I remember when India Arie released “I Am Not My Hair” in 2006 and the popular phrase swept the hair care world by storm. Everywhere you turned, ladies were chanting this phrase to declare that they were more than just their hair journey. According to the song, whether it was a press and curl, jehri curl or a relaxer, India Arie stated that hair does not define nor consume her. She is encouraged women to look inside and go beyond that. While that is true, reality illustrates that women believe the opposite of the statement.
It’s easy to agree that our hair can depict how we feel; it’s an extension of our personality, even our spiritual beliefs. I think our hair is an accessory that can be manipulated to how we see fit. We use it to express ourselves in anyway we feel and chose. It’s possible that we are our hair only because our actions prove otherwise. Women spend countless amounts of money and energy in making sure their hair is looking top notch. We go through great lengths (pun intended) to obtain long hair, a certain hair style or product. At times, our self-esteem increases and decreases depending on how our hair is looking and feeling, according to our preferences.
I don’t think there’s anything wrong with one taking pride in making sure their hair is up to their standards. Healthy hair is beautiful and it can really transform the way you feel about yourself. Our hair is an extension of ourselves.
However, we must also understand that our hair should not be the sole deciding factor on how we are to be perceived by others and ourselves. Though our hair a part of us, it’s not all of us. As India Arie greatly put it, we are the soul that live within. At the end of the day, it’s just hair.
Share your thoughts! Do you agree or disagree with the “I am not my hair” statement and why?
Valerie Bremang founded Hairlista Inc. Social Network in 2008 as a platform to educate, inform and encourage women that they can achieve healthy hair.