Tuesday, August 26, 2014

5 cardinal natural hair sins and how 2-year old Blue Ivy is "breaking" every single last one of them

By Tenisha Mercer

As soon as I saw Blue Ivy's fro at the VMAs, I knew SOMEBODY was gonna pop off at the mouth about her hair. And damnit if I wasn't right. I just knew folks on Black Twitter were prob going in on this baby...

"Bey did that, but did you see THAT baby's hair, tho?"

Jay-Z, Blue Ivy, Beyonce, Kelly Rowland, MTV VMA'sSource: MTV

Somehow, it all goes back to hair. Can't we just be happy for the Carter family for a second before we start talking about Blue Ivy's natural hair? Must it be the topic of conversation all the damn time?

Karrueche Tran, who's gotten famous for nothing more than being Chris Brown's girlfriend .. ex-girlfriend ... ride or die while in rehab ... sidepiece post-Ri Ri, I'm not quite sure, said Blue needed her hair "combed" during an interview on 106 & Park.

A grown woman throwin' shade at a 2-year-old? Much? Honey, the Bey hive will come stinging for that ARSE!

To be fair, I have heard the very same argument spoken by tons of folks NOT so famous, natural and permed. Women on Facebook, in real life. A lot say pretty much the same thing, all with a look of shock and incredulity, as if Bey has committed the cardinal hair sins and Blue is the sacrificial lamb:

1. Bey got too much damn money to let Blue walk around with her hair looking like THAT!
2. Bey always sports a weave. Why does Blue's hair have to look like THAT?
3. Bey's momma was a hairdresser. She should know better!
4.  Why don't they braid that baby hair? Got her walking around here looking like THAT!
5.  SOMEBODY need to comb that baby hair! 

Now, here are my responses to all five.

1. Let Blue be. Her momma decides how she wants HER baby to wear her hair. And Blue wearing a fro does WHAT EXACTLY to you? How does it affect your everyday life ... and your hair? As if Blue's hair not appearing  perfectly in place will impact any of us on the daily. Blue's hair is natural. That, usually means kinky natural hair, y'all.

It may not be the 'type' of natural that many folks wished for ... you know, the naturally straight kind (not that there's anything wrong with that, but keep reading and you'll get my point). Do you, her momma, daddy or nanny have to comb Blue's hair? No, then have a damn seat.

2. Bey wears a weave; we all know this. So what does that have to do HER BABY's hair, exactly? L'Oreal, of which Beyonce is a paid sponsor, probably has bought Bey's follicles and can pretty much tell her how and what to wear in her hair. Hey, it happens to women in the news business all the time. But just because Momma does, doesn't mean she wants the same for her daughter. I don't know Bey, but I'd imagine her and Jay both want their daughter to have a modicum of hair freedom that she doesn't. And the child is two. Did I mention that?

3. Hair skills, or lack thereof, is not magically passed down to your children. And no, this is Bey's baby and she probably wants to do her baby hair the way she wants to do it. No disrespect to Mama Knowles, of course. I have no idea if Bey can do hair or not. But she is saying a big, 'eff you' to everyone who wants to control her HER baby's hair looks. And I don't blame her.

4. Kinky hair doesn't have to be tamed. "THAT" hair usually means hair of the kinky variety. If "THAT" hair were curly or naturally straight, folks wouldn't say ish. They'd coo and ooh and aww over it and say how cute it is. The message we send, and keep sending our daughters, is that kinky hair must be tamed at all times. The kinkier, the more it most be tamed.

And that means it MUST, MUST, MUST be braided, twisted, barretted or ponytailed. ALL THE DAMN TIME. Loose kinky hair? Chile, BYE!  Did you see the pics when Blue had a ponytail? Black folks exhaled. Bey finally combed that baby's hair and put it in a ponytail. I heard it all: "She got the message. She answered her critics. Doesn't Blue's hair look nice?"

It looks nice in a ponytail ... or an afro. It's not an either/and question, you know. Bey stunted on 'em, in typical Bey style, and the fro is back. But, you know this is the same CHILD in which a woman launched a hair petition ... and folks actually signed it.

We are project grown ass adult hair issues onto a two-year-old. And we need to stop.

5. How do we know Bey don't comb it? I mean, have we comb checked her scalp? Run a comb through her hair? Blue's hair is kinky and it's doing what kinky hair does and likes to do. Nothing wrong with that.

But chile, we will get out the hair microscope and do an exam - is her hair dry? Does it look dry? Does it look twisted? Tangled? Matted? I personally don't believe it's matted, it's just doing what her  hair does. And who knows that better than her Momma? Tangled hair on a child is horrific, and I don't think Bey let it tangle. I could be wrong, but I just don't. It looks, to me, as if her hair was braided and then undone. In some folks' minds, if it's not shellacked into a ponytail or a braid, it is, indeed, tangled.

But, hey, I don't see Blue's hair on a daily so how would I - or any of us, for that matter - know for sure?

Ayyye, but as long as it's curly, it's alright. And besides, you know, you don't have to comb natural hair every day (gasps!). You want to offend Black people, talk about their hair and act as if it is unkempt in any shape, form or fashion.

We'll disown you, honey. And hair that appears unkempt - be it locs, natural hair, fros or any other style deemed "unacceptable" by the hairmunati, is considered uncouth and unpresentable.

I've said this before but apparently it still needs to be said again: Blue Ivy is a child. Her hair is not ripe for picking or ridicule.

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