Aren’t you glad that we live in an era where curly hair is finally getting the representation it deserves? Be it the ever-expanding billion-dollar hair care industry or the budding Gen Z influencer crowd on Instagram, YouTube, and other popular social media platforms, Curly hair is getting its well-deserved attention from all around and we’re overjoyed to see the change. But this wasn’t the story a few years back prior to the Curly Girl Movement! Today, we have brands, communities, and others bringing the curl conversation to the table.How was it back then?
When unrealistic standards of beauty left no room for curls
You might have come across curly-haired people who constantly crib about maintaining their hair. In India, for a very long time, maintaining curly hair didn’t necessarily mean taking good care of them so that they look juicy and supple. Instead, people teach you to tame your curls which is basically putting effort to make them look less ‘unruly’.
The prevalent hair discrimination was often subtle and not on your face. For instance, in schools, they tend to particularly ask curly-haired students to comb and oil their curls better and neatly tuck their tresses into a tight plait. Curly hair is considered unprofessional in working environments too! They expect you to tame your pretty curls so as to not ‘ruin’ your office attire. Isn’t it absurd that in a country like India, where hair is considered to be such an integral part of your identity, you are expected to tone down your so-called ‘rebellious’, ‘bold’ styles and conform to the generally accepted and idolized beauty standards, which had shunned members of the curly hair community for an eternity?
What is the curly hair movement all about?
Originated in the 1960s, the Curly Hair movement occurred alongside the Civil Rights Movement in the United States, where the curl conversation majorly revolved around the community of Black people and their equal representation. The movement regained its momentum in the 2000s and 2010s again, after which, there has been no turning back. The curly hair movement wasn’t merely about aesthetics, the whole point of the movement was for the black people to feel seen and to embrace their natural selves shedding the shame. The curly hair movement sparked from the fact that there wasn’t any information readily available online or otherwise for curly-haired people. As the curl community gained a stronghold, the CG method, or the Curly Girl Method, developed by Lorraine Massey, one of the leading curly hair care experts, became the holy bible for Curl heads. Massey has explained the method in detail in her book, ‘The Curly Girl Handbook’.
As the movement gained overwhelming support, brands had no choice, but to dive into curl hair care which was further followed by targeted ads, YouTube channels, Curly Hair Challenges on Tiktok and Curl Care blogs, fuelling the growth of the curl community.
How did the curly hair movement take shape in India?
Even though the curly Hair Movement bloomed in the ’60s in the US where the CG community formed a pact for over a decade, it took a while for the revolution to arrive in India, take shape and become what it is today. The internet age brought together curl heads from all over the globe to share their struggles and stories. Curlies shared YouTube tutorials and IGTV videos on Instagram with tips on curl care, its maintenance, and the horrors of using products containing harmful chemicals. Hashtags such as #Curlyhairdontcare, #NaturallyCurly, and many more began to trend in the social media world in no time. Besides that,
Source : Instagram
Source : Instagram
Source : Instagram
Kangana Ranaut, Sanya Malhotra, Saiyami Kher and other Curly Haired celebrities in India made it a point to flaunt their tresses which became a source of inspiration for other members of the community.
Source : Instagram
The relatable and light-hearted TV show, Little Things starring Mithila Palkar as Kavya Kulkarni who has long, luscious, and adorable curly hair also gained wide popularity. Straycurls, a renowned Comic artist of the country, documented her troubles and adventures with curls. When Asha Barrack, the first-ever Indian blogger who kickstarted conversations around curl care in 2015, formed the well-known Indian Curl Pride group on Facebook, it gradually paved the way for a new wave of discussions around normalizing curly hair care through video tutorials, sharing curl girl movement approved products and infinite posts.
Shattering stereotypes, celebrating self!
One of the biggest reasons behind the growing popularity of the Curly Hair Movement is social media. At present, the curly hair revolution in India is thriving with more and more members owning curly and coily hair joining in sharing their curly tales, product suggestions, tips, and tricks. In fact, it’s truly a boon to have gorgeous curls in today’s time because, unlike straight and wavy-haired peeps, you get to be a part of a huge community of curl heads who support you to be who you are. Several online curly hair communities brought together influencers from all walks of life, who share advice on investing in hair care products suitable to various curly hair types and textures, encouraging the members to accept and uncompromisingly start embracing curls.
Have you come across even one curl head with no stories to share? no. That’s close to impossible, right? So here we are inviting you too to join the Curly family and share your experiences with curly hair! Because every curl story deserves to be heard, understood, and celebrated for all the right reasons.
Can’t wait to join our Curl family? We can’t wait to have you either!
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