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Old 09-25-2004, 08:40 PM   #1
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Question and about race and hair

I have a sincere question about race and different hair types. I am Caucasian and a girl from Jamaica was my best friend when I was little. We use to swim together a lot but I remember quite a few times her Mom wouldn't let her go swimming because she just washed her hair the day before. I have known other African Americans who didn't want to go swimming because they didn't want to get their hair wet and say they don't wash it every day. What is the reason for this? Does the hair tend to be drier? Does it have to do with the texture? What are the main differences in African American and Caucasian hair? Do the different hair types grow at different rates? I know there are many different hair types within a race, but I am talking about the general differences between the races.
Thanks

 
Old 10-17-2004, 07:35 AM   #2
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Re: Question and about race and hair

yes, in general the hair tends to be drier and more fragile/weaker.
Growth rate is about the same, but breakage is a problem. For some, the hair breaks at almost the same rate it grows, so it appears never to get much further. For others, breakage isn't much of a problem. But in general, since the hair is drier and more fragile, it is more prone to breakage, therefore, requires more care.
The main difference from Caucasian hair is the natural structure- it is curlier in general. (although some African Americans/Blacks/Africans have Caucasian-type hair) and as a result, oil has a harder time travelling to the ends.
Hope that helps.

 
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Old 10-17-2004, 05:27 PM   #3
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Re: Question and about race and hair

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tienci
yes, in general the hair tends to be drier and more fragile/weaker.
Growth rate is about the same, but breakage is a problem. For some, the hair breaks at almost the same rate it grows, so it appears never to get much further. For others, breakage isn't much of a problem. But in general, since the hair is drier and more fragile, it is more prone to breakage, therefore, requires more care.
The main difference from Caucasian hair is the natural structure- it is curlier in general. (although some African Americans/Blacks/Africans have Caucasian-type hair) and as a result, oil has a harder time travelling to the ends.
Hope that helps.
Thank you. This makes a lot of sense, especially about the breakage. There are some African Americans who seem to have a Caucasian-type hair such as Oprah and Beyone. Now I see the differences. Thanks

 
Old 12-04-2004, 06:16 PM   #4
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MissLondon HB User
Re: Question and about race and hair

Quote:
Originally Posted by daisyheadmaisy
I have a sincere question about race and different hair types. I am Caucasian and a girl from Jamaica was my best friend when I was little. We use to swim together a lot but I remember quite a few times her Mom wouldn't let her go swimming because she just washed her hair the day before. I have known other African Americans who didn't want to go swimming because they didn't want to get their hair wet and say they don't wash it every day. What is the reason for this? Does the hair tend to be drier? Does it have to do with the texture? What are the main differences in African American and Caucasian hair? Do the different hair types grow at different rates? I know there are many different hair types within a race, but I am talking about the general differences between the races.
Thanks
The reason why many African Americans do not like getting their hair wet may be because the majority use relaxers in their hair ( a chemical perm used to straighten the hair)
When their hair gets wet it makes their hair frizzy, which is something women who relax do not like as they would need to go back to the salon to get it straightened again...
It has nothing to do with African americans not liking water (something which i tend to hear alot lol )..But only to do with African Americans who "relax their hair" not liking water altering the texture of their relaxed hair .
Women who relax their hair usually only wash their hair when they take a next trip to the salon to get their roots done or when they get a styling at the salon.
But african americans who have natural afro hair can wash their hair as often as caucasions do


But on the whole it is not advised for anyone to really wash their hair everyday
because constant washing can strip the hairs of its natural oils
Hair should be washed about 3 times a week ( european or afro) unless there is a reason for extra washing (like after swimming or at the gym).


Do the different types of hair grow at different rates?
No,
Afro hair in its "natural state" grows at the same rate as european hair , the only difference is that we have curly/kinky hair so it curls around itself rather than it growing straight down so it may be hard to tell.
but if u pull on a strand of afro hair u can see its length or also by how big an afro becomes.

Relaxed hair is more prone to breakage because it is "chemically treated" ...and the overlaping of treatments from the new growth to the already relaxed hair causes a breaking point.

This would mean that it can not grow at the same rate as it would if it were natural

The difference betweens afro hair "in its natural state" and european hair are:
Mainly the texture which causes Afro hair to grow outwards and upwards due to it being very curly whilst european hair grows down.

Afro hair is generally thicker in texture than european hair which makes it able to hold curls

Afro hair can be prone to dryness so it needs a lot of moisturising.

Hope that helps

Last edited by MissLondon; 12-04-2004 at 06:32 PM.

 
Old 12-04-2004, 06:24 PM   #5
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Re: Question and about race and hair

Quote:
Originally Posted by daisyheadmaisy
Thank you. This makes a lot of sense, especially about the breakage. There are some African Americans who seem to have a Caucasian-type hair such as Oprah and Beyone. Now I see the differences. Thanks

Caucasion type hair on African Americans/someone who is black (such as beyonce and oprah) is not a hair type and can not be achieved naturally.
(unless they are actually mixed race but even-so their hair will not be fully caucasion in its hair type or apperance)

Afro hair comes in different curl textures (from loose curls which curl in an "S" pattern along the strand to very tight which curl in a "Z" and "O" pattern along the strand) however you will never naturally find straight or wavy caucasion hair type on someone who is African American (or naturally straight hair on someone who is mixed race, who is part African American )
This can only be achieved by:

Using a relaxer ( chemically treated to make straight )
Using a Texturiser ( chemically treated to make wavy/looser curls)
Weaving ( woven hair pieces over entire head )
Or Relaxed hair with caucasion hair peices applied with glue.

Last edited by MissLondon; 12-05-2004 at 08:39 AM.

 
Old 12-04-2004, 09:22 PM   #6
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Re: Question and about race and hair

Its because afro hair often requires a little work after it has been washed - usually the application of oils or moisturizers and often straighteners/hot curlers to straighten/smooth - its hassle to get it wet as the process must start again.

Also, unlike Euro hair that gets greasy easily and must be washed often, afro hair really doesn't need washing as often.

 
Old 12-04-2004, 09:23 PM   #7
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veggie girl HB User
Re: Question and about race and hair

Actually in terms of growth, Indian hair grows the fastest. Afro hair and euro hair grows at the same rate but because afro hair is drier it is more likely to snap at the ends and so it may seem difficult to grow the hair.

 
Old 12-04-2004, 09:28 PM   #8
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veggie girl HB User
Re: Question and about race and hair

Quote:
Originally Posted by daisyheadmaisy
Thank you. This makes a lot of sense, especially about the breakage. There are some African Americans who seem to have a Caucasian-type hair such as Oprah and Beyone. Now I see the differences. Thanks
Actually Beyonnce is mixed race and her hair is naturally curly - kind of inbetween Euro and Afro.

Oprah on the other hand has completely processed hair. I've seen picture/videos of her not 'done up' and her natural hair doesn't even slightly resemble the "caucation-type hair" like you see on her show.

 
Old 12-05-2004, 06:10 AM   #9
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Re: Question and about race and hair

Quote:
Originally Posted by veggie girl
Its because afro hair often requires a little work after it has been washed - usually the application of oils or moisturizers and often straighteners/hot curlers to straighten/smooth - its hassle to get it wet as the process must start again.
This only really applies to those who want to straighten their hair in some ways or have a weave, braids etc .

I have natural afro hair which can just be washed and moisturised so getting it wet is not a big deal..
Not many women who have natural afro hair are too bothered about their hair getting wet .
( unless they have a piticular style done)

 
Old 12-06-2004, 09:13 PM   #10
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Re: Question and about race and hair

I have very naturally curly caucasian hair, and I know it has a tendency to break and dry out more easily than my straight-haired friends. The other posters are right, it's all about the structure of the hair. The pattern of hair growth leaves curly hair more suceptible to losing moisture and the bend causes extra fragility. This is because the bend in the hair leaves the cuticle open and then "feathers" which causes frizz and moisture loss, therefore more breakage. I only wash my hair 2 to 3 times a week to prevent drying out. Hair is also in a weakened state when it is wet. Afro hair has an even more bent structure so it is even more prone than mine. My next door neigbor (african american) says she's never been able to grow her hair to shoulder length because she has such a problem with breakage.

Also, there is a misconception that straight hair is "fine" and curly or black hair is "coarse." This is not true. When individual hairs are viewed under a microscope, Latin, Native American and Indian hairs are actually thicker, coarser, and more hearty than any other hair. The finest and most fragile individual hairs belong to curly haired Euros, and those of African or Aboriginal Australian/New Zealand decent. The tiny diameter of this hair also makes it much more prone to breakage.

I have also heard that Oprah's hair is 100% processed. IMO you can't go by anyone with that much money and that many experts at her disposal. LOL.
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Last edited by siren1024; 12-06-2004 at 09:16 PM.

 
Old 12-07-2004, 01:18 PM   #11
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Re: Question and about race and hair

Wow!!! Thank you all sooo much for responding!!! This was all great information!!!

 
Old 12-08-2004, 03:54 PM   #12
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Re: Question and about race and hair

For those of you fragile curly girls, african american or caucasian, how do you prevent processing damage? I NEVER straighten my hair anymore. If I only do it once, the frizz is terrible, I have immediate splitting and breakage, and I have tried so many "protective" products. Color is just as bad for me. I moisturize like crazy, rinse out, leave in, gentle shampoo, but when I use heat on my hair, nothing works. I'd like to straighten it every now and then, just to change things up sometimes. I love my curls, but I get bored sometimes! Any suggestions?
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