She has a point. For years, black women have felt pressure to conform to mainstream ideals of beauty, which includes a full head of straight, silky hair. They’ve endured painful processes and damaged their hair with chemical relaxers (lovingly known as “the creamy crack”) and weaves that over time can pull out your hair.
The natural hair movement has given many black women a sense of pride in their natural texture, and the courage to rock it. The ever-growing number of natural hair bloggers have provided women who weren’t accustomed to styling their natural locks (many black girls get relaxers at such a young age, they don’t even remember what their natural texture looks or feels like), with tips on how to get their hair to work for them.
Solange happens to be a spokesperson for a line of Carol’s Daughter hair products marketed for “transitioning” from processed to natural hair. The brand stands behind Solange and told us, “Carol’s Daughter continues to celebrate the passion and energy of our Spokesbeauty Solange Knowles. She truly embodies beauty by nature and is an inspiration to us all.”
Claire Sulmers from The Fashion Bomb says the criticism boils down to the fact that Solange is one of the biggest black celebrities in the public eye rocking natural hair. “With Solange, I’m sure people want her to be a huge spokesperson for natural women,” Sulmers said. “As a public figure, they undoubtedly see her as a role model and idolize her. Solange has a right to say that her hair is a very personal thing, and doesn’t care to discuss it.”
It seems one strict beauty standard is being replaced with another. Doesn’t this sort of policing go against part of what the natural hair movement is about? Wearing your hair the way you think is most beautiful without having to worry about arbitrary, imposed notions of what is acceptable? As long as Solange’s hair is healthy and she likes how it looks, who cares if her curls are defined? Solange has beautiful hair, wears it how she pleases, and quite frankly, anyone who has a serious problem with that sounds like a hater to us.
What do you think? Are natural hair advocates too overzealous in policing other people’s ‘dos?