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Natural Beauty: The New Emergence Of Self-Love And Self Acceptance Amongst Women Of African Descent.

October 16, 2015 by  
Filed under News, Opinion, Relationship Talk, Sista Talk, Weekly Columns

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( This human being, this vast and complex combination of pain and joy; solitary and forsaken, yet creator of all humanity; suffering, frustrated, and humiliated, and yet endless source of happiness for each one of us; this source of affection beyond compare, inspiring the most unexpected courage; this being called weak, but possessing untold ability to inspire us to take the road of honor; this being of flesh and blood and of spiritual conviction- this being, women, is you!

 Thomas Sankara

For centuries America’s historical Eurocentric standard of beauty has created a devastating inferiority complex within the souls of women of African descent. Mass media bombards black women with anecdotes and images that show disdain for their dark complexion, mocking their natural features. Mentally enslaved Black entertainers are also guilty of publicly criticizing African American women, finding comfort in the arms of women of European or Latin American descent. The majority of Black women featured on television and magazines are adorned in the latest European styles, bright colored make up, blonde wigs, synthetic weaves, and bleached skin. Despite such propaganda, many black women have unlocked the psychological chains of self-hate and journeyed into the meadows of self-love.

This new emergence of self-acceptance and self-love is evident across American city streets. Growing numbers of Black women are no longer straightening their hair with harsh chemicals, finding the beauty in their natural growth. This acceptance has assisted in reducing the destructive practice of avoiding exercise because they want to preserve their perm. Conscious women are also avoiding the weekly or bi-weekly spending of hundreds of dollars on synthetic items that have to be stitched, pasted, and painted.

Contemporary Black women are at an immense advantage compared to their mothers and grandmothers who faced work and social environments intolerant of natural hairstyles. Numerous women on all levels of America’s corporate industry, from bank teller to CEO, can be seen sporting dark skin and unprocessed hair. Unlike previous generations whose knowledge of hairstyles for their natural hair was limited, today’s Black women are without that hurdle. Currently there are hundreds of natural hairstyles ideas circulating in magazines, on social media, and YouTube tutorials. There is also an enormous growth in the natural hair product industry, which provides gels, creams, conditioners, and shampoos that are actually healthy to the growth and sustenance of their hair. Hair salons catering to emerging markets are focusing solely on styling the natural hair of African women.

Women now understand that the beauty standards they have been given to aspire to are fictional. They have given up the unsuccessful and expensive task of mimicking the pictures on the television screen and magazines to no avail. They grasp the futility in replicating something that is manufactured and photo shopped to make them purchase items that advertisers claim will assist them in capturing the look they are selling. Conscious women are now asking, who created this standard of beauty and why should we be obligated to adhere to it?

What’s odd about the media’s negativity toward the African women’s features is that white women painstakingly trying to mimic the same features they criticize. Aren’t tanning, implants, Botox for plump lips, and butt lifts all natural features of the African woman? Is not the synthetic attainment of these unnatural characteristics for white women a sign of self-hate? Yet, this issue is rarely raised. Could the criticism of the Black women be a psychological coping mechanism for whites’ dislikes of their own features coupled with envy that, despite all the hardships and injustices the black women faces, she still looks royal?

I applaud the sisters who embrace their natural beauty, letting their light shine so bright without cosmological chemicals that damage their skin and destroy their hair. Your self-love and courage provide the strongest gift the future generation of young sisters may ever receive: an example of self-love and self-acceptance.

Staff Writer; Linton Hinds Jr.

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One Response to “Natural Beauty: The New Emergence Of Self-Love And Self Acceptance Amongst Women Of African Descent.”
  1. Truth says:

    It’s very refreshing and encouraging to hear this message coming from a male’s perspective. I have not chemically processed my hair in almost 4 yrs. The decision to ‘go natural’ was not a stand for self-love, but because of the damage relaxers have done to my hair. At first I was devastated about the declining health of my hair and fearful and uncertain about going natural. I felt I would be no longer viewed as attractive by others and not accepted. For a year a wore a weave to allow my hair to rest and revive itself. I wasn’t fully comfortable with the weave, but kept with it to help my natural hair. The moment I removed the weave I was thrilled of how healthy and beautiful my natural hair was. To my surprise I have become very skilled at caring for and styling my hair. I have never felt more beautiful and fly! I slay with my natural hair on the daily basis 🙂 !

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