Isis Brantley fought a fight that few in Dallas even know existed. A leader in the underground hair-braiding movement, Brantley was arrested in ’95 for practicing her craft without a cosmetology license. Known throughout the international hair community as Naturally Isis, she refused to accept the charge, arguing that cosmetology courses required 1,500 hours of training for an unrelated field. Natural hair is a method that embraces the existing texture of hair and works with it, rather than altering it through heat treatment or other services that might make the scalp and locks vulnerable to damage. It’s also a movement about reclamation, teaching good nutrition and pride in heritage. It took nine years to overturn the ruling, but she did it. Now, only 35 classroom hours are required to braid hair professionally, and Isis was grandfathered in as a licensed educator. Saturday, The Natural Hair Foot Parade will extend through Dallas, led by Isis and our other favorite hair revolutionary, Erykah Badu. The march begins at 10:30 a.m. (line-up is scheduled for 8 a.m.) at the Wynnewood Shopping Center (655 W. Illinois Ave.), and the procession ends at Beckley-Saner Park, at 114 West Hobson Avenue. At noon, there’s a festival with celebrity guests, which ends at 7 p.m. The whole thing is free. Visit naturallyisis.com for more information.
Sat., Sept. 1, 2012