All fro’s matter

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They come in various sizes, textures and colors: the inescapable trend of natural hair seems to appear more often. Both black men and women have been altering their hair, straightening and coloring it just to fit into society’s image of modern day beauty. This includes long sleek hair with no sign of natural kinky coiled hair. Up until five years ago… More and more women started to make a statement with their natural hair, and embraced their natural manes. From celebrities to bloggers, afros are back in the game.

Even though natural hair has been around since the creation of the human race, it’s only been something to take pride in since a year or five, max. That is why I consider this a micro trend. I believe it flows forth from the resistance black people (especially in the US) have been feeling lately. As they now face the resignation of the first African American president, struggle with police brutality and many more forms of racial conflicts, they finally try to break free from the oppression. Proudly showing their natural hair off, instead of measuring up to the standard of Caucasian-like hair is one way to show pride of their roots.

As I myself, and people around me are a part of this movement, I can state that the idea behind natural hair really does go deeper than “just fashion”. It’s about breaking a tradition that has been around for ages, the idea that natural hair isn’t pretty or professional because that’s how we’re raised. It connects people and brings them closer together. This occurs in a lot of ways: Facebook groups, curly hair festivals and much more.

Just like other micro trends, the change of a lifestyle can have a large impact on the sales of certain products that go (or don’t go) with that lifestyle. For example the adaption of a healthy lifestyle, that’s combined with organic foods, special supermarkets with biological food and more products that are also considered the product of a micro trend. This will cause the sales of healthy biological products to climb, while the sales of unhealthy foods go down. This is exactly what happens with hair relaxer brands (the chemical product that changes the texture from curly to straight). For years black people have been buying these chemicals in shops that are specialized in natural hair care. The sales of these products are trapped in a downward spiral because of the rising trend of natural hair. To the contrary, sales of natural hair care brands such as leave-in conditioners and curl-enhancing crèmes have been shooting up massively. This might be a result of the placement of the products. They appear more and more often in “regular” shops like supermarkets and drug stores. Also, large companies that caught wind of this trend try to respond by launching products that are similar to natural hair care, for example the Andrélon coconut boost products (coconut oil is a product that is used often in natural hair care, just like shea butter and castor oil).

All in all, the natural hair movement is still alive and growing in members, making history. It does however remain a part of the fashion category. Fashion is known to make comebacks every decade or so. Which is what I base my question upon: will natural hair, just like every other fashion trend, eventually disappear and make a comeback decades later? Or is it more likely to stay growing until it’s no longer a trend but a normality?

 

Reference list

Huffington Post
Wilson, J. (31-12-2012) Natural Hair In 2012: The Year Curly, Kinky And Natural Tresses Took Over The World
Retrieved on 13-09-2016 via http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/31/natural-hair-2012-_n_2388496.html

 

CNBC
Sidibe, N. (1-07-2015) This hair trend is shaking up the beauty biz
Retrieved on 13-09-2016 via http://www.cnbc.com/2015/07/01/african-americans-changing-hair-care-needs.html

 

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2 thoughts on “All fro’s matter

  1. Hi!

    Interesting subject you’ve picked there. I think you’re right when you talked about how the whole natural hair trend goes deeper than just hair. It sets statement in the fashion industry.
    I recently saw an interview with photographer Peter Lindbergh. This guy did a thing just like this trend for the fashion industry. Instead of tons of makeup and even worse, hours of photoshop, he decided to just put all the models in a white top, almost no make-up and just photograph them. It turned out just fine, when these pictures appeared in VOGUE. (See the interview here: http://www.rtlnieuws.nl/boulevard/laatste-videos-boulevard/fotograaf-peter-lindbergh-herenigd-met-supermodellen)

    I believe that this trend will disappear and come back in a decade or what. If you search for the newest trends you indeed see a lot of natural themed haircuts. But, does it all look that natural? i have my doubts. I searched for the newest hair trend for this fall/winter and i noticed that ‘pumpkin spice’, the red/brown kind of color is all over the internet. (2016, GRAZIA).
    So much for natural hear..
    If we look at this, we see that the natural hair trend looks more like fashion then an actual trend. To many people dye there hair to make natural hair a normality.

    Me, I dye my hair as well, but going pumpkin spice? I don’t think so. How do you guys feel about this new trend?

    Emmie van de Bunt 1661186

    NU.nl. (2010, 26 september). Naturel nieuwe trend. Consulted on 16-9-2016 off http://www.nu.nl/overig/2342171/naturel-nieuwe-trend.html

    Trendstyle. (2016). De nieuwste kapsels en haar trends voor herfst winter 2016 2017. Consulted on 16-9-2016 off http://www.trendystyle.net/beauty/kapsels/kapsels-herfst-winter-2016-2017/

    N, Grazia. (2016, 15 september). Wordt dit dé haartrend van het nieuwe seizoen? Consulted on 16-9-2016 off http://www.grazia.nl/lifestyle/wordt-dit-de-haartrend-van-het-nieuwe-seizoen

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  2. This is a really interesting topic you choose!
    ‚Will natural hair, just like every other fashion trend, eventually disappear and make a comeback decades later? Or is it more likely to stay growing until it’s no longer a trend but a normality?”
    I think you can be quite right. When you look at fashion shows or photo shoots in magazines the models mostly do not have natural hair. It is also a bit like a fashion icon to have crazy cut or color at your hair. Personally I also dye my hair to make it a bit more blond. And for so far I know I am not the only one of my friends. The dying of my hair I try to do natural. That is why the trend of natural hair will stay. A lot of people dye or cut their hair but still try have it in a natural way.

    Also I just saw an article that the new trend will be to even dye your eyebrows. Before fashion shows the eyebrows of the models are bleached. It look like they have no eyebrows at all.

    http://fashionlab.nl/trends/beauty/catwalk-trend-modellen-met-gebleekte-wenkbrauwen

    Personally I do not like the very light eyebrows on models in the fashion world. What do you think? Would you consider dye it yourself?

    Lauren van Sambeek 1659140

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