It’s a Saturday morning; you’re in a local drugstore walking around the woman magazine shelves. Looking like an alive Cuckoo clock, your eyes rapidly move back and forth looking for a natural hair care magazine. Your eyes finally land on the small section where 2-3 Black hair magazines reside. Reaching for the magazine with the cover of a model sporting a multi-colored streak bob on the front, you soon realize that it was quite pointless trying to find any type of inspiration for any fly, fresh hairstyles for natural hair.

It is extremely clear that natural hair care is not incorporated in publications. In the majority of magazines, once you hit the hair section the most natural style you find is on a racially ambiguous model with loose curls and/or they will have medium wave textured hair. Not saying that any of our black publications do not cater to the need of natural hair but only having 2-5 pages a month leaves us yearning for more. The pleasure of being able to sign up for a monthly subscription and have funky and healthy styles for you waiting in your mailbox would be treasure that numerous women would enjoy.

Since natural women do not have too many print options to cater to their needs, technology plays a vital role in connecting information to the modern day natural woman. With an online community of YouTube videos, bloggers and Facebook groups, natural women have taken the power back into their own hands. Coming together on our own not only displays our outcry for more knowledge of how take care of natural tresses but also shows that it’s a major void in the market that needs to be addressed. When it comes to finding new styles or tips I don’t even attempt to comb through any magazine but straight to YouTube and blogs for my hair questions, videos, tutorials, tips and product reviews.

Even though natural women’s online presence is mighty powerful, the simple fact that a magazine is definitely a need for us. Having a weekly or monthly subscription that would have all the information online condensed in a publication would be the next step to propel the acceptance of Black beauty. Every other culture has their one go to place for beauty and hair care tips, now it’s time for our turn.

So how long will it be until the natural hair care takes over or are included in Black hair magazines?

- Ellisa Oyewo

  • Tara Melissa

    Maybe I’m salty from a lack of sleep, but really: who cares? In this day and age, no one needs a magazine to provide “hair-spiration”. There are tons of blogs, flickrs, tumblrs, fotkis and forums just for that purpose. (Plus, many of these magazines seem to be a collection of celebrities at events…I can find that on the internet as well, if I was so inclined.) Even better – they go into depth about hair care and retaining length while keeping your hair strong and healthy in a way those magazines never did. Because really…seeing a photo of a celebrity use a curling iron on her weave as she reads a copy of the magazine she’s featured in has not helped me do my hair once. Fact.

    It’s unfortunate that a large segment of the black female demographic is ignored (although I will mention, I believe many of these magazines have special sections dedicated to locs/braids/natural hair), but I don’t expect things to change very soon. I’ll just keep sending a message to those magazines with my patronage (or in my case, lack thereof).

  • Alexandra

    A lot of hairstyles/types are ignored in those magazines. But I can say, I dont care either.
    Cause like someone pointed out, I’m sure if they showcase more natural hair, one or more textures will be ignored. So it doesn’t matter.

    • Rukky

      can we chat?

  • Rukky

    Hmmm…I totally agree with Alexandra, a lot of hairstyles r ignored in those magazines but what do i care?

  • Donna

    There has been some natural hair mags out there, not sure if they still exist and I haven’t looked at one in so long I can’t even remember the names of the. I remember one specifically being based in Philly and I believe the editor was motivated to start the mag after viewing mags like black hair that has that natural section with most of the styles presented being anything but natural.

    It may have been naturally you or something like that but I don’t think it’s in print any longer and as I mentioned can’t recall the others, but they’re out there, or at least existed at one point.

  • S

    It’s not going to happen anytime soon. You may get a mini 2-3 pager in the back of one that’s it. Natural hair is very time consuming. They rather take the quick fix.

  • Aisak

    Where might one find funding for such a venture? Sounds like an expensive undertaking.

  • Kim Shine

    The time and dedication to caring for natural hair is very similar to those with processed locks. However, it can seem rather daunting for women to convert or to transform their hair (and/or themselves) to something unfamiliar to them because of targeted media and new products. Going natural can be a lonely process, but it’s not necessarily the magazine’s responsibility to fill this void. Regardless of what women see in print, they should make the decision to go natural because they want to be part of something unique – not because they may find comfort/or help within a magazine. Being natural for two years (no big chop), I agree that having more print options would have helped me manage my hair better, sooner; however, I see plenty of natural women daily. Understanding that these magazine’s have an audience to cater to (and bills to pay), I would rather ask my fellow ‘naturalista’ to explain her process instead. Rather this is in person, or through online connections, both are better ways to view the actual results and great ways to network.

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