Thursday, January 26, 2012


I was on twitter today and a question caught my eye. The question was random, yet provided great insight to how many see women/men who wear their hair in its natural state or should I say “kinky”. The question “If your partner didn’t like your natural hair and demanded that you change it, would you?”

Many of the responses made me proud to be a part of the natural hair community, but there were still a few that made me say “hmmm”. The way we all tend to present ourselves is solely up to us, and no one should make or demand you change, period. I believe that a person’s personality or individuality is formed through their style and appearance. Now don’t get me wrong, there are some who take it too extreme by leaving nothing to the imagination or by causing a traffic jam when passing by, but seriously, do the way we wear our hair really matter that much? Just what is exceptional or not in this crazy world?

I wear my hair natural because that was/is a choice I made eight years ago, due to chemical burns and other personal reasons. I do have some family members who say things regarding my “naps” as they call it, but that doesn’t make me want to go back out, sit countless hours at a salon, and endure all the pain I once experienced. I simply smile or shake my head, and continue to be my sassy, classy and sexy natural hair wearing self! I used to get defensive, curse somebody the hell out, and allow them to make me upset, but why? What good could that do? It really didn’t matter anyway, I am my own person and I dictate what I do or don’t do with my appearance.

If I had a problem with the way I looked just because one or two people did, it would be pointless to maintain the morals and values about my appearance. I would have given in to all the naysayers and whispers when I walk in or out of the room. I wouldn’t be able to teach my children to be who they are. How could I when I wasn’t doing the same for myself? Do people really think about that particular fact when they are criticizing or putting down on someone else?

True, we tend to judge others by the clothing they wear, the way they wear make-up or the kind of shoes they have go, but it is still unjustifiable. Just like how being from a different neighborhood or the kind of job your parents have, what kind of car you own or the color of your eyes shouldn’t matter either, but sadly, it plays a huge part in your acceptance in the world.

I love the way I can change my hair any time I feel like it. I love the way it complements my personality. I love the way I feel when I look in the mirror and see the bushy mass on top of my head. Not that anyone who decides to use chemicals on their hair cannot see and feel the same way as do when they too look in the mirror, it just purely mean that it’s my preference. I’m not knocking anyone from doing them. Who I am to do so? Personally, I think that it’s what’s on the inside of a person that should matter most. Their heart should determine your view for them, but their appearance.  

As I scanned through the answers, I saw that a few men said that they would never date a woman who didn’t perm her hair. One said that if he couldn’t run his fingers through his woman’s hair, he couldn’t be in a relationship with her. Come one now, how many women allow you to even do that anyway, Dude! (I’m just saying) I personally don’t have a problem with my hubby running, pulling or anything else to my hair. Hey, we do tend to get a bit out of hand from time to time. *winks*

I think that before anyone judges a person who wears their hair a certain way, they should learn why or educate themselves first. Or just date who you date. Be attractive to whom you are attractive to. Being closed minded can cause many people to miss out on amazing people. But, to each their own! What do I know, right? I do know that there are many natural women/men out in the world who are wonderful, smart, daring individuals. Just because society frowns upon “kinky” “nappy” hair, it doesn’t make wearing straight, permed, pressed hair the better choice or more exceptional of the two. Just like a woman who doesn’t have a “big ass” or “nice rack” more or less attractive, but people are attracted to various types.

I’ve heard stories from a few friends on YouTube and twitter how they were given an ultimatum to change their hair or lose a job, companion, even friends. This is just bogus. Does the way people wear their hair make that much of a difference on their job performance, how good of a friend they will be or if they are marriage material? Damn, have the world become so shadow, superficial and ridiculous that just being you are doesn’t stand a chance in hell? I do believe first impressions are lasting impressions, but if someone looks nice, is dressed nicely and can hold a damn intellectual conversation, why should anything else matter? Shouldn’t that be enough!

We as Society need to stop forming opinions, putting up barriers, stereotyping, or placing individuals into categories and start digging deeper. Like transformers, there is more than meets the eye. And for the individuals who have someone in your life who is trying to change you into someone that you are not. Tell their ass to kick rocks! Nine times out of ten, they are probably the wrong person or people in your life anyway. Be who you are or want to be! If you don’t like whom you are, then and only then should you decide to make a change. Don’t give anyone that much power over you! Let’s decide today, right in this moment, to start looking beyond a person’s appearance and get to know them before determining if they have a purpose in our lives. Don’t miss meeting and having great people in your circle!

And as I always say, comments are welcome. Feel free to speak your mind!! You have a voice and it deserves to be heard. Until next time, be inspired, be encouraged, be blessed and most importantly, be you!

Keke Chanel

Follow me on twitter @keke_chanel
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