I didn't realize I had curly hair until the very end of high school. Before that, I'd brush through my hair, ending up with a broomstick-like ponytail of frizz, which people made comments about. That I don't mind so much because it did look pretty bad. My mother used to have people relax my hair sometimes when we got our hair done, or I'd dry at home and usually end up with waves.
Eventually I realized that my hair looked pretty good when it air-dried and I left it alone. Some people just don't have straight hair was what I realized.
I adamantly told my mother to stop requesting that they relax my hair in the front (my hair is really dry in front) when we got our hair done.
Fast-forward, and while I have gotten comments from people who love my hair and tell me it's awesome (I have a lot of hair), I'd say that there are only three to five people in my life who prefer the curls. Sometimes I straighten my hair for a change, and most people tell me how I look better and should go with the straight hair more often. It's hard to explain to people why it bothers me when they tell me it's an improvement.
Now to the real insults. The last place I worked at, when I would go in with my hair loose, a lot of people would do a frightened step-back gasp of shock at seeing me, saying how they were scared for a moment. Yeah, they were joking, but it annoyed the hell out of me.
They would constantly tell me that I should do something about my hair, and basically question my grooming, asking me why I didn't brush/comb/style my hair. It's incredibly offensive to me that people would suggest that my grooming was suspect because I have volume.
I would also get comments about how it's just a "Dominican hair" thing. Yes, I'm Dominican, but just because my hair is curly doesn't mean it's "nappy" (I understand that it shouldn't be derogatory, but that's basically how it was used), which is another word I heard.
Most of them were Mexican, and so they all pretty much had super-straight hair, and it's like they couldn't get the concept of curly hair, or volume. I didn't even bother telling them that brushing through curly hair is the kiss of death, because they'd just have said how they were right about how I didn't take care of my hair.
I went to Peru last summer for a wedding, and when we went to the salon, they kept commenting on the extreme curliness of my hair, looking panicked, and I just hated the way they couldn't let go of "your hair is sooo curly!". All they needed was the "eww" to finish their thoughts.
Sorry for all the ranting, but it feels so good to get that out. Between people's comments and then seeing commercials constantly showing women wiping out their curls (or frizz, as so many try to tell us) for straight hair, it gets really frustrating.
Hell, I'm at a point where I straighten my hair whenever I want to make a really good first impression, because I see how a lot of people perceive the curls.
Last edited by Saria; 08-29-2008 at 11:00 AM.