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Wednesday, 12 June 2019 01:11

A Close Look at New Naturals

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It's not new. Afro hair has been around for millenia. And it wasn't always hated by its wearers. In other countries it was celebrated, styled into gravity-defying crowns of glory.

We have a long way to go

to get to where they were - but it's a challenge we are reaching for every single day.

It may be new to you, but its existence is timeless. And we still have a lot to learn to get to that knowledge. That's why starting your journey is a very big deal. It's a journey of discovery.

Here in the United States, our hair has been the victim of hate, shame and all out destruction. We have engaged in a war with what grows out of our head ever since we were told how awful it was. It's been legislated, banned and outlawed. It's been regulated, singled out, disrespected and hidden. As Black women, we have all experienced levels of this. Not always consciously. Not always knowingly. Not always deliberately.

Your hair is as unique as your fingerprints. As unique as your DNA. No two natural-heads are alike and it is so important you understand this, especially as you start out on your natural journey but just as important to remember as the years go by and you maintain your natural crown.

There is no product in the world that will make your hair look just like hers. Or her hair like yours. When you try hair products and tools, the way they work on her hair may not be the same way it works on yours, and I think that is the beauty and wonder of our natural hair! It's what makes it special and the journey so exciting.

If you have been relaxing your hair or straightening it for a long time, be prepared for some revelations. Here are my tips for helping you make your way.

Your natural hair will change your outward look and your inner feelings. Experience it.

Don't ask people who don't like what you're doing for their opinions.

Be kind to yourself.

Be patient with yourself.

Give yourself time to learn to understand your hair and the way it grows.

Don't get caught up in obsessive hair-typing.

Don't feel guilty about covering up on bad hair days.

Don't compare yourself to others to the point where you are disappointed in your hair texture.

Treat your hair gently and allow it to express its best look.

Experiment.

Accessorize.

And don't forget to check the back of your head.

Last modified on Tuesday, 18 June 2019 10:50
Patricia "Deecoily" Gaines

Patricia Gaines aka Deecoily is the founder and creator of Nappturality in 2002, the beginning of the natural hair movement. Since 2000 she has been blogging on all things natural hair, Black culture and politics.

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