African Women Don’t Have Hair??!

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22 Responses

  1. Tola says:

    Beautifully written! There have been times when I would want to wear my natural hair out and my dad would be like why does the hair look ‘unorganised’ – a way of complaining about the fact that it’s kinky and not straight. The only day I went to my office with my kinky hair packed in an ‘updo’, I was greeted with several uncomfortable glances and stares. This is the reality of our experience as Africans with 4c kinky hair. However, we remain undeterred in our resolve to make all embrace our unique kinky hair.

    • Coloured Africa says:

      Firstly, thank you for inspiring this post. And then thank you for your comment! I cannot count the number of times my mom has looked at my hair and then sighed. Lol. We will keep wearing the hair and showing them different.

  2. I have always kind of suspected where human hair weaves comes from but I never really thought to investigate. Now my mind is really changing towards the whole thing. And as for getting products suitable for my skin, they are just wayyyy too expensive. When I was in law school i had to neglect my hair because between I had to choose between food and my hair and of course I chose food, you need a full stomach to survive law school.

    • Coloured Africa says:

      Sigh! We need products that are tailored just for black hair and skin and are cheap enough for students to easily get. I’ve learnt to style my hair myself for the most part. Twists are my go-to hairstyle anytime, except I have an interview lol.

  3. Salome says:

    Well written Ohotu.
    The natural hair struggle is real! Between showing off your natural hair and looking presentable in the society. Natural hair has been dubbed “rough”simply because it is not following the status quo. As for the hair products, you have said it all.

    • Coloured Africa says:

      Yeah, Salome. The older generation turns up their noses at girls wearing kinky hair in twists or dreadlocks as if they’re somehow loose. And boys wearing afros? Another wahala.
      I hope for a time when even old people are able to unlearn these negative attitudes. More importantly, we must work against passing them on to the next generation.

  4. Tosho says:

    As a hair stylist, I have met at least three girls that promised to perm their natural hair because, ‘it is expensive to maintain’.
    I mean, a lot of older Nigerians maintained beautiful natural hair with cheap natural products. Whatever happened to those cheap but good products is the work of marketers who feel they can make up for the losses on Indian/Chinese hair and Hair Relaxers by rebranding hair products and selling them at exorbitant prices.
    There has to be a way out Ohotu!

    • Coloured Africa says:

      Yes o! I think the industry will come back to making cheaper hair products for African hair. But it must be encouraged by a culture that doesn’t view natural hair as “unpresentable” or “impossible” to manage. I’ve heard many people say they can’t go natural because it’s too hard. I thought that before I went natural. With more people talking about these, things will change.

  5. Joo Gabriel says:

    So are such a prolific writer??….intriguing

  6. Olaiya, Timilehin says:

    I have always loved anything natural. Should I say your Indian friend was right? I think he is. The problem is, we’ve lost our culture and pride. When a man loses connection with God, he will seek acceptance from men. That’s exactly the problem. We ‘ve lost touch with our culture, why won’t we embrace someone else’s.

    • Coloured Africa says:

      We have lost touch with the things that make us who we are, in many respects. We can only keep changing society every day.

  7. It’s a shame that some churches as stated supports the degradation of African hair, although I am not really surprised as it is only promoting an agenda off it’s predecessors (no offense) thoughts.

    The law society of most African countries are actually a big disgrace when it comes to promoting inferiority complex. From practicing old cultures of the colonial masters that even the colonial masters themselves have long discarded, to wearing those wigs of theirs that makes them look somehow, to many other things going on within their society which exalts European thoughts and tramples on anything indigenous.

    Final thoughts, prior to colonization/neo-colonization Africans have lived with their hair for thousands of years maintaining it using local methods. How is it that these knowledge of hair preservation all suddenly disappeared or is it that we are actually neglecting them, passing them off as “local”?

    • Coloured Africa says:

      Hi, Balógun. Thank you for reading and replying.
      No offense taken by me with regards to the comment that some churches denounce the African and promote the unAfrican.

      The legal systems in many African countries sticks to many archaic practices despite calls for improvement under the guise that law is a traditional profession and that such practices separate legal practitioners from other professionals.

      I don’t have the complete answer to your last statement but I think that indigenous products and processes for hair and beauty generally may have been neglected for so long in many areas such that we have been unable to improve them to meet with modern day developments. Regardless of that, some natural and indigenous products for African hair and skin are in use now and many African beauticians are trying to reintegrate them back for popular use.

  8. Adamaranma says:

    Nice piece! The negative criticism I got while transitioning .. Even till now.
    As a doctor, you look scruffy..
    My boss once complained when I wore Afro to work that my hair was rough n should make it..
    Its not that expensive to maintain natural hair.. Most of us like brand names that are pocket draining just because others are doing the same…

    • Coloured Africa says:

      Thank you for sharing your experience. Sad that natural hair is now associated with words like “scruffy” or “untidy”. Professional women and men must be allowed to wear their own hair without all these negativity.
      Maybe I can write a post about cheap products for hair soon.
      Thank you.

  9. Olayinka Faderera Olayiwola says:

    My Dad once told my younger sister, “Don’t you think you need to relax your hair?”
    “My hair is not depressed,” she replied.

    This is very enlightening. Every one should read this.

    • Ohotu says:

      Hi Olayinka. I love your sister’s response. “My hair is not depressed.” Talk about knowing what you have!
      Thank you for reading and sharing. Thank you.

  10. Dam Dam says:

    The comment from the lecturer actually made me stop wearing my natural hair to class, I couldn’t flaunt the rapid growth to the world (you know that feeling when your natural hair is blooming and healthy) wigs were the only options I had but now that I’m free to style my hair as I please I don’t even remember wigs anymore (sometimes very uncomfortable)
    Honestly people should appreciate natural hair more
    It’s beautiful, dynamic and it’s got its own super powers (shrinkage) 😬

    As for the products, honestly there are a thousand and one DIYs and your hair will still grow healthy (I’m very true to this practice)
    You definitely don’t need Shea moisture or sunny isle to have a gorgeous and healthy hair!!!

    • Ohotu says:

      Hey Dam Dam!!! The fact that you had to hide your hair is so sad and annoying; you’re not alone in this. Yes, Shrinkage is really Natural hair’s superpower!
      I really think I may have to find out more about DIYs for hair products and share.

  11. Annie says:

    Soon, people’s view about natural hair especially 4C hair type , will change. These natural hair products are really cheap in some areas and quite expensive in others; I believe it’s all based on the demand: high demand of the products in certain areas result in high cost of the products

    • Ohotu says:

      Hi Annie. Thank you for reading and sharing your thoughts. Yes, I also believe that the negative perceptions about natural hair will change pretty soon.The different costs of hair products is also something I’d like to look into. Thank you!

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