'People would pay for your hair ' is something family members said to me quite often. They were making a point and wanted to show their misunderstanding towards me constantly straightening my hair when I was younger.
My family has always been very supportive of this hair acceptance journey even though it took me over 18 years to realise that my hair is lovely as it is.
My hair is a representation of my identity and my heritage and it’s important for me to own it and embrace it for these reasons.
Sometimes people ask me where I am from because of my hair, because it looks different from theirs. This shows that curly hair, in general, is still being portrayed and perceived as a foreign characteristic, an ‘exotic’ factor.
Throughout the years, I realised that when people don’t understand something, they simply prefer to be dismissive about it.
Because it’s unfamiliar or deemed different curly-haired women have been sent home from their workplace, have been asked to get it straightened in order to look ‘presentable’.
This still-existing penalization based on our look is what encourages so many women to hide their true nature.