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Don’t Call My Relaxer Creamy Crack!


Posted September 17, 2012 by

Some women who are new to the online hair world credit Chris Rock with coining the term ‘creamy crack’ in his documentary Good Hair, but it was a common term in the healthy hair world long before that film was even in production.  Relaxed and natural women use the term alike, but I am actually slightly offended by its use.  I’ve already explained my philosophy on hair – I love all types and textures and my priority is promoting HEALTHY hair.  I don’t hate my natural hair or think that natural hair is less pretty, and I don’t wish that my tight 4b kinks were looser or any different.  Relaxing my hair is a styling choice and I could care less how many natural extremists insist there must be a deeper reason for my choice, I know better.

Affirm Relaxer System

So why does this phrase bother me?  Calling my relaxer creamy crack indicates a few things:  One, that I am addicted to my relaxer, which is not true.  I don’t feel it is something I have to have, can’t live without, and don’t even prefer to wear my hair bone straight – I like body and volume so when I do wear my hair straight I like to rollerset over flat ironing.  Two calling anything crack holds a negative connotation.  While there can be damaging effects to relaxing your hair, I think the plethora of Black women growing healthy hair to lengths they’ve never had before proves that relaxers do not automatically equal damaged hair.  When naturals say things like “I decided to end my addiction to the creamy crack” or “That creamy crack is the devil” I feel that my decision is being judged.  When relaxed haired women remark that the “creamy crack was calling to them” during the days leading to a touch up, it seems like they feel there is something wrong with relaxing their hair.  I don’t know, I may be overly sensitive but to me there is nothing positive about calling my styling choice creamy crack!

Am I the only relaxed hair woman that feels this way? 


EbonyCPrincess is a Staff Writer for BHM She is a self-proclaimed hair enthusiast with a love of all things hair as long as keeping it healthy is the #1 priority. Along with informative articles, Ebony shares hairstyles, tutorials, the latest on celebrity hair trends, and much more!


    AJ Music

    OH MY GOOOSH!! THANK YOU so much EboncyCPrincess for writing this article! I despise the term “creamy crack” because it is another negative connotation to African American/Black women within our society! First off, I have long hair (in which I come from a family of women with long hair); so when many African American girls meet me they sometimes ask “Is that your real hair?” Guys have asked me this as well, or some guys would say “Are you mixed,” in which I am not. I am mixed with African American and more African American! Although I have a lot of hair, I also receive relaxers and my hair is HEALTHY as it can be!! As a child my mother took really good care of my hair, which is the reason why my hair is so healthy today! It is actually sad that many African American girls AND women, are not taught that Black women have many different textures of hair, and skin tones (as well as Black males). Second off, why are some Black women worrying about whether a Black woman’s hair is “naturally” or “unnatural?” As a of matter fact, the word “natural” is used too loosely; people need to stop using this word in this way because the REAL definition (Merriam Webster dictionary) of natural does not describe a texture of hair. In any case, MY HAIR IS HEALTHY! A relaxer has NOT damaged my hair because my hair was already healthy, to begin with. It should not matter if I receive relaxers. When Black women wear their hair “un-relaxed” it does not make them any “Blacker.” As a matter of fact, I have met some who act the opposite of their “Motherland” hair styles who act a little Uncle Tom-ish. I also feel that I am more into my African heritage than a close friend of mine, of whom I know that wears her hair “natural.” In no shape, or form am I “addicted” to getting a relaxer because I do not go around and say “Oh, I have a relaxer in my hair, and it looks better than yours.” Instead of making another irrelevant situation relevant, WE as a Black community need to focus on U-N-I-T-Y! Without that WE are a weak generation! HAIR IS HAIR!! Black women should wear it however they want to! WE should be celebrating the different styles our hair can be formed to! I LOOOVE MY HAIR just the way it is!! P.S. This article really meant a lot to me, thank you so much for writing about it, and making it a discussion!


    In my opinion the only person that can criticize my choices regarding my hair is myself, and perhaps a trusted stylist, who wishes simply to do the best for me and the health of my hair. The term creamy crack in my mind is derogatory, since, as you’ve stated. it implies that relaxer has a hold over us who are relaxed, and it does not. i admit, before I started on my journey I grabbed a box for a touch up much faster, the minute my Africa truly started showing, but today I know it’s because didn’t know how to properly care for my new growth and thus whenever it started making its presence known I experienced breakage, and I thus relaxed quick fast and in a hurry to stop the breakage and to be able to manage my hair. Now, I know better, and even though I can handle my NG better and take care of my tresses better, I feel that my “relationship” with my relaxer kit is my business and no one else’s, and I sure as the grass is green am not addicted to it. Great post Ebony, I love how you brought across the fact that us relaxed girls do not appreciate the judgment.


    Black women really need to stop all of this general all-round animosity towards our hair…whatever state it is in. You don’t hear White women accusing each other of being addicted to dye when 70% of them color their hair. It’s so crazy when you think about it!


      I totally agree with you Shona. I think that people should spend less time worrying about what someone else is doing with THEIR hair. I used to relax for manageability and now I’m a natural who straightens for a fuller look. Who knows what I might do with my hair next year??? As long as my overall hair health is good I’m fine with that. I have had healthy hair as a relaxed person and have it now that I am natural. This whole natural vs relaxed thing is ridiculous.


    I agree with you sweetie!


    Using the term “creamy crack” is also to intimidate those, like myself who relaxes, and to make us feel “less than” our natural sisters. I’ll admit. I have never liked my hair bone straight. I don’t like the feel. I love a little texture to my 4B tresses as it always makes my style, layered, “lay” better. I also stretch my relaxer by going longer without out, and by flat ironing. It’s ALWAYS been my view that however a woman chooses to wear her hair, is her biz, as long as it’s clean and nicely coiffed. Even outside of those parameters, it is not my business mostly on how someone chooses to wear THEIR hair. People who feel the need to “belittle” someone for such a personal decision, has all kinds of other issues going on. These are the people who maybe have bully tendencies and well, it has always been a pleasure of mine to “deal” with bullies. It’s such a shame that as usual, within the AA race, our women find time to fiercely judge each other, on a matter so private, while we already have the WORLD to deal with and contend with, when it comes to our own personal choices on how we wear our hair, our complexions and features. Do we really need to do this to ourselves, as well?????


      I agree with you. Why make judgements like that? Crack? I am still just as black as a sista wearing an Afro. My birth certificate will prove it. Just because their hair is natural what does that mean? They are still wearing clothes that are not made by black corporations, carrying designer handbags, and driving foreign cars!!
      Nappy roots don’t make you anymore than black then sitting on a church pew makes you a Christian, or sitting in a garage makes you a car.

      I am black regardless of the texture of my roots. My heart speaks to that.


    poor should have been typed pour – but you know what spelling I meant


    Creamy crack is an unfortunate term. Though I think natural Nazi’s is not all wrong simply because there are some in the natural community who do nothing put poor hate on others for their hair choices. I am a natural who wears extensions and that is frowned. Maybe natural extremist sounds nicer for them but still. As adults we should never hate on a persons personal choice. In this day and age I doubt it is lack of knowledge when it comes to hair choices. Variety is the spice of life so lets enjoy it


    Only if the terms “natural b*tches/natural nazi/nappy headed hos/slave hair” and a number of other put downs for natural haired women are equally abolished and or criticized. Black women’s hair will always be an issue.


      True!!! I have never used any of those terms save for natural nazi – which I never knew was offensive. To be honest the attitude that sparks someone to describe a person as ‘natural nazis’ is probably more offensive though. So are you saying that since one exists its okay to use the other?


      I would never refer to other sistas in the natural community by any of those names. I love watching their natural hair textures. I always compliment them, and applaud their choice. Particulary the sistas with the made up faces, big earrings, the whole package. They look good and I give them their props.


    I will never get why people use that type of terminology. I also don’t get why “Natural Hair Police” go so far as to speculate if someone is truly natural if they color or if someone straightens their hair. I


    They can call it what they want I don’t care, I just see it as them having issues “finding themselves” so they trying to bring others down


    I hate the phrase “creamy crack.” It just rubs me the wrong way that there’s such a negative connotation with my style choice. It’s just going to take time for the hair community as a whole to move away from the idea that relaxers are inherently evil and addictive. And I hate when people say it with a smile. How is likening something to a highly addictive, destructive drug something to smile about? Ugh. Hate it lol.


    I’ve never really gotten offended by the term. If they want to use be my guess. As long as I know what I’m doing with my hair that is all that matters. The whole holier than thou attitude that some people get when they stop relaxing their hair is what can work a nerve. lol

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