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Empowerment through Hair: The Impact of the World Natural Hair Show


Nov. 25 2023, Published 11:58 p.m. ET

Natural hair has deep roots in black culture. It is a significant representation of identity, freedom and resistance. Over the last 23 years, Taliah Waajid’s World Natural Hair Show has developed into a cultural movement that is striving for positive change in society’s view of black lifestyle, culture and beauty.

Since its inception, the show has helped spur a powerful cultural movement that is driving positive change in society. It has been pushing for progressive expression of natural beauty and hair — and celebration of non-conforming societal beliefs on the same. With that said, here’s a breakdown of how Taaliah Waajid’s World Natural Hair Show is empowering the black community by celebrating natural hair and beauty.

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What Is the World Natural Hair Show?

This is the first and biggest event that celebrates natural beauty and hair in the black community. What initially started as a small gathering of no more than 25 exhibitors and 150 people in attendance for a day of celebrating natural hair over two decades ago, has gradually turned into a four-day extravaganza that brings together upwards of 25,000 attendees and 250 black-owned businesses, all under one roof.

Today, the event is not just a show of natural hair and beauty products and practices – it helps foster community, entrepreneurship and wellness.

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More Than a Hair Show

The Natural Hair Show is a multifaceted experience that brings together different exhibits and activities. The Women of Color in Business Summit kicks things off by establishing a conducive environment for sharing insights and engaging in discussions revolving around commerce. This is then followed by the recognition of significant contributions to the world of natural hair and beauty by way of the Award of Natural Excellence Gala. These set the stage for the highly engaging two-day natural hair show.

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With the participation of more than 250 black-owned businesses, the event brings together a wide selection of service and product exhibits. Those in attendance get to enjoy an immersive experience that covers the latest industry trends, natural hair styling and more.

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Fostering Skills Through Competitive Challenges

Natural hair care professionals also get to show off their skills by participating in the event’s competitive challenges. Loc, Braid and Barber competitions at the show expose attendees to the boundless possibilities of styling natural hair, in addition to celebrating the artistic skills of participants.

Knowledge Sharing

The World Natural Hair Show is open to everyone. This makes it a great option for anyone looking to learn more about natural hair and any related trends. Taaiah Waajid is passionate about helping individuals enjoy and showcase their natural beauty. She stated in an interview, “I also am enthusiastic about educating others on the numerous benefits of embracing and celebrating natural hair.” In furtherance of this belief, the show provides access to a variety of Free workshops – where those in attendance can learn more about caring for natural hair. The DIY workshops are a great resource for natural hair enthusiasts and professionals to enrich their natural hair care routines.

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