"Why women straigten their hair" -BBC

SailaSaila Posts: 1,212Registered Users Curl Neophyte
I just ran across this very short video clip from Kenya:
BBC NEWS | Africa | Why women straighten their hair

For me, this was a very interesting perspective. I am pretty new around here and I had not yet broadened my understanding of natural hair to include international implications.

What do you guys think? I'm just interested to hear all the various reactions and opinions you guys may have.

Comments

  • coilynappcoilynapp Posts: 4,233Registered Users
    I'm from Kenya and I know for sure that the media influence is really increasing there with the introduction of more and more western media (satelite tv)

    when I was growing up, there was no such thing as satelite tv, we had no access to western magazines, no internet and tv itself, started at 4pm and ended at 12am and it was all kenyan media. We still had relaxers then, but I knew a lot more people with natural hair. Now all my friends who had natural hair, have relaxers. It's interesting
    th?id=H.4940802350254088&pid=1.7&w=183&h=144&c=7&rs=1
  • subbrocksubbrock Posts: 8,212Registered Users
    the main thing i wonder is do they really think they look like western celebrities now that their hair is straightened? seriously. i can't imagaine just coloring my hair any old shade fo red and saying, "look, i look like rihanna!" let alone tricking others into suddenly thinking i looked like rihanna too. i wonder this about ladies in america who are influenced by celebrities as well.
  • LiyahLiyah Posts: 118Registered Users
    subbrock wrote: »
    the main thing i wonder is do they really think they look like western celebrities now that their hair is straightened? seriously. i can't imagaine just coloring my hair any old shade fo red and saying, "look, i look like rihanna!" let alone tricking others into suddenly thinking i looked like rihanna too. i wonder this about ladies in america who are influenced by celebrities as well.

    I think people really think this...

    Like all of the girls walking around thinking they look like Nicki Minaj. I think they look in the mirror and see what they want to see and not what is really there.
  • coilynappcoilynapp Posts: 4,233Registered Users
    I think it's the same here as it is there. Like the one lady said, "I want my hair managable and easy to comb" and that she wouldn't like the journalists hair. She said her hair is hard to comb in the morning.

    Also note that the products available here so easily are not available there. They have all that bss stuff that many of us have discovered doesn't do well for naturally curly hair. Many ladies who keep natural hair that I see, keep it short like the journalist. Although when I was growing up, all of us with natural hair did get it blow dried and hot combed every week and put in braids for the week so there was no "taking care" of your hair in it's natural state.

    I don't think that they think that now they look like rihanna, or bey, but I do think seeing celebrities with straight hair and then straightening their hair makes them feel like they fit in with fashion. Like the owner of the salon said, it's fashionable. When we were colonized, to the best of my knowledge, the whites were not trying to erase our looks--so I don't think we ever got the "nappy=ugly" mentality directly in our faces, but the import of relaxers did that with their advertising. My mum didn't relax her hair till way after she had had all of us (me and my siblings) and I don't know why she did it. I grew up seeing my mum as a natural (at least in the early years) and my granny never relaxed her hair either, neither did my aunt until I was a teen.
    th?id=H.4940802350254088&pid=1.7&w=183&h=144&c=7&rs=1
  • CocoTCocoT Posts: 5,330Registered Users
    I found the reasons that the women gave for chemically straightening their hair no different than why women here straighten it. Top reason being manageability. Not everyone has the patience or what have you to care for their natural hair. It's a sad reality. My friend attempted to go natural but went back to relaxers because she could not handle her hair. She likes to work out and things and prefers to wear her hair straight because she doesn't like her texture ( :sad3: ) and no matter how sad that may be, she's the one that has to deal with it day in and day out.

    I've grown out of trying to convince people to do what they really don't want to do or have the patience to do. When she's ready she'll come around and I'll be there for her with products and knowledge galore! My mom was the same way. She didn't want to hear a thing about natural hair and what not. Now she has realized that relaxers and her scalp just can't coexist and has decided to go natural. It may have taken a few bald patches and excruciatingly itchy scalp for her to come around, which is sad, but she did and is on her way to a healthy hair journey.
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  • KeenyliciousKeenylicious Posts: 2,320Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    Saila wrote: »
    I just ran across this very short video clip from Kenya:
    BBC NEWS | Africa | Why women straighten their hair

    For me, this was a very interesting perspective. I am pretty new around here and I had not yet broadened my understanding of natural hair to include international implications.

    What do you guys think? I'm just interested to hear all the various reactions and opinions you guys may have.

    pardon me as i pick at a minute detail of the video, but... TWENTY DOLLARS FOR A RELAXER?! wth?! it used to cost me at least 50, and that was DISCOUNT b/c they didnt keep it on as long or something like that.

    and i giggled a little when the woman said "oh no!" when the interviewer asked if she would take her hair.

    i hope there was more to this, like this was just a clip from a larger piece or something.
    tumblr_lr2y4sUYNh1qb5gkjo1_250.gif
  • DerbyCityNaturalsDerbyCityNaturals Posts: 422Registered Users
    dang keeny she is clownin for real "ooooh noooo"

    I think that it is important to state that western culture does greatly affect the rest of the world. I would love to see more prominent Black women like Michelle and Oprah choose to go natural.
  • LiyahLiyah Posts: 118Registered Users
    dang keeny she is clownin for real "ooooh noooo"

    I think that it is important to state that western culture does greatly affect the rest of the world. I would love to see more prominent Black women like Michelle and Oprah choose to go natural.

    I would like more prominent women promoting self love and acceptance.

    It's a shame how people in general are always made to feel like they aren't enough or less than. If it wasn't relaxers, it would have been bleaching cream, if not that then skinny noses...it's always something.
  • SailaSaila Posts: 1,212Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    Liyah wrote: »
    dang keeny she is clownin for real "ooooh noooo"

    I think that it is important to state that western culture does greatly affect the rest of the world. I would love to see more prominent Black women like Michelle and Oprah choose to go natural.

    I would like more prominent women promoting self love and acceptance.

    It's a shame how people in general are always made to feel like they aren't enough or less than. If it wasn't relaxers, it would have been bleaching cream, if not that then skinny noses...it's always something.

    Liyah - That's a valid point and I agree with you completely. However, I must add that images are powerful, especially when considered from the perspective of people in other countries. Since so many prominent figures "promote" issues insincerely, sometimes sincere promotions are dismissed as superficial rhetoric. I'm not saying that people shouldn't promote what they care about, they absolutely should, but only about things they are truly passionate about.

    Words quickly loose impact in today's sensationalist news climate. It is often difficult to get a message across without a strong visual to back it up. I'm by no means saying you have to be natural to promote self-acceptance or that relaxers make you a self-hater. What I'm trying to emphasize is that if a prominent figure were to go natural, that action would speak louder than words, particularly on the international scale. It would automatically help make natural hair seem more "mainstream" and acceptable.

    You're right that if it wasn't hair it would be something else. In the context of this forum though, our focus is hair. The ultimate message is self-acceptance, regardless of the issue.
  • itsKelCeeEeeitsKelCeeEee Posts: 1,084Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    CocoT wrote: »
    I found the reasons that the women gave for chemically straightening their hair no different than why women here straighten it. Top reason being manageability. Not everyone has the patience or what have you to care for their natural hair. It's a sad reality. My friend attempted to go natural but went back to relaxers because she could not handle her hair. She likes to work out and things and prefers to wear her hair straight because she doesn't like her texture ( :sad3: ) and no matter how sad that may be, she's the one that has to deal with it day in and day out.

    I've grown out of trying to convince people to do what they really don't want to do or have the patience to do. When she's ready she'll come around and I'll be there for her with products and knowledge galore! My mom was the same way. She didn't want to hear a thing about natural hair and what not. Now she has realized that relaxers and her scalp just can't coexist and has decided to go natural. It may have taken a few bald patches and excruciatingly itchy scalp for her to come around, which is sad, but she did and is on her way to a healthy hair journey.

    +1000
    tumblr_mfb2v27JpJ1qfxenmo1_250.gif
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  • AmberBrownAmberBrown Posts: 1,072Registered Users
    Natural hair is not harder to care for than relaxed hair :-| A natural woman can be high or low maintenance just like a relaxed woman. The notion that it's harder to care for nappy hair than it is for straight is an excuse in disguise. The real sticking point is...some woman just don't like and/or hate their natural hair.
  • SailaSaila Posts: 1,212Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    AmberBrown wrote: »
    Natural hair is not harder to care for than relaxed hair :-| A natural woman can be high or low maintenance just like a relaxed woman. The notion that it's harder to care for nappy hair than it is for straight is an excuse in disguise. The real sticking point is...some woman just don't like and/or hate their natural hair.

    That's what I thought. Someone explained that it's the transitioning and learning how to take care of a new texture that's difficult.
  • AmberBrownAmberBrown Posts: 1,072Registered Users
    Saila wrote: »
    AmberBrown wrote: »
    Natural hair is not harder to care for than relaxed hair :-| A natural woman can be high or low maintenance just like a relaxed woman. The notion that it's harder to care for nappy hair than it is for straight is an excuse in disguise. The real sticking point is...some woman just don't like and/or hate their natural hair.

    That's what I thought. Someone explained that it's the transitioning and learning how to take care of a new texture that's difficult.

    Mmkay, this seems semi-reasonable....

    The transitioning especially, I imagine blending two textures would be difficult. Of course...the simple and obvious answer would be just to cut off the relaxer, yes? But that's only if you're actually committed to your natural texture...

    The learning curve--well, I don't think anyone was born knowing how to care for a perm. For some reason, some people are more willing to tough it out for the perm, but not for the natural. I think the reason's connected to a basic dislike of your natural hair.

    I see the validity to what you said :) I just think that's a slightly better excuse than the simple, "natural hair is more difficult".
  • SailaSaila Posts: 1,212Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    AmberBrown wrote: »
    Saila wrote: »
    AmberBrown wrote: »
    Natural hair is not harder to care for than relaxed hair :-| A natural woman can be high or low maintenance just like a relaxed woman. The notion that it's harder to care for nappy hair than it is for straight is an excuse in disguise. The real sticking point is...some woman just don't like and/or hate their natural hair.

    That's what I thought. Someone explained that it's the transitioning and learning how to take care of a new texture that's difficult.

    Mmkay, this seems semi-reasonable....

    The transitioning especially, I imagine blending two textures would be difficult. Of course...the simple and obvious answer would be just to cut off the relaxer, yes? But that's only if you're actually committed to your natural texture...

    The learning curve--well, I don't think anyone was born knowing how to care for a perm. For some reason, some people are more willing to tough it out for the perm, but not for the natural. I think the reason's connected to a basic dislike of your natural hair.

    I see the validity to what you said :) I just think that's a slightly better excuse than the simple, "natural hair is more difficult".

    I agree. I personally don't think any kind of hair is inherently more difficult. Ultimately, it's up to the person (despite society's influence) to determine how much time and money they want to spend on their hair.
  • gagirl09gagirl09 Posts: 2,316Registered Users
    I saw a familiar golden and purple container lol
    Last relaxer: Nov. 24, 2008
    BC: December 19, 2009
    Products: Whatever works!
  • adthomasadthomas Posts: 5,525Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    Saila wrote: »
    I just ran across this very short video clip from Kenya:
    BBC NEWS | Africa | Why women straighten their hair

    For me, this was a very interesting perspective. I am pretty new around here and I had not yet broadened my understanding of natural hair to include international implications.

    What do you guys think? I'm just interested to hear all the various reactions and opinions you guys may have.

    pardon me as i pick at a minute detail of the video, but... TWENTY DOLLARS FOR A RELAXER?! wth?! it used to cost me at least 50, and that was DISCOUNT b/c they didnt keep it on as long or something like that.

    and i giggled a little when the woman said "oh no!" when the interviewer asked if she would take her hair.

    i hope there was more to this, like this was just a clip from a larger piece or something.

    But in that $20 to $40 price you have to consider how much money the average person makes in that country.
    Yes, it's real. No, you can't touch it. :wav:

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