I have always been fascinated by natural black hair. I think it’s amazing how different the textures can be on one head and even more amazing from one natural head to another. However, what has kept me in love with natural hair is all the artistic, creative, and unique things that can be done with it requiring nothing but manipulation by talented hands.
My mother is obviously one of the biggest influences on how I feel about natural black hair. I feel incredibly fortunate and at an advantage, especially in this day and age, that she showed me the beauty and versatility of my hair and did not instill or pass down to me a need to hide, change, and or destroy my natural roots in order to be accepted or even worse, in order to be considered beautiful. We both had minor periods in our Life where our hair was straightened but it was never viewed as “better than”, but simply as “because I can”.
I can’t say I always loved the Sundays my mother picked up the comb, brush, and grease which meant I was “booked” for the next 3-4 hours either sitting on the floor between her knees or sitting on a chair in the kitchen. However, what I always loved was our time spent together chatting while getting a cornrow style that I chose (yes, of course, there was the occasional tear inspiring pulls and threats to sit still but apparently this builds patience and character…).
As a Master Loctician, I get to talk about natural hair with black people a lot. The number one reason that inspired me to write a column dedicated to natural black hair was that I am finding an alarming number of young black people who have absolutely no idea what I am talking about. They have never had a regular natural beauty grooming session with their parents or another family member, they have not seen what their natural hair looks like except in childhood photos, they have never heard of tying their head up at night, and most importantly, they cannot recall when and/or if any of their parents or family members dedicated 3-4 hours solely to them.
I have so much to say and share about the value of spending 3-4 hours weekly or bi-weekly personally grooming our children’s natural and unique gift of a crown. I have so much to say and share about the power of our natural crowns. I have so much to say and share about the reasons and consequences of the attack on and disappearance of our natural roots. However, to end this article which is my first of many, I just want to say that your natural hair is a magnificent gift to shine and I just want to share my love for it.
About the writer
“Shana Seifert, world traveler and explorer, has been a natural hair advocate for most of her life. She locs, she styles, she maintains and entertains. With a genuine interest in hearing your story, she shares her own with warmth and humour. Shana is excited to be part of the Ottawa/Gatineau scene, and she’s looking forward to hearing from you at: firstname.lastname@example.org and/or www.shana-b-seifert.com.