Mom Who Got Her Daughter's 'Natural' Hair Braided Defends Herself After Being Called Out

People were so angry over the hairstyle they mocked a child in response — and it had many people rushing to her defense.

Screenshots of TikTok mom accused of racism and cultural appropriation for having her daughter's hair braided TikTok

A mom on TikTok has sparked major debate after showing off how she manages her daughter's kinky, tightly curled hair with braids. Some have called it cultural appropriation, while others have applauded her for protecting her hair type from damage. Along the way, she has been subjected to a heated round of call-outs from others who feel she's overstepped.

A mom has been called racist for having her daughter's curly hair braided. 

TikToker @goingwiththegagnons has a nine-year-old daughter named Jordan who has a rare genetic condition called Giant Axonal Neuropathy, which affects her nervous system. One of the distinguishing features of the condition is kinky, super-curly hair, and Jordan's full head of luscious, tight curls certainly fits the bill.


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But as much as Jordan and her mom both love her kinky hair, it can be a lot to take care of—especially when traveling. Given that Jordan is in a wheelchair, finding handicap-accessible facilities in hotels that allow for the upkeep her hair requires can be a challenge. 

So with a trip to Europe coming up, Jordan's mom wanted to get her hair done in a style that would require minimal maintenance on their trip, so she took to TikTok for advice.



The mom took her daughter to a Black hair salon for a protective hairstyle typically used by Black people with Afro-textured hair. 

Super-curly hair like Jordan's is susceptible to all kinds of damage. Even just trying to style it can wreak havoc on the tight curls, and the weather—both hot and cold—can cause breakage and damage the ends of the hair strands.


Because of this, many Black people of African descent with what is sometimes called Afro-textured hair—a term for coily hair that is very tightly curled right from the scalp—use protective hairstyles like box braids, locks and twists that mitigate the need for styling and keep the ends of the hair strands concealed from the effects of weather, protecting them from breakage.

Since Jordan shares this type of hair, many Black women on TikTok urged her to get Jordan's hair braided, saying that it was the best option as far as protective styles go.

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The mom has been called racist and accused of cultural appropriation, and her daughter has been mocked on TikTok.

Jordan's mom posted a video showing the process of having her hair braided and highlighting the finished product of Jordan's long box braids—and it did not go over well at all. Jordan's mom was hit with all kinds of angry comments, many of which mocked Jordan's appearance. One commenter called Jordan and her mom "delusional" for thinking Jordan's hair looked good.




Jordan's mom was also accused of cultural appropriation and outright racism for having her daughter's hair braided. "Thank you for doing our cultural hairstyle when there are so many protective styles she could've done," one commenter sarcastically wrote, adding, "ur racist.



Jordan's mom responded that she had taken some of the honest criticisms she received to heart. "I think there is value in conversation and hearing other people's points of views," she said. But the vitriol went just a bit too far in her estimation. "I do have to admit that I am getting tired of being called a racist. Even once feels like too many times," she went on to say.


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Many Black women have jumped in to defend the mom for doing what was necessary to protect her daughter's hair.

As much backlash as Jordan's mom received, there were just as many people who backed her up for taking good care of Jordan's hair, and who firmly disagreed that her use of box braids was racist.

"MA'AM!! You are NOT racist for trying to protect your child’s hair!!!" one Black woman wrote. "She has our hair type, she can use our styles!!!" Many other TikTokers agreed. "The point of protective styles is for hair that needs protection—like HER HAIR!!" another woman wrote. "Please continue to do what’s BEST for HER & HER HAIR."

Others urged Jordan's mom to ignore the critics. "Listen to the aunties coming from a place of love and not those trolls," another Black TikToker wrote. "She 100% deserves styles that make her happy and both of your lives easier!"


Others were quick to point out how beautiful Jordan's hair is. "Her hair is beautiful! Honey her Crown!" one woman wrote, while another commented, "Jordan can have all the braids!! She and her hair both are absolutely beautiful!!." And to their point, as her mom revealed in another follow-up, Jordan has since taken out her braids—to be in a fashion show.



There will always be trolls—even those willing to bully a disabled girl for her appearance—but it seems like in Jordan's case they are vastly outnumbered by the people more than willing to share their cultural hairstyles with a girl with hair like theirs. Or as one Black TikToker put it, "Aunties baby! start tagging me in these nasty comments and I'll take care of them. stay beautiful."


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John Sundholm is a news and entertainment writer who covers pop culture, social justice and human interest topics.