Natural Hair in the Summer Air: How Do You Wear Your Hair For Interviews??

10:03 AM

Part of the exciting changes happening in my life right now is the process of interviewing for some really interesting career opportunities. Recently, I have been asked what I do with my hair when I interview? I have been asked this before, but it's such an interesting question - as women (and specifically women of color) our hair becomes this being all it's own. This entity that we have to think about when we go in to a new environment. I have had the privilege to work in several different industries, so I understand that "proper" interview looks will differ from one place to another. When I first went natural, I only wore goddess braids or low buns when interviewing. I was still unsure of the my identity with natural hair and didn't want it to detract from my skills. I would shrink my hair (and in some ways, myself) to avoid standing out in what I thought could be the wrong way. After moving to a more creative industry, I started to fluff these twist outs and was always met with nothing but positivity. But as opportunities for advancement open up, in areas of an industry that could be a bit more conservative, I have been faced with the issue of how to wear my hair for interviews.

1. Decide How You Feel Most Confident

When it is super humid or raining, I know that I will feel most comfortable with my hair in a goddess twist or top knot. These styles will allow me to worry less about shrinkage, and focus solely on conveying my skillset to the interviewer. It isn't about making them feel comfortable with "tamer" hair - it is about eliminating a worry from my list so I can shine the brightest. On better weather days, my hair will be in it's full curl fro glory. I do tend to use flexirods to give a more defined curl just so it looks a bit more polished and uniformed than my bantu knot outs.

2. Don't Try the Hottest New Styles 

This isn't the time to try that new hair chalking tutorial or even to wash the day before with a batch of new products. Interviews are time to go back to the old standards that you know work for your hair. I tend to use less product the night before an interview so I don't have to worry about excess shine or anything dripping. Stick to the styles and products that you know work for you. 

3. Wear Your Hair

Most important, wear your hair. You are interviewing this opportunity just as much as they are interviewing you - you don't want to present this super altered version of yourself, then both realize you didn't get what you thought later down the line. I realize that it is a blessing for me to practice this "take me or leave me" attitude with job hunting. So many women of color have to fit inside whatever small box is given to them in order to make a living. But while I have this opportunity, I will be as authentically me as possible. My hair isn't a trend, it isn't any more fashion forward than hair that grows out of any one else's head. I battle shrinkage with my coils, and I won't accept shrinkage of my being either. If my hair makes you uncomfortable, we are not a good fit. 

Below are some other resources of naturals weighing in on the debate (don't agree with everything said, but good to hear other views):

Naturally Curly - 5 Professional Hairstyles to Nail that Job Interview

I would love to hear how you naturals wear your hair to interviews? Are free afros taboo in your industry? Comment below or on my instagram {@anucreature} under today's post picture!

"There is far more to your life than the food you put in your stomach, more to outer appearance than the clothes you hang on your body. Look at the birds, free and unfettered, not tied down to a job description, careless in the care of God. And you count far more to him than birds." Matthew 6: 26 MSG

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