In Netflix’s new original movie starring Sanaa Lathan “Nappily Ever After,” viewers are given an insight into the life of living with black hair.
The plot of the movie follows perfect Violet Jones in her fairy-tale life turned upside down.
As a child she “was a reflection of her mother” so this meant having to maintain – in her mother’s eyes having straight hair and keeping it that way.
Her mother set her up to want this certain way of life, to believe her hair will get her to her dreams and goals she has set for herself.
In the black community having straight hair opens doors for women of color in any industry. It’s also a harsh reality.
A flat-iron doesn’t just do the job as seen in the movies.
Ask any black woman over 18 what they had to do for straight hair.
Perms, relaxers and – the worst of all – the hot comb are just the bare minimum to feeling satisfied.
The movie is set up in sections to represent which hair stage the main character is in, starting from straightened and ending at “nappily.”
For the lead character, growing up and living with her natural hair became more of a task than a luxury.
Her hair needed to be perfect. It ran her into a rut that caused a mental breakdown leaving her with no hair at all.
In a Britney Spears-style moment, she shaved her hair off in a drunken state to soon realize she let her appearance run her life.
Violet was uncomfortable in her own skin, but she was too busy to understand it.
Signs throughout the movie showed this was a fact, even more so when she shaved her hair off, her smile silently spoke freedom.
The movie was made more for the Naturalista movement, these are a group of individuals that embrace their natural hair by using products safe for curly hair and using little to no heat to stop the risk of damaging their hair.
In known stories from random people, they went through the same issues Violet had, minus going bald but they did the big chop that cut out whatever damage their hair had and gave them the chance to regrow out their original hair they were born with.
Though the movie depicted well that women of color should embrace the natural look, it still kept going back to a repetitive plot of the lead character needing to be perfect.
Violet even helped a young girl who was a child with nappy hair and made her feel beautiful. She just couldn’t get it through her own head that her hair didn’t need to be straight for her to be accepted.
Then just when it was thought that Violet was happy in her skin she let someone convince her to straighten her hair because he wanted her to be her old self for a night.
This movie didn’t live up to its hype, but by taking the sexual content out of the movie to make it kid friendly it could be a great movie young black girl growing up in the world need to learn that they can embrace their natural hair.