31 Jan 3 Ways to Boost Your Self Esteem About Multiracial Hair
My multiracial hair.
Sometimes it’s admired. Sometimes it’s a source of contention.
Loved or hated, my hair undeniably me.
Growing up as a kid I had straight hair and somewhere around the age of 12, it became this afro puffiness of bushy hair, which wasn’t curly but more like a crazy hair wig. Curls adorned my head at the age of 16. Over the next 10 years, my curl pattern and texture continuously changed. If you thought buying products for your hair was difficult, mine was a nightmare. I’m pretty sure my hair was the equivalent of a mad scientist’s laboratory with the number of products I tried to manage it properly.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
I remember my poor mother when I was 13 sprained her wrist trying to get through the knots in my hair. I remember as a kid hating to comb my hair. I remember getting hit in the head with the brush because I wouldn’t sit still. I remember the tugging at the knots every morning and night – oh the agony of combing through knots!
I had insecurities about my hair for most of my life. I used to hate my hair. Every day I’d curse it and always wanted to chop it off. I think the only reason I never did is because I thought I’d look like a 12 year-old boy without long hair.
I had insecurities about my hair for most of my life.
Apart from my impatience to manage it, the comments that I would receive from people in my late teens and early 20s which made me feel like something was wrong with my hair.
My hair is really thick, and I’d always receive comments like, “Oh my gosh! Your hair is so big! Why don’t you straighten it?” or “Why don’t you relax your hair?” or “I don’t really like big hair.” or “Don’t you think your hair would be prettier if it looked more Indian?”
Granted I do have a full head of thick curly hair, but what is wrong with that? Why was my hair such a focal point for negative comments?
Finding the right hairdresser who could work with thick curly hair was a struggle. I would be recommended to hairdresser after hairdresser whose best solution for my hair type was either to ‘relax it’ or ‘use Matrix.’ I refused to do either of the procedures because they weren’t helping me find a solution to manage my curly hair. They were essentially telling me the only way to manage my hair was to change its texture.
I started to embrace my curls for the past 6 years of my life when I realised that there were products out there that were meant for my curly hair. Plus I transitioned my mentality from straight hair was the ideal to my kinky hair was acceptable.
In fact, I think one of the main reasons I started to love my hair was that I finally found a hairdresser who accepted my hair just as it is.
I’d like to suggest that hairdressers are taught at school how to speak to women about their hair without making them feel as though something is wrong with them.
You would think living in the Caribbean finding someone to swap curly hair stories with are easy, but nope – it’s not. People think managing curly hair is easy! You just wash and go! It seems as though over the years because I was mixed, people assumed that I did not understand the struggle of having kinky hair. What I would like is for women to realise that you can’t really know someone else’s “struggle.”
Fortunately, there has been significant changes over the past 5 years with attitudes towards natural hair and there have been movements telling women to embrace their natural hair. Unfortunately, we still live in a world where appearance matters, a lot. But there are a couple of things you can do build real self-esteem about your multiracial hair:
Take less stock in other people’s opinions. That includes snide remarks and compliments about your hair or overall appearance. It should be YOUR thoughts and feelings that really matter.
Practice positive self-talk. Become more mindful and watch your automatic thoughts. Do your best to push the negative, self-defeating and destructive thoughts from your mind.
Pay no attention to hair trends. Ten years ago my hair was too big, now women all over are buying big curly hair weaves and wigs which closely resemble mine.