Relaxed and curly perm hairstyling have destroyed the health, finances, emotions, and reputations of at least three generations of Black women.Consider my mother’s generation, Black women born 1944 and earlier: their hair and scalp have been permanently destroyed. If one attends any church service or any sorority conference with a large Black female population, the majority of the women born 1944 and earlier wear straight-hair wigs, color-coordinating scarves, and fashion-forward hats mostly to hide the irreversible hair and scalp damage from relaxer and curly perm exposure.

  Members of Chesterfield Girls-1941


One will observe similar results for Baby Boomers, Black women born between 1945 and 1964. The majority of them reveal irreparable temporal and nape scarring and irreversible perimeter hair loss from practicing relaxed and curly perm hairstyling and wearing straight-hair wigs, extensions, weaves, and other hair additions.

The destruction does not stop with Generation X, Black women born between 1965 and 1976, and Generation Y or Millennials, Black women born between 1977 and 1995. Dare I say many of them display significant hair loss and breakage, severe after-grooming scalp tenderness, and persistent dandruff from relaxing and curly perming their natural coily hair? 

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So far, Generation Z, Black females born between 1996 and 2015, have ESCAPED irreversible hair and scalp damages and stand the BEST CHANCE to not practice relaxed and curly perm hairstyling and NEVER experience irreversible hair and scalp damages.

Three generations of Black women, to varying degrees, suffer daily with physical traumas from relaxed and curly perm hairstyling. Their suffering does not stop there. It also involves emotional and psychological traumas. In fact, their physical traumas extend from their emotional and psychological traumas. Simply put, the physical damages Black women receive from their relaxed and curly perm hairstyling are symptomatic of their emotional and psychological hair issues. Many Black women HATE their natural coily hair. Many would rather WILLINGLY ENDURE the shame and embarrassment of wearing damaged relaxed and curly perm hairstyles than publicly appear with their hair naturally displayed.

Why do many Black women hate and feel shame and embarrassment for their natural coily hair? Many Black women FEEL their natural coily hair is defective, an attribute needing correcting or fixing, a hair design mistake they immediately must correct, turn into something acceptable and worthy of public display. They react to the hate, shame, and embarrassment by DESTRUCTIVELY SWITCHING from wearing relaxed hairstyles ranging from the typical bone-straight Bob hairstyle to the brightest, unstructured, bizarre, and uncoordinated relaxed ones, from hairstyles even the most gifted, experienced writer and fashion editors struggle to describe to ones making some employers, men, store personnel, and other fashion decision makers react somewhere between intentionally not acknowledging a Black woman’s presence to cringingly making eye contact with them. So extreme their hate, shame, and embarrassment Black women desperately use relaxers and curly perms, one of the haircare industry’s most health-destroying grooming products, to so-called correct, fix, or eliminate the SO-CALLED DEFECTS and avoid disregardful or insulting social encounters.

 FAIR MINDS empathize with Black women’s feelings of hate, shame, and embarrassment in light of the subtle and overt disrespect, disregard, and disparagement STILL bombarding Black women’s physical beauty. Most cosmetology and barber students STILL can get their license WITHOUT their training program instructors requiring students demonstrate and test for proficiency in grooming natural, coily hair. On a large scale, top clothing manufacturers and designers STILL FAIL to design, manufacture, advertise, and market clothing to fit Black women’s inimitable range of gorgeous body shapes. The aesthetics community CONTINUES to SLOWLY develop and market makeup colors and application techniques better harmonizing with their darker skin tones. Some military branches STILL do not allow Black women to wear locks or hats best fitting Afros and hairlocks. The media STILL broadcast the most NEGLECTED, OBESE, AND POORLY-GROOMED expression or version of Black physical beauty. Will some Black family members EVER stop saying the most ABUSIVE AND ABRASIVE words when describing Black behinds, lips, noses, thighs, coil patterns, and skin coloring? Some employers STILL will FIRE OR NOT HIRE Black women for wearing certain natural hairstyles or for demanding employers sanction SisterlocksTM, Afros, and bald heads as acceptable corporate hairstyles. The conclusion: Black women rightfully deserve empathy!

In light of this history, FAIR MINDS absolutely empathize with the feelings of Black women. But should FAIR MINDS indefinitely accept Black women not taking corrective steps to conquer their feelings of shame and embarrassment? FAIR MINDS forever will empathize with BLACK AND AFRICAN ANCESTORS struggling to conquer their feelings about their physical beauty. The physical beauty of Black and African ancestors has endured the MOST heinous treatment known to humanity. No one of sound mind can blame them for disliking their physiques after suffering centuries of unavoidable rape, disparagement, torture, and neglect. However, for Black women(baby boomers and later generations), FAIR MINDS will poorly empathize with Black women NOT TAKING CORRECTIVE STEPS to feel confident, proud, protective, and loving about their physical beauty, especially their hair. Not fair, you say? Granted!  However, consider this: as some say, YOU HAVE MUCH SKIN IN THE GAME! Many Black women have willingly and intentionally practiced the most destructive haircare imaginable DESPITE having access to the latest and best haircare the most talented haircare professionals can provide. They, against proven professional medical and beauty advice, have maintained their relaxed and curly perm hairstyles by addictively greasing their scalps with oils low-grade and viscous enough to lubricate machine gears, cleansing their hair and scalps with far-apart consistency and with products better suited for HORSE MANES, purchasing grooming products marketed with HORSE AND GORILLA SYMBOLS, straightening their hair with products containing active ingredients found in drain and oven cleaners, plaster, pesticides, batteries, fireproof materials, depilatories, cement, leather tanning, and photo development, styling their hair with tools hot enough to INSTANTLY dissolve hair and permanently disfigure skin, ears, and necks, and sleeping with their hair bound with ties, scarves, and wraps one should only purchase and wear while nursing a head or neck injury. Black women have destructively groomed themselves in these manners for at least sixty seven years(since 1945), resulting in at least three generations of gorgeous Black women destroying their health, finances, emotions, and reputations. The verdict: FAIR MINDS will grant Black women LITTLE IF ANY empathy about their physical and emotional hair traumas until they start practicing safe, hygienic, greaseless, professional haircare.