Dolores Andral fell in love with the look of locs many years ago, and then after having twins, decided it would be the perfect hair choice to compliment her busier lifestyle.

However, Andral, like many others, was shocked by a wrestler in New Jersey having to cut his hair, especially when the rules allowed him to use a head cover. The student’s hair and the referee’s actions prompted a lively discussion about race and about hair. 

Andral answered a few common questions she gets about her hair.

Are locs a political statement?

People think they are political statements, in the same way that afros were considered a rebellion against “the man,” and that’s not what it is. It’s one of the choices we have to manipulate the hair that quite honestly, I believe God gave us. Our hair grows a certain way, and that’s what we can do with it. We can braid it, we can twist it, we can let it grow out to an afro, we can choose to straighten it, or we can lock it. Those are the choices based on the dynamics of our hair.

Is it professional?

People often think there are only one or two ways to professionalism, one of them being straight hair. Your career makes you a professional and your work ethic. You can be a doctor, a student, or a teacher and have this hair. I remember when people had to cover their tattoos when they went to work. Now people would be outraged if they had to do that. It doesn’t determine your quality of work.

Do people still think you don’t wash it?

This is hair. You do with it what you do with any hair. You swim in it, you wash and condition it. You must take care of it because it’s part of your body.