He Said He Has “That Puerto Rican Hair”… Is Black Hair Not Good Enough?

black manWhen going to grab a bite to eat with a new guy friend we somehow got on the topic of hair. We both moved to the DMV area about 8 months ago and he was expressing his struggles of finding a good barber.

I had always been curious about how do guys find barbers. Do they just walk into a shop, or do they rely on word of mouth?

He then said that he met a couple guys on a nearby basketball court and after the game asked for suggestions on barbers. He took their advice, went, and ultimately said that the guy just didn’t do a good enough job as his guy back home.

He then proceeded to say that they don’t know what to do with his “Puerto Rican hair”. I hadn’t know him that long so of course my response was, “oh you’re Puerto Rican?” to which he responded “no, but you see how good my hair is, there has to be something mixed in me down the line.”

This comment definitely rubbed me the wrong way. Yes, he did have nice hair that curled with a smooth texture, but why does it have to be “Puerto Rican”? Us natural girls get bothered every other day from people assuming we’re mixed because our hair curls nicely, and we fight to explain that all black hair is good hair. To hear an African American male try to put off the fact that his hair texture is nice onto an ethnic group that he doesn’t even know he’s apart of was saddening.

Yes, I know he probably wasn’t THAT serious, but why can’t just African American hair be good enough. We come in so many different shades of course our hair textures will have variation as well.

What would your response to this comment be?


About Vanessa


Hi! I'm Vanessa! I'm a 26 year old natural. Making the decision to go natural has been one of the greatest decisions in my life. It has boosted my self confidence and has given me a way to express myself through the hair God has blessed me with. I had my last relaxer in Dec of 2013 and big chopped Aug of 2014 and there's no turning back! I now share my journey with tutorials and tips that work for me through my youtube platform and my blog in hopes of helping other naturalistas in their journey to natural.

About Vanessa


Hi! I'm Vanessa! I'm a 26 year old natural. Making the decision to go natural has been one of the greatest decisions in my life. It has boosted my self confidence and has given me a way to express myself through the hair God has blessed me with. I had my last relaxer in Dec of 2013 and big chopped Aug of 2014 and there's no turning back! I now share my journey with tutorials and tips that work for me through my youtube platform and my blog in hopes of helping other naturalistas in their journey to natural.

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Comments

  1. Basimah Banks

    Umm being Puerto Rican isn’t a Race!! Its a Nationality!! just like being American..soo that statement makes noo sense what so ever!!

  2. Eleanor

    There are black Puerto Ricans… That guy was ignorant about hair, but there might be merit to assuming that he is mixed because of his loose curls. However, I hate the term “good hair.” Does that mean someone with tight coils or kinks in their hair has bad hair? Educate this young man before he becomes another black person who has internalized racism.

  3. Jai Bacote

    I read the article. This isn’t about a famous athlete, lol. First, why didn’t she educate him about hair instead of become defensive and all judgemental? My response to him would be: Your hair isn’t defined by your nationality. Puerto Ricans are simply ppl who was born in Puerto Rico. Your curl texture may be smooth because your hair holds moisture which is how to get your curls defined and poppin’! Of course you are probably mixed with black as well as white which could play a role in your curl pattern as well. Perhaps, you should learn more about your hair…which is loosely coiled/curled…to find a barber that can work with your hair. Then I would let him know how his statement can be hurtful to black ppl.
    Then that educates him about hair as well as lets him know how it makes someone else feel. Sometimes we say things not realizing what it means. We have just been conditioned to think certain things.

  4. Jai Bacote

    And I forgot to mention…he NEVER said black hair was bad. He simply said they don’t know what to do with “puerto rican hair”…he was basically just trying to explain his hair type in “socity’s” terms. Didn’t anyone read the article?

  5. Rose Boglin

    Puerto Rican hair is very different from most black hair. And he didn’t say anything negative about black hair. Reaching much?

    1. Diona Stampley

      What is Puerto Rican hair when this is a nationality and not a race? To say their hair is different than blacks would be an insult to black Puerto Ricans.

    2. Rose Boglin

      How is it an insult when black hair was not mentioned in a negative light? And Puerto Rican hair is very curly but sometimes its not. Very much like mixed hair.

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