Endless Discussion: Where, Oh Where is the Love for Curly Hair ?

Sunday, 14 February 2016

Where, Oh Where is the Love for Curly Hair ?

It’s true, there are hardly any YA MC’s that have the trait of curly hair. I mean there’s hardly any MC’s with curly hair. The classics like Sense and Sensibility and Emma by the inspirational Jane Austen feature woman with curly hair but where’s the love for curly hair in books in the modern day and age? Where are their voices?

When I say curly hair, I’m referring to the spectrum of curly hair, from the wavy hair, loose curls to the tight locks and beautiful afros. I myself have curly hair, I don’t really know how to describe it rather than it’s a raging thick afro of loose locks and curls and if I read about an MC with the same trait I’d most likely scream in happiness. Like, that’s someone like me in a book! I can relate, I will relate with everything the curly haired protagonist has to say.

If little girls and boys who have curly hair read books about strong and inspiring curly haired people, there is no doubt in my mind that this character would be their hero and they’d aspire to be like them.

See, when I was four, I received a VHS of the first Harry Potter movie and when I saw Hermione Granger, she was all I ever wanted to be. Her hair kind of reflected my own and I fell utterly in love with her character. We NEED more characters like her; we need more voices like hers.
Hermione doing her thang !

I get why most MC’s have straight hair, it’s easier to maintain and I guess can be perceived as ‘normal’; and once someone has curly hair it stands out and the person is depicted as ‘wild’ AND ‘exotic’ in correlation to their hair. Straight hair is even perceived as neat and tidy whilst curly is messy.

Even straight hair sounds more ‘fancy’ when adjectives such as shiny, silky, smooth are used to describe it. But compared to curly hair, it's hard to describe in a loving way. However, that shouldn’t influence the decision of choosing a characters style of hair. Curly hair can belong to powerful, strong, generous, kind, good natured people. For example one of my favourite people Amandla Stenberg. She's such an inspirational young woman! I'd love to see characters like her in books !

We are in need curly haired characters! See, I never really loved my curly hair, because all my favorite characters have flowing long straight hair. The only curly haired character I’ve EVER been compared to is Sideshow Bob and don’t know about you, but I hate Sideshow Bob and having that comparison whist I was growing up honestly just hurt. No one wants to be compared to a bad guy or to the opposite sex. Plus Harry Potter back then wasn’t really big amongst my friends, so they never really knew Hermione, so I was stuck with Sideshow Bob.

Image result for hermione granger frizzy hair
I'd rather be Hermione 

If I had more Hermione Grangers when I was little, I can honestly say I’d be more confident with whom I am. I’d be flaunting my curly natural hair without the shame of the possibility that people would link Sideshow Bob with me.

I want to see more curly haired people in books; I want badass female characters with some killer locks that are dangerous, witty but at the same time elegant and gracious; I want some brothers who share the afro trait and the possibility of killing you without you knowing because they’re assassins. I want some fierce curly haired feminists! I want more curls on boys and girls! Is that too much to ask for?

Lastly, all you curly haired woman and men out there, you are beautiful! We need to show more love for them in books to celebrate them, to appreciate them and to acknowledge them! Curly hair is beautiful. You are beautiful.


Here's a list of some curly haired MC's;

Clary Fray from The City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments)
Eleanor from Eleanor and Park
Scarlet and Winter from The Lunar Chronicles
Mia from Boomerang
Maddy from Everything Everything

11 comments on "Endless Discussion: Where, Oh Where is the Love for Curly Hair ?"
  1. Oh erm. I don't think I can remember a female protagonist with curly hair (besides Hermione) just now. You're absolutely right though. I promise you to write one with curly hair in my book! I've always been in love with curls and ginger hair and basically...I really like characters that look different and less mainstream as I hate to be common. I'm actually glad about this post because now I can give my own character another dimension thanks to you :')

    Oh wait, Clary Fray (Fairchild) from The Mortal Instruments has curly hair!! And Lily Evans Potter has been portrayed with wavy hair (but I don't think it was ever described in the books).

    1. Thank you so much ! and oh yes Clary Fairchild, how could I forget.

      Ginger curls are amazing ! I actually love them so much too.

  2. YES I BACK THIS 100%. And where are the POC with curly hair? We still have "fiery red curls" and "wavy blond locks" in books from time to time, but POC with naturally curly hair is definitely something that's missing in YA.

    1. Yes definitely ! I'm waiting on some natural afros like my own to pop up cause I'd LOVE to read about them!
      Sometimes when I read about curly haired side characters too, they straighten their hair because they don't like it. I mean I don't mind people straightening it, it's just a message I don't like to read about in books. "You have to have straight hair to be beautiful". That's what makes me sad

  3. Gosh that would be awesome tho😍 I would love to read about a MC with a hair like yours, that would honestly be so fun. Thinking about them hiding weapons in that beautiful cloud of hair

  4. Gosh that would be awesome tho😍 I would love to read about a MC with a hair like yours, that would honestly be so fun. Thinking about them hiding weapons in that beautiful cloud of hair

  5. I'm currently listening to a middle grade book, The Thing About Jellyfish, whose MC has curly hair. It's unruly and she never thought much of it until she was about to go into middle school and her best friend started trying to change it for her. Not sure if she'll end up being a strong character, but I have hope!

    1. I hope so too ! I'm definitely going to try this book out as well

  6. I'm pretty sure that Maya from The Star-Touched Queen had curly hair and that it was mentioned frequently throughout the book. Hm...I know I've read more characters with curly hair. I'll have to think on this some more but I love the idea of this post. Unforunately I have straight hair and wish so much that it was curly. lol.

  7. Wow, I don't think this is something I ever thought about - but then again I don't usually pay that much attention to the protagonist's appearance XD I tend to only remember hair and eye colour. Hermione is the best, but I do hope you get to see some more awesome curly haired heroines you can look up to!

    Aentee at Read at Midnight

  8. Holy crap I've never even thought of this. I've always wanted brown curly hair and green eyes - my main character in the book I'm writing looks like that


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