Hair is monumental in self-esteem and self-confidence. There is a complex relationship with hair in the black community, and Mixed-ish tackled it head-on.
On mixed-ish Season 1 Episode 3, the children were faced with the choice of staying natural or changing their hair for picture day.
The saddest part was that Bow and her siblings thought nothing of the differences in their hair until a teacher pointed it out.
A teacher that was supposed to supply children with a safe place of learning made Bow feel like an outsider. She has enough of that out of the classroom, she doesn't need that from an adult.
Bow's teacher tells her to come to school with neat hair for picture day which sends her parents into high alert. Unfortunately, this mentality is common, especially in the workplace.
There is a stigma with non-straight hair that most people of color have dealt with from a very young age.
This idea is even pushed by other people of color in an attempt to conform to societal beauty standards to have what is considered more manageable hair.
Denise to the rescue! She informs the children of the different hair options available to them, against Alicia's wishes.
Embracing hair can be a journey, and it takes time and, to be honest, money. Either way, you can face a problem.
Santamonica: Hold on, so there are people who do hair for a living.
Paul: Yeah, but…
Santamonica: And I trusted you.
As we saw Bow and Santamonica straighten their hair to fit beauty set standards, we saw Johan trying to cut his own to blend in more with the black community he was trying to be a part of in school.
The scene at the salon brought back memories. Years of relaxer, texturizers, and flat irons. Hours upon hours in a hairdryer until my scalp and neck burned.
All for the chance to look like a celebrity. Only to find out 85% of the people of tv wear wigs.
Most women today wear their hair natural, so looking back at this period is eye-opening.
Then came the term known as good hair. The number of times I've heard that used is astounding.
The fact that a person can rank hair from good to bad is beyond ridiculous.
No matter how you spun it. The term good hair was bad for black self-esteemAdult Bow
Good hair is equivalent to "pretty for a black girl," and it can feel like a backhanded compliment.
These terms can lead to a complex which explains the sensitive relationship that black people have with hair.
Bow revels in the salon and feels the magic of the atmosphere.
She feels accepted and able to explore with her hair without judgment.
Johan was met with opposition on both sides, the poor kid. He tries to go to the white barber with no luck.
They are unsure on how to give him the cut that he wants.
He tried to go to the black barber and had the same problem.
Have no fear, super dad is here! Paul proves once again that he can hold down the house while his wife is working.
He handles all hair care for the children and spends hours with Johan trying to give him a look that he is happy with.
He goes the extra mile for his children, and we can always appreciate a good dad as well as a good mom.
You guys can do whatever you want. But to be honest, when you change your hair it makes me feel like I didn’t raise you to love yourself.Alicia
Through all the craziness that was happening at the children's school Alicia never got to reflect on how her words and actions were affecting the children.
She had dealt with similar circumstances in her past and was throwing her baggage at the children. As Paul said, self-love takes time, and the children are just realizing they are different from the general population.
They were not taught how to handle their uniqueness, so they may not be ready to stand out yet.
So I’m not a good black person if my hair is straight?Santamonica
Santamonica is quickly becoming a favorite character. I'm not sure it's her age or blunt tongue, but she made me laugh this entire episode. The witty one-liners have me laughing out of my chair.
By the end of this episode, the family has a deeper conversation about hair. This was the best speech of the episode.
It makes the statement that black hair, in general, is beauty. Though I am an advocate for natural hair, kudos to Mixed-ish for emphasizing that whatever you choose is beautiful.
Some women like to have natural hair, and some like it straightened, but either way is great.
Paul: So none of that is your hair?
Denise: It’s all mine because I paid for it.
A good number of women wear wigs and style protection. This allows their natural hair to stay healthy.
I did not expect Denise to remove her wig. Honestly, I didn't even know she was wearing one.
This was a beautiful moment to address that even if you purchase hair, that doesn't make you less than anyone else.
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Comment Below. Start a conversation.
I want to hear your thoughts on this episode, as well as your relationship with hair.
Mariha Morales is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.