The natural hair movement was created to teach African-American women how to care for their hair through viral Youtube videos. This social media tool was also a vehicle to inspire and encourage self-confidence, self-esteem, and self-identity for afro-textured hair types. Afro textured hair has never been accepted by mainstream media and African American women had a difficult time finding products in the stores that catered to their specific hair texture.
It was a platform for African-American women to provide informative videos about how-to styling, hair regimens, product awareness and the unique challenges that face coarser hair textures.
As soon as African Americans embrace their own beauty, it’s a threat. If black women speak out on texture discrimination, not to even mention bringing up skin color issues, they are accused of being haters or insecure. The real deal is that texture plays a big part in how women and men are treated in society. When you are made fun of in school for having natural hair or seeing their eyes roll up in people’s heads just because you’re wearing your natural born hair that grows out of your head, there is a problem. It’s not caused by black women or men, but by others who have an issue with it.
Over the years, there has been a gradual, subtle shift where the emphasis has been placed on softer, silkier textures that have wavy or bouncier curls or even looser, springy coils that can be transformed with less manipulation. These women are creating videos featuring Bantu knots or Nubian knots, twist outs, flat twist styles as well as shingling and other methods of styling which was formed within the natural hair community.
Although mainstream media has been featuring a lot more natural hairstyles on TV than the norm, the terminology of what natural hair truly means has shifted in the mainstream. Every aspect of natural hair and African-American culture has always been stolen or discredited from the black community. Brands continue to capitalize off African-American’s culture, hairstyles, music, hair products, cuisine, and inventions. The end result is always about diverting the attention from African culture to glamorizing traditional African American hairstyles by reproducing and stealing ideas and designs for profitable gain in the mainstream for corporate revenue streams.
The video below is a great example of how the natural hair community has been hi-jacked. I encourage you to listen to the full video to get a clear understanding. If you happen to get angry or upset, challenge yourself and ask yourself why. Without truth and understanding, there is no growth or change.