Pure Hair Chose Me
What a tremendous time we reside in when girls of color with natural hair — similar to Viola Davis, first African American to win an Emmy Award for Lead Actress in a drama, and Oscar-successful actress Lupita Nyong’o — are featured in worldwide fashion magazines and are the principle sights on television. Ladies of coloration now fill every level of corporate America with naturally-textured hair. A motion has boomed, and there’s now a big neighborhood of girls with pure hair. Social media linked us to one another, allowed us to share, change ideas and create new language, which has introduced the main target of naturally-textured hair to the mainstream. And, unlike the days when there weren’t products accessible for ladies with textured hair, we now have an infinite amount of choices available to us 24 hours a day.
I have been a natural hair stylist and advocate for pure hair awareness and inclusion for over 30 years. It’s been my passion, my drive and my objective to “reintroduce” women to their pure hair. We use the term “going pure”, but in actuality, it refers to “returning to pure.” This is how we were born; it is our inheritance and a return to our authentic selves.
I actually did not determine to go pure; it chose me. As a teenager, I never thought of myself as fairly. At 13 I stood 5’10’ and weighed about 100 pounds, I used to be tall, lanky and awkward. I felt misplaced, however I used to be unbiased and began braiding my very own hair at 10 years outdated. There was a interval in my life after i didn’t take any photos, because I hated how I looked. I told my mom and she allowed me to express myself by way of my hair, makeup and style. Some hairstyles had been higher than others, (ranging from scorching comb-Jeri Curls), however the one thing I found via my trial and error, was that I felt prettier when my hair was wholesome. I blossomed when my hair was rising and full. To me, wholesome means stunning, — whether it is wholesome pores and skin, wholesome teeth or healthy hair — all of it equates to being beautiful. Healthy hair is beautiful.
It wasn’t always easy to walk this path, and to have the clarity to defy the cultural aesthetics of this country and reject a one-sided aesthetics that isn’t inclusive of wavy, curly, kinky or coily hair. We were denied the ability to express our true beauty. African American women and different women of colour had to verify to an aesthetic that not solely was self-defacing but additionally harmful, unhealthy, intrusive and irritating for many of us to keep up.
While in high school and college, I wore protective types, braids, extensions and weaves for many years. Protective styles added dimension and selection to my picture, nonetheless, I really strongest once i decided to loc my hair. It was a sure degree of freedom, a real sense of elegant beauty as my locs matured and grew. I remember the primary day I got here dwelling with my little loc/twists, my father, who cherished me dearly said, “I do know what I’ll get you for Christmas .. a comb and a brush!” All of us laughed, however it hurt to hear that from the one man who had all the time supplied acceptance and help. My mother was not a how to braid with weave to the scalp lot better, as my locs sprouted out like buds on a plant, she looked at me and unhappily mentioned, “That is not sexy.” I replied, “I’ll make them sexy.” As a natural hair stylist I’ve made coily /kinky hair and locs very sexy and fascinating. I have worn my hair locked for 20 years, till just lately I did the “massive chop.” Now I am rocking my TWA.
Getting hired for an workplace job with my hair in braids was nearly impossible 30 years in the past. Several occasions I’d remove my braid extensions to be able to confirm to a standard straight hairstyle for the interview, and once I bought the position, I might how to braid with weave to the scalp put my braid extensions back. Of course after a week or so, my supervisor would have a discuss with me privately about my “unprofessional” braided hairstyle. After getting reprimanded about my selection of hairstyle, I could not keep at that job very lengthy. I needed to discover a career that might replicate my true self. I had to dwell my fact 24/7. Loving my pure hair and my truest self helped me discover my profession. I’m at present, an award-profitable natural hair specialist, a magnificence ambassador for the main magnificence model, SheaMoisture, an author and an business advocate — this is greater than a job, it’s my core and my ardour.
In 1994, I was appointed by the State of recent York to advise the division of licensing on the primary Pure Hair and Braiding license in the country. My passion has led me to write down a number of textbooks by Milady Pure Hair and Braiding. I am currently growing the primary natural beauty trade association, EMERGE: Natural Magnificence Business Alliance. The EMERGE mission is to develop management, mentorship and entrepreneurial empowerment for the natural magnificence community and industry. The natural hair trade is value billions of dollars and we would like to provide our business with the abilities, support and advocacy to prepare for and benefit from this financial progress.
Embracing my textured hair in highschool empowered me; I used to be no long hiding behind someone else’s standard of beauty. I have taken the path that has led me to an international profession, and given me the opportunity to educate and elevate the conversation about pure hair. I really feel very blessed.