As the wave of going [back to] wearing our natural hair sweeps the nation, we all know someone who is transitioning, has done the “big chop” (started over by cutting hair very low, sometimes nearly shaven), sporting dreadlocks or rocking a sassy ‘fro – be it for health reasons, joining the movement, being fed up with hair relaxers or just sick and tired of those marathon days sitting in the salon.
While we know this movement is powerful and looks ever so beautiful on us, there is a price to pay for this beauty. And those of us who go through it, know what I’m talking about – the nighttime prepping period. The twists in your head the night before the cute ‘fro. The “Set it Off” cornrows before the wavy side puff in the morning, and so on. I even had a single friend tell me that she wanted to go natural, but BECAUSE she was single and looking for a man, she didn’t want to do it. She feared that men would find her less attractive if she had natural hair. Wow! We have really been brainwashed all these years…and yes! I’m talking to myself, too!
I went [back to] natural about 7 years ago and was so excited about my decision. Even more so, when my husband welcomed my transition from shoulder-length, bone straight tresses to a more “ethnic” look that changed my whole look completely. I’ll never forget the day I did my first big chop. He ran his hands across my hair, complimented my cheek bones, and said that now he could see my dimples. This felt good! He was so loving, and so accepting. Sooner than later, my teeny weeny afro started to grow, and I wasn’t quite sure what to do with it. I would wake up in the middle of the night catch a glimpse in the bathroom mirror and be mortified… I looked like Don King!
I was so used to looking and feeling sexy with my hair swinging around [brainwashed], especially when I was flirting with him. I tried all of the natural hairstyles and techniques that I found on YouTube. I quickly realized that at night you have to look like Celie (from The Color Purple), with all those fly away twists and plaits all over your head, in order for our hairstyle to look like Jill Scott’s!! I’m thinking, “What have I done?” “I know he loves me unconditionally, but is it fair to him for me to go from being his Sexy Seductress to looking like a Black Pippi Longstockings from the neck up?”
My co-worker shared her experience with going natural. She had (what she thought was) a budding romance. She took the natural plunge and he started treating her differently. Of course, now we know that was a blessing in disguise. My husband is like most men when he says he doesn’t care about petty things like my hair at night. But he might be in mixed company. Fellas do you care whether your wife goes natural or not? Ladies do you feel a little less sexy or even MORE sexy now that you’re rocking your natural tresses?