I have been blessed (or cursed, depending on how you look at it) with curly hair. I am somewhat of an anomaly in my family, no one else really has curls. The closest genetic link to my curly hair comes from my father, who had the craziest hippie/”jewfro” hair you’d ever see before he went bald. My mother however has naturally straight hair which does not have an ounce of curl in it. I must have gotten the short end of the genetic stick, winding up with dark Russian hair that is difficult to manage.
I have spent so many years fighting my curls; using chemical treatments, flat irons and every conceivable “straighting” cream on the market. While all these weapons I’ve used against my curly hair have been mostly effective, I feel like its a huge war to wage against nature. But I still battle to the death with my hair, and for what reason? Mostly because of society’s ideas of what is beautiful. I always claim I was born in the right decade for my hair, but grew up in the wrong one. I was a child of the 1980′s and at that time, voluminous, curly hair was a hot look. Unfortunately, being born in the late eighties meant I had to grow up in the 1990′s and become a teenager in the new millennium. When I hit my teens straight hair was the look to have. So I fought my hair until it became straight.
Lately I am starting to feel like the war I wage is useless. I had already resolved that one day I’d throw in the towel and stop fighting nature. However I figured that time would come when I had a family to take care of and no time to bother with my hair. While that is certainly not the case now, I still feel like straightening my curly hair away is not the most worth while thing to do. I long for the convenience of wash and go hair. I hate spending hours upon hours blow drying and flat ironing my hair only to walk outside on a foggy San Francisco day (there sure are a lot of them) and have my hair balloon up with frizz. Honestly I want to embrace the curly beauty that I know is there under all the frizz.
I recently picked up a book from the library that has been around for several years (an updated version will be released in Jan 2011) called “Curly Girl” by Lorraine Massey and Michele Bender. The passion for curls in the book has gotten me thinking a lot about my hair and how if I treated my curls with more love, they’d look amazing. So I’ve decided that once I am officially on winter break I am going to try out the program in the book. I am going to follow the techniques which include changing my shampoo routine and styling techniques. Hopefully I can learn to embrace and love my curly hair. Maybe, just maybe 2011 will be a year of curls.