These are the stories of my lifelong journey for “good” hair.
Black men like straight hair, permed hair, relaxed. It doesn’t matter if it’s your own or some lady’s from China. White men dig the roots, the natural look, even the braid.
I’m a Black woman and these are my hair confessions. So maybe not all Black men, and maybe not all white men are as I’ve described, only all the ones I know. The only exception to my full-proof rule are mixed guys or those Black men with a vanilla latte hue. You never know what type of request you’ll get from those guys. I should know…My hair. I’ve had:
Jheri curl, s-curl, asymmetrical cut, braids, micro and big, so much color, that I am not even sure what my natural color is exactly; weaves, long ones short ones, light brown, black, wigs and of course, my most loyal friend, RELAXER!
Olive’s, Danny’s His and Hers in Boston, Helen’s Hairum in Springfield, Barry Fletcher and the Hair Gangsters in Maryland, the Haitian hair salon in Tampa where you can have “NO perm” and they’ll blow dry your hair so straight people will swear your momma is Indian. There’s Neeko (hands down the best to ever pick up a curling iron or scissors), this man can color and relax your hair in the same day and you won’t be screaming, except to say “damn I’m fly!”
I’m sure I’ve paid for a few cars, diamond rings, down payments on houses with all the money I spent on my do.
My momma has curly do anything hair. I, unfortunately, did not get those blessed genes. Thanks mom!
I’ve owned curling irons, but it was merely for show, or for my friends who would stop by and ask if I, a black woman, had a curling iron. I always did, but they never understood the absurdity of their question. These hot iron curling tools mainly sit at the bottom of a drawer, collecting dust, on stand-by, waiting to be used.
I used to be one of those “regulars”, “every week” type of girls.
Color. Cut. Relax.
I don’t sleep with any apparatus. A girl has to look good, even at 3am. By Wednesday, my perfectly straight hair would begin the four-day creep back to its natural state.
I’ve had five inches cut when I asked for a trim; left with fire engine orange hair when I asked for a rinse, and even one brave black woman who washed my hair with Pert (and I still tipped her.)
This summer I was forcibly torn from my relaxer, forced to do the unthinkable…MY OWN HAIR!!!!
One week led to two, then three. The salon where I was once a weekly regular, where my girl knew more about my life than my own family, had blacklisted me. I had let my hair go.
I was rocking my thick, naturally kinky — color still unknown — 4B hair!
Then it happened. My boyfriend (darker than vanilla latte) requested an intervention. Imagine that.
I thought I looked good.
“Baby are you strapped for cash? I got your relaxer. Need a trim too?”
“You are doing what? Keeping it like that? On purpose? What about black tie events?”
Insert image of me laughing hysterically.
Stay tuned…no more space, but definitely more hair stories.
To follow Naila’s hair journey visit tyrashow.com