Let's Talk Hair
Many black hairstyles such as box braids, afro shape-us, deadlocks, and more can be found in drawings, engravings and hieroglyphs from Ancient Egypt. However anti-black hair sentiment in the U.S. has existed for centuries. In the 1700s, enslaved women who worked in the fields usually covered their hair in head-rags due to the harsh demands of their work. Enslaved Africans who worked in the “big house,” however, sometimes mimicked the hairstyles of their enslavers, either by wearing wigs that had become popular during that era or shaping their kinky hair to emulate them. The end of the 19th century saw the invention of the hair-straightening comb, which would be used to “tame” black hair. Madam C.J. Walker, a black woman, popularized the comb, and “by the mid-1920s, straight hair had become the preferred texture to signal middle-class status.” As a result, Walker became the first female African American millionaire (JSTOR). With the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s and ‘70s, came the rise of the "Black is Beautiful" movement that encouraged black people, especially Black women to accept their hair and turn away from damaging products. The notion of conforming to European standards did not fit with their message of black power. Sporting these natural styles was its own form of activism, and seen as a statement in reclaiming their roots (Horne). Nowadays we still see Black people getting discriminated against in schools, workplaces, and just out in the streets because of their hair. Nonetheless, there is so much power and strength behind our hair. It's not just hair, it goes deeper than that. So maybe before you, a white person goes to touch our hair, in the words of Bryson Tiller, Don't!
For our Black audience, here are a few Black-Owned hypoallergenic braiding hair companies, and they also sell other products.
Dosso Beauty is the #1 Pre-Stretched Hypoallergenic Braiding Hair
Rebundle is the first U.S. made plant-based braiding hair. The hair is lightweight, comfortable, and itch-free. Most importantly, it’s biodegradable.