Major figures in the history of black hair are presented – from early hair care entrepreneurs Annie Turnbo Malone and Madame CJ Walker to unintended hair heroes like Angela Davis and Bob Marley. Comprehensive in its scope, this book covers many controversial areas: – Why did American slaves use items like axle grease and eel skin to straighten their hair? – How a Mexican chemist straightened black hair using the formula for turning sheep’s wool into a mink-like fur. – The evolution of the Afro from militant style to mainstream fashion trend. – What prompted the creation of the Jheri curl and the popular style’s fall from grace? – The story behind Bo Derek’s controversial cornrows and the range of reactions they garnered.