ATH thinks: If the hair on pause is viral on TikTok, where is the positive beauty?


What used to be broom hair —or corn hair, if you’re blonde— is now known as hair on pause, a viral expression on TikTok that refers to mistreated, tangled, burnt, opaque, dry, rough, or dirty hair. The one where the comb gets stuck—or pauses, then.

The truth is that there are many factors that can lead to unhealthy hair. A reference that we all know? Britney Spears, who is constantly singled out for her disheveled hair.

The singer has just come out of a guardianship program to enter a “care plan” developed by her medical team. The videos in which she shows her uncoordinated dance steps, her apparent disconnection with the world today, and her violent and erratic writing, are evidence that something is not right. However, it’s her appearance—misplaced extensions and messy, unwashed hair—that first throws her off, especially as a high-profile celebrity. But how could a woman who is clearly dealing with a mental health crisis deal with something as banal as her hair?

Sometimes there are other priorities. Being a mother, coping with a recession, suffering from an illness, studying for an exam, undergoing hormonal changes, saving your relationship, resolving a work conflict or reaching a sporting goal are all valid reasons to neglect your long hair. The hair care it requires time, effort and an economic investment that we cannot always afford. And that’s fine. What is not right is to highlight those who do not have the same tools as us.

The positive beauty movement, which promotes inclusion and respect, dominates the discourse when it comes to the body and skin. No one would dare to criticize being overweight, stretch marks or acne anymore, because they are understood as part of life. We know that there are many conditions that can cause them, from going through adolescence to having given birth, going through mere genetics. We practice compassion and empathy. And I wonder: when will we start to validate our long hair through language?

Woman with paused hair and comb stuck in hair
Words matter! In research by Unilever, involving more than 10,000 people from nine countries, seven in 10 said the word “normal” on beauty product packaging has a negative effect on people. Credit: Tima Miroshnichenko/Pexels.

The post ATH thinks: If the hair on pause is viral on TikTok, where is the positive beauty? appeared first on All Things Hair Mexico.


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