How Do You Deal With Negative Comments About Your Hair?

25 Jul

This comment was recently posted on my Questions/Comments page:

Zizi writes:

At work the other day ..some black women starting taunting me about my natural hair. Saying things like I need to get a perm. I felt horrible not because I am ashamed of my hair but because as black women they felt that their perms and weaves made them superior. I was embarrassed for them.

How would you handle this situation?
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20 Responses to “How Do You Deal With Negative Comments About Your Hair?”

  1. briggsy July 25, 2011 at 6:21 pm #

    I probably would have said, “wow you hate yourself that much” and then walked away.

  2. Khandi 'Choclatstar' Myers July 25, 2011 at 6:27 pm #

    I do not know how t handle that. I have Locs and I have gotten more negative reaction from other black females than any other ‘group’ of people because of my hair. I even had a supervisor make it seem like if she knew my hair was in locs she would not have hired me. ( When we had the interview it was winter and I had a hat on so she did not see my hair.)

    • Ollie Moss July 26, 2011 at 4:05 am #

      Keep your head and your locs up! I love locks. the look, feel everything about them. I plan on locking mine in the next year.

      Ollie M.

      ollimo91@aol.com

  3. ~L July 25, 2011 at 6:34 pm #

    Comments from FB:

    P.D.-C.- i take a deep breath…. then i tell them that if they want a perm, they should get one. Then i politely tell them to pay as much attention to my business (hair) as i do to theirs (none).

    someone at church told me ‘i like your hair natural but i really liked it when it was a silky straight bob’…. my reply ‘then you should get a silky straight bob.’

    S.R.- I don’t respond to ignorance!!!!

    K.W.- it’s not easy when it family…my gran hates my natural hair…she is always tell me it looks nappy and dirty…i tell her that taking care of my natural hair it harder than taking care of it when it was permed

    B.R.-N.- Because I have complete confidence in myself, I choose to ignore their statements. I have been called some pretty bad names, even from the older generation, but I keep on stepping. I am so thankful for my hubby, aunt and BFF Pauline who have supported me during this journey. I am healthier because of my decision to go natural. 🙂

  4. patricia July 25, 2011 at 7:00 pm #

    I liked all of the comments. I probably would say something smart A– and waited to see what they had to say, sometimes I have that problem (lol). But I just smh, because I always read these posts about negativity towards natural hair and I want to know where these people live because I have never had one negative comment and I have been natural for over 7 yrs this time around.

  5. Erica M. July 25, 2011 at 7:40 pm #

    Fortunately, I haven’t experienced this with my fellow sisters… I don’t know how you handled it, but they are ignorant to me! I can’t wait for the day when we as women stop downing and hating on one another, regardless of color. Press on and stand up for what you believe it!

  6. ~L July 25, 2011 at 8:10 pm #

    Comments from FB:

    V.S.- It is so sad that we are conditioned to think that straight hair is better. The hair that God gave you is best! I decided to go natural after my coworkers started to compare my hair to the only other sister on my job that happens to be natural. Oh Vernia, your hair is so long and straight. why doesn’t “X” straighten her hair like you? I was literally sick to my stomach. I explained to them that her hair was beautiful too and the following week cut my hair off to about an inch. I am loving it!

    C.K.T.- I just say…”you know, folks don’t like everything about you either.”

    K.H.H.- Most of the comments that I have received have been positive. Most people ask if it is my real hair or a wig. Once when I wore it in a protective style (cornrows with an afro puff in the back) I had brother say I took it all the way back to elementary school with that hairstyle. I was a bit offended, but simply explained that if I want to keep the length, I cannot wear the fabulous fro all the time.

    K.C.G.- Sometimes I laugh out load at the ignorance, sometimes I laugh inside shaking my head and sometimes I educate the ignorant on the science and benefits of wearing hair naturally kinky,coil,beautiful and sometimes you just got to ignore because I pretty much don’t value ignorant,negative opinions about myself.

    R.B.- I started dreading & it feels wonderful! Don’t really care what others think got denied some good jobs but so what. My uncle told me “you’ll never get a job w/ hair like that LOL Why is authenticity a crime? *shrug*

    M.A.- Depends on what I’m trying to do. Do I want to be the most popular person in the room or do I want some peace and quite to get some work done. I can take the high road and quietly feel sorry for them, I can tell them how they’re words make me feel and how that’s affecting our work relationship or I can take it up to management and tell them that those individuals are creating an environment where I can’t my work done.

    Or I can straight-up clown their asses.

    Either way trifling people are only going to act as trifling as you let them so it’s probably best to take a more active stance of some sort.

    L.P.- if I worry about what people say about me and my hair I wound have more gray then what I got. Im locin my hair and I love it so what if they say nasty things about your hair there not BRAVE like me I’ve baby loc’s and I rock them very well

    T.H.- IGNORE THEM my hair doesn’t make me the strong beautiful intelligent woman that I am so all that’s negative is ignorance to me.

    N.P.W.- My brother in law calls me Harriet Tubman if im wearing my twist & i respond by saying…”i have told you Sojourner Truth read about her” that shuts him up…..

  7. Ollie Moss July 26, 2011 at 4:09 am #

    Negative comments are the norm for anything that the negative person feels envious of. I have a co-worker that wears her hair natural but covers it up with a wig, she has a nice length to her hair but is afraid to wear it. She always has something to say about my afro, but I ignore it and keep on picking!!!!!!!!lol

    Ollie M.

    ollimo91@aol.com

    • Autumn H. July 26, 2011 at 6:40 pm #

      LOL!! I love your response, I feel the same way 😉

  8. Kiddada July 26, 2011 at 9:02 am #

    What is sad to me is how women treat each other. Then the other sad thing is how we forget that when we are born and for most of our lives we have natural hair before it gets manipulated by a hot comb or a perm. Does that mean that these ame women hated themselves as youth?

  9. CurlyNuGrowth July 26, 2011 at 10:05 am #

    I’ve had to deal with that, even from my family. You have to stand by your decision and at the same time take it as an opportunity to educate them about perms and the benefits of natural hair. Even if they aren’t receptive to your advice, you know you’re doing yourself and your body a good service by not adding harmful chemicals to your hair. Stay strong & positive and don’t let those women or anyone else sway the positive choice you made in your life.

  10. Miss Moon July 26, 2011 at 6:37 pm #

    I would say something along the lines of “You have a right to your opinion, girl. Luckily for me, I know that rude a** opinions do not shape who I am in the least bit.” Pity their ignorance, forgive their rudeness and keep it moving with your head held high!

    And for an added bit of Music Therapy with Miss Moon – change your ringtone to Dead Prez ‘The Beauty Within”.. 🙂

  11. Terrinique Pennerman July 27, 2011 at 12:31 pm #

    I just say “If you don’t have anything good to say then don’t say it at all”…that what my mom used to tell me. Recently tho my boyfriend told me he didn’t like my afro…so I told him to close his eyes. LOL

  12. pea July 29, 2011 at 7:24 pm #

    Benjamin Franklin said, ‘Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain and most fools do.’

  13. Tanya July 30, 2011 at 8:10 pm #

    My 76yr old mom lives with me. Since going natural (June 2010), she feels very comfortable turning her nose up at my hair and referring to it as,”that mess” or that “sh–!”. I very candidly remind her of her Afro that she sported in the 70’s. My 22 year old daughter & several other family members wear their hair natural. So when family visits, i remind her that she’s living in my home and if she doesn’t have anything nice to say, then she should keep her mouth shut. For the rest of the haters, if they feel comfortable enough to express negative opinions about my hair, I have an open invitation to tell them what I think about their insensitivity. If they are offended good; the feelings are mutual.

    • ChicagoCutie August 2, 2011 at 2:40 am #

      Totally concur! I subscribe to the theory that if you don’t know how to talk to me, I don’t know how to talk to you.

  14. ~L July 30, 2011 at 10:13 pm #

    Comments from FB:

    W.D.- I have not had any.

    L.V.- Use humor and intelligence to turn the comment back on them and make them look like the “uneducated about diverse hair textures” person they are. LOL Always have a few generic “come backs” in your repertoir to combat stupidity and ignorance on the spot!

    M.A.- The more I love my hair the less I give a hoot what anyone else thinks. My mother hates my hair and I love my mother dearly. I smile when she makes comments about my hair……..When others do, I feel sorry for how they are feel with self hatred AND how ill-mannered they are for sharing negativity…

    M.V.- My neighbor looked at me one day and said “You’re always doing something to yo’ hair”…I simply said, “Yeah, I like to try things to change my look and to look fresh”…(with her haggard look arse)…LOL

    T.L.B.- I ignore them. Obviously its ‘IGNORANCE’ doing the talking…….

    M.M.- I give them a 10 min speach about loving themselves and their culture.

    R.T.- Too confident to concern myself with it…..!!! People will always be intimidated and have something negative to say when you have the ability to be beautiful with the hair YOU WERE BORN WITH!!! Everyone doesn’t possess that ability…..and insecure people HATE IT…..

    M.L.F.- I just think their ignorant and uneducated about natural hair. Natural isnt nappy. Most of them are shocked to see my hair is soft.

    B.B.M.- The most negative comment I ever got was “Can you wash it?” I of course say, yes everyday if I want and I never have a bad hair day 🙂

    D.P.C.- Y’all know what natural hair does more than anything? It allow you to be creative which will pour into other aspects of your life.

    N.S.-
    Personally, I’m not a Christian, but most black folks are. Here’s my snappy comment that will shut most folks DOWN: If hair of wool was good enough for Jesus, how come it’s not good enough for you?By the way, I don’t really get negative comments. I think folks can feel how much I’m diggin’ my hair and they may think it, but they don’t voice it.

  15. linnie July 30, 2011 at 10:41 pm #

    Perhaps because I am proudly sporting gray hair in my natural ppl are more respectful of me and I haven’t received negative comments. Or perhaps its because they see how excited I am about my natural look. Or perhaps its because I had been wearing that darned straight ponytail for so long that people are glad to see me wearing beautiful hairstyles now. (I work outside all day long on my job and straight hairstyles just wouldn’t last at all.) Whatever the reason, I’m glad I don’t have to put up with that foolishness from folks.

  16. AC July 31, 2011 at 1:18 am #

    When I first started my natural hair journey, initially I got negative comments and looks, and even smirks from the people closest to me – mom, few close girlfriends (not my brother, he liked it and was encouraging.) I knew this was not about freeing my hair of chemicals and trying something different – this was a journey about confidence and independence. So I wore confidence along with my hairstyle. That was 10 years. But now if someone says something negative, I don’t get offended…especially now, I’ve been kinda lax with my hair .. just wearing it free. Some days, it’s beautiful and other days, I could use a trim, a pick or another hairstyle.I handle any comments individually, some I take as constructive criticisms but other folk … most times, all I gotta do is look at their head and gather comments for the comeback … LOL ….

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