Not too long ago, the media waves were alive with that Sesame Street piece in which a dark skinned muppet with kinky hair sings and dances proclaiming for the world to hear that she loves her hair – her curls, her afro, her cornrows, her twists, her braids, her pigtails undsowieter. I blogged about it here. After it went viral, the author, a man of Italian descent explained he wanted his 5 year old daughter, adopted from Ethiopia, to accept her hair as it is rather than envy long blond hair that bounces around.
So why did Essence, a magazine for African-American women, pick up on this and send their Beauty Editor out on the streets of New York City to find out “Why DO Black Women Love Their Hair” in a piece called “Shake Your Beauty: Loving Your Hair” only to interview women with chemically altered hair and weaves who claimed they loved their hair because it was “natural” and “versatile”.
Huh?! Have we deceived ourselves so well that we consider applying sodium hydroxide in one form or another to our hair every four to six weeks or wearing someone else’s hair on our heads as NATURAL? Does New York City not have one single Black woman who doesn’t relax, texturize or weave up her hair that could have been interviewed? THAT is their beauty editor? Is Essence bloody kidding me? The only truthful thing I heard came out of the lady who stated she loved her hair “because it’s mine”. Fair enough.
And no, I do not read Essence magazine, I happened to pick up on this from the blogosphere.