How can I help my dd love her mixed race hair?

(13 Posts)
GympieGirl Mon 07-Apr-14 13:33:24

My 3 year old is dying to have blonde straight hair. She has gorgeous dark brown curly type 3/4 hair. I'm very conscious about keeping it in good condition - only using natural products, using a satin pillowcase etc. Her nursery is very multicultural and she has friends from a wide range of backgrounds. Although I'm pretty sure her friends either have straight hair or Afro hair which is always styled in cornrows etc. She gets very upset after I've washed her hair and "it's curly not long!" If it's a choice between Sleeping Beauty and Tiana she'll choose Sleeping Beauty every time. Any ideas on how I can help her see blonde and straight is not the only type of beautiful?

sebsmummy1 Mon 07-Apr-14 13:42:46

First of all I think your DDs hair sounds absolutely beautiful. I used to have ringletty hair in my youth and I totally loved it, unfortunately it has gone wavy as I've aged. Beceuse of this I drool at mixed race hair, I think it is totally stunning and I am sure as your daughter gets older she will receive tons of compliments on it and she will start to really enjoy it.

I suspect it's a case of one of her friends having a look that she considers pretty and wants to be the same. It could even be the drip drip of adverts and children's TV/films that's making her think a certain style is prettier than her own. It honestly won't last. It sounds as though you are doing the right things. Keep reinforcing the positive and how pretty she is.

Sammy3 Thu 10-Apr-14 00:35:51

DD1 went through that phase. She wanted "down hair" as she called it. It's hard to explain to a girl that young that people with very straight hair often want curly hair or hair with more body. I tried that but also did her hair in lots of different hairstyles & told her how versatile her hair was. She eventually outgrew that phase but I suspect she'd swap her hair for straight hair even today. She does now understand that everyone envies things about other people, like body shape, hair, height, etc, so she's now very positive about her own overall body image.

Sammy3 Thu 10-Apr-14 00:42:54

Also, I agree with sebsmummy, it is likely that she has a friend with the look she wants. DS1's best friend at the time had straight, blonde hair. I think it helped as she got older seeing popular singers & actors who were black or mixed. It is the entertainment industry that influences what's popular with kids & teens after all.

SavoyCabbage Thu 10-Apr-14 00:48:47

My dd was exactly the same. She wanted long hair.

There is a book called 'I love my hair' and there is a black Rapunzel book in the Jump at the Sun series that my dd loved. It sounds like she has lots of multicultural friends which has got yo help. My dds are very much in the minority. Also it took me years to understand how to look after their hair.

Oh, there's also a DVD on Amazon of a pantomime where Brandi is Cinderella.

MysticMugBug Thu 10-Apr-14 01:06:24

Tell her that people/children are more likely to feature both on tv and be chosen as models for being mixed race. They have a unique charm that is desired by many.
If you don't want to go down the vanity route, maybe tell her that every person has something unique to themselves and that differences should be celebrated.
I had to learn the latter late in life sad

Your DD's hair sounds gorgeous and hopefully there'll come a time when she'll love it.

I am Caucasian and have brownish, wavy, prone-to-frizz hair and always wanted shiny, black, swishy Asian/oriental hair - no idea why (there was nobody with hair like that around) and I kept hoping my hair would 'darken' as I got older hmm. It didn't and I certainly loved how versatile my hair was when I was growing up now I hate the grey

Maybe it's a matter of 'wanting what she doesn't have' for your DD? If she had straight blonde hair, she'd envy ringlet curls?

Acknowledge how she feels about her hair; don't dismiss it: 'Ah, you don't like your hair, you wished you had blonde straight hair like xyz' 'Come for a hug, I am sorry you are upset' 'I love your gorgeous curls - the way it feels and smells and looks'

She's 3. She'll change her mind in due course, most likely.
smile

TeaAddict235 Thu 10-Apr-14 16:09:27

hi Op, give it time and try not to put too much emphasis on a) her hair, or b) external beauty. As someone else said, media are popularising people of dual heritage nowadays anyway, so at least she'll grow up with a wide selection of role models; think Jessica Ennis, or Halle Berry, Scary Spice, Oona King, etc, all with different expressions of mixed race hair. I have black cousins who would have literally killed for looser coils (watch the film Dark Girls for enlightenment), and who are only now coming to terms with the fact that pure afro hair can be beautiful.

No one has it perfectly sorted. True, getting books etc can help, but I'd rather just focus on my DCs other attributes.

MannishBoy Thu 10-Apr-14 16:14:13

Hi Gympie, our DD was the same at that age. All her friends at nursery were blonde, blue eyed. It wasn't til she went to proper school, with more kids like her who were the same age, that she thought differently.

We used to point out pretty, clever, successful mixed race women on the tv, or children in adverts. "Look, DD, she has hair like you, she's pretty isn't she?". Seeing her face when she saw more and more women with hair like hers was so wonderful.

thoughtsbecomethings Thu 10-Apr-14 16:14:24

My Dd has just turned 18 and finally has grown to love her hair mixed raced Afro.
She use to long for poker straight hair like all her friends and they wanted her curly hair !

Notfootball Sun 20-Apr-14 12:20:22

My daughter went through this phase at about 3, wanting to know why she didn't have blonde, straight hair like x & y. I always pointed out how beautiful her hair is and that I bet that x & y wish they had gorgeous curls like hers. It helped that all her friends' mums would be all over DD's curls when it was loose. Things have improved since DD went into reception and has other mixed race girls in her class. When we're out, I also point out other older mixed race girls with beautiful hair like hers. Little children always look up to older children.

Shallan Sun 20-Apr-14 12:23:32

There's a great Sesame Street song called I love my hair - the writer has an adopted black daughter who was wishing she had straight blonde hair, and wrote the song about how great Afro curls are. It's on you tube if you want to take a look

Serendipity30 Sun 27-Apr-14 01:25:19

Tell her that people/children are more likely to feature both on tv and be chosen as models for being mixed race. They have a unique charm that is desired by many. oh my God the ignorance of this comment is too much.

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