Can A White Girl Be A part Of The Natural Hair Movement? – Curly Nikki Post Controversy

Curly Nikki controversy

We cannot even sit here with straight faces and pretend like we have not noticed the controversial topic of discussion this week. To get you up to speed, basically Sarah of Curls & Blossoms shared her curly hair story with Curly Nikki. Sarah is a white woman. Since then both she and Curly Nikki have received a ton of  backlash for sharing that particular natural hair journey and the opinions are rolling in like an uncontrolled wildfire.

The team here on BHI have been talking about it as well, we have all seen the comments and we have tried to rationalized why black women feel so strongly as to why we cannot see the “curly hair struggle” as a united struggle beyond race and beyond texture.

I will share the same two comments Sarah shared on her blog here:

“Why do we need to make spaces for people who already have representation? Always so willing to accommodate and yet always being less accommodated. Making spaces for white women in the limited spaces made for women of colour isn’t going to change anything.”

“Still shaking my head at the black women on here defending this mess. Y’all are absolutely pathetic. I don’t want to hear any of you complaining when white women take over Essence and they change “Black Girls Rock” to “All Girls Rock”. We basically have nothing for ourselves, so we carve out a little space of our own in the beauty world and sellouts are ready and willing to hand this precious space over to white women. It’s amazing. And sad.”

Then there is this comment:

“You are free to call your hair whatever you want, but seeking inclusion in a space that was created to allow black women the opportunity to buck conventional ideals of western beauty standards, learn to accept and embrace themselves despite the images that we see in the media, and gain an understanding for our hair despite having few external examples to learn from, is the real issue. You cannot ignore the politics that exist surrounding black hair. Black children are being sent home from school for wearing their hair in afros.

Black men have to wear their hair shaved low otherwise it’s deemed unprofessional, and black women are told that the way that our hair grows out of our scalps is inappropriate for professional settings. These are real challenges that we uniquely face and the natural hair movement was created in part to begin to dismantle them. So please, call your hair whatever you wish, but quit seeking inclusion in a space that was created to challenge the very privilege that you apparently don’t even realize that you enjoy.”

Sarah’s responded on her blog…

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About Petra

Hi I'm Petra Lomax , a staff writer and editor for . I am Jamaican born and raised and moved to the United States in my early 20's. I have a BA in Political Science and International relations as well as an MBA and a Masters In Project Management. I love travel, culture and anything that has to do with creative media and business.

About Petra

Hi I'm Petra Lomax , a staff writer and editor for . I am Jamaican born and raised and moved to the United States in my early 20's. I have a BA in Political Science and International relations as well as an MBA and a Masters In Project Management. I love travel, culture and anything that has to do with creative media and business.


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  1. Azure Nefertari
    Azure Nefertari

    Also I need to say this. There are white people who DO have naturally curly hair. There are Asians and hispanics too. Curly/kinky hair is not limited to a certain race. Get out more if you really believe that.

    Saying all non-blacks who have curly hair must be permed is just as bad as people who assume a black woman with long hair has a weave. Doesn’t feel too good does it? Don’t generalize people if you don’t want to be generalized. Smh.


      the problem is ….thats not what we are saying.. what we are saying is that the struggles are different.. so just like you have the right to share your struggles on new created platforms, others have the right to be protective of it. even though we are all ‘natural’ there is an understanding that for black women the struggle is greater, and so there pride might be greater too.. we have to respect that..and only in that space of respect can we have any understanding Azure Nefertari

    2. Azure Nefertari
      Azure Nefertari

      White women with curly hair, same struggle. They too had to straighten their hair when they were told that their curly hair was unacceptable. It’s not just limited to black people. You are perpetuating bigotry and prejudice. That’s not “protecting” that’s exclusion. You wouldn’t want anyone excluding us from stuff, you’d be quick to call it racism. Really sad when people can’t see the bigger picture. I welcome anyone who is natural with open arms. Curly or not.

    3. Wendy Jean-Louis
      Wendy Jean-Louis

      My god can we have something of our own sometimes. They took rock, jazz n blues. Nothing wrong with supporting the movement

    4. Azure Nefertari
      Azure Nefertari

      Ciani your comment made absolutely no sense at all, and is completely irrelevant as a contribution to this conversation. I saw your bigoted, ignorant post too. Smh.

      1. Tracienatural

        Wait a minute, Azure Nefertari. Are you saying that if people don’t agree with YOU, then they’re a bigot? Thought you were the “open-minded” one? Listen, everyone will not agree to everything. But if something is created by a person, for themselves and others in their family, friends, or community, then they have the right to feel upset if someone takes it/shares it/steals it without permission. It’s just like family/ethnic recipes. You might think it’s no big deal to steal, a.k.a. borrow, someone’s family recipes, because you probably did not create any of your own. But to the creator(s), they’re going to be fuming! It’s kinda the same thing, except hair seems to have more importance to the black female community than food. Bottom line: you don’t have to agree, but since you didn’t create the movement (are you even part of the movement? No shade, but I can’t tell by your comments) then who are you to tell the creators and their community how they should feel when an outsider wants to partake in that movement?

    5. Mew Lee
      Mew Lee

      why do you want to white ppl to come in to platform that deals with BLACK WOMEN and their natural when their curly hair is totally different from black ppl?

    6. Vivian Jackson
      Vivian Jackson

      So just a question…Are you guys also okay with seeing other races on the cover of Ebony or Essence magazine? What about Hype Hair? Do they still make Jet? haha Just a question.

  2. Alphia Joseph Sauer
    Alphia Joseph Sauer

    Yes girls of all races should understand the pressure to straighten their curly hair I know some that I have never seen their curls until it got wet at the beach and it was a surprise. They feel the pull to be like everyone else too

  3. Karina Rodriguez Anderson
    Karina Rodriguez Anderson

    The term Natural doesnt apply to race, or skin color.. is just the fact that you are not chemically treating your hair and you wear it in it´s natural state…DONE!

  4. Asha Lewis
    Asha Lewis

    I understand it IS their NATURAL hair. But just leave the movement alone they jump on every band wagon. I thought the movement were black women embracing THEIR NATURAL after years of embracing white peoples natural and now here we are. Ready to embrace it again I mean dang! America, South Africa white people just want it all. And here we are like always saying “here you go, we can share” like we always do.

  5. Erica Williams
    Erica Williams

    I can understand if she was born with bone straight hair! There are people born with really curly thick hair no matter their color or ethnicity! If she is tired of chemically straightening her hair then why not let share her journey! Obviously there was a reason she kept hair straight for years instead of embracing her natural curl! The desire for straight hair is universal!

    1. lilly Moore

      Let the girl get on a white website!

  6. Natalee Beckford
    Natalee Beckford

    Wow get a life. Hair is hair. I can stand people who make everything about color and you wonder why we can move pass our issues.

    1. lilly Moore

      What planet do you live on? What country are you from? If you are from America then color and race will always be an issue. If you are an AA/black female/male then your race/ color and everything about you is negative from society as a whole. We can’t get pass race issues because whites won’t let us. Many slaves thought slavery was good for us as a whole. Sweeping issues under the rug will not assist us as a society evolve. Tell your silly remarks to whites and see if they respond with a friendly remark. Why do you blame blacks for now they feel about this subject? Blacks did not create this situation. whjtez

  7. Hamm Ramona
    Hamm Ramona

    If she has curly .. What us the issue .. Please don’t perpetrate the same isms we are trying to over come

  8. Starlan Hoke
    Starlan Hoke

    Yes I work with a white guy his hair was kinky than mine I wore it late 60 and 70 it your hair you was born with no one own the right to one hair the movement was when we protest for rights Iam 60 something I was raise to embrace my culture my hair is kinky love all we came from One rock on

  9. DeMetri Lasha Weeden-Brown
    DeMetri Lasha Weeden-Brown

    Its sad that When it comes to things Blacks are just as bad as whites when it comes to stuff,just as petty!!!Who cares if they join.God wants women in general to accept ourselves wether we are white or black

  10. LaShaun Whichard
    LaShaun Whichard

    That’s problem right there it’s a so called movement so yes they can be apart of the “movement” but for me I’m not apart of a so called “movement” or “fad” it’s my life and I’m doing it for me I don’t care what they or any other woman does if you’re in it for the “movement” then of course you”ll have a problem and your in it for the wrong reason

  11. Whittney Cain
    Whittney Cain

    No one is coming up to white girls asking can I touch your hair, or living in a society where kinky, coily hair is a major obstacle. So no no no and hell no. They have plenty of isles in grocery stotes where they can find sufficient products and knowledge about haircare and we only get a endcap. MOVING ON…

    1. kellistarr

      As far as products go, I think we get more than an endcap these days. And yes, hair care products for our type of curls have expanded because black women have been speaking out and companies have been listening because they continue to want to get our money. But, truthfully, the main products were always there, black women just didn’t know how to use them. I come from an era where the only available styling gel for hair in general, was Dippity-Do. Now, that did not work on my hair. Conditioner was available, but I didn’t know about co-washing or leaving the conditioner in etc….. And my mom never purchased the conditioner! The massive amount of products we have now weren’t there for blacks or whites. My hair still thrived from washing and oiling and braiding. I still had long, manageable hair. And what’s wrong with people asking if they can touch your hair. Black hair is unique and alluring. When I see juicy twists, or cottony hair that looks like it would feel soft as a cloud, I want to touch it too! I think it’s a compliment when someone asks to to touch it.

  12. Tinesha Avalon Williams
    Tinesha Avalon Williams

    A lot of you women sound really ignorant. Natural hair or natural beauty is not something that people can claim as your own because everyone has it and God made us that way. If your hair grows out of your head without you doing anything to it then congratulations you are apart team natural. Another thing I don’t get is why we have to separate ourselves from relaxed, natural , weaves n etc. Hair is hair and just because it’s not something as separating light skins from dark skins doesn’t mean it’s not just as ridiculous and it’s ALWAYS the black people who keep doing it. Just stop and be happy doing you.

  13. Erica Holloway MrsNewsome
    Erica Holloway MrsNewsome

    I really don’t care. Not being rude or disrespectful, but I’m tired of our efforts not being accepted until they do it. I care about every one as humans, but I’m CONCERNED about my people.

  14. Tasha C Smith
    Tasha C Smith

    I don’t have a problem with this. Everybody hair type is different. If they want to be part of the natural hair movement then be my guess. When did the natural hair movement end at color? I know a white girl with unruly curly hair. Hell my hair isn’t nappy, I have curly hair almost like hers. I’m not mixed or anything. So have a open mind people and quit all the hating. Its not a good look.

  15. Chavon Walton
    Chavon Walton

    Why not? Maybe it’s just not that deep to me. Curl typing, black vs white hair struggles, it’s all over my head. It’s just hair! What makes you think her journey is any different? White girls straighten, perm, weave and color their hair too. Black people are always crying about inclusion but are quick to exclude people. Get off it.

  16. Jenna Sanford
    Jenna Sanford

    Ok. <— white girl w mixed stepdaughter here…. It was one blog post right ? Curlynikki hasn't changed her format or anything has she? It's been a while since I've been to her blog. It still is an open blog anyone can read and comment on, correct ? I say more power to her for including different perspectives for her readers. If you want a space that is just for black women to discuss their views if the natural hair movement great. You can do that and have a closed group with membership. Unless it's a closed group, I say more information and variety is always welcome. Dealing with multiple textures of hair on a mixed adorable girl is what I'm faced with. Since I'm helping to parent her , and love her hair is it ok to share the struggles we have or am I invading space ?

  17. Sarina Evans Gardner
    Sarina Evans Gardner

    It not about the other races…our people need to learn how to join together at something and protect it and stop being so racist against their own people its nothing wrong with us having a group for our hair why do we have to give up everything to please another race. Learn to build your people first then you can embrace others. I agree with what alot of these sistas are saying can’t we have anything!

  18. Asha Lewis
    Asha Lewis

    Natural hair DOES mean natural hair. White people DO have natural hair. No doubt. But I thought at least PART of the movement was glad black women breaking away from European beauty standards. What they know about that (T.I voice).

  19. Ruth Longsworth
    Ruth Longsworth

    Why not, they process their hair too. They are also understanding that they don’t need to keep coloring, perming, and frying their hair to get it bone strait.

  20. Arlena Smith
    Arlena Smith

    For the forum she is on yes she fits in there. As far as a forum like Black Hair Information I don’t think so. Every race has their “natural hair movement” so in a mixed environment I don’t expect it to be an issue

  21. Jennifer Greene
    Jennifer Greene

    She’s only embracing her hair texture. Nothing else. I don’t believe she’s comparing herself to an afro-american woman. Give it a rest.

  22. Jelann LtRipley Mitchner
    Jelann LtRipley Mitchner

    Omg y is the race card played in aspect of life now! It’s bad enough we can’t have shyt 4 ourselves but seriously who the hell cares! Seriously Ebony & Essence magazines are jumping on the bandwagon 2 about the “natural” thing! There r more important things in life than some white chic wit natural hair!

  23. Daisha Miller
    Daisha Miller

    This is a no win conversation , if you say NO suddenly you’re being a hater. As if it’s impossible to simply just disagree with this movement. When we placed extensions and relaxers in our hair suddenly we were being white.

  24. Omar McKelley Sr.
    Omar McKelley Sr.

    Why not? Because we need to stop always trying to get a white view on everything! Let us Afrikans have something just for us. And let everyone else do them on their “Hair Page” haven’t they stolen enough!?

  25. Carrieanna Luicadi-bell
    Carrieanna Luicadi-bell

    I am white with a mixed race daughter, I do all the caring when it comes to my daughters hair. I cainrow, twist and plait and encourage her to love her natural hair. I learn along the way, I myself have curly frizzy hair and care for my hair in a similar way. I think anybody who loves their hair and wants the best out of it can be part of the movement! It isn’t about race or white women taking things away from black women (one of the comments have mentioned this) I feel anyone can love their natural hair and encourage others to do the same. Great page btw!

  26. Nicole W.

    I am not now nor will I ever be interested in any white woman’s hair “struggle” ever. I can not fathom a “struggle” that is the standard of attainability and acceptability. One that has salons on every corner, mall and back alley. One that has commercials for products and several aisles if not all out complete store fronts dedicated to products just for white hair. Oh my how white women have suffered with limited resources available to them. I want space that is 100% free from their bullshit, god knows they’ve carved out plenty that would not give a second thought to anyone darker than flourescent beige.

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