Referring to My Curly Hair as 'Frizzy' Isn't A Compliment

Referring To My Curly Hair As 'Frizzy' Isn't A Compliment

Curly hair has a mind of its own. It's uncontrollable, it's crazy, it's wild, but, most importantly, it's beautiful.

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Having to brush your hair? Can't relate.

I grew up envying the girls whose moms braided or styled their hair every morning, adorning perfectly parted manes with big, multi-colored bows, sparkly headbands, and beaded hair ties. I wished that my hair would be just as shiny, sleek, and pretty as I found everyone else's to be, but no matter how much I tugged at it, I saw my curly hair as nothing but a big, annoying mess.

At 10, I sat teary-eyed in a hairstylist's chair feeling the painful pull of a straightening iron, covering my mouth and nose with a towel to try to block out the burn of the formaldehyde emitted from the Brazilian keratin treatment. Three days later, when I was permitted to wash my hair again, I looked in the mirror and cried at seeing my natural curls reforming. Heaven forbid.

I had grown used to my hair being called "frizzy", "frizz ball", "poofey", and "unmanageable", and even saw these adjectives as normal, rightful descriptions of the thick entanglement of strands on my head. Over time, as I came to accept that what I was born with was something that wouldn't change, and started to better understand that having long coils that grew and flourished in every direction, that I saw that they were not a flaw, a fault, or a burden, but rather something that made me individual, unique, and beautiful. It was in the moments that followed that realization that allowed me to realize that I was my own worst critic. Little old ladies and young girls alike would come up to me saying things like, "I love your hair!" or "I wish I had your hair!" Although I had accepted them myself, getting this validation from strangers that helped me reinforce what I already knew to be true: all hair is beautiful hair.

One thing that no one tells you growing up, though, is the amount of work and responsibility that comes with mane-training such locks. If you have anything but curly hair, your hair washing routine probably consists of the standard shampoo/condition, maybe spritzing with some texture spray or using a leave-in conditioner, towel or air drying, and you're out the door. This is the dream routine of us #curlygirlys. Everyone's routine is different, and I'm sure some are more extensive than others, but I know mine consists of a post-shower hair routine with steps that must be done in a particular order otherwise the results will show for days to come. To spare you the details, just know that there are many.

Long and loose curls, tight coils, or anywhere in between, if you've grown up hearing people say your hair is "frizzy" it's okay to be hurt by that, it's an insult, but it's not okay to not correct that person. Let them know that your curly hair is crazy, a little wild, and maybe something that you don't always have the energy to deal with; but remember that it is also beautiful, makes you unique, and that you wouldn't change it for all the straight hair in the world.

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20 Small Tattoos With Big Meanings

Tattoos with meaning you can't deny.
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It's tough to find perfect tattoos with meaning.

You probably want something permanent on your body to mean something deeply, but how do you choose a tattoo that will still be significant in 5, 10, 15, or 50 years? Over time, tattoos have lost much of their stigma and many people consider them a form of art, but it's still possible to get a tattoo you regret.

So here are 20 tattoos you can't go wrong with. Each tattoo has its own unique meaning, but don't blame me if you still have to deal with questions that everyone with a tattoo is tired of hearing!

SEE RELATED: "Please Stop Asking What My Tattoos Mean"

1. A semicolon indicates a pause in a sentence but does not end. Sometimes it seems like you may have stopped, but you choose to continue on.


2. "A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor."


3. Top symbol: unclosed delta symbol which represents open to change. Bottom symbol: strategy.


4. "There are nights when the wolves are silent and only the moon howls."


5. Viking symbol meaning "create your own reality."


6. Greek symbol of Inguz: Where there's a will, there's a way.

7. Psalm 18:33 "He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he causes me to stand on the heights."


8. 'Ohm' tattoo that represents 4 different states of consciousness and a world of illusion: waking (jagrat), dreaming (swapna), deep sleep (sushupti), transcendental state (turiya) and world of illusion (maya).


9. Alchemy: symbolizes copper, means love, balance, feminine beauty, and artistic creativity.


10. The Greek word “Meraki" means to do something with soul, passion, love, and creativity or to put yourself into whatever you do.


11. Malin (Skövde, Sweden) – you have to face setbacks to be able to go forward.

12. Symbol meaning "thief" from "The Hobbit." It was the rune Gandalf etched into Bilbo's door so the dwarves could find his house.


13. “Lux in tenebris" means “light in darkness."

14. Anchor Tattoo: symbolizing strength and stability, something (or someone) who holds you in place, and provides you the strength to hold on no matter how rough things get.

15."Ad Maiora" is translated literally as “Towards greater things." It is a formula of greeting used to wish more success in life, career or love.


16. A glyph means “explore." It was meant as a reminder for me to never stop exploring.

17. "Aut inveniam viam aut faciam," meaning roughly, "Either I shall find a way, or I will make one."


18. Lotus Flower. It grows in muddy water, and it is this environment that gives forth the flower's first and most literal meaning: rising and blooming above the murk to achieve enlightenment.

19. The zen (or ensō) circle to me represents enlightenment, the universe and the strength we all have inside of us.

20. Two meanings. The moon affirms life. It looks as if it is constantly changing. Can remind us of the inconsistency of life. It also symbolizes the continuous circular nature of time and even karma.


SEE ALSO: Sorry That You're Offended, But I Won't Apologize For My Tattoos


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Shaving My Head Taught Me That Self-Confidence Does Not Depend On How I Look

Shaving my head helped me gain more self-confidence than I ever thought possible.

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Hair is something that has more power over us than we think. Historically, hair was viewed as a way to identify your gender, marital status, religion, or social position. In the Quapaw tribe, single Native American women wore their hair in braids, while the married woman wore it long and loose. Hair can be sacred, as well. Many Sikhs believe that hair should not be cut in any way, as it is a gift from God.

In most of Western society, hair serves simply as a gender marker. Although we are straying away from traditional gender roles, long hair usually signifies femininity and short hair represents masculinity. The media portrays desirable young women with long, silky, effortlessly perfect hair.

For me, my hair served as a comfort. Although I struggled with its frizziness, brittleness, and tangle-ability, I relied on it to make me feel secure. When it hung to my waist in high school, I would use it to cover up my arms and shoulders when I wore sleeveless tops, as I didn't like these parts of my body.

As a child, I remember watching Natalie Portman on the Oprah Winfrey show, talking about having to shave her head for a movie role. Even though I thought it was extreme, her calm and pragmatic demeanor about it changed my perceptions on having a shaved head. I remember her saying, "I always wanted to do it once in my life, anyways. It'll grow back my natural color eventually."

Months before I left for college, I began to devise a plan. I would dye my hair the fun colors that I wasn't allowed to in high school, and then shave it all off for the new year. I got started the week after I moved into my dorm and bleached my hair. As the chemicals burned my scalp and made my eyes water, I realized that there was no going back now. I had committed to shaving my head.

When January rolled around, I was starting to get apprehensive. The weekend I had marked on my calendar approached, and I trekked through a snowstorm to the nearest SportsClips. The barber seemed bewildered at my request but didn't give me any time to reconsider. She took the clippers right to my head, and I watched as my bleach-damaged locks fell to the ground, much like the snow outside.

The first week was hard. I didn't recognize my reflection and often caught myself reaching up to play with my non-existent hair out of habit. I only went out in girly outfits or a full face of makeup, as I felt the need to assert my femininity.

As the weeks went on, however, I began to fall in love with my stubbly head.

Would I recommend shaving your head? I would. Although the journey has been challenging, the benefits make the shave well worth it. Not only do save time in the morning, but I also have learned how to stop hiding behind my hair.

Shaving my head taught me how to stop relying on my appearance for self-assurance. When I had long hair, I would often base my validation around how I looked. Although it provided me temporary confidence, it meant that I wasn't placing any confidence in my other traits. I cared more about how the world saw me than how it heard me. Now that I've stripped myself of my comfort blanket, I feel as though I can conquer anything, no matter how I look.

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