Biracial Hair

On April 29, 2011, in Biracial, by Honeysmoke

Is there such a thing as biracial hair? I don’t think so.

The term is a misnomer in my mind. I’ve seen curly hair, wavy hair and straight hair. But biracial hair? No, I don’t think so.

I offer Simone and Nadia as Exhibit A and Exhibit B. They both have curly but very different hair. Simone’s hair is medium in its thickness. It is wavy, and fat, lush curls form on the ends. Nadia’s hair is fine, straight at the roots with ringlets on the ends. These same hair characteristics can be found in the hair of men and women who are not biracial. I rest my case.

Still, I can see how someone who didn’t know to start at the ends and work their way to the roots would be terribly frustrated with it and try to put it in a category all its own. Following a few simple rules can make it all better.

* Detangle the hair with a wide-tooth comb from tip to root, or from bottom to top. Those who don’t follow this rule will find themselves with a knotted mess on their hands.

* Moisturized early and often. Failure to do so will result in dry and brittle hair. Parched locks tend to break, causing even more frustration.

In the past, many folks, including my mom, relied on oil or glycerin to keep curly hair moisturized. Now the common method is to condition the hair with a water-based conditioner and then “seal” it with a light oil, butter or pomade, locking the moisture in the hair.

The trick is figuring out how often to do this. Some curlies wash, moisturize and seal their hair every few days, while others can go a week or even two between sessions. There is no secret formula. Use trial and error to design your own regimen.

Which brings me to my last tip.

* After you find a routine that works for you or your curly, do not depart from it.  Some of us, including those of us who know better, often suffer a setback when we experiment too much. Unfortunately, there isn’t a next best thing. The research is in and we have known for a long time what is good and what is not good for curly hair. That’s why I like to call those new-fangled products that separate us from our money the next best expensive thing.

 

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  • taliba

    I so agree that biracial hair is a misnomer; although I do know what people are thinking of when they say that. My child is a chocolate beauty and has always been. It was amazing to me that when she was a baby people insisted her straight hair would change; when it didn’t they started saying I had put something in it. Then total strangers would insist that her father had to be white or at the least Puerto Rican because of her long wavy hair (this came from people of all colors). It used to freak people out when I’d say “No, we are both African American.” Of course they had no way to know that my father was mixed because I’m brown skinned and that boggles the mind of some folks.
    Thanks for the deva curl refresher reference. I’m going to look it up.

  • Juicy

    I think people say biracial hair because we are genetic mosaics and as women esp of color usually have more than one type of texture on the head already but its a huge difference biracials usually have a mixture of the two races I don’t know your family but from the looks of it like myself your daughters have a grade of hair not as curly as yours but not as straight as his am I correct? somewhere smack in between if you know genetics you know where I’m going I know you try to bring your daughters up texture blind which is beautiful but as they will see other natural curlies will never have the exact look feel beauty to their hair so embrace the term because genetically they are the best of both worlds

    • http://www.honeysmoke.com Honeysmoke

      Yes, my girls have hair that is a lot less curly than mine.

  • mixedbaby

    I like the tips for dealing with curly hair. My daughter is a newborn and although its too early to tell I think she is gonna have hair more like her hispanic father. Its nice to think ahead of how I’m going to deal with it.
    As I was reading your post I was wondering if you have a problem with catagorizing people or their charactoristics? I think it is perfectly normal for people to have a certain image in their mind when they think of black hair, white hair, or biracial hair. When I look at the picture of your children their hair looks how I would have pictured it looking in my mind. That’s not to say that their hair in person is much more complicated but it was expected. They are biracial and their hair looks like the hair most biracial people.

    • http://www.honeysmoke.com Honeysmoke

      I had to wait a very long time before I could do any hair.

      Nah, I don’t have problems with categories. Hair is hair is hair is all. ;)

  • http://32candles.com Ernessa from 32 Candles

    I’m just waiting for Betty to get old enough to wear a sleep cap and also to sit still while I put her hair in protective styles. Til then I have to deal with her after-nap moisture drop which I solve using the deva curl refresher spray. I have no idea what I’m going to do when she goes to preschool, and starts taking her naps there….

    • http://www.honeysmoke.com Honeysmoke

      That’s a good idea — deva curl refresher spray. Thanks for sharing.