New Perception Institute Study Confirms Bias Toward Black Women’s Natural Hair

A new study from anti-bias consortium Perception Institute confirms what many Black women already know: many Americans are not fans of kinky, coily hair.

“The ‘Good Hair’ Study: Explicit and Implicit Attitudes Toward Black Women’s Hair” tapped 4,163 women and men—including 688 women who identified themselves as “naturalistas” and participate in the digital natural hair community—to explore how bias colors Americans’ view women of color who wear their hair in its natural state. Researchers sought to measure both explicit bias (directly expressed feelings) and implicit bias (the things someone might not even know they feel) as it relates to natural hair.

When it came to explicit bias, the study, which was released yesterday (January 31), observed some key differences between Black and White women:

  • Black women who consider themselves to be naturalistas feel more positively about natural hair than all other women surveyed, including other Black women.
  • Black women still feel that there is a social stigma associated with more textured hair.
  • Millennial naturalistas adore natural hair more than all the other women in the sample.
  • White women expressed explicit bias against Black women’s hair, rating it less beautiful, less attractive and less professional than “smooth” hair.

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Source: Black America Web | Kenrya Rankin