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Curly Hair vs. Straight Hair: It's On!

Curly Hair vs. Straight Hair: It's On!

Two writers are duking it out over curly hair and styling irons. Both have curly hair, but only one is happy about it. Emma Cowing, who loves her flat irons, curses her wavy locks: "Left to its own devices, my hair would descend into unruly curls then run off and join a 1980s tribute band." On the other side of the argument is Fiona MacGregor, who urges curly girls to "embrace your natural kinks and say no to the tyranny of tamed tresses."

If you think those are fightin' words, you haven't seen anything yet. To see where it gets a little catty,

Cowing argues that styling irons are a "natural progression of women's rights," and that straight hair is superior to curly hair:

A woman with straightened hair looks in control. She looks as if she cares about her appearance—and that she's spent time perfecting it. . . . This small, unassuming instrument can turn ugly ducklings into swans, create beauty and inner pride, and restore self-confidence in even the most timid of women, all in a ceramic-plated flash.

And MacGregor retaliates:

For centuries curls were something to be proud of. Did Botticelli's Venus entice the world with ironed hair? No, she used those wavy locks blowing all over the place to seduce. Yet now straight hair is, according to celebrity magazines at least, an expression of feminine perfection to which we should all aspire. What kind of evil mastermind of female manipulation would decree that not only must women be thin and beautiful, but they also have to be straight-haired too?

Both writers seem intentionally provocative, but if you had to back one argument, which would it be?


Join The Conversation
OneBodytoLove OneBodytoLove 7 years
I have unruly wavy hair that doesn't really look good unruly all of the time. So I like it straight, but even straight it can be a little wavy which is nice.
kittyktpink kittyktpink 8 years
i had completely straight hair and i didn't like it very much so i had a perm. this lasted for 4 months but although it was quite hard work, everyone loved it! i think its best to mix and match.
leanneluvsu leanneluvsu 9 years
As a black woman with chemically-straightened hair, I've always been envious of the natural curly look. Relaxing is intensive on the hait and scalp, while curly hair is versatile. Unfortunately, just a drop of moisture will cause my hair to revert so relaxing has it benefits. once upon a
maisiegirl maisiegirl 9 years
I have curly hair and mostly wear it natural. The only time it gets a blow out is when my hairstylist does it, but other times, I'm not afraid to use hot rollers to get a different look. My curly hair travels well and it is part of me, so I've gotta love it. Besides, my hair is what makes me unique and expresses that untamed part of my persona!!! :-)
coachluvr33 coachluvr33 9 years
I have thick curly hair than I can straighten (thanks to Paul Mitchell), but I prefer it wild and curly. I think it just suits my face and my personality better. If I straighten it, I usually just put it up in a high ponytail off my face. I feel different when it is straight though, kinda like an imposter. Isn't that weird??
snowbunny11 snowbunny11 9 years
My hair just doesn't look right unless it's flat-ironed. Seriously,two minutes with a flat-iron gives me entirely different hair, it's crazy.
janetta13 janetta13 9 years
I have curly hair and I hate it. Its just too big and frizy. I flat iron my hair or blow it out and put it in a bun for a while so It gets wavy. I have not left my hair curly in years!
bugness bugness 9 years
I agree with Rhiannon... Cowing is full of it and either severely judgmental (if she's got straight hair) or self-hating. It all comes down to personal opinion. Stay out of other people's grooming habits. A natural progression of women's rights? More like retrograde! Birth control is progression, being a slave to ideal hair is NOT. I think it's true about the grass always being greener on the other side. I've always envied curly hair, but not just the well-groomed curls. I was always jealous of the girls that no matter what they did with their hair, it looked more done than mine. I feel like I wouldn't have to spend nearly as much time on makeup if I had some body on my head. Most women with straight hair have to work just as hard to look polished!
almostloli almostloli 9 years
i like both. but frizzy hair is a total no-no, and curls/waves sometimes come along with frizz 'bonuses', which i really hate, that's why i regularly smoothen my hair (using l'oreal extenso every few months) then i can go either straight or curly :D
kungfubunni kungfubunni 9 years
i have super curly hair, i don't own any hot styling products, just a brush and some goop and i'm out the door. i think curls are great and super feminine. but if you're hair is striaght, that cool too! why are we saying one is better than the other?
Mere Mere 9 years
I have wavy hair, uncontrollably large and messy wavy hair. Some girls can pull off the wave and the curl. But then there are some, like me for example, who look like they stuck their finger in a light socket. I keep my hair short and straight. Some girls were blessed with great curls or great sleek hair. I have neither. But I work with it, all I can say is thank God for flat irons!
stayplus stayplus 9 years
Curly hair just takes too much effort to manage for everyday wear. My hair is a mixture of curly and straight, that easily frizzes up. One time my friend asked me: "Hey, did you wash your hair last night?" I said: "Yeah! How did you know?" and She replied: "Because you look like the Lion King." I was so glad that I was able to save up enough money to chemically straighten my hair for the first time in high school. From then on, I was hooked. Sometimes when I'm running late I don't even bother brushing my hair. I just run my fingers through it and it looks neat and perfect.
Garbich Garbich 9 years
I don't think that either style is 'superior', it really depends on what looks best for you! but of course straight hair rocks(because mine are straight!!!!;P )
barbienaki barbienaki 9 years
i have curly hair...but i really do hate them. Straight hair for life!
Rhiannon Rhiannon 9 years
As a naturally curly girl I am so offended by the "not clean, not professional, not polished" comments. That is complete B.S. What gives you the right to make a value judgement about me based on the texture of my hair, or any other part of my appearance for that matter? I was born with this hair, I didn't choose it. But I will say hat I hope you kids get my curly hair. Curly girls need to fight these kinds of stereotypes. Why should I spend so much time, money and damage my hair on top of that, to fit into some ridiculous ideal that my hair is not naturally intended to fulfill? I have curly hair. I love it, it looks great. Get over it. I love that I spend all of 10 minutes on my hair in the morning and get compliments on it all day. You can keep your flat irons and chemical straightening, I'll just continue to air dry my lovely locks. I am so glad the beauty industry has started making some incredible products that are formulated for curly hair. Why fight against your hair, why not figure out how to work with what you have?
BlooBayoo BlooBayoo 9 years
It's not just a matter of 'choosing to' love your curly. And all you straight haired girls who are jealous, don't be. Most of us curlies don't have "two hairstyles built in." We've got one section of super kinky hair; one section of slightly wavy and coarse hair; one teeny, tiny spiral curl section that looks good every blue moon; and, the rest is just a frizzy dry mass of Little-Orphan-Annie-with-her-finger-stuck-in-a-light-socket hair. Sometimes it doesn't suit your face or your personality. Sometimes it's not a matter of getting the "right" cut or using the "right" products. Sometimes curly hair just doesn't work no matter what you do to it. And really, it's just hair. Why does it have to turn into a larger statement on womanhood or self-esteem?
iAMthefuture iAMthefuture 9 years
My hair is naturally curly which is sometimes a pain but is great because sometimes complete strangers come up to me and admire my hair!
breakbrooklyn breakbrooklyn 9 years
btw i think it's ok to have preferences but trying to create a war between the two hair types is pointless and doesn't strike me as feminist so shame on the first woman (the other woman just seems to want girls to love their curls, she never downed straight hair) that being said, i do love curly hair haha but mine is straight. both can be beautiful though
breakbrooklyn breakbrooklyn 9 years
just love your hair the way it is! what are they arguing about? i'm more against the first lady though b/c she HATES her hair. in the words of that male cheerleader in bring it on, "not cool". ppl need to start appreciating what they have. straight vs. curly is one of the stupidest arguments ever b/c it only started when men decided they had the power to decide what female beauty was and they're continuing to do it today. smh
megania megania 9 years
Maybe it's just because I've never had them, but I like curls better than straight. My hair is so thick and straight that I couldn't even hold a perm when I was little. I wish I had curls.
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