For so many reasons, the term ‘good hair’ has gone out of style and fallen out of favor. Not only with educated Black folk, but also with many folk who are ‘educated’ in non-formal, non-debt inducing ways. Lots of folks agree that using that phrase is divisive and problematic. For anyone who has taken a course in Africana Studies, one may know that the term “good hair” sends a sting down many Black folks' spine as a familiar historical phrase that denotes a particular kind of respectable texture.
During my college years at a Historically Black University, I found it particularly interesting when people would change their wording mid sentence to signal that the girl, with the honey brown skin, and mid-back length loose wavy hair had a “nice texture for going natural” rather than say what they really wanted to say: Good hair. And although they realized the phrase had lost good favor, they (and I knew) exactly what they were signaling. Meanwhile, the equally as stunning, brown skinned girl with the kinky curly TWA (teenie weenie afro) was the shining example of why the Midwestern girl with the 3 packs of Brazilian weave would proclaim “…going natural just ain’t for everybody!”
So is saying “nice texture” just a new, more politically correct way of saying “good hair?” And are girls with more curl than kink who are two strand twisting their hair to death to help “define their curl pattern” the new jeri curl? Or does that just go down in the history books as hair manipulation in an attempt to get a “nice texture?” Are we still playing acceptability politics with our hair? Or is this just one of many examples of how we have not completely reached the promise land of cultural acceptance with Afro-textured hair?