A newsweek article, blasted Angelina Jolie for what the author called uncombed hair. The article insisted that the Jolie-Pitt family knew nothing about black hair care, nor did they seem to care. However, the accompanying photograph showed a head full of healthy looking curls. A more recent Jezebel article agrees that the child’s hair looks very healthy looking, and the photo on that article shows the child with well groomed hair.
Madonna has also received a bit of flack for the condition of her black daughters hair. The problem there is that she has hired out someone to do the child’s hair and some don’t agree with the child’s dreadlocks.
You don’t have to be famous to be given a hard time about haircare if you are the adopted mother of a black child. The hostility seems to come natural. Partly because white mothers don’t know what to do with African American hair, and partly because black women take it personally if they feel the child’s hair is a “hot mess”.
But what is a mother to do? She has crossed cultural boundaries to adopt a child out of love, yet she is being vilified for something as simple as hair. Oh, but black hair is not a simple thing. As stated in the Boston Globe, “More than anything, black hair epitomizes the deep disconnect between white society and black society. By and large, most whites are oblivious to the cultural minefield young black girls are born into, just by virtue of having hair that doesn’t bounce and behave. The issues it raises are complex and seemingly eternal, and while only a few of the most hostile emails and message board posts begrudge Jolie and Pitt the right to raise a black daughter, from the moment Zahara was adopted in 2005 there was an almost unanimous consensus that her parents should be doing something else with her hair.”
What the white mother can and should do is pretty much what Madonna and Angelina Jolie have actually done inspite of accusations that they have done very little.
1. Get educated on black hair. Read: African American Hair Care: How to Grow Black Hair
2. Buy the best products specifically for black hair that your money can buy. Read: Best Products to Use on the Market Geared Toward African-American Women and Use Coconut Oil to Grow Your African American Hair
3. Pay to get the child’s hair done, and ask for instructions on day to day upkeep. Read: Easy Pain Free Hairstyles for African American Girls
Once these things are done, you should be secure that you have done the best you can where your adopted daughters hair is concerned.