“Oh, Lawd, not another conversation about black Hair.” began Elizabeth Wellington’s  Mirror, Mirror column in the Inquirer Magazine section on March 01, 2013 

My answer then and now is:  

OK Elizabeth, I ‘m not going to talk about black hair. What I’m going to talk about is women’s and little girls’ hair. I’m white. My family produces little girls with straight hair. May sound good to women of color, but that’s not good to white women. Curls are a MUST! 


At age 6 my straight hair was braided. But by the time I was 9 my hair had to be curled. As is very evident from the picture on the right, curls didn’t work well for me. When straight hair came in in the sixties I thought I had died and gone to heaven! People asked me how I got my hair so straight. Did I iron it? I said No, it just grows that way. Oh, they replied, obviously impressed. Finally I had the RIGHT hair. It was a wonderful feeling!


As a child I sat under a miserable contraction with wires that came down from overhead and that were attached to big clips that where clamped on my hair that was tightly curled up. I had two fears, electrocution and that if I were to bend my head even slightly the weight of this contraption on my head would cause my head to separate from my body. The glorious result?  Thanks to the need for curls I spent most of my childhood dealing with split ends.  And, just in case anyone is wondering, the perms never really worked. Right after the ordeal my hair frizzed, then over the next several weeks it gradually became straighter and straighter.  The split ends, though, were constant. 

My friends of color were undergoing some crazy procedure that was probably just as nasty. Their mothers were just as determined that they would not have nappy hair.  

So there we were, growing up with the constant reminder through these crazy hair rituals that we weren’t right. Needless to say the boys’ hair was always the way hair should be. They didn’t go through any of this. But we girls were wrong. We knew that because of the extreme effort our mothers made to correct the curl or lack of it in our hair.

NO MORE! I campaign for natural hair. Mother Nature gets it right! So why argue with her? I lead the battle for natural hair. Mine is cut about once a month and the rest of the time I wash and blow dry it and that’s it. I don’t color it either – because if I leave it alone it then matches my natural palette. 

I refuse to take up with all these stupid advertisements that try to convince me that if I just buy some coloring product or spend hours in the beauty chair that this will somehow make me more attractive to the world in general. The REAL attraction is that of Wall Street to my pocketbook.  

My advice to the women of the world?
Leave your hair alone!


Link for Laurel’s books on Amazon
P:215 884 7065, C:610 908 7222


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