Book a FREE consultation  
For a free consultation or assistance, please call 020 7730 6666

Browse by Category

Women with Afro Hair Ditch Damaging Weaves and Chemical Treatments

Comedian Chris Rock’s exploration of afro hair in the 2009 documentary Good Hair revealed an industry hell-bent on the European look: straight hair that was achieved through chemical relaxers. The film also touched on a subject that was all too familiar to many thousands of people: hair loss, as caused by poorly applied or overly-harsh chemical treatments.

Fast forward six years, however, and times are a-changing.

Solange KnowlesNatural hair movement

As celebrities, from singers Solange Knowles (Beyonce’s sister, pictured) and Erykah Badu to actresses Lupita Nyong’o and Viola Davis, embrace their natural hair, more women are starting to follow their lead.

According to an article in New York Magazine, rising consumer interest in natural, untreated hair has resulted in lower sales for salons dedicated to extensions and chemically-treated hair.

The Atlanta Black Star agrees. “Right now, the coily-textured, tightly-coiled hair is the most popular because the natural hair movement is in full swing,” says celebrity hair stylist Diane Da Costa, in an article headlined Did Natural Hair Kill the Black Hair Salon?

Influenced by health and the internet

The article argues that unlike in the 1960s, when afro hair was left natural for political reasons, this time around it has more to do with “health, autonomy and personal growth.” It also points out that websites such as CurlyNikki.com and popular YouTube sites have proven influential.

Da Costa, meanwhile, reckons that many of the women opting for the natural look are at least partly influenced by finance. “They want to save money,” she says.

The subject of natural hair was certainly a talking point at the recent Bronner Bros. International Beauty Show in Atlanta – an annual highlight for black Americans who have in an interest in the beauty industry and an event which also featured in Rock’s 2009 film.

For his part, Rock apparently hit on the idea for the documentary when his young daughter said, “Daddy, how come I don’t have good hair?”, referring to the curly, afro hair she was born with.

In the documentary, Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air actress Nia Long explains that: “There’s always this sort of pressure within the black community, like if you have good hair you’re prettier or better than the brown-skinned girl that wears the afro or the dreads or the natural hairstyle.”

A welcome change

This change in trends is certainly a healthy step for black hair, which can often be prone to styling damage  due to its naturally dry texture.

Chemical relaxers and straightening treatments always come with an element of risk,” says Leonora Doclis, Belgravia Senior Trichologist, “This can increase exponentially when done frequently and without the necessary care and attention, whether they are carried out professionally in a salon, or by using a home styling kit. Accidents can and do happen, and the horror stories of straightening treatments gone bad are legionThese types of accidents can lead to thinning from hair breakage, where strands snap off along the shaft.”

Additionally, tight hairstyles including braids such as cornrows, and sew-in weaves, are further fraught with problems. “Traction Alopecia is a common complaint among black women, as well as anyone who wears hair extensions” she says. “Due to the excessive tension these styles create and place on hair follicles, they can lead to severe hair loss particularly around the hair line, which bears the brunt of the constant pulling. Although we offer treatment for Traction Alopecia, prevention is always a better option, so if the natural look is in, then women would be doing their hair the world of good by following the trend.”

The Belgravia Centre - Hair Loss Specialists LondonThe Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is the leader in hair loss treatment in the UK, with two clinics based in Central London. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the UK or the rest of the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which are the largest collection of such success stories in the world and demonstrate the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time for our hair loss helpline or to arrange a free consultation.

Related Stories

Share this article

No Comments

No comments yet.

Comment on this article

* required field

Will not be published

Online Consultation

Submit an instant online consultation so that one of Belgravia’s hair loss specialists can diagnose your condition and recommend an effective course of treatment, wherever you live.

21 Oct

Can Garlic Shampoo Cure Male Hair Loss?

There are many myths about how to treat hair loss, a number of which involve applying various foods to the head. Three of the most commonly repeated include rubbing onions into bald spots, having scalp massages using ginger, and using garlic-based solutions and rubs. Now, taking these mythical natural hair loss remedies to the next level is garlic shampoo which […]

Read full article »
20 Oct

Success Story Alert! New Male Hair Loss Treatment Entry

A new entry has just been added to Belgravia’s Male Hair Loss Treatment Success Stories gallery. Receding hairlines can be reversed with advice and treatment recommended by Belgravia’s team of experts. Find out what this client had to say and see his regrowth results close up, or find out more about treating Male Pattern Baldness by clicking the buttons […]

Read full article »
20 Oct

‘How Long Does Hair Shedding Last When Starting Minoxidil?’

Name: Lawin Question: I’ve been using minoxidil for a month now and the amount of hair I am losing is shocking! I know this supposed to be a good sign! But how long does that occur for? It seems to me if things go the way it is now I wouldn’t have a single hair left on […]

Read full article »