Friday, January 23, 2009


"Good Hair" vs. "Bad Hair"

The terms "good hair" and "bad hair" were used by our ancestors to distinguish between hair that was kinky and course (bad hair) versus hair that was soft, curly, and easier to manage (good hair). Those that grew up during slavery and the pre-civil rights era were conditioned into thinking that features and characteristics typical of most African Americans, including hair texture, were inferior to that of their Caucasian and or Mulatto (those of mixed heritage-a term commonly used back then) counterparts. Unfortunately, many still believe this today, for the terms "good hair" and "bad hair" are still used by many African Americans who believe that curly and or silky smooth hair is more desirable to have than course, kinky hair.

If you've had the opportunity to watch my video titled "5 Things I Hate" (I've posted a snippet of it below), then you know that the terms "good hair" and "bad hair" are terms that I despise. For one, they seek to tear down the beauty of our ancestry while giving some an inferiority complex that is completely unmerited. In addition, it forces people to believe that their natural, beautiful, God-given hair isn't good enough. Now, I can see how our ancestors could have easily become victims of brainwashing, especially during a time when our access to resources were limited. However, this is 2009, and there are so many hair care products for diverse textures at our disposal that anyone, regardless of whatever situation they've got going on on top of their head, should be able to style their hair in a manner that suits them.

While browsing the Internet the other day, I stumbled upon information regarding an upcoming documentary featuring famed comedian Chris Rock, who also helped write and produce it. The film, which is titled Good Hair, explores our cultural view of hair, and includes commentary from actors and actresses such as Nia Long, Kerry Washington, and Ice-T. You can find more information about it here: Good Hair.

Chris Rock said that he was inspired to do this film because of his daughter's yearning to have "good hair." Finally, this issue that has been prevalent in our culture for so long, is being examined and exposed by not only black women, but black men as well. Thank you, Mr. Rock for hopefully assisting our people in putting an end to such foolish ideals. May our sons and daughters have better self-esteem because of it!

Here is the portion of my video titled "5 Things I Hate" that addresses the issue of "Good hair" vs. "Bad hair."

1 comment:

Yvette said...

Could you have every beautician in America aware of this? lol