It all started when my mama sat me down in that kitchen with that good ole box of Just For Me Relaxer. From kiddie perms to super-duper Dark & Lovely Relaxers, I’ll probably never go natural, and I’ll tell you why you should or shouldn’t…
So lately, your girl has been rocking a sew-in. For those who don’t know what that is, it is exactly that: hair sewn into your scalp, ok ok, they braid it first and then crochet the hair tracks through the braids. Anyway, but even before I started to wear weave, I relied heavily upon relaxing my hair. It wasn’t until I began to fraternize with the “natural” community that I realized that this was frowned upon by my roots. I learned in college at one open mic event that my decision to straighten my hair with chemicals was a sign of my conformity to the white culture. I learned this from a “natural” sista whose hair went from here to yonder and back again. Her hair looked like an unkept chia pet minus the pet and add another chia on top of that with a brown broccoli bushel and that was her mange. She approached me after I performed a poem on stage and told me that my spirit was too beautiful to straighten my hair. She went on and on about my roots (as if I didn’t know) and that I shouldn’t allow myself to be caught up in the cultural influences of white mainstream America. I must have accidentally stepped outside unknowingly with my elbow length blonde wig and blue contacts because that is exactly how she was talking to me.
While she was going on and on about natural beauty, I looked her over three times because that’s how long it took me to take in the face full of Mac makeup, cowrie shell necklaces made in China, Bob Marley tees probably produced in a Indonesian sweat shop, a quarter sleeve jean jacket from The Gap, jeans probably from The Limited, Aldo shoes and a fake Gucci purse. Some nat-u-ral beauty she was.
I paused her in the middle of her “Move Me Back To Africa” speech and told her that I relax my hair because I want to. I could have caved and used celebrating Madame CJ Walker as an excuse, but all I know is that when those roots are coming in, pass me the creamy crack. My straight hair is easy and simple to manage. Since I’m always on the go, all I have to do is unwrap my forcibly silky mange and go. I personally don’t have time to load my hair with natural products (that probably have more chemicals combined than one relaxer) and twist and braid only to untwist and unbraid. I just simply don’t have time to rake and prod at my hair.
Besides, nowadays, it seems as though natural hair is becoming more of a trend then a movement. It’s ok to admit you’re not a fan of half of a girl’s head being shaved with a Sonic the Hedgehog blondish, brownish greasy afro encroaching on her forehead.
Going natural isn’t for everybody. If you want to try it, do it for YOU and YOU ONLY.
Now if you really want to join the natural movement be committed and start using natural soaps and deodorants. Walk 25 miles to go get some water, then you can talk to me about conforming to the pattern of mainstream America.
4 More Weeks ‘Til My Next Relaxer