My hair is TOO Ethnic!
That is what I was told this past weekend.
Black women are embracing their natural hair texture, and it is a beautiful. I am reminded on a daily basis when logging onto Facebook, Tumblr, and YouTube how amazing our hair is. I am held captive for hours on the computer looking at curls, coils, twistouts, afro puffs and locs. I have been natural for four years now, and I have no regrets. Even with the ups and downs I have with maintaining my hair I know I could never go back to the way things once were. I know that people have their perceptions about natural hair, but I have never had a negative experience concerning my hair until this past Saturday.
My hair has been feeling horrible lately, so I made a salon appointment for my annual hair straightening, and trim. I specifically told them that my hair was natural, and asked if they have a professional that could do it? I was told “Oh yes we do, I can book you an appointment with Margie.” Cool! I was all set to go. I had to wait a week for the appointment so my excitement was in high gear. I could not wait to go, and see the finished product. Margie was Spanish, which made me no never mind, since all I wanted was a blow dry, and trim. I was on time to my appointment and patiently waiting for her to come get me. She finally came, introduced herself, and took me in the back for my hair consultation. This is when things got real interesting. She started probing my hair like a scientist examining an extra-terrestrial. She was really in awe of my hair, but had a look of disgust at the same time. She asked “Just what do you do to your hair to get it like this?” I explained to her that it was my natural hair texture, and all I wanted was for my hair to be blow dried, pressed, and trimmed. She still had this look of disgust, and surprise on her face, and said “I don’t know how to blow dry hair like this.” At this point I was giving her the o_O. She was still playing in my hair, and commented “OHHHHHH WOW! Look how long it gets when you pull it.” “Your hair is just TOO ethnic for me to do, I can’t do it.” I was shocked! I could not believe what this “master stylist” just said. Too ethnic…..REALLY? How can somebody or some part of them be too ethnic? I knew exactly what she was trying to say when she said that. My hair is too “black” for her to do. She tried to sweeten it by saying; she loved the color that was in my hair. She then went on to say “We do have a stylist here that has hair that looks JUST like yours we can set up an appointment for you to see her.” I did not want to make a bigger scene (although that part of me that is exactly like my father wanted to erupt). I said, “I will just call later and schedule an appointment.” I knew then I would not be calling back. I know I probably could have done things differently, but at the time I just really wanted to get the hell out of there.
I felt like an animal on display. Everybody was looking at me like I had done something wrong. I left there in a ball of confusion. For a second I questioned my hair. You see how the devil using negativity to bring you down. I really was wondering what is wrong with my hair. As I was waiting on my family to pick me up I snapped out of it because I know there is nothing wrong with my hair. My hair is a part of me, and fits my personality very well. It was the stylist who was wrong. In a way I do appreciate her for being honest about not having the skill set to do my hair. It was just the way she went about it. I went home, and my family made me feel so much better. I thought the day was ruined, but there was a happy ending in it all. I got to see my family who came from out of town, kept money in my pocket, and learned a valuable lesson. I know some people only view natural hair as negative, and may never see its true beauty. I may not like or understand it, but it is a reality. This was a horrible experience, but I remembered that I know too many black women with awesome natural hair including my mother. I will never in a million years believe that our hair should be categorized as anything more than being TOO ETHNIC.