A Journey In Black and Indian Love

A Peek inside the marriage of an African American woman and her East Indian spouse

Isn’t It All Good Hair November 11, 2009

New Hair Nov 09

New Layers for Me

M and I were anxiously waiting to see Chris Rock’s movie “Good Hair” but unfortunately it came and went from the theatre in my town within a week.  Now we have to wait to see it on video.

M says one of the things that he wishes he had known about being with a black woman was all that we go through with our hair. Now let me just say that over the years I have gone through all kinds of hair styles. I’ve done it all.. braids, weave, natural, wigs, twists and yes even a jheri curl!

I admit, I’m pretty bad..I run like crazy from the rain when I don’t have an umbrella (to which M says is a sad pitiful way to live. LOL) and I always wear a shower cap in the shower.  I remember being in high school when the hip hop rap group Salt N Pepa were at the height of popularity. They had a severe asymentrical bob that was chopped short on one side and left long on the other with a “stacked” look on the back. I begged my mom to let me get my hair cut like that but she refused so I had to be creative and pin my hair back to get the “look.” 

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve toned down my hair style bravery and now go with the more safe and easy maintenance styles. I’ve learned in my travels to India to take ethnic hair products. When we lived there, I spent several weeks desperately searching for anything that would work on my hair. I had failed to even think that I would need to pack extra when I was preparing to go there.  I was one desperate sista and it was one lonnnngg difficult hair summer. Fortunately, my daughter’s hair was in braids which made things much easier.

Essence magazine has a great article in last month’s magazine about the hair drama we as women go through. It’s thought provoking and it makes you think about the little insecurities we all carry within ourselves unknownly. I recommend it as a read for anyone regardless of your ethnic background.

M’s first real experience with ethnic hair came when it was time to take our daughter’s hair down during the time we lived in India. M volunteered to help with the process then tried to bail out a mere 30 minutes later. Bless his heart, he kept getting her hair tangled as he was taking it down. Thankfully, he didn’t let that experience scare him away completely (notice I said completely). On his off days this past summer he was responsible for combing Peyton’s hair. He did the best he could and I must say, a much better job than I expected. One day I came home to a hair surprise. Peyton’s hair was combed and I actually asked M if another woman had combed her hair because he did such a good job. He had it done in two neat braided pony. I didn’t even know he knew HOW to braid.

Then there was the time I decided to sport a style where my hair was pulled back and I had put a little chignon comb piece at the back. M, the kids and I were in Goa and the hotel we stayed at had a slide for their pool. As I slid down the slide for the first time, my first thought as I hit the water was ‘OH NO my hair piece!!” I could just see it floating in the pool and people wondering what kind of creature it was. M said the first thing I did as I came out of the water was touch the back of my head to see if it was still there. Thankfully it was.. ..However, on the flight back to Delhi I wasn’t so lucky. M put his arm around my neck and as he did, he knocked the hair piece off. It literally rolled under the seat behind us. We couldn’t reach it no matter how hard we tried and unfortunately, much to my horror, M had to ask the guy sitting behind us to reach under his seat to get it. The guy did it with such a straight face that it made me feel even worst. That was the last time I wore that hairpiece in India (notice I said in India not the last time period…LOL).

Anyway, I’ve shared my embarrassing stories with you to say that as women, we go through so much to conquer the idea of what others think we should look like which is one of the points of Chris Rock’s movie. As women, we put ourselves through insane processes to have longer hair, different texture hair, or different colored hair. Unknownly, we pass these hair insecurities to our kids. Not good..I admit.  M is astounded at the amount of money I spend on hair each month..and to think I’m mild compared to some women who are at the salon every week.

I’m threatening to cut all of my hair off  a la Solange Knowles but I’m not brave enough yet.  This week, I had layers cut in my hair. I doubt I’ll wear this style on a regular basis since it would require more time than I have in the mornings but it’s nice to have a temporary change. 

I’d love to hear your hair stories..good or bad..or funny.  

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17 Responses to “Isn’t It All Good Hair”

  1. Empress Samantha Says:

    My sister and I saw Good Hair, it was hilarious, sad and true all at the same time. Chris Rock did a good job. He actually went to India for part of the film because that’s where the hair comes from that’s in the weaves that so many people wear these days. Your stories about M and hair are funny though. Thanks for sharing them.

    I’m pretty mild about my hair. My mom refused to get us perms (after watching Good Hair I immediately gave her a HUGE thank you for that) and we wore our hair in braids until HS because we went swimming so much. After that we started getting our hair straightened but we get it braided during the summer for swimming. We don’t spend a lot of time or money in hair salons but I’m starting to wash my hair myself to reduce even that.

    My roommate is Filipino and he wants to see the movie in particular about the weaves that people spend thousands of dollars on, LOL! He’s so curious about black hair, LOL! Hair is an interesting topic in the black community!

    • yummipanamena Says:

      girl, i loved reading this post of yours! hilarious, girl i would have died if that would have happened to me on the plane, and your husband asked for the hairpiece back? wow! he truly loves you…my srilankan boyfriend i have to admit loves my wigs, i was surprised, he loves my constant change in looks…but i love reading your blogs…

      • blindianlove Says:

        Thanks for the blog love! Girl, you’re not going to believe this but hairpiece rolled out of my bathroom closet this morning?! I had laugh. I’m glad your Sri Lankan guy embraces your hair changes. Sometimes we need a bit of umph in our lives and a hair change can bring that.

  2. Charie Daviston Says:

    I’m going to see Good Hair tomorrow! A bit apprehensive because some have told me that the brotha should not have put the sista’s hair business in the street like that. Women the world over do things to their hair and spend money on it.

    • Blindianlove Says:

      Cherie,
      I never thought about it from the perspective that he’s putting our hair business out there. LOL. Don’t you think that at this point women are much more comfortable about people knowing that all of their hair may not be “theirs?” At this point almost every black woman I see on a reality show has that same lacefront of weaved look now where it’s the side part front swoop with deep waves. I know this description sounds funny but I’m sure you know what I’m talking about.

  3. Charie Daviston Says:

    Hey,
    Just came back from seeing “Good Hair.” Black Women’s hair is a billion dollar industry. Too bad that most of the money goes out of our pockets and into someone else’s.

  4. ann Says:

    Well, try wearing your hair more natural or less weaves.

    I never wore a wig or weave; but, I will relax my hair.

    I wear it short and I have been complimented on my short hair style.

    Actually, I laugh at women and girls who toss their faux hair around as if they were really born with that hair. What a joke.

    • Blindianlove Says:

      Ann, I had to laugh when I read your first comment because I guess from my post it sounds as though I wear a lot of weaves or wigs. LOL. I haven’t worn a weave in almost two years. That was a travel convienence thing back then. I only relax my hair now and have it cut when needed. Girl that various styles was a back in the day thing.

  5. ann Says:

    Ladies, we put too much thought into our hair. Freedom is not worrying too much about hair.

  6. Blindianlove Says:

    Oh and I forgot to say.. I agree about people who toss their faux hair around as though it’s theirs. However, it is theirs and I think in today’s world, people don’t have the same attitudes toward fake hair that they used to.. but we’ll throw it to the audience. What do you think ladies?

  7. Charie Daviston Says:

    As much money as the weaves cost and the hours it takes to get done, women better toss that stuff around like they own it!

  8. Stacee Says:

    Hey, lovin your new haircut…Rock it Girl!

    I haven’t seen the movie yet, but I relax my hair because it’s simply more manageable. However, now that I started using refined coconut oil to moisturize my hair, I relax my hair every 5 mths….6 mths is stretching it. I have thick hair and I like the body in my hair after flat ironing it. I just hate applying heat to it and I’m not too fond of wrapping it either. —yeah I have my own issues. lol However, I do comb all my hair back and tie it up in a silk scarf.

    As for the weaves, it was never really my thing. But I don’t see a problem with women who choose to rock ’em. If it looks good on you and makes you feel good…..do u.

    Anyway, I hope you enjoy your thanksgiving!!! Be blessed…

  9. Truth Says:

    Hey Sista,

    You might want to try Kinky-Curly hair products or Carol’s Daughter Hair Milk. You can alway use curling gel! I have naturally curly hair with a slight wave to it and I use a curling gel!

    Well anyway may our LORD JESUS continue to bless you,your husband, and your children!!!

    Stay encouraged on your natural hair journey!

    Also, go to http://www.kinky-curly.com okay?

    God Bless everyone on this Christmas Season!!!!

  10. The diverse one Says:

    Usually, I get a perm in my hair, but I have been thinking about getting a short braid in it.

    I admire my baby sister. She’s better than me when it comes to hair acceptance. She has gotten so tired of her hair that she’s plan on getting cut it almost bald( partially because her micormini’s(braids took a chunk of her hair out).

    She’s always been a person who could care less about what people thought about her hair. Though I Iike short hair, I struggle with my hair being super short like that, I prefer it being moderately short like Shawnie O’neal’s length.

  11. Milky Chai Says:

    blindianlove, you are absolutely ADORABLE!!! And I do love the do! I have wavy frizzy hair and I use a flat iron every day, such a pain. I run from the rain, too!

  12. Nikki Says:

    I’m an Indian girl, born and raised in Southeast Asia, studying in Australia and just returned from a trip to southern Africa where I did some work at a hospital. I’d never had close African friends before that – the first time I discovered how marvellously textured African hair can be was when I tried to smooth back braids from a patient’s face in an effort to calm her down before a medical procedure.

    Needless to say, I was intrigued. I spent so much time haranguing the nurses to tell me their hair stories, and to show me pictures of all their hairstyles, that one finally decided that I needed to experience it first-hand. And in the spirit of living local, I insisted that I get it done at a tree-salon (where you sit on a rented plastic stool under the shade of a tree, and – God forbid, if it rains – the hairstylist somehow nestles an umbrella between her elbow and hip while doing your hair).

    I lasted a grand total of seven hours with my braids (felt a migraine coming on because I wasn’t used to the tension on my scalp, and had to run out and get one of those special unpicking combs – I still have it:D). But it was still the best hair experience of my life, sitting under that tree, seeing magic worked into hair all around me, ‘carrots’ and ‘pineapples’ sprouting everywhere. And all those conversations I had with strangers, just walking up and touching my hair and telling me that they’d never have believed it could be braided African-style!

    And yes, I did get some dirty looks from local Indians on the way home. Yes, by that time I’d been in the country long enough to understand what that was all about. I haven’t read much of your blog yet, but I imagine yours must be a very special marriage, blessed and built to last. Cheers!


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