The word black has so many negative connotations associated with it and black hair has been labeled as “bad hair”
Growing up I was told that my natural hair was nappy, dry and ugly and I grew up seeing a glorified European standard of beauty. Well as a child I internalized those things and carried those beliefs throughout my adulthood until in learned the truth.
I’ve learned that those negative stigmas were placed on me because of the racism that exists. I’ve learned that my hair is tightly curled and with the right amount of moisture my curls really pop. Ultimately I’ve leaved that my hair is beautiful and its okay to be who I am created to be. Who told you that your hair was not beautiful in your past and what have you learned along the way?
“Nappy” is considered a derogatory term to describe tightly curled afro textured hair. “Happy To Be Nappy” was a little phrase I would say to dismiss the haters but I was never really confident with my hair because of all of the negative attention it warranted.
Eventually, I stared to believe the bad things and started to subconsciously hate my hair. After years of self-hate and an unhealthy relationship with my self- esteem I learned to love my hair and in turn became confident in myself. I’ve titled the first Chapter of my book “Happy to Be Nappy” as I tell my story about how the self-hate started on my path to self-discovery.
Joshica Kiah Craig is a wife, mother, military veteran, CEO, author of The Strength of Your Strands, and natural hair expert. Based in Los Angeles, California, Joshica began Joshica Beauty with a purpose-driven mission: to empower black women everywhere to not only embrace their natural hair but love their natural hair and begin living unapologetically black. Featuring a luxurious line of 100% natural hair care, soaps, body oils, and lip products; the Joshica Beauty line is designed to enrich and nourish natural hair, moisturize the body, and empower the mind.
You have to change your mindset before you change your hair. You have to know that this is you and learn to love what you have. You have to be willing to go through the struggle of bad hair days, the high maintenance and dealing with the stigmas around black hair. Learn to take your time and be patient with yourself. It’s easy to find the right product or visit a natural hair salon to find a style but its hard to break away from the negative views on black hair and be confident in you own skin, so free your mind and your hair will follow.
My best triumph with my hair is simply accepting it at it is. Once I was determined to take care of my hair I had a desire to take care of it, to grow it, to find cute styles because I first had an interest to do so. I was not alway as this place and it took the motivation of someone else to tell me that I was beautiful with my natural hair and so that is what I want to do for all black women out there; be a cheerleader for being yourself and loving who you are.
When I was young I remember telling my aunt when I grow up I want to be a white girl. I told her I wanted to be white because I wanted long, pretty hair like the woman I saw on television. She explained that I don’t have to be white to have long pretty hair that my hair will grow long and pretty. So in my adult life I went on a natural hair rollercoaster, going from straight to natural, to wigs and weaves but my goal was to have long and pretty hair like the woman on the television. It wasn’t until a heated debate with my husband, Dominque, that I heard someone express how beautiful my hair was and how much they loved it that I then started to see my hair in a different light and started loving my natural hair. I later created products to encourage and empower other black women to start loving their natural hair and walking confidently as their best self.
All black women need to hear that they are beautiful, that they are accepted, that they are enough. We don’t need to change our appearance to be seen, to be heard or to be loved. What we have to offer the world is great and we don’t have to change or try so hard to fit in. We should celebrate our uniqueness and be the women we were created to be. It’s time to build our self-worth and stop being bullied by the hair care industry that is making billons off of our insecurities. It’s time to own our space and build our self-esteem by having a healthy relationship with our self image.
Are you newly natural? Are you considering going natural? Do you wear hair weaves or relaxed hair? Black women have been using hair relaxers and hiding behind hair weaves for years and now it is time for us to let it all go and come into our own. It’s time to wake up and realize that we are beautiful and that we need to show who we are. It’s time to start encouraging one another that we don’t need to cover up the beautiful tresses that we have been blessed with, we just need to learn how to work it! It’s amazing to see how far we have come as black women, yet so obvious how far we have to go when it comes to our hair. Are you ready to dispel the negative sigmas about black hair? Are you ready to be naturally free and walk with confidence, living out your full potential and loving your natural hair? Be inspired and empowered to know that there is strength in your hair.