What you should know about Afros

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Afros have a long history in the black community, particularly in the United States. With cultural black hair practices such as maize dating back to 3000 BC – with hairstyles often used to denote someone’s standing in society and the society to which they belong – the hairstyle was used again as a social message when afros rose in popularity in the United States in the 1960s .

“Afro is African but it wasn’t known as an afro until the ’60s and ’70s,” celebrity hairstylist and brush-up with top owner, Felicia Leatherwood, told Pop Sugar. “That was when Avros turned from a cultural heritage into a political manifesto.” That’s right: At the height of the civil rights movement in the 1960s, the “Black is Beautiful” movement saw black thought leaders encourage blacks to love their natural traits, especially their hair in its natural state. As a result of this movement, Avros became incredibly popular, and activists such as Angela Davis wore the hairstyle as a sign of rebellion against European beauty standards.

Nowadays, Afros are just a statement, especially in the midst of the fight to pass the CROWN Act, which seeks to ban discrimination based on hair texture and protective hairstyles at the federal level. “Today, the Afro is a symbol of acceptance, pride, and trust in the black community,” Leatherwood says.

Afro can come in many variations and styles, including high afro looks, afro puffs, and TWAs (small winnie the pooh) to name a few. The health of your hair is essential to any African hairstyle, and Leatherwood offers some helpful tips for caring for and maintaining healthy Afro hair.

“Moisture is an Afro’s best friend,” says Leatherwood. “Get a good moisturizer, leave-in conditioner, or oil spray to put on your chin.” Products like Creme of Nature Argan Oil Formula Conditioner ($8) and Creme of Nature Argan Oil Gloss and Shine Mist ($9) promise to keep your hair hydrated and, most importantly, easy to manage and detangle.

Another pro tip when wearing an afro: Increase the number of times your skin is deep. “Make sure to deeply moisturize twice a month for a healthy afro,” says Leatherwood. Try using an ultra-moisturizing hair mask, like Flawless by Gabrielle Union 5 Butter Miracle Masque ($10).

Now that you know how to take care of your Afro, get some inspiration from the pre-built Afro hairstyles.

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