There’s a documentary called 400 years without a comb and the documents how Black people specially Black women had to deal with slavery and subsequently not being able to take care of their hair the way that they knew at home because they were taken and they weren’t able to take any tools with them because slavery. It talks about how Eurocentric beauty standards were pushed up on black women because they’ve never seen hair like ours before and subsequently that shit is carried to this day.
I think about that documentary every time I buy a wig every time I buy a weave and everytime someone criticizes black women for doing so buying a wig buying a weave for straightening their hair whatever would have you. It is absolutely infuriating to me that people do not have the cultural and historical context when it comes to Black women and our hair before they feel the need to criticize us for what we do to make sure that our hair is healthy and that it’s presentable in the way that we wanted to be presented because we know if our hair isn’t a certain way then we’re going to have an issue.
It’s not our issues it’s shit that’s projected onto it is things that we have no fucking control over but everybody always has such extensive comments to say about our hair. how we should keep it and how we should wash it and if we should go natural or if we have the right type of natural hair (the hierarchy in natural hair is another issue entirely but it’s exhausting too) and it’s like shut the fuck up. Because at the end of the day you don’t have to deal with this shit you don’t have to deal with people making assumptions about you your hygiene your sense of self hell even your socioeconomic status based solely on your hair. It’s annoying because nobody wants to talk about how ostracized Black women are for the hair that grows out of their heads, but they so QUICK to tease, or comment, or to mock.
So it’s like yes we going to wear a weave and we’re going to wear a wig and we’re going to wear braids. I’m going to wear whatever the fuck else that we need to so that we don’t have issues and that we don’t get accosted by managers or accosted by school teachers or principals or expelled or fired or told to cut our hair because it’s not proper when it’s what grows out of our head. Nobody wants to talk about this when they criticize weaves and wigs and extensions and everything that we’ve developed in order to navigate through this system that envies us and maligns us at the same damn time. When you are able to find a better solution you let me know until then shut the fuck up.