“Good hair” is a fraught term for many people. According to Urban Dictionary, good hair is “a popular term in the African-American community, used to describe a black person’s hair that closely resembles the hair of a typical white person (i.e. soft, manageable, long, as opposed to “nappy” or “bad” hair).” Yikes.
So when we chose it as our name, we knew we were treading dangerous territory. We knew it would strike a nerve and probably piss some people off. But we also felt the time was right to shake things up, to reclaim the term and redefine its meaning.
We define good hair as healthy hair, and are particularly focused on making sure textured hair is included in this definition. This idea seemed simple enough the first time we talked about it, but several months of shopping it around has shown us that it’s not quite so straightforward.
First off, what the heck is “textured hair”? Despite having so-called textured hair ourselves, we hadn’t heard the term before embarking on this venture. Textured hair is any hair with a curl pattern – whether that curl pattern is kinky, curly, coily, or wavy. It’s the modern day, politically correct way of recognizing that the challenges of curls are not restricted to one race or ethnicity. Obviously an Afro is textured. But what about a Jewfro? Most definitely. We were surprised to learn lots of Indian girls have textured hair too! Basically, if your curly hair requires special TLC to keep it healthy, welcome to the textured hair club (relaxed, keratin and otherwise chemically-treated curly hair girls: this includes you too!).
And what is healthy hair? Had to ask google about this. We know from personal experience of being scolded by hairstylists at various points what’s NOT healthy hair. Breakage is not healthy. Excessive shedding or hair loss – not healthy. Our search yielded some helpful insights, the most useful being a “SELF” magazine article which defines healthy hair as “strong, yet soft with lots of shine.” Makes sense and is appropriately broad to allow for all sorts of things we textured folk do to make our hair work for us. Blowouts, braid outs, twist outs, even relaxers – all can yield hair that’s “strong, yet soft with lots of shine” if you use them in the right ways for your hair.
And finally, what is “GoodHair”? Right now, GoodHair is an early (i.e., concept) stage hair salon chain specifically designed for women with textured hair. Our goal is to deliver a service that’s healthy, fast, affordable in an environmentally friendly and socially responsible way. If you have textured hair, you know finding all these things in a salon catered to your hair type is a BIG, unprecedented deal. And that said, we hope that GoodHair will become much more than a salon. Our vision is to build a movement that redefines what it means to have “good hair.”
So whether your hair is natural, relaxed, or somewhere in between…whether you’re black, white, brown or somewhere in between…and whether you have a head full of textured hair or are simply down to support the cause, we invite you to join us.
This is GoodHair.