“Mommy, that little girl looks like me,” my daughter says, excitedly, tugging my arm to get me to turn my head as we cruise down the aisle of Target. A cute black girl with a halo of tight curls is featured on the signage in the girls’ department, decked out in a brightly patterned outfit that my daughter would definitely wear.
“I see,” I tell my daughter now. “She has hair just like you, huh?”
She nods but doesn’t say anything else. When we get to the toy aisle, again, she scans the shelves looking for dolls that “look like her.”
When we’re watching TV, she’s looking for young girls who “look like her.”
When we’re out at community events, she’s looking for young girls who “look like her.”
She’s seeking that representation everywhere. Representation matters. Nothing will grab my daughter’s attention faster than seeing a young black girl with big natural hair.
My daughter has big, big hair with perfect curls. It’s all I can do not to be jealous when we sit down to wash, condition and style her hair every Sunday. I’ve spent a good chunk of her life trying to instill in her that her hair is beautiful, that it is magic and she is lucky to have it.
“See how your hair grows up, away from your scalp?” I ask her. “Your hair can’t be restrained by gravity! That’s a superpower!”
We talk about her hair so much because earlier in her life, that self-love wasn’t quite present. I almost cried when she came home in second grade and told me she was upset that all the other girls in class had straight hair. “Why doesn’t my hair look like theirs?”
Again, representation matters.
I’m thankful to Dove Hair, which not only offers products specifically for different curl patterns with its Quench Absolute line, but now the company has also started a conversation about curly haired representation. Their new #LoveYourCurls emojis (and GIFs) literally add curly hair to the conversation.
These emojis can be used in all text and messenger apps (i.e. iMessage, SMS/text, Facebook messenger, WhatsApp, etc.), addressing what has been a crazy oversight all these years. Three out of five women say they cannot accurately depict how they look using emojis—in 2015. I’m so happy that number will change now with these new Dove Hair emojis.
After I downloaded the emojis to my phone, I immediately sent off a few texts and showed my daughter. Her smile grew wide. “Mommy, she looks like me!”
Indeed she does, baby. Indeed she does.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Dove. The opinions and text are all mine.