It’s no secret, the topic of hair in the black community is a touchy one. We live in a time where so many uninvited opinions are thrown around which often lead to tension and arguments.
Trying to suggest to another woman of color who you’re not related to or even close with can be tricky. But what if you honestly just care and would like to politely help someone out?
Recently a friend came and asked for my opinion on how she should address a coworker who always wears her hair uncombed and not moisturized. Here’s what I told her:
Pull Her Aside
First and foremost when approaching someone about their hair be sure to not embarrass them. Don’t bring it up at lunch with a group of people around. Find the perfect opportunity when they’re alone and no one is in earshot.
I always like to lead with an HONEST compliment. Find something that you do like about her, whether it be her outfit or her earrings. People are likely to be more receptive after hearing a truthful compliment.
Suggest, Don’t Tell
Now getting down to the nitty-gritty. As uncomfortable as it may be, you have to be honest without coming off as demanding or condescending. Maybe start off by saying, “I noticed we have similar hair types and I thought I could share some tips on what works for my hair, maybe you should try _______” Or ask her if she’s ever considered switching up her style and share how you master your best twist out.
However, you choose to go about it, be sure not to tell her what she needs to do but instead ease in suggestions.
If you’re not bold enough to come out and suggest what she should do differently for her hair, you can always do the gift of products. What natural doesn’t like new products?!
You can bring her a jar of your favorite product for her birthday or for Christmas. That way it’s less awkward and then it can help break the ice when it comes to talking about hair.
Have you ever tried to help out someone who’s hair just wasn’t working for them? How did it go?