Misconceptions about my afro textured hair

Misconceptions about my afro textured hair...

β€œWow your hair is long! It's so thick... is it real?"

There is nothing more frustrating then hearing those words. From friends, family and even strangers. It reminds me of why I decided to keep my hair 100% natural. And why I decided to cut off all my chemically altered hair off almost 3 years ago.

I love being an exception. I like meeting new people and showing them that it’s possible to grow your hair long if your african/african American, nappy and all :)

It annoys me whenever someone says this to me because I realize that, for some reason people think it’s impossible that I can't grow hair on my own.

Why has it become a fact, and even expected that unless your part Caucasian, you can't grow your own hair?

Aren't I human too?

The worst part of this is, most of these comments are coming from people with afro textured hair. They too are convinced they can't grow their hair long.

One situation that really resonated with me was when a friend of mine (nigerian-american) came up to me and complimented my hair asking how long I've been growing it for and I replied two year two years and she stared in amazement as another friend of my simply stated that I had white in me. What difference does this make? Up to a 3 years ago, my hair had never passed neck length. I don't have magical hair growing genes. It wasn't by magic, I just changed my hair care methods to fit my hair.

It's understandable that other people don't understand afro hair. It's not mainstream, so I understand why very little is know of it. But It's bad if you don't understand your own hair, because then how is anyone else going to?

Our ancestors did it. Afro hair isn't impossible, to grow. it just takes work because of all the curls and kinks.

A brief history on afro textured hair http://blackgirllonghair.com/2011/10/a-brief-history-of-afro-textured-hair/

Common myths about natural hair debunked! http://blackgirllonghair.com/2011/09/12-common-natural-hair-myths/


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What Guys Said 6

  • So wait, you're saying that this hair:
    ISN'T the natural hair texture for black women?

    My whole life is a lie.

  • I had no idea people believed that about afro textured hair lol.

    Eating enough protein and getting your vitamins is all hair needs to grow at its fastest rate lol.

    I do find it funny how I can easily outgrown my mom's hair. She often tells me mines is long even though it's not. Hers is just short lol.

    • The trouble isn't growth. That happens on it's own. It's retaining the length. Exposing hair to frequent chemicals, heat, excessive friction (clothing) makes it harder to maintain healthy hair :)

    • Oh if it's hard to maintain, it's because the person has really poor care.

      Our hair texture's whole purpose is to be sun resistant. It's in coils so the sun has a harder time breaking it with heat damage.

      It's the way the hair had to develop since our ancestors roamed a really hot continent.

      From what I've seen, most girls (in my country) screwed up their hair by using chemicals such as perms and other heat stylers. They weakened the coils and thus exposed themselves to damage.

      Had they not used chemicals, they'd have been completely fine.

  • I started (from being completely bald) growing my a year and a half ago. I don't interfere with it at all aside from washing. I love it. I dont evven own a comb!! lol

    • Lol I hate combs! πŸ™ˆπŸ™ˆπŸ™Š Seriously, they kill my hair. But no one can tell I don't use a comb unless I tell them :)

  • Funny enough, it's only a couple of weeks ago that I've learned that black people had trouble growing long hair.

    • Ugh I'm black and my hair is long.

    • Show All
    • I have never had a perm nor relaxer.

  • I'm gonna grow out a fro too

  • Natural afro hair is a huge turnoff for me.


What Girls Said 13

  • Don't forget to mention that that there are different textures and curl patterns. People tend to think your hair is supposed to look a certain way because they know other people who have hair that is more shiny, wavy or have loose curls. My curls are undefined some days but mostly wavy and corkscrew. I hate it when people recommend products to me. What works for some won't work for others and I'm still learning what works for me. When I had relaxed hair people always told me try this try that wear it this way and that way and now that I'm natural its the same thing and im even more sensitive about it because I have my own troubles with my hair but I also love it so I don't need or let anyone influence what I do to it. I also prefer a man who appreciates a woman with natural hair instead of frowning upon us because he is so superficial and used to something else. I'm more than my hair so I don't get the fascination of it.

  • I'm black and I dot have Afro texture hair but I can relate to this. (But I do have curly 3C curly hair like this s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/.../...35a93b9b1a.jpg
    Anyways though I had a relaxer from the time I was 7 to the time I was 13. Then in 8th grade I said no more and decided to embrace my curls. I had a lot of heat damage and assumed my hair was kinkier, but after some time I learned I had 3C curls. I love my hair and I with more black women/girls could go natural. I think one big step to get more balk beauty in the world, is to like our own beauty first. So I loved this article and may soon right one as a hair typing guide as a follow up

  • Thank you for sharing this, it was very informative. As you can see in my profile picture, I'm white so my opinion probably doesn't matter. Lol But I think everyone should be proud of their natural self and should not feel like they have to add damaging chemicals to their hair in order to look good. Personally, I think afro-textured hair is beautiful. It does sound like it's somewhat difficult and time-consuming to care for but I think it's always better to be natural :)

    • Thank you for reading it! :D And it does matter. It means one more person who understands--whether their black or not.

    • No problem! And yes, I hope more people will read and start to better understand :)

  • Well stated. As you mentioned, a lot of times it's other fellow afro-texture haired people that believe and spread those misconceptions, mainly just out of ignorance. Our hair does have to be shown much more careful attention than straight or wavy hair types to grow, BUT that certainly doesn't mean that it can't.

    It's actually pretty easy to handle, grow, and take care of once you know what you're doing. At first I really struggled with figuring out what to do with my hair. It would take me hours just to wash and style it. It was a hassle. I'm used to it now, though. Washing it can just take 20 mins. And now I know how exactly my hair responds to different products and styling methods. It's not a hassle anymore and it's bra strap length and growing.

    Anyone that says only "good hair" (basically, loose curly hair or very soft, silky type hair) can grow long is fooling themselves. It's just a matter of not throwing a damaging chemical on top of your hair in an attempt to constrain it by altering its natural properties, not constantly applying 300 degree heat on it like it's a flippin piece of toast, and actually figuring out how to work with it so it can reach its maximum potential for health and growth. You don't have to be born with straight or wavy hair or loosely curled hair to have long, shiny, beautiful hair. You just have to educate yourself, let go of the ignorant misconceptions, and figure it out.

    • Yes! :D
      How long have you been natural?

    • About 4 years I think. It had grown it to bra strap length by the 2nd year but had a setback that involved regularly swimming in chlorinated water and not properly taking care of it afterward and it fell back out to armpit length. Now I'm finally back at bra strap and am waiting for it to get to mid back, hopefully even waist length eventually.

  • My hair out of braids is past my shoulders while still being curly (type 4b/c). Every time I get it done my hairdresser says i've got too thick/long and i should perm it to make it easier for her to do... not a chance in hell.

  • OMG! I can relate to this so much I had cut my hair late spring of last year and it wasn't the first time I cut all of my altered hair either when I younger my grandmother made me perm it again because she though I didn't have "good hair". I'm like "Woman, my hair is good because it's al natural, and not receding to the back of my head due to those cheap dollar store chemical's you see these fake's running around with." I hate it when people make stupid comments about my afro, especially my friends and family. She finally understand that I'll keep cutting my hair if she tells me to perm it again so she has given up.

    • I don’t like the concept of good hair either! The best hair for you is the one your born with in my opinion :)

    • I know and I try explaining it, but all I ever get is the "good hair" speech.

  • I love afro hair. I think it's looks amazing on people, but a lot of girls with afro hair (at least girls I know) straighten it or do things with chemicals n stuff. I never really understood that. Be proud of your lovely curly hair.

  • I used to have afro hair when I was a toddler. I used to get compliments about my hair. The diasadvantage about it was that I'd get hurt when my mom brushes my hair, lol.
    Whenever I see afro hair, it reminds me of myself back in the day.

    • I used to cry SO MUCH when my mom would put a comb to my head. Especially since mine is really thick and coarse, it was horrible. Now I finger detangle and it's so much easier. I rarely get any knots/tangles anymore.

  • I can relate to this a lot!! My hair was always thick, coarse, and curly and people would always ask me is that my real hair. Of course, why wouldn't it be?
    I still have coarse, thick hair, and it gets thicker each time I cut it.

  • Thanks for the info. I think the hair in your links is really pretty.

  • I LOVE the video you posted, her hair is so gorgeous.

  • My hair is think but I have a different curl pattern. I have type 3b hair. So I have loose curls. But I can relate with people thinking it isn't yours. I hate that.

  • I'm Latina and have trouble growing my hair out. 2-3 years and it doesn't even pass my breasts.

    • Do you take biotin. ?

    • No. I used to for like a month. I heard taking vitamins doesn't help though...