A couple of days ago there was a comment left on my post about teeny weeny afros (aka TWAs) which I found to be particularly thought provoking. The anonymous commenter said the following:
I just think it’s telling that most of the responders voted for the woman who had the loosest curl pattern, which makes me feel sad, because even now we are reinforcing the idea that natural hair only looks good if it has a loose curl and/or is longer than shoulder length.
I thought about her response for several minutes before responding and jotted down the topic so I’d remember to bring it to your attention for discussion. My thoughts? I don’t find it sad in the least that women seem to prefer tighter curl patterns to be shoulder length or longer. Don’t we have preferences on hairstyles in general? For example a pale skinned black woman doesn’t look as great with platinum blonde hair as a brown skinned black woman in my mind.
Well, that’s not the best example because I’m not a fan of platinum blonde hair on most black women anyway, plus it’s too damaging to achieve that color, but I digress! The point is that people think certain hairstyles look best with certain facial features and head shapes, right? How is curl pattern any different? To revisit my somewhat unpopular opinion, I don’t care too much for the look of TWAs. When speaking specifically about type 4 (tight, kinky hair) curls, I do prefer the look of a close cropped style or longer hair than the TWA. I don’t think that viewpoint means my appreciation of type 4 hair is any less than someone who loves a type 4 TWA.
Now brace yourselves for my next statements because I already know they may be inflammatory and although I do realize that, I am not saying it to be sensational, it is really how I feel. I’m so exhausted about having to be so politically correct and walking on eggshells when speaking about natural hair. Can’t I just say “I don’t like TWAs” without having to qualify it with “I love natural hair, I have an appreciation for natural hair, I have worn natural hair as an adult” et cetera. Why does everything have to be read as something different and deeper? Do we have to love every natural hair look or be seen as an enemy of the natural hair community if we dare voice that we don’t like one particular thing? Some women don’t like natural hair blow outs, some don’t like twist outs, some hate cornrows on adults. Yet all of those women may love or even have natural hair themselves. So if women prefer TWAs with hair of a looser curl pattern, why does it automatically indicate something deeper than a simple opinion?
What do you think? Hopefully this post reads somewhat coherently and you understand what I’m trying to say! lol.
To anonymous, I hope you don’t mind me bringing your comment to everyone’s attention. I truly found it interesting and thank you for sharing your thoughts!