full of life, but because I haven’t had it out and left it to be ‘free’ for such a long time I’ve always wondered how I could ever maintain it (time and effort is what is needed) and when it comes to my natural hair, I just don’t have it. But – having had so many people say I should leave my fro to show (you guys have had sneak peaks on Facebook and Insta) and having come away from Radiant’s event so inspired by such beautiful women of colour, I have decided that it is time to face those fears, and let that natural hair flare! Now, I know so many of my friends and family have been dying for this to happen, and there is a slight catch with this one. So, if this post can be liked and shared a significant amount of times then I will break down the hair barrier and leave my natural hair out! I say that because I have such a small audience, so I’d love to see how far this can go. So, I call to you, my friends, family, acquaintances – if you would like the Fro to Show for good, then get sharing and get liking! It would make my day, and yours too probably 😉 #showthefro
Follow Radiant London Salon – @radiantlondonsalon
Follow AJ Odudu – @AJOdudu
Follow The Food Effect Dr – @TheFoodEffectDR