How I Look Is My Business
In the past 24 hours, I’ve asked 4 people of their opinion of my hair. Not including the 650+ people who follow me on Instagram in a post that I may or may not have deleted out of sheer embaressment.
I’ve always been a people pleaser, especially when it comes to “me.” During my first year of college, I used change my clothes 2–4 times a day. Yes, the numbers are accurate and that’s not because I spilled something nor does that include getting in my PJs for bed. I’m sure there’s a name for this type of behavior but I’m sure it relates to my severe insecurites rooted being an adoptee with abandonment issues.
I’ll constantly “fix” myself so you love me and won’t leave.
As an African American child, I was always told that my hair was my crown and glory. My mom would spend hours washing, conditioning, blow drying, my hair all to braid them into four sections with barretts. My course, brown hair suddenly felt like a heavy burden on my shoulders. I absolutely hated it.
Let’s fast forward the stages where I only wore my hair in a high top-knot on my forehead, flat ironed it daily, permed it (not the curly kind), dyed it chocolate brown twice, and then blue-black. Oh, and my hair fell out in the shower and I had to cut it all off. Starting over and learning about my kinks and coils was easily the best decision of my life.
After years of damaged hair, I finally saw what my curls actually looked like. They were absolutely stunning. If you are familiar with the natural hair community then you know all about hair typing. My type 4b kinks were revealed to me when I got a pixie cut in my second year of college.
The changing of clothes died down and I wore black and white the majority of the time (still do) and added 6 extra piercings. I loved my look and it was the first time I felt like “me”. Everyone else loved my hair, except for the people who constantly asked if I was a “lesbian”. I didn’t know my sexuality was based on my hair cut, clothing, or piercings but I digress. Although my curls were flourishing, those comments from those close to me kick-started my obsession in changing myself again.
As my curly fro grew longer and longer, I could stretch it down my back. But of course, microagressions and unrequested comments about how “wild,” “crazy,” and yes even “nappy” caused me to change again.
Cue in the wigs.
To be completely honest, I’m extremely lazy with my hair, however I love temporarly trying different styles. I feel refreshed without bleach, heat damage, or commitment. There’s only so many different braid-outs, high-buns, low-buns, or pigtails (which make me look like a child) that I can do.
Wigs gave me a break from my boring routine. Also, if I pleased people who preferred wavy or straight textures better then that was a very, very large bonus.
Now, I’m twenty-two and that 12 year old girl who would get paniac attacks from slightly upsetting someone is still in me. Sometimes, I have to hold her and remind her to see herself the way God made her. Then there are other times I have to throw water in her face and yell, “Stop it! Be thankful you weren’t in a car accident or burned alive. Then you would have wish you appreciated your health, body, and hair.”
Outsiders comments about our opinions are irrelevant to who we are. We are constantly evolving. Our taste, sight, spirit, opinions, and values all change. It’s completely normal, in fact you should change. I’ll wear 30" inch clip-in extensions today and have a blonde bowl cut tomorrow. But when I wear my natural hair please, shut up.
In the words of my dearest friend, Mikaela Wilburn, (who ironically I met in class and paid her to do my hair) how I look is my business. No questions asked and no comments necessary.
To see more pictures of my hair, click here.