This blog post is not meant to be a rant. It is intended to give insight, be educational, and most of all be helpful.
This post is merely scraping the surface of this topic and I’m sure there will be a part two…or three lol. However, we have to at least start the conversation. So let’s talk about it.
By the way, this message is for every ethnicity...including my own.
My favorite book says…
”But for a woman, if her hair is abundant, it is a glory to her; for her hair is given to her for a covering.” – Corinthians 11:15
Let that sink in for a second.
In order for you to get in my headspace, let me share some experiences I’ve personally had.
In Elementary school,
my mom had to threaten my life and drill into me that no one had permission to touch or change my hair.
Before that threatening of my life...lol…people would play in my hair and I’d come back home with a changed and diluted version of the style that my mom started me out with.
Not understanding how much time was spent to get this thick hair to cooperate (sorry mom!), I couldn’t understand why she got so mad. But TRUST, as I grew up and had to learn to do my own hair, I understand now.
Throughout grade school,
when wearing my straight hair, people wanted to touch and run their fingers all through my hair. Little did I know, when rocking my afro that would multiply times 1,000. And unfortunately, that’s no exaggeration.
As an African American woman, understand that my hair takes TIME. It is a full time job washing, styling, and taking care of this mane.
Being that I interact with very diverse people, I’ve often run into very interesting situations and find myself having to correct and educate those individuals on proper hair etiquette I guess you can call it.
In laymen’s terms, to those I’m close to, I’ve explained why it’s a no-no to touch African American women’s hair WITHOUT permission.
Let me break it down for ya:
Wash day can take up half of our day. Sitting in a salon…whew child…you never know how long you’ll actually be in there. Sitting to get protective styles done like braids?! That can take 8+ hours! Oh, and let’s not even get into how much good hair products cost.
What I need you to understand is that our hair is truly our glory. Whether it’s a short cut or flowing down our backs, it’s a part of us.
So for someone to come up and touch my hair without permission is DISRESPECTFUL. Lacking courtesy. An invasion of space.
My hair is not a petting zoo.
You don’t get to touch it just because it looks so intriguing.
Let me give you some examples of what people have said to me after I check them for touching my hair without permission:
1) I just couldn’t resist!
2) But it just looks so soft! Like a pillow. I wanted to see if it felt like that too.
3) It’s just one touch. …….Just one touch??? Yeah, you and 25 other people today simple mindedly thought the same thing.
Listen, I have no idea where your hands have been. I don’t know if you just finished eating or what you’ve touched previously. Whatever oils and such you have on your hand can affect the flow of our hair. Yeah…it does.
For example, I personally don’t put lots of oil in my hair because it weighs it down. So just think about the oils of 25 people’s hands on my hair.
I’m not being a germophobe but these are facts.
I hope this is giving you insight and allows you to understand why touching someone’s hair without permission is a no go.
This wouldn’t be helpful without a SOLUTION so let me offer you a couple:
1) Ask permission to touch someone’s hair BEFORE reaching out to do so.
2) If you are really intrigued about someone’s hairstyle and would like to know more, Google it. Google offers great descriptions and examples to help you understand. Even better, watch a YouTube video. You can definitely learn a lot from there.
I hope this blog had offered insight, education, and help. If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments. I’d love to continue the conversation. No question is a stupid question. I’m open and willing to answer. If you’d like your question to be personal, feel free to email me at: -firstname.lastname@example.org
For your entertainment, check out Solange’s music video called Don’t Touch My Hair.” Take in the lyrics and enjoy the great visuals that come along with it:
Until next time:)
I’m at a point in my life where once you figure out what your purpose is and realize it’s so much bigger than you, you begin to often re-evaluate things within your life to make sure it’s benefiting those around you.
I think we all go through moments of re-evaluating ourselves and how we’re making a difference in our community and in this world. That’s what phase I’ve been in lately.
Well, as I was browsing through my social media, I saw cute pics. I saw cute pics with good captions and an inspirational message…which is great! But, I want more.
I’m capable of more.
Let me explain. Right now, I see myself as being a “Fashion Enthusiast.” An enthusiast is a person who is really passionate and excited about something, which I am! Fashion does excite me, but I’m ready to take it a step further and walk in the authority of a “Fashion Activist.”
A Fashion Activist is a person who uses fashion as a means of social or political change. I am a confident 5’3” and 1/2 (never forget the 1/2) athletic/curvy girl and I’m proud of it! Unfortunately, all clothing doesn’t flatter my figure and that was a learning process for me. Thankfully, I have mother that is so fashionable and was able to help me find my stride in what works for me. Everybody doesn’t have that luxury, so that’s what I’m here for! Let me be that bestie that you take shopping with you.
Listen, we’re in this thing together and no number or size will confine our fabulosity!
Besides my own yearning to do this, I get so many women that compliment my outfits saying “I wish I could wear that” or “I’d love to rock that, but I don’t know how” or “I love that, but I don’t know if it’d work for my body.”
Figuring out what styles flatter your figure is one of the best gifts you can give yourself. Because when you look good you what…..FEEL GOOD!
My desire is to continue to post cute fashionable pictures lol, AND give you more ideas of how you too can achieve certain desired looks for yourself.
Being a fashion enthusiast was cute and I got wonderful compliments, but that’s not the only reason I want to post... (Although, keep those compliments coming lol!)
So, my desire is to post more YouTube videos and have different episodes geared towards various areas of fashion to inspire and motivate you to continuously be your best self. Let me know in the comments what videos you’d like to see! Until you read again!