Can we talk about Black-ish? (Let’s Discuss)

So, this will probably be a more unconventional post. But hey, who doesn’t love experimenting every so often?

This week we got something I didn’t know I needed in my life. Yes, I’m talking about the latest episode of Black-ish. Keep in mind, if you haven’t seen the episode yet there are some spoilers ahead.

Black-ish Season 6 Episode 11 Bow and Diane

The producers really did something different with this episode. They actually had some of the black women who work on Black-ish sit down and recount their own hair stories. This part hit me in my soft spot, y’all. I love hearing from older black women about their own hair experiences and just how shared it is.

It was great to see this on screen and to know that our shared stories are being told. I remember when I first started doing my own hair and having to learn what it really meant to be natural. It was difficult having to learn at a time when most of my friends and family had their hair relaxed.

Before I get too sappy, I can’t go on without mentioning that there was also some cartoonification, costume changes, and a full song turned music video. They got real creative this episode. Somehow, they still managed to have a portion of the episode devoted to Dre and his barbecuing competition with Junior.

Black-ish Season 6 Episode 11 Dre, Jack and Junior

All this to say, I’m so happy Black-ish decided to tackle this topic. They really did their thing and rolled with it. I’m pretty sure I’ll be re-watching this episode, it was just so good.

Let’s Talk About it!

Here’s the unconventional part y’all. I’m going to ask a few questions, answer said questions, and ask for your own answers. Please don’t leave me hanging! I really do want to know what y’all have to say.

Have you seen the latest episode of Black-ish?

Well, um, yeah. Hence this discussion post. The real question is, have you? (So meta)

What did you think of it?

I loved it. It was definitely what I needed to see this week.

What was your favorite part?

I’m a sucker for cartoons, especially with the way it was anime inspired. My inner kid nerd self wanted to be a part of that.

How do you style your hair?

I’m natural and my go to is a twisted bantu knot out. It’s where you twist your hair, wrap those twists into a bantu knot, then let it out the next day. They give me so much volume, fluff, and a little bit of curl for my type 4 hair.

Right now, my hair is in box braids which is super rare for me. It’s literally a once or twice a year hairstyle but I’ve had fun with it. I got ombré hair this time around so some of the tips are burgundy and some are blond.

How has television and social media affected the way you view your hair?

Black-ish natural hair

I used to want straight hair so bad as a kid. I would literally beg my mom for a relaxer but she never let me get one. She used to straighten my hair with a hot comb every Sunday before church.

I didn’t start to take care of my hair until high school when my tender headed scalp couldn’t take it anymore. YouTube taught me everything I know about my hair. I still follow Naptural85 to this day.

What lessons would you tell your daughters about their hair?

If I have daughters, I want to teach them to love their hair because there’s truly nothing else like it. Every strand is unique. I want to let them know that God took his time with her scalp, making sure every strand had enough love.

How has the natural movement affected your life?

It’s been so great for me. The natural hair movement helped me embrace my natural hair. It gave me the confidence I needed to get my voice out there. I’m so thankful this movement exists in the first place.

Tell me your hair story, I want to know. Let’s start a discussion in the comments!

Author: Rachelle Saint Louis

Rachelle Saint Louis is a Haitian-American writer, born and raised in South Florida. She received a 2018 Silver Medal in the Scholastic Art and Writing Competition for her poem “Red Blood Cell.” She is currently a Psychology and English double major at Florida Atlantic University. Her poetry has been published in Rigorous Magazine. Rachelle has been writing poetry since the 7th grade and you can often find her performing Spoken Word at local open mics.

7 thoughts on “Can we talk about Black-ish? (Let’s Discuss)”

  1. I’m not a huge TV watcher so, no I haven’t seen the latest episode of Blackish and I probably wont see it. But, I’ve heard nothing but excellent things about the program and I’m happy something like it is available on television.

    I ‘went natural’ 10 years ago this June. Believe it or not, I did it after watching Chris Rock’s movie documentary Good Hair! Lol. I watched it on a redeye flight from Maryland to Vegas. Landed back home in Maryland, had my hair cut super short and never looked back. Growing up, I’d always had a perm and was able to grow my hair long. I’ve watched women in my family wear their hair long, short, braided, my mom is locked. Hair was an accessory. I had ‘Patra braids’ (box braids), long straight wraps, short bobs and even shorter finger-waves. I had mid back length hair up until college when I chopped it off for the infamous T-Boz shortcut with long sides. 🤦🏾‍♀️ Only thing I haven’t done is weaves. Too much maintenance, too expensive and I get to darn hot for all that on my head! Lol.

    Anyway, I’ve treated being natural the same. I’ve grown it long and I’ve chopped it off. I appreciate the journey of realizing the world had me convinced I needed a perm and that my natural hair was something that needed to be ‘done up’. The truth is mine and everyone else’s hair is just fine exactly the way it grows out of our head. Best, Shawn

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for your response Shawn! I love hearing about your hair journey and all the different styles you’ve tried 😀 I don’t think I’m quite as bold right now with my hair, but when I first started styling it I used to experiment a whole lot.

      I remember cutting off my heat damaged ends (about four inches) and my family freaking out because they thought my hair would stop growing. Now my hair is longer than it’s ever been and I’m way more confident now than I was at 12.

      The growth is evident, thank you for sharing your story 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I haven’t seen the newest episode of Black-ish yet but I love watching the show. I’m bi-racial half white and black so my hair journey was a weird one. My mom didn’t have any clue what to do with my hair and it went from straight to fried to curly over the years. I learned most of hair journey through social media especially Youtube and went natural in 2013.
    I really wanted to fit in with the family I had ( a white group with straight hair) so I really struggled with my identity and my hair was a huge part of that. However, I’m really glad that the natural movement is as big as it is it made me love my natural hair and rock my curls the way they were given to me.
    AS for my hair, I don’t do much to it I mostly just let it lay the way it wants to or pull it back at work. I’m hoping to try some different hairstyles though this year. I cut my hair really short last year so it’s growing out again so I can do more this year with it! My hair is type 3 and I’m still figuring out what to do with my hair most of the time but I’m much happier working with my hair.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s great! I love hearing about how the natural hair movement has impacted so many women of color. It can be so much harder when you’re biracial and/or don’t have anyone else in your family with your hair type. I love that YouTube helped you out the same way it did for me, those videos really did teach me everything I know about taking care of my hair. Through my hair journey, I learned to become more confident in my own skin and even convinced my mom and grandma to go natural 😀

      If I were to straighten my hair right now, it would be about mid-back but I have been thinking about cutting it for years. I think I might cut it short when I’m older because I honestly love the look. Thank you for commenting Arya 🙂


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