Can You Ever Be Too Old To Go Natural?

African American woman with greying natural hairI recently saw a senior citizen sporting snow white Afro curls and thought ” Wow, she exudes class”. The flecks of light from the sun bounced off  her angel soft silken strands, giving the impression that her head was crowned in a radiant halo.

As I sat behind her on the bus, I couldn’t help ogling. I was so engrossed in admiring her shock of hair that even when she had exited the bus at her stop, I found myself craning my neck to catch one last glimpse of her majestic crowning glory.

O.k., I know it comes across a bit corny, but it has been a while since I’ve seen a mature woman wear her natural hair out. It seems that many try to cover it – scarves, hats, weaves and wigs, you name it, the real mane is very often hidden in women over forty.

It got me to thinking about why more of our older black sistas don’t rock their natural textures more often.

I’m not saying that many don’t have natural hair, it’s just that it is rare that you see them advertising it. Take the natural hair forums for instance, if you should check, you would recognize that the scene is dominated by the younger generations.

It got me thinking: do mature women perceive the natural hair movement to be a new age trend for younger women? The few over forty women I have seen so far who are interested in returning to natural, have their own set of questions and concerns, chief among which is “can you ever be too old to go natural?”

The answer is self explanatory I think, but for the sake of clarity of course the answer is no! Since the question exists however, we cannot simply leave it there, but explain the reason for the answer.


Length retention

The question is whether you can ever be too old to go natural, not if you can gain extraordinary length after a particular age. Truth be told, even though terminal length reduces slightly as you grow older some mature naturalistas in the 60-80 category, have experienced phenomenal length retention; shoulder and bra-strap length so let us lay that issue to rest.

Age is a big deal to us women judging by how much we spend to look and feel younger and how some of us loathe telling our true ages. This is partially because we feel that the spunk starts to dwindle after a particular age.

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About Marsha Buchanan


As a Jamaican girl raised in a devout church family headed by my mother, I have always had my natural hair, no chemical processing. After years of mistreating it , often ignorant of that fact, I began my healthy hair journey in January 2013 in fact, I have seen to it that my entire household falls in line where this is concerned. When I am not poring over some hair blog or forum I spend my time teaching English to rowdy high school students (ok maybe I have some little sweethearts in the mix), mothering the most adorable two year old on this globe, or rushing to meet the deadline for a writing project on Elance. In my spare time I enjoy a stroll along the beach with my doting husband.

About Marsha Buchanan


As a Jamaican girl raised in a devout church family headed by my mother, I have always had my natural hair, no chemical processing. After years of mistreating it , often ignorant of that fact, I began my healthy hair journey in January 2013 in fact, I have seen to it that my entire household falls in line where this is concerned. When I am not poring over some hair blog or forum I spend my time teaching English to rowdy high school students (ok maybe I have some little sweethearts in the mix), mothering the most adorable two year old on this globe, or rushing to meet the deadline for a writing project on Elance. In my spare time I enjoy a stroll along the beach with my doting husband.

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Christy LoveFelicia AllenLadyMalakah Angellia GladstonLynda Brooks Recent comment authors
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Nicole TaylorMoore

beautiful!!

Intercessor Angela

This is the look I’ll be going for when I turn 50 in 5 more years, I love it

Jennie Scott Lai

you should definitely be natural when you are old. if not before

Mark E Roberson Sr.

Awesome!

Sheron Hunt

Georgeous

Gail Gartin

Never too old-she is beautiful!

Rochelle Carpenter-Williams

Black women have always been beautiful. Remember we were beautiful before relaxes ever came out.

Tamika Murrell

Absolutely not!

Jacqueline McDonald

There are many of 50 plus ladies wearing naturals. Some not with a head full of gray hair. I am 50 and my sister is 51. We love it and rock it well.

Sammie Time

No!

Dabney Ross Jones

Nope. My mom is in her 60’s and decided to stop pressing her hair. She is now the envy of her friends because of the thickness of her hair. Before, her hair was thin and shedding like crazy because she pressed it all the time

Beverly Smith

No

Bernice Williams-Graham

Never to old, i decided when i turned 40 I would go natural but i waited til i was 45 so i have been natural for 10 years but just started learning and really taking care of my hair and now it’s retaining length, never to late.

Day in the Life of a Natural

No way

Angela Humble Neal

Never to old my mom went natural at 63 you go mom! You look absolutely beautiful!

Joy Blakey- Boles

My mother returned back to being natural at 72.

Deborah Bogie

No never to late to do you

Tina Ishman

No way. As we get older we should become more natural because who has the time to keep up with all the maintenance.

Shelly Allen

Never too old or young to be yourself….

Lisa Gill Hamilton

I didn’t know there was an age limit on hair choice! I’m 46 and I’m natural except for my hair color! I love the fullness of my hair and every month I can really see my new growth because it is always new white hair–that I dye black! So far, I’m looking forward to 6 inches per year!

Tee Wilson

Don’t get your hair done like you are taking a picture!!

Tee Wilson

Be careful about sharing all you do in the Beauty Salon!

Angela Jones

no! because we have blossomed into wisdom!!!

Leah TheOvercomer Jones

At 45, I hope not and natural for a couple of years

Judy Ann BloomMinott

Never too old

Sherry Y. Jackson

no. Also, you don’t go natural that’s how you started out. More like return to natural

Aunt Faye

I’m 58 n loving my nappiness ♡♡

Bea Henry-Anderson

NEVER!!!

Kim Armstard-Knight

I’m 55 and went back to my natural hair 16 months ago . My hair color is gray- silver right in the front and i do the 2 strand twist out. I think it’s beautiful.

Angela Anders

Beautiful

Alicia Giddens Henderson

She’s beautiful.

Jasmine Lyons

Curly girls, naturalistas, relaxed ladies–please spare a few minutes and take this quick and easy hair care survey for me!!! It’s for a project I’m doing and every submission helps! Feel free to share with friends! http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/VWMTJYG

Nadine DeBose

Never to old to do anything you feel up to doing. I went natural and I am 69 and love it.

Angela Williams
Angela Williams

I’ve been Natural for 15yrs & I’m 45yrs old! There are a lot of over 40 women on Natural hair care forums, blogs, vlogs, etc…it’s just that when we are soliciting & giving Natural hair care advice our age isn’t an important factor & profile pics don’t necessarily give away our age either.

Sharonda Milburn

No not at all

Shawntay Colbert

No I’m natural mi self

Lynda Brooks

No I’m natural

Malakah Angellia Gladston

Da hell kind of question is that???
This is like asking “can u ever be too old to be black” EVERYONE was born natural!

Lady
Lady

Just an FYI….. the lady in the pic is my cousin and she is far from senior citizen. Her hair has been gray like that since her 20s

Felicia Allen

Will a natural ever get too old to start relaxing?

Christy Love

Nope!!!!