Yes, I Wear Wigs — and No, That Doesn't Mean I Hate My Hair

Being told your whole life that as a woman you are defined by your beauty, and that your hair is a key part of that beauty, leads many Black women to have a special attachment to their hair. I was definitely a victim of this. I would obsess over my hair, and if I couldn’t get it quite right, I wouldn’t go out in public. My hair needed to be absolutely pin-straight and perfect when I wore it out, which led to me damage my hair with a straightener multiple times and then eventually use a relaxer.

My mother absolutely hates extensions, so I was never allowed to wear them. She had certain negative opinions toward Black women who wore weaves and wigs, and I internalized those same opinions. A part of me had always wanted to venture into this new territory and try wearing fake hair, but my mother’s voice persisted inside my head. But the older I get, the less time I spend trying to appease others with my appearance. I am ready to wear what feels authentic to me.

Before the pandemic, I had maybe two wigs that I brought from the beauty supply and wore only a handful of times. They were both relatively conservative with a solid natural brown color and medium length. But boredom, an overgrown ombré dye job, and an increased desire to online shop led me to the magnificent world of #wigtok. Yes, seeing women review wigs on TikTok was my motivation to start wearing wigs. Flash forward a couple months, and I’m changing my hairstyle every week — sometimes twice a week. I have long wigs, short wigs, curly wigs, and even brightly colored ones. I can’t get enough.

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