Jacqueline Yates

Black female praying with closed eyes

“I remember during my days working as a stylist at a retail store during one of my college breaks, a co-worker asked me [if it’s] possible for my hair to grow past my shoulders. That wasn’t the weirdest part—she then went on to say, ‘I never see Black women with long hair that’s their own. It’s always like a wig or something.’ I had to enlighten her that there are plenty of Black women with long, healthy hair, and many times when you see women with naturally curly hair it’s shrunk because of the texture or they may be wearing extensions as a protective style over their amazing crowning glory. Her statements didn’t make me feel horrible personally, because I care more about the health of my hair than the length. But, it did enlighten me to the fact that there are many others who unfortunately probably think the same way [she did].” — Jacqueline Yates