We’re reaching a milestone this month: March marks our one year anniversary and goodness what a year it’s been. Thank you all for believing in Eight, it gives me such joy that our one hair product has helped hundreds of you love your natural hair and realise you are More Than Enough.
But it isn’t always thus. The natural girl’s hair journey is a complex one: sometimes I want straight hair, and I yearn for toss-able Peruvian waves. Alas, I do not (and cannot) toss my hair; it is thick, curly and doesn’t hang down. As the CEO of a natural beauty company my comments might seem contrary, but I’m slowly realising my worth is not wrapped up in my appearance and however I wear my hair it doesn’t diminish the fact I’m good, I’m great in fact.
This may or may not be something you’re struggling with, but with the rise of ‘new feminism’, see Cardi B and Adwoah Aboah, I am here to encourage you to do as you please because you’re doing it for you, and no-one else. You are not your hair, and what you look like doesn’t make a blind bit of difference to your worth, in spite of society’s and the male effort to tell you otherwise.
I say this as someone who knows a thing or two about my value being judged by my appearance – my hair in particular. I’m a twin and for years I’ve been judged and compared to my twin sister. Whilst it didn’t make much difference to the way we felt about each other, during my late teens and early twenties I became known as the twin with straight hair.
I was the one who looked more European and once when my twin sister and I were out, a security guard stopped my twin sister and asked “who’s your Asian friend?”
Like I said, the natural girl’s journey is a complex one. But I realised a few years ago I didn't want to be anyone but myself and stopped trying to be someone else's idea of perfect. I stopped straightening my hair, and realised I was more than enough, on my own, no fillers, enhancements or additives, required. It was then that I embraced my naturally curly hair and identified key ingredients that made my hair lock in moisture, for stunning, hydrated curls I was proud to flaunt.
Let me clarify I am in love with my natural hair. But even when I have had braids I’ve been challenged by family members about my curls: “what happened to the ‘fro?” It’s at such times I remind myself that personal choice is not removed when you embrace the hair you were crowned with.
I used to be the one with straight hair, but it’s okay to be both because my soul is unapologetic and I no longer need my appearance to be affirmed or accepted by anyone.
I am not my hair and Jim + Henry is about genuine self acceptance, whether that’s a weave down to your ankles, or a twa. Darling, you’re good.