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since I disliked sitting at the hands of my mother while she — armed with a wide-toothed comb, hair grease, and bobbles — attempted to tame my tresses with plaits, adorning them with bobbles that click-clacked with movement. The process of washing my textured hair was a long one, as it was difficult to have it lather with soap due to its curliness and thickness and thus took several more washes than average to make it completely clean.To my mother’s credit, she mastered the art of patience in styling hair like mine, even if she accused me of being “tender-headed,” a term often used in Moncler Kids Vests Sale the black community for those who are easily pained by the wear and tear of combing through our textured manes. I graduated from my occasional Afro and plaits to patterned cornrows adorned with sashaying beads, styled for me by hairdressers at the local hair salon predominately frequented by other African-Americans. It was among black women in hair salons where I learned of the diversity of black hair. From weaves, plaits, braids, press and curls, relaxers, twist-outs, Afros, box braids, and more, there wasn’t a hairstyle that I couldn’t wait to don.However, during my preteen and teenage years, I succumbed to the pressure to look like the black women I saw in magazines and on my television by getting a press and curl, accomplished by using a curling iron and a relaxer, used to make naturally curly hair straight. Both hair regimens can have damaging effects on one’s locks because of the heat and chemicals, but accomplishing straight hair through these processes brings black women that much closer to possessing what some have referred to as “good hair.”

Photographed by Lauren Perlstein.AdvertisementAnd, while I tried my best to fit in, I couldn’t escape the misconceptions raised about my hair from white classmates at my predominately white, all-girls, private middle and Moncler Women Jackets Black Friday Sales high school. Moncler Kids Coats Black Friday Sale Some peers, uninvited, ran their fingers through my hair, remarking with looks of disdain over how “kinky” it felt (during times when my press and curl wore out). During an overnight class retreat, I struggled to find the words to explain why I wrapped my hair with a silk scarf at night. It actually took me a minute to Moncler Women Coats Sale figure out why my cabin mates were warily eyeing me, until one asked, “Why are you wearing that…thing on your head,” gesturing to her own. I offered the best explanation I could think of: “It keeps my hair straight.”

Questions like this found their way back to me when Moncler Women Vests Black Friday I was asked why I flat-ironed my hair every day or how my hair grew to such long lengths after a short period of time. The truth is: I didn’t flat-iron my hair every day — my hair was chemically relaxed, or what most in my community call “permed.

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