Today I wanted to talk about something that’s “bigger than me or any single act of legislation this is about a matter that should be at the highest importance to every American…my hair”.
If you know what movie I am quoting then yay! I think we can be friends 🙂 As you can guess, today I wanted to talk about something that always crops up in conversation, not only with my friends but sometimes even strangers, I am talking about my hair and the decision between leaving it naturally curly or getting the old GHD’s on it for a straight look. I personally love my hair both ways, but there are certainly pros and cons to both styles and times when I prefer one over the other. So what are the benefits of each style?
(Hair inspirations: I do not own the above Photos- courtesy of Instagram* )
I have naturally afro hair, thanks to my Jamaican side of the family. When I was younger I hated my hair. Not because it didn’t look nice, but just because of how difficult it was to brush and control. I was surrounded by friends with naturally straight hair, and they could do anything to theirs. I was just confused as to why my hair was so difficult and unmanageable. My mum had two of us to try and figure out what to do with our hair on a daily basis. Bless her; she did have some strength getting a brush through it at times! The thing about curly hair, I don’t think people realise is that it can get knotty and tangled so easily! Honestly if I just rest my head for even 10 minutes on a cushion my hair already starts to tangle together.
As I grew up, I looked into ways to straighten my hair, and to just get it thinner. Eventually I decided to get it relaxed. (This is basically a cream, which makes hair easier to straighten by chemically “relaxing” the natural curls). I did this for a few years, before I realised that relaxer was just not what I wanted for my hair anymore. It was great for when I wanted straight hair, but for the times my hair was curly, it wasn’t the way it used to be. The tight curls were gone, and it was just very loose and a bit weird, not wavy or curly just in between. It has been around 4 years or so since I last used relaxer, and since then my hair has really got it tight curls back, and actually grown! (I used to have really short hair that never grew). I don’t regret using relaxer, but I prefer how my hair is these days.
So what are the benefits of curly hair? For me, the best thing about leaving my hair natural is that it is very low maintenance. Though a brush can sometimes be hard to run through it on occasion. I don’t have to wash my hair very often at all, if it rains, I don’t even notice and in the summer heat, I am quite cool, as my hair is free to breathe and doesn’t stick to my face. Curly hair is also a great way to have a different look, rather than always keeping the same style; by simply changing my hair people always notice and compliment me on my hair. A con for curly hair is also the fact that people think they can touch your hair as much as they want. My friends of course can, but when other strangers compliment me and then start putting their hands through my hair, or trying to… I find it bizarre. Another problem is that once it has been styled for the day, it’s quite hard to change it. So if I have it in a bun, and then take it out, you can bet that I have a very big kink in my hair which isn’t a good look. But I really do love the curly hair, and feel like we should embrace it more if you have naturally curly hair.
(Photo credit- Tameramowrytwo Instagram & Tia Mowry Instagram)
My two favourite curly-haired women are of course Tia and Tamera! My sister and I were huge fans of Sister sister, mainly because there wasn’t much else if anything on TV we could relate to. Tia and Tamera looked liked us, they rocked the curly hair and they made it cooler. I know they often wear their hair straight or a wig, but both are currently embracing their natural curls again. I love what they stand for and if you need hair inspiration as a fellow curly-haired girl than I suggest these two 🙂 But there are so many others to look to for curly hair inspiration, and I believe it is very important to embrace your natural look too. Dove actually have a ‘Love your curls’ campaign. In a US poll they found that only 4 out of 10 young girls with curls thought their hair was beautiful. That makes me quite sad, although I understand how they feel, these days, there are so many options in terms of hair care and role models for curls. I embrace mine because I love my curls, but also because I want other girls, including my nieces to see how lovely curly hair is. You can read more about Dove and their work here.
Straight hair is also a great look, I do love my hair when it’s straight, and often I will have my hair this way if I am going out or somewhere special. Lately I have been trying to straighten my hair less as I know how bad heat can be on a regular basis. When I do my hair however, I like that I am able to change-up my hairstyles much more than with curly hair. I can rock a high bun in the morning; wear it down later on or numerous other looks. That is probably my favourite thing about straight hair. I am able to change my look easily and without having to run my hair under a tap first (Curly problems).
Some not so good aspects? Probably the fact that when I go to the gym, my hair will become a hot mess very easily. This will stick to my face, start to go curly if I am really hot or sweaty and end up like a big frizzy mess. It can also look quite dry, which is why I am a leave in conditioner maniac and also why I leave it curly to give my hair a break from the heat. I have many hair inspirations when it comes to straight hair, it’s an endless list (Just see the collage above!). But that is another reason why I do enjoy wearing my hair straight, looking at other styles and trying to emulate them can be fun! That’s what styling your hair should be…fun. With the ability to try both styles easily, I think I am actually a very lucky girl!
So there are certainly times when my hair is better off straight and times when I really love it curly! Whatever you prefer and whatever makes you comfortable I think is the best look you can rock.
Thanks for reading and let me know your go to hairstyles for either curly or straight hair!