Entertainment

Black Hair: Does Natural Hair Drive Men Away?

Tue., Jun. 7, 2011 9:45 AM EDT
by McKenzie Harris

Rolling out's, McKenzie Harris

As a new member of the “Natural Hair Club” I can attest that embracing my hair in its natural state has been a bit of a challenge. In a world where black women have numerous options to choose from when it comes to their hair, whether it’s extensions, wigs, braids, dread locks, relaxed or natural, the last thing we need is to worry about what a man thinks about our hair.

Wearing my hair natural has opened my eyes in many ways. The reactions and comments I received from men were most interesting. During this mini research experiment, I’ve found that since I’ve been wearing my hair in its natural state, men have shied away from approaching me.

Recently, I was at a social gathering with some friends, when a young man approached me. He began to tell me that he and his friends had been standing nearby discussing my hair for the last 20 minutes or so. I gave him a blank look and he proceeded to explain that he thought my hair was “dope” and unique but one of his other friends didn’t care for it. Mind you, this young man was a total stranger to me, so I was perplexed as to why he thought it was OK to come over and offer his unsolicited opinion of my hair. I politely thanked him and ended the conversation.

On the flip side, I’ve had a handful of men who would approach me just to let me know they liked my hair … because it was different. Now it could be that it was blonde, or that it was blonde and natural, either way, men are noticing our hair and most haven’t quite embraced the “natural movement.” This prompts the question, do you want a man who doesn’t accept you for who you are in your entirety? Didn’t think so.

Whether you wear your hair straight, natural, relaxed, shaved or colored … just rock it with confidence!  Only you know yourself and only you can define your style. It’s just hair guys … so stop trippin’.

mckenzie harris

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  • http://twitter.com/WhatzWillieGood #ItsMitchBitch

    There’s a huge portion of the black [woman] population that we are missing here; and that is the “natural” but straightened women, which makes the poll hard to vote. I am relaxer free, yet I most likely will never wear a full on afro because that doesn’t speak to who I am as a person. So I guess, all this to say, I’m on the fence. :)

  • Blakekellymusic

    As a guy i think natural hair is a good look on some women ..some more than others ..i feel as though the look depends on you and your confidence ..being a product of a natural hair home ..(my mother has had her hair natural my whole life)lol ..i feel as though it compliments a lot of the natural  beauty like my mothers and i enjoy it ..maybe its my mom or maybe the young lady who wrote this but they seem to have everything in check so keep it up ladies ..ill love you 

  • Shawtyp16

    Your hair is gorgeous to me! I’m warring with making the big chop. You’ve just inspired me.

  • M_jg3

    Depends on who the man is! I mean as far as African American men are concern – most of us if not all shouldn’t put up a fuss about sisters who are more natural in the hair department, I mean unless we’re walking round looking retro “Press-N-Curl” or “Jeri-Curl”  who are we to dislike a style that’s apart of our ORIGINAL culture?!? I’m just say’n…

  • Healthycurve

    I have been Natural for 13 years and to me I got more positive attention when I went natural. It just seemed like I drew a different type of man. Brothers certainly approached me differently. It was a good thing. Bottom line, some are gonna like it and some are not, I’m not concerned with those who don’t.  I have heard countless men say that they hate weave too, that ain’t stopping sisters from spending trillions each year on it.

    You and your fro are beautiful!

  • http://twitter.com/DevonChatman Devon Chatman

    Natural is sexy. A women who NEEDS the make-up, fake hair, push up bras, etc. just to feel confident and sexy is not attractive. While are those things are fine, a beautiful women is one that is comfortable in their own skin. India Irie said it best… you all know what I’m talking about.

  • just b me

    i always get compliments and end up in a serious relationship when i go natural or if relaxed, wear it without a weave.  as soon as I weave it up  I am always treated like a jump off. 

    • Ms. DC

      Thank you for your last line.  I often wear my hair from a very close, natural short crop to a blossoming fro of impressive fullness.  At whatever length of hair, Black men and women frequently stop me to tell me they appreciate my natural hair, find it beautiful, want to talk about it or whole-heartedly build confident community through a compliment.  I find when I braid my hair up and wear it in a mid-back length style, the attention becomes shallow and aggressive.  I know like energy attracts like energy but that is not what I am emitting.  It is a very sociological response to objectifying Black women with long and/or weaved hair as desired objects.  Conversely, being natural seems to elicit more sincere reactions from people—good or bad—but I can tell you how outstandingly genuine the good are.  

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=802384915 Anitra Favors

    I think u should do what makes you feel good about yourself and if you choose to allow your hair to remain the way God created it more power to you!!

  • JAYNE DOH!

    We live from the head down and not the feet upAnd I’m adorned with the crown that’s making this upAnd I’m fine under cloud 9
    Yes I wear the lamb’s wool, the feet of burned brassAnd the wool defies gravity like the nature of a gasAnd I’m fine under cloud 9
    Twist my cloud and it rainAnd when it rains it poursAnd the energy will absorbPower for the metaphysical one
    Happy to be nappy, I’m black and I’m proudThat I have been chosen to wear the conscious cloudAnd I’m fine under cloud 9
    I be a chameleon and wear it bone straightBut it’s so much stronger when it’s in its natural stateAnd I’m fine under cloud 9
    Twist my cloud and let it rainAnd when it rains it poursAnd the energy will absorbPower for the metaphysical one
    Repeat
    We live from the head down and not the feet upAnd I’m adorned with the crown that’s making this upAnd I’m fine under cloud 9
    Twist my cloud and let it rainAnd when it rains it poursAnd the energy will absorbPower for the metaphysical one
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4imnYaE_UD0

  • Nigeria Harris

    As a licensed hair stylist, I see All of the new trends, in the hair industry, whether its natural, relaxed, braids,weaves, dreads, and EVEN JHERI curls!!! ( Yes!!! There are  some who are still rockin the Jheri’s, Lol) I am down  for whatever it is, my clients wish to achieve!! I find the natural hair movement to be a very popular thing nowadays, and I like it, although, I haven’t chosen to switch to the “other side”….My only problem I have with Black women, transitioning from the relaxer, to natural, some of them “think”, just because, they are natural, they Don’t have to comb their hair??!!!! I was in Best Buy last night, Baffled, ( and slightly embarrassed), by the way the young African American cashier hair looked…it was obvious, she was in the trasitional stage, but more so than anything, there was absolutely, NO EFFORT, (well it looked like it), towards the grooming, of her hair. It looked unclean, and VERY Unprofessional. This is called “When going Natural Goes Wrong!!!!!!!!!!”! Lol!!!! I of course, had my smock on in the store, gave her a business card, and Prayed, she would call me to get a RELAXER!!!!! Lol!!!!

  • Da villain

    That short shit is not a good look! You thirsty ass niggas need to stop telling these chicks that shit look good! If u are gonna do it just invest in alot of hates and wraps and the pretty ones should do it Till it grows out some. Don’t get me wrong I respect going natural if the person man or female is doing it as something more than a trend. My girlfriend is natural and thank god she looks great with natural hair and more important it’s not a tend it’s her life now.

  • Talibah

    I have been natural my whole life. therefore its no “trend” to me. It is truly a lifestyle to be able to love yourself and be completely confident in exactly what you look like when it is not a trend. Those of you “new naturals” congratulations but you have not uncovered some great feat, you are simply walking the earth the way God put you here. It should not be such a big topic. Everybody is doing it now, the same way everybody was wearing polka dots and pointy toe pumps, that has now faded and so will the natural hair trend. I sent love and light to those sistas who keep it going after the thrill is gone.

  • ObserverOO

    You’re cute. People need to be free when it comes to their appearance, unless, of course, they are doing something obscene like showing the public their bodies. In the guy in the club’s defense, I talk to strangers all the time about all kinds of things. Sometimes, I say something that may seem imposing just to strike up conversation or make them feel good or laugh. Most people are receptive to that, I’ve found. I can understand though why you were a bit thrown off by that, especially if you’re not sure about your look yet…

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  • Mystified

    There are a lot of things I consider when trying a new hairstyle. What a blk man may or may not think of it doesn’t enter my mind. Do they dress or style themselves w/women in mind? NO. So, why women put so much focus on what they think is beyond me. You can’t ask somebody to take you as you are while simultaneously try to change everything about them. Doesn’t work like that. 

  • Mystified

    There are a lot of things I consider when trying a new hairstyle. What a blk man may or may not think of it doesn’t enter my mind. Do they dress or style themselves w/women in mind? NO. So, why women put so much focus on what they think is beyond me. You can’t ask somebody to take you as you are while simultaneously try to change everything about them. Doesn’t work like that.