You never hear women with straight or wavy hair say that their hair is hard to manage. Why do only women with kinky and curly hair say that their hair is too hard to, so they have to straighten it? It’s not because straight hair is magical and that those with type 4 hair was born unlucky.
When I was getting my hair pressed every month, I was able to pull my bonnet off, let my hair fall, and then go out the door. With my hair straightened, I didn’t have to do all this manipulation every day. When I transitioned from straight hair to my natural hair, that required hours of work. My hair, at the time, was damaged, wanted to be straight, so it was hard for me to get it to curl. This goes the same for our hair. 4c hair is versatile, but that also requires manipulation. Manipulation requires time. If a certain style that you poured time into doesn’t turn out the way you expected, then you feel, and that might cause you to quite your natural hair journey.
When I started my natural hair journey, I only did twist outs and braid outs, thinking it would look like the youtubers I was following at the time. Every twist out and braid out I did was a failure. Hell, the twist out and braid outs I do now are failures because I expect them to be these perfect juicy curls that fall around my face and bounce when I move. Then and now, my hair hates stretched styles. I can’t even wear a stretched afro without it looking weird. (Yes, team shrinkage all day.) I was fed up with spending two-plus hours twisting my hair every night for it to be a big failure in the end. It wasn’t worth it in my opinion. Some people can perfect the twist out and braid outs, but I’m too impatient. There are some people out there who don’t have the time to twist their hair every night.
Wash n go’s were better for me even when I was transitioning. I used to spray my hair with water, put Cantu in my hair, and then went out the door. There was no need for me to actually wash my hair, detangle, and then go out. With my hair longer and kinkier, wash n go’s aren’t as simple as they used to be. On wash days, I wash my hair, detangle in sections, then apply my products once a week. I don’t care about popping curls or eliminating frizz. I embrace my frizz. (Yes, team frizz all day.) Every night I throw on my silk bonnet. I don’t care if my hair gets squished because that’s my hair and I accept that. The next day, I take off my bonnet, fluff, and sprits my hair with water, and go. That takes about five minutes.
I’ve been natural for about three years, and I still struggle to accept my hair for what it is because of society. There are a lot of us in this boat. There’s this crippling fear of being judged for wearing our kinky hair out. People can deny it all they want, but kinky hair isn’t loved as it should be. It’s not welcomed as it should be. I want to wear my hair in an afro and not feel like an animal at a zoo. I want to wear my afro without the fear of losing a job or not getting a job because of it. I want afros to be seen as workplace appropriate. I don’t want to struggle with my hair. I don’t want to fight my hair. I want to let my hair be what it wants to be; what it was born to be.