Natural Hair vs. Zoom Calls

In Culture, Lifestyle by Hannah Masresha

Never in a million years could we imagine a plausible scenario of attending lectures ten minutes after waking up. Thanks to online school, an unexpected freedom of comfortability was gifted to all students. While many students despise online school, it is hard to argue against the fact that they are effortless to attend. Yet, while Zoom calls have their perks, they pose an unexpected frustration. How should we style our natural hair?

Sure, we can wear sweatshirts and sweatpants, or move the camera so it can only show our good side. But the camera is not merciful to hair. For me, my casual, at-home hairstyles consist of stray curls reaching for the moon or a bonnet that hides braids that make me look like a boy. It is hard for me to feel confident or comfortable being seen on camera like that, so I, along with many others, attempt to style our hair. We all thought our hair could finally grow free and unhinged in quarantine, but it continues to suffer from frequent manipulation and handling.

After enduring this for an entire quarter, two things have been highlighted. First, it’s an incredible waste of time and energy. Imagine spending ten minutes on taming hair for a fifty-minute lecture. Ten minutes may not be much, but it prohibits the luxury to wake up and immediately hop into Zoom. Second, it highlights an important value of the “professionalism” of natural hair. Is a messy bun acceptable when it’s on natural hair? Or is it considered inappropriate? 

While this is merely for Zoom calls, this adds to a bigger conversation of the bar being raised for certain textures of hair. While some of us struggle to combat these societal roles because we do style our hair for Zoom calls, we will all continue to push for a more accepting environment for natural hair.