Recently, Kenyan blogger Nancy Roxanne wrote an opinion piece for uReport disapproving the appearance of natural hair on black women. In it she confesses,

"First of all, natural hair is not flattering to everyone. I even dare say it is ugly. Only a handful of women actually look good with kinky hair. Still, masses of unenlightened women wake up one day and decide to rock natural hairstyles only to end up adding to the ghastly parade of natural hair disasters being flaunted around."

PHOTOS COURTESY OF RAPID EYE -- GETTY IMAGES

Dear Nancy Roxanne,

Several times over I’ve read your blog post on your belief that “natural hair is ugly”; each time that I read that post my emotions and thoughts changed. But not a change in support of your claims, I’m rather appalled to see that someone of African descent could feel such a way about a beautiful feature that makes us unique from other cultures and from one another. Among the leading point of my many issues I had with your claim and statement, this is the tip of the iceberg.

First, you’re misinformed.

You’ve synthesized a claim that straight, voluminous hair is more pleasing to the beauty standards of society. However, there are plenty of individuals that go to extreme lengths to mimic our unique textures. Our hair is so versatile and, for lack of better terms, dope that many women outside the black diaspora strive to replicate something that our DNA is blessed with. Ms. Roxanne would you find natural hair appealing if it were presented through the lens of cultural appropriation; would Kylie Jenner sporting coarse afro like hairstyle make it more appealing to you. #questionsthatneedanswers.

Secondly, the history of tolerance and acceptance for natural hair in societies that didn’t care for black people is a great deal of importance to why the natural hair movement is highly relevant.

For centuries, black people across the world have been forced and bullied into altering the integrity of their hair to make others around them feel comfortable. I know this very well, as a previous employer of mine harassed me because he voiced his preference for my long poetic justice braids while I was transitioning, instead of my natural coily afro.

In social culture and in the hair world, curly hair of every type and texture controls the market of hair products in every way possible. Sales in relaxers have dropped, and the focus is the consumer's need to maintain essential needs for their texture. Looking at the demographical information of the world over the past decades, the number of individuals of ethnic background has started to outnumber those of mainly European ancestry. With more black women and men embracing the beauty of natural hair and loving one another for the confidence that natural hair exudes, it’s a freeing lifestyle. There's a sense of black love that is not conforming to the Eurocentric ideologies of beauty.

Thirdly, you mentioned that natural hair is an investment of time and finances.

However, so is having relaxed hair, permed hair, short hair, or a weave. Really think about it; the time it takes to properly apply the relaxer/perm, let it set, the washing process, conditioning, and styling time is a lengthy process. Or to put it in a better perspective, the length of time spent at a hair salon for this service can take an entire day.

For women who know a thing or two about weave units, they understand that it's impossible to just install the hair unit and leave it; there’s a high level of maintenance required. With a weave you’re not only caring for the sew-in part, you also have to nurture your hair underneath. As for the care process of natural hair the length of time varies from one naturalista to another.

Given that each head of hair is different and has varying needs, the time it takes to wash, detangle, and style natural hair varies. It’s a matter of preference of how thorough one wants to be with their wash process; I may only have a 4-step process while my cousin may have a 35-step process, in the most hypothetical scenario. Personally, I only take 15 minutes for my entire wash process and another 15 for styling; do note that my hair is past shoulder length. Once again a matter of preference, I choose to streamline my wash process because 4 hours is too long for me.

So, Ms. Nancy Roxanne...

We are both adults, and I can’t change your mind. All I can do is share a piece of mine, share knowledge, and pray that one day you’ll be able to see the uniqueness you have been blessed with. Lastly, to some degree I do not fault you for you misinformed perspectives because we all have been brought up in a society that has conditioned us black women to think a certain way about ourselves. Free your mind, sista!