Don't You Ever Wash Your Hair?

2018

The first day of university, I came to class late and the professor stopped me and said:
“Why does your hair look like that? Do you not have any water at home to wash it with?”
I was so embarrassed, but I laughed it off.
body image, hair, bullying, beauty standards

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Self-acceptance

2018

I spent so many years wondering why God gave me a decent-looking face—or so people say—and hair that looks the way it does.
He could’ve given me decent hair too.
I figured God must’ve done this on purpose.
But why?
beauty standards, body image, hair

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The Way God Made Me

2018

I started getting comments about my curly hair when I came to Egypt.
I get comments like, “Brush your hair.”
“Mop-head.”
“Why is your hair so messy?”
body image, hair, bullying, beauty standards

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Why Do I Have Ugly Hair?

2018

“Why isn’t my hair pretty like yours?
Why isn’t it soft like my friends’ hair at school?
Why do I keep screaming whenever my mom fixes it for me?”
body image, hair, bullying, beauty standards

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Uncovered Hair

2019

Something annoying happens every Ramadan.
As a woman, I’m looked at as a glitch in the Egyptian societal system.
I’m seen as a problem, just because I don’t cover my hair.
social stigma, social pressure, hijab, hair, harassment, the street

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14 Years of Hair Straightening

2019

Ever since I was young,
I was told that my hair wasn’t nice.
I’ve been straightening my hair since elementary school.
Everyone around me made fun of me.
They called me “brillo pad.”

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Seal

2019

My hair is curly,
And I love it.
I’m tired of the stupid things people say to me.
Going out is one of the worst experiences ever.
I feel a knot in my stomach whenever I’m about to go out.
I don’t know if this is social anxiety.
I have self-confidence,
And I love my hair.
I wish people would accept differences.

Hair, The Street

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Good or Bad Hair?

2018

“Do you have good or bad hair?”
I get this question all the time from everyone around me.
But I’ve never mustered up the courage to reply.
So I tell them: “Yeah, my hair isn’t straight.”
Despite my family’s efforts to convince me that I had nice hair as a baby,
All of the kids at school were skilled in the art of bullying.
body image, hair, beauty standards, bullying

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You Think You're So Cool?

2019

I don’t want to be the kind of woman they expect me to be.
I don’t want to shave.
The problem is that people see that as a lack of cleanliness.
But I think it’s okay.
I want to be flat.

body image, social pressure

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You Must Not Be Fasting

2019

I stopped wearing the hijab a few months ago.
Ramadan is approaching and I’m terrified.
I’m afraid of what my family might say.
I’m afraid of what people in the street will say.
social stigma, hijab, hair, harassment, the street, social pressure

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