LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) – A Lafayette native wrote a children’s book to help break the stigmas surrounding natural hair.
Chantell Zenon is a wife, a mother, and a Lafayette native. Her new role is helping young girls accept their hair for what it is. Zenon says before writing her children’s book “It’s Just Hair'” she struggled with accepting her hair in its natural state. “My hair, my hair, why can’t I get it to look right? Beautiful long hair is all I see. I wonder why my friends don’t look like me. That is what I thought about as a child,” says Zenon.
She says her journey to helping young girls embrace their hair came with a price. “For me to have to face it, that was when reality sat in, and I said if I’m going to do this, I have to do it and be confident.”
Zenon is a mother of three. Two girls and one boy. She saw some of the similar patterns in her youngest daughter. She used the book as an inspiration not only for her but for other girls who may be insecure about their beauty or about their hair texture.
In the book, she uses herself, her two daughters, and friends and family to perfectly portray the beauty of wearing your natural hair. “When she looks in the mirror, I want her to already know that whatever hair type I have it’s beautiful, whether it’s an afro or long and silky.”
Although the book focuses on outer beauty. Zenon’s message to young girls is that inside beauty is what matters most. “Sometimes we freak out before prom or before our weddings and we are worried about how our hair is going to look, which matters but it’s just hair. You will be ok.”
She says although this book is geared toward young girls, anyone can relate to the message. “No matter what profession we are in. I feel like that’s the hair we have been given and we should rock it to the fullest and embrace it.”
Zenon says in the future she plans to write another book for little boys which will include illustrations of her son and husband.