Since the launch of a new natural hair movement somewhat reminiscent of the 1970s womanist culture ala Angela Davis, women have begun trading in their weaves and perms for their kinks and curl creams.
The ‘70s movement was motivated by rejecting the White man’s repressive regime, which included the assimilationist hair styles of straight, flowing bobs and ponytails that swayed in the wind. The movement of the new century is motivated more so by natural health.
Healthy lifestyles have caused Americans and other westerners to move away from chemical-based household, skin and beauty products. Thus, Black women began to question themselves: Why do I continue to douse my hair and scalp with a harsh chemical when in fact “healthy” is the way to go? It’s only natural to go natural, they decided.
So, there you have it. Black women are cutting the chemicals out of their lives: this includes relaxers, heat-based tools and straighteners, hair sprays, sulfate shampoos and paraben-laced conditioners.
So, if none of those are an option, how can a women style her very tightly coiled natural hair and still look presentable for the boardroom, school, weddings and other special events?
Well, it takes a lot more ingenuity. Websites, blogs, vlogs and offline natural hair communities have begun cropping up to support women in creating new Black natural hairstyles.
Black women haven’t had this much fun in years when they get together. They gab about natural hair styling products, the latest doos like frohawks and wash and go styles for short, natural hair. They even host product swap days and natural hair nightlife events to encourage each other to embrace what some may deem a very intimidating lifestyle.