Team Natural or Team Relaxed? This has been an ongoing debate which has taken center stage more recently because of the growing numbers of brown girls joining the natural hair movement. The topic came up recently when a friend and I were discussing the nuances between natural hair and relaxed hair. First of all let me state that I do not consider myself a “hair expert”, professional stylist, hair artist or whatever it’s called nowadays. I am just your average brown girl with a love for hair, makeup, and beauty in general. Anyway, during this conversation my friend made the comment, “When are you going to go natural? Using that creamy crack is bad for your hair.” Honestly, I was slightly insulted because as of right now I can truly say this is the healthiest my hair has been in a long time.
So why do we as women of color judge one another based on a simple hair condition preference? Some say natural hair is becoming all of the rage now but others feel it is just another passing trend. I happen to think it’s a personal choice. As a relaxed-haired woman, do I disapprove natural hair? Nope! Honestly I love it, but after having tried to transition to a natural style twice I discovered it just was not for ME. What bothers me the most is when some “naturals” tend to frown upon those who are relaxed instead of respecting that person’s decision. Now understand, I am not jumping down natural women’s backs because I have seen relaxed women showing bias towards those who choose to wear their hair chemical free. It’s a two way street of unnecessary animosity when in reality we all should be on the same team.
Now here comes my personal rant about the relaxed versus natural debate. I honestly do not care if you are relaxed, natural, juicy jheri curled up, or rocking a weave: having healthy hair is more important than what state your hair is in. I adore seeing brown skin girls with a healthy head of hair rather than someone repping a certain style with a head full of dead hair. Team Healthy Hair is a movement I’m proud to claim, learning what works for YOUR hair and maintaining its healthy state. So whether you choose to wear twist outs or unwrap your tresses and go, the key to hair is not relaxed or natural but healthiness.