According to Dugas, her hairdo isn’t without its challenges: seeing clearly under it is quite the task, and it often gets stuck in trees, car doors, and even people’s earrings, but she sees these as minor setbacks compared to the bigger message she wants to send to Black women and girls: you don’t need to straighten your hair to be beautiful.
“At one time, I strived to get hair that was bone straight, and now all I want is it big and poofy,” said Dugas. “I don’t know why, but there’s something very important to me about little girls appreciating my hair and then wanting to wear their hair the same,” she added.
“I tell them there is nothing that I did special; there is no magical formula, we are born with our hair like this.”
Dugas was also inspired to grow her hair after seeing a picture of her mother wearing an Afro during the ’60s.
Deborah Dugas, who runs a care home, said, “‘I’m humbled by the fact she did this because she liked my natural hair, way before she was born. She made her decision when wearing your hair natural was considered unattractive in the Black community”, the elder Dugas added.
“But, against all that, she started wearing her hair natural years ago. I am really proud.”
The Afro may have even grown longer in recent years; however, Dugas can’t be sure until Guinness takes another measurement.
“When my hair is stretched out to its complete length and pressed, it goes down to my butt. But I don’t wear it like that because it looks weird,” she said.