Picture Supply: Getty/Plume Artistic
A couple of weeks in the past, influencer @sincerelyoghosa went viral on Tiktok for her video displaying how exasperated she was by the scrutiny lots of her hairstyles face. Within the video, she wrote: “Unpopular opinion: I not care about damaging my hair,” and the caption reads: “Let it break 🤣.” All through the clip she explains that she lately tried a number of new hairstyles and quite a few individuals have been asking her if she wasn’t afraid of her hair breaking with every one. Aggravated, she questioned if the concern of her hairstyles breaking her hair ought to value her the liberty to expertise a brand new look.
Oghosa’s expertise is not an remoted one. In actual fact, the concern of hair breakage or harm is a really actual concern in Black communities, and many individuals have grown up severely limiting the hairstyles and coverings that they obtain due to this mindset. “Black hairstyling is approached from a spot of concern due to an absence of Black hair schooling,” Keka Heron, an expert hair and make-up artist, tells POPSUGAR. “Black hairstyling has solely been taught in cosmetology textbooks inside the final 5 years. If the professionals do not learn to work with Black hair, how can they educate purchasers or educate others?”
The dearth of Afro-hair schooling in cosmetology faculties level to a bigger concern: Black hair discrimination. “So many ladies of colour really feel that they must put on straight extensions and straight hairstyles in an effort to achieve success, significantly in company environments,” Heron says. “We have been taught to not be seen as completely different or to face out in any manner. I’ve heard tales of pros within the ’70s and ’80s who wore dreads and Afros and needed to minimize them off in an effort to enter the ‘skilled’ sector.” There are additionally societal implications that include completely different Black hairstyles, and discrimination like this nonetheless exists right this moment. This prejudice nonetheless so deeply impacts the Black group that it has prompted motion just like the creation of the CROWN Act, which is laws that prohibits discrimination based mostly on hair texture and protecting hairstyles.
Even additional, the obsession with lengthy hair and retaining size when styling additionally comes from forcibly imposed Eurocentric magnificence requirements. “The obsession to size has to do with lengthy hair being checked out as stunning,” Heron says. “Hair wanting extra like that of white/caucasian individuals remains to be predominantly considered extra stunning.” Fortunately, the rise of the pure hair motion has combated a few of these beliefs. “The natural-hair motion has given individuals of colour the power to say, ‘Sure, all of us have completely different hair varieties and textures, however completely different should not be a destructive factor,'” Heron says. “The motion has allowed individuals to embrace who [they] are.”
On the finish of the day, the way you fashion your hair is a private selection — one which ought to be left as much as you alone. “Hair is individualistic, and the kinds that you just create can change day by day,” Heron says. “Making different individuals comfy together with your hairstyles shouldn’t be mandatory.” So whether or not you’re part of the natural-hair group, have a relaxer, or desire protecting kinds like braids or wigs, method hair care and styling from a spot of abundance, not concern. Black hair is so extraordinarily versatile that limiting your styling choices because of the concern of breakage could not solely have you ever feeling as exasperated as Oghosa, but in addition feeling trapped by the hair that grows out of your personal head. Take pleasure in your hairstyles — no matter kinds these could also be — and when you have any issues in any respect, discover a licensed hairstylist that’s well-versed in Black hair care to inform you every part you might want to know concerning the well being of your hair. Most significantly? Have enjoyable. The perfect half about Afro hair is its versatility, so don’t ever be ashamed of the magic that your hair can do.