Things to Stop When it Comes to A Big Chop

Pile of hair on the floor
Credit: Thinkstock

Welcome to Beauty School!  Beauty expert and former pageant gal Nicole L. Townsend  chats about some of the annoying comments to avoid to natural-haired beauties.

One of the greatest things about being grown women is that we have the right to choose.

We have the right to choose our friendships, our careers and the neighborhood that we live in. We have the right to choose where we spend our free time, who we date, how much money we spend, and which clothes and shoes we wear. We have the right to choose how we wear our makeup, and we certainly have the right to choose how we wear our hair.

You guys know that I recently chopped off all of my hair, (if you didn’t know, check out the recap here) and while most of the feedback has been positive, unfortunately some of it has have been a bit distasteful, immature and just plain dumb. Sure, I respect everyone’s right to have their own opinions about natural hair, women with shaved heads or otherwise, but I for one – am not here for the buffoonery. I am here, however, to challenge Eurocentric standards of beauty, which is why I think that it’s important for us to address some of the things that shouldn’t be said when someone goes natural or opts for the big chop:

Offense 1: I’m sure you’ll grow out of this “natural” phase.
Sorry, folks, but is since when did natural hair become a phase? Last I checked – it’s the texture we were all born with, so why not rock it?

Offense 2: You look like a cute little boy.
Just because a woman decides to cut her hair super short, does not mean that she’s any less of a woman. And, I’m pretty sure that the gender box on her birth certificate is still checked: FEMALE.  Also, as I mentioned, I am fully grown.

Offense 3: Don’t you want to straighten your hair for that interview?
So natural curls are employment averse? Be seated.

Offense 4: What happened to your hair?
Well, let’s see…I made an adult decision to switch up my style a bit, plus my hair has never defined me.

Offense 5: Are you sick?
Sir / Ma’am, maybe you should have a seat and question your own sensibility about Western-American standards of beauty.

Offense 6: Do you think you’ll be able to get a job with that hairstyle?
Blank stare.

Offense 7: Don’t you think it’s a little weird that your hair is natural, but you still wear a face full of makeup?
The beauty industry is a multibillion dollar business that isn’t going anywhere, my friend. Further, a little mascara and lip gloss ain’t never hurt nobody.

Offense 8: I just assumed that since your hair was so short, you were into women.
Do we even need to talk about why this statement is just inappropriate?

Offense 9: How did you get your hair like that?
Well for starters, it grew out of my head.

Offense 10: Physically touching the ‘do.

Hands OFF. I repeat DO NOT touch a person’s hair without their permission. It’s invasive, tasteless and weird.

I’m sure I could muster more annoying comments that should never be spoken, but I’d like to hear from you. What did I miss?

Weigh in…

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