Are You Really Team Natural?

According to the Urbandictionary: Your natural hair is when your hair is in the state that you were born with. Hair that is not permed, dyed, relaxed, or chemically altered.

You remember the 80’s and 90’s? Myself and almost every little black girl I knew had to sit in the kitchen and dread that super hotcomb making its way to our tender scalp. The smell of hot metal and hair grease already in the air, “sizzle….AHHHH!!Ma! MY EAR!!” “How about you stop moving and maybe you won’t get burnt again!”

All that work and my curls would last maybe for a day, it would eventually revert right back to a greasly oily mess.

Many of us are also familiar to the next best thing, a perm, a permanent , a creamy white or yellow lye based hair product that literally was designed to break down our natural hair to make it more “relaxed” and “managable”. My first experience was around age 12, My aunt thought it would be like an exciting passage in life, her way of reminding me of my “blackness” Or maybe it was to spite my mom I don’t know. All I knew was that my hair was BEE-EEA-U-TEE-FULL (at least to the held standard at the time, which was to be straight), for like two weeks!

The older I got, the more often i’d perm, Started perming my own hair at 14, did’nt stop till age 29. During all those years, i was not aware of terms such as “neo-soul” and “afrocentricism” otherwise I would have eaten that all up.

I was in a thick foggy bubble that was never meant to pop. Apple Bottoms ,Straightend hair, chunky hoop earrings and lip glass was all i knew and was all that surounded my neightborhood. I wasn’t used the seeing or being inspired by the Jill Scotts and India Aries. It was very unfortunate.

Nowadays we see women of color rocking their natural hair and curls and loving it! We as a whole are obsessed with creams and oils to keep our coils moisturised and bouncy.

Personally I don’t even really use shampoo, I mostly do natural cleansing at home with natural products and use deep conditioners. but the more I look around, the more it’s about the curls. Yes, our hair is naturally curly with several different textures.

My question to you is, when is natural unacceptable? Is my hair only acceptable when it’s curly? How about my complete natural afro? When my hair is fresh out of the shower or is sprayed with moisture, the spirals do pop. But when my hair dries naturally, the curls go away and I end up with a big poofy proof. Funny, when I go to the store I don’t get many compliments on how round my Afro is, when my hair is in spirals that is when people ask to touch, and ask me what do you put in your hair? It’s beautiful! Really? Is it beautiful? what’s wrong with the afro?

Teamnatural has been a big deal for the past few years, it began in the early 2000 but was completely under toned and pretty much ignored. Almost like a subculture, like a alternative or taboo. But teamnatural really started in the late 60s. If you do research, you will find many beautiful black and brown women during the Black Panther era embracing their afros at their most natural state. Back then it was about pride, and not about what was accepted. In fact, it was about what was not accepted.

Does one Kink favor the other? In which state of your hair is it when you are most confident? Ask yourself. Many black and brown people say that their natural hair is just too hard to deal with, so they make it more manageable with creams and oils to make life easier, but is it really to make life easier? Or is it to follow a certain standard that has been established?

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