I remember the first time I heard of the California law passed to stop discrimination against people wearing natural hair types in the workplace. I thought to myself “that’s ridiculous, why would that even have to be a law”. It was a strange feeling that came upon me, when I had the sudden urge that I wanted to part ways with my extensions. That law may not be so far fetched when I began to think of the reasons I truly invested in extensions. Sure they’re popular and all but the bottom line was I had stigma with my own hair, my own identity. Instead of embracing the “flaws” of my hair being “big” “poofy”, “messy”, and all of the above, I chose what I thought society would favor, my “sleek”, and straight extensions.
It has been interesting the feedback I’ve received since removing my extensions, mostly positive. However the negative comments have allowed me to see that I’ve grown past society’s stigmas. One guy thought it’d be funny to call me a “nappy head”. My response was reprimanding, and assertive, but proud as I defended my hair in honor, not shame. I am proud to come to terms with my hair and embrace it in its natural form.