In a year when a black woman with natural hair is heralded as the “Most Beautiful” person in the world by People Magazine and natural hair care products are inhabiting whole aisles in the hair care sections of stores, it may be hard to imagine that there is still discrimination not only against the natural hair community but also within the natural hair community. This intra-community discrimination is the topic of natural hair vlogger Jouelzy’s latest video where she discusses texture discrimination in the natural hair community.
Texture discrimination refers to the ways in which natural hair vloggers and the natural hair institution as a whole have begun producing and reproducing specific images of what it is to be natural and how natural hair should look. In this video, Jouelzy focuses on the ways in which 4C natural hair YouTubers such as herself, naturalme4c, and mahoganycurls have been pushed to the margins of the natural hair vlogger-sphere as well as the blatant ignoring of their content within the greater natural hair community.
As all of us who are natural know (especially the 4C’s), natural hairstyling is a gamble. Sometimes the curls are perfectly coiled and stay in place and other times we are lucky if we can get our kinks to not stick out of our head at odd angles a la Don King circa 1993. So it is refreshing to have YouTubers who are willing to take the time to encourage natural-hair women regarding their hair and the trials and tribulations they encounter when dealing with this texture.
A YouTuber for over two years, Jouelzy has made tutorials on styles for 4C naturals, videos with tips on how to care for your 4C hair texture and lifestyle videos catered specifically for black and brown girls. She also does tutorials for styles that would work for both natural and relaxed hair.
Her companion website, blackhairkitchen.com, has detailed posts that delve deeper into the products she’s reviewed in her videos and the styles she created in her tutorials. With the motto, “Celebrating the Versatility of Smart Brown Girls,” Jouelzy’s mission and purpose on YouTube is clear—to create a space where black and brown women can be celebrated and see themselves reflected on YouTube – sounds a lot like our mission here at The Visibility Project.
We can appreciate and we certainly value Jouelzy’s honesty regarding marginalization within the natural hair and black and brown communities and the ways in which these commonly produced images of “perfect” or “correct” natural hair are harmful.
Jouelzy’s YouTube channel and site, blackhairkitchen.com are a great source of information on how to properly care for 4C hair and what to expect from your 4C hair. Although there may not be a ton of YouTubers who are willing to speak honestly about 4C hair and its challenges or provide realistic, yet encouraging depictions of what 4C hair looks like, Jouelzy is definitely leading the charge with her sharp wit, sense of humor and brutal honesty.
Check out Jouelzy’s video below and be sure to subscribe to her channel today!