Celebrating natural beauty is something that many individuals, organizations, and industries such as the fashion and beauty community have been advocating through the years. It's one way to tell men and women to accept their natural appearances without conforming to any societal norm or standard and be confident in their own skin. Feeling naturally beautiful—whether it's going out without makeup or feeling good about your unique features—can truly go a long way when it comes to self-acceptance.
In the midst of the real-time hype on Miss Universe 2017, the issue on natural beauty has once again been tested. Netizens had a lot to say about every single detail of the pageant. Recently on Twitter, one particular comment garnered criticism and sparked the ire of Twitter users.
@Senyora, a parody account, made unsavory comments about Miss Jamaica's hair which she wore in its natural afro form. This elicited reactions from a handful of users including @MillennialofMNL, an account using the voice of today's outspoken Filipino youth, pointing out that making fun of African hair is a form of "racial microaggression" and should no longer be tolerated today.
This garnered similar reactions from other Twitter users who echoed the same sentiments.
Today, being proud of your natural beauty can still be a challenge, not just for those with an African lineage, but among young girls in general. As someone with naturally thick and wavy hair, I myself faced similar comments and questions growing up, ranging from "Nagsuklay ka ba?" to "Ayaw mo magpa-straight?" I get the latter question a lot whenever I go to salons to which I reply with all the politeness I can muster, "'Wag na. Mas gusto kong kulot ako eh."
While I was watching the live coverage of Miss Universe 2017 on TV, even my mom, who's in her mid-'50s commented, "Paano mananalo 'yan? Eh mukhang nagulat 'yung buhok," as if hair worn in its natural glory isn't presentable enough anywhere, let alone in an international beauty pageant. Naturally, I was triggered. But, all I could say was: "'Yan 'yung natural hair niya eh," in hopes that it was enough to, at the very least, make her think about the implications of her statement.
Miss Universe runner-up Jamaica Davina Bennett, who chose to wear her hair in its beautiful afro form, was undeniably one of the most brilliant and stunning women of the evening. Her spot in the Final 3 is just a mere manifestation of that fact. But, beyond that, the message she sends by choosing to wear her natural curls proudly is one that celebrates our natural features, making her a true beauty queen in the best sense of the title.
While this message indubitably boosts our confidence and self-worth, wearing our hair in its natural form is also a healthy choice. According to celebrity hairstylist and owner of Thesis Salon, Mark Anthony Rosales, constantly styling your hair can lead to permanent damage. "Direct heat and harsh chemicals are dangerous to your hair. It can lead to excessive dryness because your hair will lose its natural moisture," he states.
When you're fond of using straightening irons on a daily basis, Mark also claims that it breaks your hair from the roots causing your hair follicles to weaken and may lead to hair fall in the long run.
Another convincing tip from Mark is that "rebonding" your hair makes for a boring hairstyle. "It's very difficult to change your hairstyle again once you've gone for a straightening treatment." Now would you want to limit yourself to just a pin-straight 'do? Heck, no!
Knowing all these, there's really no other reason why you shouldn't be proud of your God-given mane. As long as you're taking good care of it and you carry it with the right attitude, natural hair is the way to go! Flaunt it, girl!
What do you think about Miss Jamaica's look? Have you also struggled with wearing your natural hair? Let us know in the comments below!
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