Search This Blog

Friday, June 18, 2010

Is Your Natural Hair a Fad?

Is natural hair a fad? Naturally Sophia thinks YES! Hell yes! I can remember just a few short years ago maybe 2 at the most when natural hair was a niche. There were more attitudes of that looks good on you but not me. There was more an emphasis on weave too. But my how things have changed?

Now, there are so many natural blogs and products and etc. I can't even keep up with all of them. In a way this can't be good, natural hair= mass consumerism. Unlike the afros and natural hair of the 70's, which often just meant a curly head went without heat styling to reveal a beautiful afro, there are magic puddings, wet look conditioners, texturizers, etc.
It's more about a Natural Look than BEING Natural.
Looking natural is easier I think than being natural. It's easier to change a look than your way of being. What place does a blog have about being natural in a sea of blogs about looking natural?


Then, there's the trendiness. There are afros on the runways for even White models. Most of the images I see with Black models in popular magazines or on commercials have some type of natural weave, wig, or look. I used to have to look at only Black channels or Black media for those images. They are abundant now.





I think natural hair has become a movement, and I hope it's not a temporary one. I have locked in my natural hair so it's not a fad for me. Is it for you? Thoughts?





Furthermore, I think locs or locks, dreads, whatever you call them are less trendy and hence more permanent for those who wear them. It is easier to go from permed hair to natural and back than to go from perm to natural to locks and back to perm. You follow? So, when I see locks I always assume (sometimes wrongly) that its less of a trend for them and more a staple. What do you think? Please discuss.

19 comments:

paula said...

When I got my sisterlocks a year ago, I came home. I finally came to the place where I had always wanted to be, the place where I always knew I belonged. I actually always wanted locks, but I didn't want to have dreadlocks, they have a way of getting out of hand. Besides, to prove my point, almost every celebrity who had sported dreadlocks at some point eventually cut them off: Lenny Kravitz, Lauryn Hill, Wyclef Jean, Gary Dourdan, Malcolm Jamal Warner... So I waited. I didn't know what I was waiting for, but I did. I stumbled onto sistelocks in one of my browsing frenzy totally by accident. It was time. Time to come home. At last. I'm sisterlocked for life, I don't see what could possibly push me to get rid of them. I might consider a hair cut when I can sit on them!
Greetings,
Paula.

dewdrop said...

I like this picture of each model wearing a different color afro. Who knows, they might just qualify for NP's record for the largest afro, lol!

Naturally Sophia said...

Wow Paula! How enlightening? YOu know I had traditional locks and got rid of them too. I never thought about it like that. I am praying to 1,000 gods you comment more:) Thanks for sharing. I love your presence on my blog.

Naturally Sophia said...

@dewdrop- This pic excited me too. They just might. I love the bow and the concept of decorating an afro. :)

V said...

I've notice a lot more sisters going natural now days too. I wonder the same thing if it's a fad or is it here to stay. I honestly hope it is hear to stay! Locks is definitely a way of life for me no turning back. I love my locks to much. Great post, love the pics!

Euphoria's Sisterlocks said...

I too have had traditional locks and picked them out 7 months later, but for me being natural is eye awakening for me to express myself in my natural state, its amazing how in my younger days I did every beauty cover up there was to do to "fit in" with what the magazines said beauty was. I wore makeup lots & lots of make up, long fake nails, & long weaves. I did it all to hide the real me but now all the fake stuff is gone no more hiding & I feel free, but now that I feel comfortable in my own skin I get more negative comments then when I was fake & covering up. great post

Naturally Sophia said...

Thanks V. Locks can be a way of life. I don't think I realized the impact of what that meant for me at first.

Euphoria- You are so right. I had long nails, weave, told lies- to myself and to others. Thank God for the choice to be natural and for me that means authentic.

robinc said...

I transitioned to being natural because I had to change hairstylists and could not find one that match the skill of my long time friend that had been doing my hair for about 17 years. He put me on the path of transitioning not to long before he stopped doing my hair by combing perm through my hair and shampooing it out just to tame the frizziness. After he left I decided to lock. Fad or not, I am locked for life. I may have to cut my locks at some point because the weight, but I will always be locked.

iRockLocs said...

I can totally see how going natural could be a fad. It's like this bandwagon a lot of sisters have jumped onto. I do think locs is more permanent. I think of myself who just did the BC for the third time. and those first two times, I went back to relaxers. I wanted the style. Now, with a third time, and with locs as my goal, I think of it as a much more long-term/permanent decision and definitely not a fad, because I see loc'd sister few and far between. Now, it is loving and embracing how God made me.

Thandi said...

Oh no way, my nappy roots are here to stay.As for here in South Africa, seeing natural hair is still a novelty.(Except among some immigrants from Zim)LOTS of men with palm-rolled locs but that's it.

vonnie said...

i believe that it's more informed this time. In the 70s it was a fad, black power trend, just something to do, whereas this time there's WAY more information out there about the harmful effects of relaxers and other bad products used on hair. With the invention of the internet, way more knowledge is at way more people's finger tips.

Naturally Sophia said...

RobinC- How interesting? You had a great stylist. I too had a good stylist. Unfortunately, I don't know where he is in the world. I hope he is doing ok.

IRockLocs- I agree. And you know the 3rd time is a charm:) But I wonder will locks be the new fad?

Thandi- hardly no natural hair in Africa. Horrible? Conversations like these make me aware of how far-reaching assimilation(racism) can be.

Vonnie- Thanks for commenting. Yo are right. Knowledge is power.

blackrussian said...

The LWC strikes again:

I found this post and comments very interesting.

I've been natural for almost 20 years now, since the age of 15. I relapsed into relaxing twice.

Once around the age of 19. I experimented with texturizers in an attempt to bring uniformity to my curl pattern. Not realizing then that my hair was just going to do what it was going to do.

It grows how it grows and chemicals won't change that. Not in a way that I like.

And again about 2 years later. I had a job that was very important to me at the time (actually, a volunteer assignment, a cause) where my immediate superiors decided that my look did not properly represent the cause.

With tears and trauma, I relaxed my hair to straight. I hated it SO much.

It wasn't worth the price. I quit the cause. I cut my hair. I started over fresh and never looked back.

It was terrible at the time, but I am glad I had the experience, because there were times when I was struggling with this Deep South humidity and I thought that a relaxer might be the way to go. Fleetingly.

Because then I would remember how awful that final relaxer experience was. How it sucked the life and vibrance from my hair. How I felt so oppressed.

Most men and people of other races - and truly a lot of black women - don't understand what a connection to naturalness you develop.

It becomes a part of your identity. Like your skin color or eye color. When you look in the mirror and see something else, you feel like someone else.

It actually felt wrong to me to chemically alter my hair. Like I was bleaching my skin or some other such drastic cosmetic alteration.

Being locked or not is different from the being curly or straight for sure.

It is more permanent, but in a way that is good and comforting to me, not in a way that feels limiting or restrictive.

I get angry now when people suggest that I'll get tired of my locks one day and take them out.

And the funny thing is: I know maybe I will cut them and start over with something else SOME day, but not because I am tired of them. Not because I no longer love them. Not because I prefer straight hair or curly hair.

I really don't know what would make me give them up. Right now I can't imagine. But I also can't foresee the future, so I would never assume that NO circumstance would present itself.

blackrussian said...

The LWC strikes again:

I found this post and comments very interesting.

I've been natural for almost 20 years now, since the age of 15. I relapsed into relaxing twice.

Once around the age of 19. I experimented with texturizers in an attempt to bring uniformity to my curl pattern. Not realizing then that my hair was just going to do what it was going to do.

It grows how it grows and chemicals won't change that. Not in a way that I like.

And again about 2 years later. I had a job that was very important to me at the time (actually, a volunteer assignment, a cause) where my immediate superiors decided that my look did not properly represent the cause.

With tears and trauma, I relaxed my hair to straight. I hated it SO much.

It wasn't worth the price. I quit the cause. I cut my hair. I started over fresh and never looked back.

It was terrible at the time, but I am glad I had the experience, because there were times when I was struggling with this Deep South humidity and I thought that a relaxer might be the way to go. Fleetingly.

Because then I would remember how awful that final relaxer experience was. How it sucked the life and vibrance from my hair. How I felt so oppressed.

Most men and people of other races - and truly a lot of black women - don't understand what a connection to naturalness you develop.

It becomes a part of your identity. Like your skin color or eye color. When you look in the mirror and see something else, you feel like someone else.

It actually felt wrong to me to chemically alter my hair. Like I was bleaching my skin or some other such drastic cosmetic alteration.

Being locked or not is different from the being curly or straight for sure.

It is more permanent, but in a way that is good and comforting to me, not in a way that feels limiting or restrictive.

I get angry now when people suggest that I'll get tired of my locks one day and take them out.

And the funny thing is: I know maybe I will cut them and start over with something else SOME day, but not because I am tired of them. Not because I no longer love them. Not because I prefer straight hair or curly hair.

I really don't know what would make me give them up. Right now I can't imagine. But I also can't foresee the future, so I would never assume that NO circumstance would present itself.

blackrussian said...

The LWC strikes again:

I found this post and comments very interesting.

I've been natural for almost 20 years now, since the age of 15. I relapsed into relaxing twice.

Once around the age of 19. I experimented with texturizers in an attempt to bring uniformity to my curl pattern. Not realizing then that my hair was just going to do what it was going to do.

It grows how it grows and chemicals won't change that. Not in a way that I like.

And again about 2 years later. I had a job that was very important to me at the time (actually, a volunteer assignment, a cause) where my immediate superiors decided that my look did not properly represent the cause.

With tears and trauma, I relaxed my hair to straight. I hated it SO much.

It wasn't worth the price. I quit the cause. I cut my hair. I started over fresh and never looked back.

It was terrible at the time, but I am glad I had the experience, because there were times when I was struggling with this Deep South humidity and I thought that a relaxer might be the way to go. Fleetingly.

Because then I would remember how awful that final relaxer experience was. How it sucked the life and vibrance from my hair. How I felt so oppressed.

Most men and people of other races - and truly a lot of black women - don't understand what a connection to naturalness you develop.

It becomes a part of your identity. Like your skin color or eye color. When you look in the mirror and see something else, you feel like someone else.

It actually felt wrong to me to chemically alter my hair. Like I was bleaching my skin or some other such drastic cosmetic alteration.

Being locked or not is different from the being curly or straight for sure.

It is more permanent, but in a way that is good and comforting to me, not in a way that feels limiting or restrictive.

I get angry now when people suggest that I'll get tired of my locks one day and take them out.

And the funny thing is: I know maybe I will cut them and start over with something else SOME day, but not because I am tired of them. Not because I no longer love them. Not because I prefer straight hair or curly hair.

I really don't know what would make me give them up. Right now I can't imagine. But I also can't foresee the future, so I would never assume that NO circumstance would present itself.

blackrussian said...

Sorry about that. Through some blogger glitch, the same commetns posted repeatedly. Oops!

blackrussian said...

I did NOT believe that what I had to say was SO profound it had to be said - what 5 or 6 times??

blackrussian said...

I get lots more compliments on my locks now that they are past my shoulders.

Enough people seem to realize that if your locks are that long, your straight hair would be 6 - 10 inches longer. And they are fascinated with that.

So I get more comments that say: You should take those out and straighten it. Then it would be REALLY pretty. Or, Don't you want to see how long it REALLY is? Or, Sisterlocks. I've thought about getting those. You can take them out when you want, right?

I am SUPREMELY annoyed. Each and every time.

I'm not saying that locks or SLs have to be a lifetime commitment for everyone.

When I got mine, I didn't know if I would really keep them.

I was kind of afraid that I wouldn't like them from the start and might be ready to give them up in the first 6 months. And after the money I invested (while unemployed at the time) I figured at the very least I should keep them for a year to get my money's worth.

But I was in love with them from DAY ONE.

So taking them out never seemed like a viable option.

Natural hair was never a fad for me.

I do agree that going natural, staying natural, and being natural requires much more of a commitment than 'looking' natural.

But seeing so many more people with a natural look is a very good thing.

Natural weaves and wigs are high-maintenance and expensive. I wore kinky twist extensions for years before I got tired of the fakeness - they were always bulky and the texture was much coarser than my own hair, far inferior to the soft thickness of the natural locks I rock today - and decided to see what my own hair would do.

They were a good bridge to where I am now. If wearing and seeing fake natural hair leads more of us to a place where we are comfortable experimenting with the hair that grows from our heads, then I cannot see that the current fad will be a bad thing. Many fads become trends. I think natural hair is here to stay.

Simply because so many people are getting fed up with the expense and maintenance other styles require. Not that natural hair is cheap or easy to maintain, but I'd rather spend time and money to be proud of my heritage and make the most of who I am than to try to cover that up and look like someone else.

And I believe more and more of us are coming to that realization with each passing day.

blackrussian said...

I get lots more compliments on my locks now that they are past my shoulders.

Enough people seem to realize that if your locks are that long, your straight hair would be 6 - 10 inches longer. And they are fascinated with that.

So I get more comments that say: You should take those out and straighten it. Then it would be REALLY pretty. Or, Don't you want to see how long it REALLY is? Or, Sisterlocks. I've thought about getting those. You can take them out when you want, right?

I am SUPREMELY annoyed. Each and every time.

I'm not saying that locks or SLs have to be a lifetime commitment for everyone.

When I got mine, I didn't know if I would really keep them.

I was kind of afraid that I wouldn't like them from the start and might be ready to give them up in the first 6 months. And after the money I invested (while unemployed at the time) I figured at the very least I should keep them for a year to get my money's worth.

But I was in love with them from DAY ONE.

So taking them out never seemed like a viable option.

Natural hair was never a fad for me.

I do agree that going natural, staying natural, and being natural requires much more of a commitment than 'looking' natural.

But seeing so many more people with a natural look is a very good thing.

Natural weaves and wigs are high-maintenance and expensive. I wore kinky twist extensions for years before I got tired of the fakeness - they were always bulky and the texture was much coarser than my own hair, far inferior to the soft thickness of the natural locks I rock today - and decided to see what my own hair would do.

They were a good bridge to where I am now. If wearing and seeing fake natural hair leads more of us to a place where we are comfortable experimenting with the hair that grows from our heads, then I cannot see that the current fad will be a bad thing. Many fads become trends. I think natural hair is here to stay.

Simply because so many people are getting fed up with the expense and maintenance other styles require. Not that natural hair is cheap or easy to maintain, but I'd rather spend time and money to be proud of my heritage and make the most of who I am than to try to cover that up and look like someone else.

And I believe more and more of us are coming to that realization with each passing day.