Okay, so I have not been wearing my hair natural for that long. It has been a couple months since I started wearing my hair in an afro. For part one of my project I made a conscious effort to wear the afro for the whole week. These are some of the reactions I’ve encountered:
“Did you cut your hair?” - a co-worker
“I didn’t recognize you with-fro.” - a friend after passing me up on the street
“Kiana is here and she has an afro!” - my 8 year old cousin (white side of the family)
“Your hair looks awesome!” - another one of my friends, after not recognizing me on the train
“Don’t you get sick of people asking about it?” - my roommate
“Curly hair, don’t care?!” - my 14 year old cousin (black side of the family)
“What the hell is on your head?” - my uncle (white)
“I’ve never seen it so curly! It’s so cute!” - friend
“I don’t know why you even bother straightening it. It looks nice.” - my manager
“I have this thing for natural curls, I think they look good.” - stranger, black male. The black female he was with wore her hair straight with a weave. She proceeded to roll her eyes when he said this.
“I love your hair like this! You whip it around and it’s so fun and bouncy!” - friend
“I knew you were coming to meet us but I didn’t recognize the poofy hair.” - an aquaintance
“It’s like a chia pet! It’s so fluffy. I wish I had an afro. My hair doesn’t do anything.” - an aquaintance
“I like your hair today, it looks cool.” - my boss
I also have had three incidents now where, when going to buy liquor or get into a bar, my ID is questioned because the photo of me on it is me with straight hair. Each time I have had to also show my school ID, and a credit card. Why are you looking at the hair anyway? Why not look at my facial features to confirm? Is hair really that distracting?