Natural hair trend

Rolanda M. Johnson
Professor D. Milstein
English 101
December 17, 2016
The Natural Hair Trend
In the modern society, women have realized the beauty and fashion that lies in their
natural hair and have started gravitating towards achieving the best out of it. Surprising enough,
unlike the past old days when natural hair was perceived in a negative image especially from
women of the African descent, today the narrative is changing (Johnson and Bankhead 52-78).
Many women of pomp and color have come up and openly expressed their love for natural hair.
For example in the United States, the former first lady, Michelle Obama, came out wearing her
natural hair (Johnson and Bankhead 52-78). Other women across the country applauded her for
that decision. This shows the positive transition trend exhumed through appreciating the beauty
of natural hair today. Women should hence continue feeling proud and confident in their natural
To those who have in the past maintained their hair using chemicals and perm, there is
always a challenge in cases when they feel the need to shift style to maintain natural hair
(Johnson and Bankhead 52-78). Lack of the necessary information from credible hair stylists or
hair bloggers in showing steps to take while transiting to natural hair makes most women fall
back in championing their wish to establish a new style (Johnson and Bankhead 52-78). Among
many women, relevant information on the different products used in the maintenance of natural
hair and more explanation on the time that should be spent while untangling sections of their
natural hair is necessary (Johnson and Bankhead 52-78).
In the earlier days, natural hair was not regarded as empowering or popular. For
generations, various stereotypes have been advanced among women who find comfort in natural
hair. In the mid 60s, many African women could not walk freely feeling comfortable in their
native hair style (Johnson and Bankhead 52-78). Nonetheless, things are changing. As time
progresses, most women have moved beyond undertones that were pushed there before. Slowly,
many women now, especially the African American, feel stronger and confident in embracing
their love for the natural hair (Versey 60-96).
The use of chemicals in straightening the hair started in the 1890s (Versey 60-96). It was
intended to flatten and straighten the hair so as to give it a streamlined and a smooth look. It was
popular among black men and women in developed nations like the United States in the 1950s
(Versey 60-96). It involved the use of chemical relaxers. These relaxers were cream and lotions
used to people with curly hair so as to make the hair easy to straighten (Versey 60-96).
In the African American culture, natural hair embraces and reflects the true aspect of the
African beauty (Versey 60-96). In this culture, hair is an integral part that supplements the
natural beauty. Hence, through appreciating the elegance that comes from natural hair, then other
cultures are able to emulate the African American fashion and project it in a positive way
(Versey 60-96).
As more African American Women abandon the use of chemicals in processing their
hair, their savings have gone up (Omosigho 77-92). Money that was earlier channeled into
beauty shops in purchasing hair chemicals is now put in the bank. Through this, women have
been able to use their finances to more important projects that generate revenue for them and
their families at home (Omosigho 77-92).
Amid this shift, many hair stores have suffered losses and others closed down in the
recent years as a result of a fall in the market for relaxers (Omosigho 77-92). For example, in the
year 2014, hair care products sales in the United States hit $774 million. This was a 12%
increase from the year 2009. However, this trend has changed significantly. According to a
report by Mintel Company, by the year 2016, the sales of relaxers had declined to $131.8million
which represents only 18% of the total market value (Omosigho 77-92). This value translates to a
34% drop from the value that was in the year 2009. By the year 2019, it is estimated that the loss
of money from the hair stores will hit a 45% decline in the total market value. Owing to the fact
that there has been a sharp decline from the purchase of chemical relaxers, most African
American women in the U.S have entrenched their financial savings into gainful entrepreneurial
ventures while others have pursued investing in other relaxer alternatives (Omosigho 77-92).
The use of natural earth hair products entails development of a range of natural and
organic hair care products that are designed to give the natural hair a glamorous look (King 61-
82). Natural earth products are chemical free and hence those going natural experience a
different feeling in their championing their style.
To date, many natural hair styles have been exhibited. According to re-known hair
stylists, there are different ways through which natural hair can be maintained so as to appear
thinner and fuller (King 61-82). For example, using ones fingers instead of a comb after a blow
dry and conditioning the hair before applying a shampoo gives the hair more texture and makes it
appear full. In addressing shrinkage, women are advised to always allow the hair to dry after
washing, ensure that they do a complete blow out and using ponytail holders in stretching wet
hair (King 61-82).
Natural hair expresses the individuality of a person. Among the black women
population, identifying themselves with the natural hair helps them understand themselves better
(King 61-82). It creates the best feeling out of them and are able to know their true individuality
through their appearance. Owing from the decline of the chemicals and hair relaxers market, the
straightening kits have slowly gone down (King 61-82). Rising campaigns for maintenance of
natural hair have rendered these kits irrelevant.
In conclusion, it is therefore true that women continue to appreciate the need to go
natural. Unlike before, women in the modern society now feel more proud and confident in their
natural hair.
Johnson, Tabora A., and Teiahsha Bankhead. "Hair It Is: Examining The Experiences Of Black
Women With Natural Hair." Open Journal of Social Sciences 02.01 (2014): 86-100.
King, D. "Hair Care And Health Care: Cvd Awareness, Concerns, And Issues Of Natural Hair
Among Women." American Journal of Natural Hair 17.5 (2014): S161. Web.
Omosigho, Ukpebo R. "Changing Practices Of Hair Relaxer Use Among Black Women In The
United States." International Journal of Dermatology (2017): n. pag. Web.
Versey, H. Shellae. "Centering Perspectives On Black Women, Natural Hair Politics, And
Physical Activity." American Journal of Public Health 104.5 (2014): 810-815. Web.

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