Touching hair is a controversial topic within the natural hair community. Several women with natural hair have to deal with unwelcome touches or various requests to discover what their hair texture feels like. Some are perhaps happy to oblige but most compare the experience to feeling like an animal at a petting zoo.

An editorial site that focuses on the black hair experience, is exploring the touching phenomenon in an unconventional way. They are launching an interactive public exhibit called “You Can Touch My Hair,” which will take place today and on June 8th, 2013 from 2-4pm in New York City’s Union Square.

The exhibit is being touted as their effort to “take one for the team and explore the tactile fascination with black hair.” As part of the project, “strangers from all walks of life will have the welcomed opportunity to touch various textures of black hair” on live models.

It will be fascinating to see how the participants feel about their experience once the exhibit comes to a close. What do you think about “You Can Touch My Hair,” Clutchettes?

RSVP here and get more information about the exhibit here.



  1. Waithira Mbuthia-Protano

    Say WHAT?!! This is the dumbest and most degrading idea I’ve ever heard! As an African woman who has worn her hair mostly natural all her life (locks, for the past several years–I refuse to call them “dreads”–nothing to “dread” or “dreadful” about my hair), I was always polite in answering the often asked questions, “How long does it take (to braid the hair)?” and “Is it your hair?” (sigh) But I later became exhausted with the role of a Walking Encyclopedia for not just my African hair, but for many things African and now refuse to answer these idiotic questions after deciding that, if these people want to know about our people’s hair and whatever other curiosities they have about black people in general, all they have to do is SOCIALIZE with them. Invite them to your social circles–weddings, club meetings, your children’s birthday parties, etc., and get to know them in a “natural,” genuine way. I don’t know about other black folk, but I found it interesting that braids were found to be sexy only when Bo Derek wore them in the movie “Ten,” just as big butts, a prominent characteristic of black women, suddenly became attractive with the rising fame of Jennifer Lopez. .Anyway, I’m glad I missed this “exhibit.” Urrgh.

  2. Tiffany

    I’m a black american woman with natural hair. I can relate to the women who got involved in this exhibition. Take a look at the youtube video. These women are wanting people to touch their hair because they are proud of it and its different from the “norm” and they want people touch their hair and experience the soft fluffiness. I bet a lot of them are thinking: ‘Come on … you know want to touch my hair, come here, touch it! touch it!, yeah … you know you like that.’

Comments are moderated, please be respectful. View our policy.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>