Ice-cold take: The natural hair scene is a little too focused on perfect curls. Doesn’t matter if it’s S-shaped, coiled, or both — that pattern better be defined. Preferably with a truckload of product. And while we all like to indulge our crowns with that other kind of creamy crack (the one that doesn’t burn) it can be a whole lot of work.
What happens when growing and maintaining long, defined curls becomes the ultimate goal but your hair just doesn’t… do that naturally? It becomes a pain in the ass. More than that — it’s another ridiculous beauty standard to live up to. And it’s one Texas-based TikTokker Sasha, known as @Lipglossssssssss, is over.
“[I’m tired of] fighting against what my hair wants to do,” she tells Allure over the phone one afternoon in late July. Her very tight coils naturally experience shrinkage — meaning that when her hair dries, it looks shorter. People with highly-textured hair often experience this phenomenon, but on type 4C hair, it is even more pronounced.
She decided to embrace her shrinkage and share the journey on TikTok. This simple act of self-acceptance sparked a trend on social media that aims to properly center those with kinky hair. “I feel like the constant need to stretch your hair was giving me anxiety,” Sasha says. “As soon as you wash it, you’re trying to figure out a thousand ways to make it look as long as possible.”
In the original video, which she has since made private, Sasha candidly shares her frustrations and feelings of vulnerability surrounding her unstretched hair. She acknowledges her shrunken coils, but still only lightly styles and moisturizes. Then, she lets them be. She jokes that she can “only pull white boys” with her hair in this state, a reference to how texturism (preference for looser patterns as a result of white supremacy) plays out within the Black community.
Though her joke did cause a bit of controversy, Sasha says her goal was just to show herself love, not start a trend. “I don’t want to be part of a movement,” Sasha says. “I just want to be myself.” Her videos still underscore the need for natural hair spaces to actually be inclusive of kinks as they exist. Though her initial clip is gone, the sound still lives on. Other creators are using it in their content about embracing shrinkage.