sorry i'm flooding the tag guys

Sometimes I feel so pressured by the black hair community.

It’s like “do this, do that, you want your hair perfect don’t you, why are you doing that, go buy 4284638528 natural things and mix them in a cauldron while quoting Macbeth darkly to yourself. Then slather it on, get a silk hair cap and sing mantras till your hair touches your butt.”

I mean, it’s my hair. Why can’t I play in it everyday, straighten it, wear it out as an afro then wear a weave, loads of extensions and braids, use a product with a teeny picture of the continent of Africa on it (as if to convince me that yes this is for black people, look at how it has a lady with a scarf and big lips on it)? I read all these blogs and forums with women who wear twists or buns for months to achieve long hair and I feel like I’m a complete weirdo for being like “well, good for you, what? You don’t seem to actually do anything with all that growth” while everyone else in the comment section is trading tips on how to use olive oil and aloe vera.

But don’t feel victimised, natural-hair-type people - I felt that way when I had a weave too and women were paying hundreds of pounds and getting their weave done every fortnight and talking about how you should never touch it while I was constantly playing in the tracks, paying £20 and a cake to get it done, putting it in ponytails, pulling it, going swimming… I’m a fidgety, active 21 year old woman-child and if it’s attached to my body I’m gonna play with it. It’s like having a Barbie and keeping it in a box, mint-condition; yes it looks pretty but that’s not what it’s for, you know?

I know no one’s forcing me to do these things and everyone has their own opinions, but sometimes I feel vilified for treating my hair as hair and not a precious and vital organ. I’m sorry about the rant, but am I the only one who feels this way? Is this because this is genuinely the first time I’ve ever felt peer pressure, or am I blowing this wayyy out of proportion and I should just go get some ice cream and rewatch Good Hair until I feel better?