Wigging out

Natural Hair Club to begin at Jones


Michael Brandt '17

“My hair means everything to me but my hair is not my power,” said club member Yahira Tarr ’17. “As a black woman my hair is stigmatized, fetishized, and demonized but I’ve learned to appreciate my curls and the versatility of my hair that represents the many factions of being a black girl. I am beautiful hair or not, but there’s a certain beauty and artistry of natural hair that can’t be imitated.”

Hair: don’t touch it, but you can love it. With a new wave of feminism and realization of intersectionality, Kai Wright ‘18 and fellow students created a club to embrace their natural hair.

“Jones doesn’t have many spaces specified for black and brown people to embrace our uniqueness,” said Wright. “And I felt that not only would this club be a great space for people with all types of hair to come and learn about themselves or about others in attempt to unify and strengthen the different communities inside of Jones.”

The club provides people with an area to share experiences as well as educate others on rights and wrongs.

Wright expresses the boundaries people cross when it comes to wearing her hair natural.

“White men and women have come up and touched my hair without asking. Or they say really offensive things when I tell them about my hair process, like making a face when I tell them I don’t wash my hair every day,” said Wright. “It’s obnoxious and offensive, and I think part of natural hair club is to let people know that these are some of the issues that go on. Natural hair is a part of black culture and should be respected and has boundaries.”

Because the goal of the Natural Hair Club is to educate, welcome, and unite, all genders are welcome to join. Landon Bryant ‘17 decided to join to learn more about himself and his hair.

“My goal is to learn as much as possible about my hair so that I can let it grow and flourish before college. Or at least know how to take care of it,” said Bryant.

According to Bryant, the club has many more women than men. However, he believes the reason for this is a busy schedule or being unaware.

Although the community is mostly students of color, it is not limited to just those students. Anyone who is interested in learning about or encouraging natural hair is welcome.

Olive Jenkins ‘18 joined to promote self love. With long, curly hair she can relate to hair care issues but has a different experience as a white female.

“A lot of people I don’t know go up to me and touch my hair without my permission, which is disrespectful to my personal space and also creepy,” said Jenkins. “But people are generally accepting of curls on white girls so I don’t think I’ve ever been really disadvantaged because of it.”

No matter who you are, Rachel Nwosu ‘18 advocates for Natural Hair Club as a journey of learning more.

“I want all people who feel like they could benefit from Natural Hair Club to join because the sharing of different cultures is so important,” said Nwosu. “It’s something that not all girls with natural hair feel like they can do in school where majority of the student body can’t even relate to their struggles.”