“I work for a member of Congress who has sister-locks, so I knew that I wouldn’t receive push back for wearing my hair natural in the workplace…”

“I’ve been natural for ten years. I was motivated to go natural because I got a bad perm and when I went to college everyone was natural. Honestly, it was something that I didn’t know was a possibility but I tried it out and stuck with it. I was spending so much money trying to keep my hair straightened that wearing it natural was the most efficient way. I don’t miss waiting in the hair salon. Even when I do go to the salon, I don’t go on a Saturday because I realized that I could not continue to give my life over to a random salon where I’m not paying bills.

I work for a member of Congress who has sister-locks, so I knew that I wouldn’t receive push back for wearing my hair natural in the workplace. Prior to working for the congresswoman, I had internships in corporate environments and if someone said anything about my hair they never said it to my face. I went to college in Philly, so I saw a lot of judges with Afros and dreadlocks. The precedent was a little higher there compared to where I’m originally from down south. A lot of family members still don’t really get it, so you just have to be comfortable with yourself.”

“When I started focusing on living a more holistic lifestyle, I stopped relaxing my hair…”

“When I started focusing on living a more holistic lifestyle, I stopped relaxing my hair. I transitioned to natural in 2009 and started growing it out in 2016. Having my daughter earlier this year also influenced my decision to let my hair grow out more. Initially, I wanted to loc my hair, but I always kept it cut short until now.”

“I recognized that I needed a change, so I started snipping my hair and combing it out..”

“I cut my locs because my birthday was a little over a week ago and I just turned 34. I’m going through a time of transition with a lot of different things, including my personal and professional life. I’m a clinical social worker and a therapist working primarily in healthcare with a network that focuses on undocumented  black immigrants. I had my locs for about two years. I recognized that...

“People are figuring out that your natural hair can grow and that it is beautiful….”

“I’ve been natural my whole life except for the time when I relaxed my edges and my edges have never been the same. I lived in Phoenix, AZ until I moved to Washington, DC for medical school when I was 24 years old. Having grown up around a majority of non-black people, I was kind of ashamed of my hair because people would always try to touch it and would...

“Going natural and cutting my hair was me saying ‘no, I’m taking my power back’…”

“I decided to take time off before pursuing my undergraduate education. At the time, going natural and cutting my hair was me saying ‘no, I’m taking my power back’ because I was always looking for answers outside of myself. Loc’ing my hair has helped be more patient. I can visually see how strong and healthy my hair is as it grows and I mature. I’m excited to attend Howard University...

“I often choose to do my own hair and makeup…”

Shanel James will represent the United States at the 2017 Miss International beauty pageant to be held in Japan in November. Let’s show her some love!  “I’ve been involved with the pageant world for about ten years. I went to a high school in Maryland that has a lot of former Miss Maryland USA contestants which exposed me to the pageant process. I’ve done multiple photo shoots which is amazing...

“I’ve been natural for a decade and quite a few of the women in my family have natural hair…”

“I’ve been natural for a decade and quite a few of the women in my family have natural hair. I’ve cut my hair various lengths throughout the years. The only thing that’s changed is that it’s not as thick as it used to be because I’ve gotten older, but I’m glad! If my hair still had the same thickness then my arms would probably fall off from washing it.”

(Featured Post) “My mother wanted me to get a perm before going to school because she didn’t know how my natural hair would be perceived…”

Patricia is another friend of mine. The kind of friend who you can talk to for hours about everything under the sun that’s related to being a black woman, race in America, politics, Afro-Latin culture and travel. We originally met while in a MBA prep program for women. She’s now pursing a higher degree in Italy! I’m sending her hugs and strength from afar. Thank you for sharing with me,...

“We’ve been hoodwinked to believe that wearing our hair in its natural state is not actually the natural thing to do…”

Tarica June is a DC native, Howard educated Lawyer and hip hop artist. I first learned about Tarica when her song ‘But Anyway,’ chronicling the changing DC landscape due to gentrification went viral online last year. I had the opportunity to meet her after she performed at the most recent Creative Mornings DC gathering and thank her for taking time to share a bit of her story with me.   “We’ve...

“I have a hard time wearing my hair like this at work…”

“I went natural in 2010 because I had headaches that I thought were related to chemical relaxers. At the time, I cut my hair super short. I have a hard time wearing my hair like this at work because I work in a relatively conservative environment. I only recently started receiving more support when another black woman was promoted into a senior position. I’ve applied for promotions, but have yet to receive one. One woman at work regularly asks me if I will cut a certain piece of my hair, but I always say no.

My boyfriend has locs that touch the ground, so he’s always been supportive of how I choose to wear my hair. I wish that he was here with me now, so that you could see us together.”