By Erickka Sy Savané
Every time I see my beautiful black queens with long, straight hair weave I take a sigh. Their beauty is undeniable. Let’s get that out of the way, first. But it’s not the hair. It’s the skin tone. Dark skin is majestic, regal and refined. There’s a presence to it. But it gets covered up with excessive hair. Sometimes I want to scream, "Give White people, Asians, and Indians back their hair- We Don't Need It!”
|Cicely Tyson, Grace Jones, Lupita Nyong'o|
I know, easier said than done. Here I am making a plea for dark skinned sisters to let go of the long hair weaves when I haven’t walked a day in a dark skinned woman’s shoes. For many, being dark skinned is a crime from here all the way to Africa. The fact that even there a black woman resorts to bleaching cream as an option to a better life is beyond disheartening. So if not at the source, where is a dark skinned woman celebrated? At least with long, straight hair she can make an attempt at the “mainstream” as if the black could be softened or even camouflaged. And it’s being done at the highest level. Dark skinned women emulating this Barbie look on instgram have thousands, sometimes millions of following. So obviously there is a place for it, and getting the look means Hair. Must. Be. Laid.
|Duckie Thot, Aaija, Juju via instagram|
|Bo Derek, Kim Kardashian, Kloe Kardashian & Kylie Jenner|
We got IT. But it starts by owning it and celebrating our own from the blackest among us for her dark skin and afro hair. I have two young daughters with short, afro hair who need to see more women like this. They also need to see more kids who look like them. Right now, a young, black girl rocking short natural hair is rare- unless in Africa. It’s much more common to see our young girls in long braids. This past summer, I saw a 4-year-old with a full hair weave and edges that were as smooth as a baby’s bottom- gone like a Brazilian wax. We need to let these girls rock their hair short if it’s short. So what if people think ‘she’s’ a ‘he.’ It happens to my girls all the time. We laugh about it now. But they also get A LOT of compliments from all types of people every day who are happy to see them with their natural hair. We cut Princess Tiana’s hair and the hair on most of the dolls they get because even rarer is the black doll that doesn’t sell the fantasy of long hair. Yes, the dolls are black, but the majority still look like Barbie. So this black barbie image starts early and has been around for a long time.
Do you believe in perpetuating the Black Barbie Doll Look?