Monday, 29 March 2010
Sub saharan African hair
(Please visit following link for an updated version on this note: http://efemenaoreoluwa.blogspot.com/2010/06/before-you-use-that-relaxer-on-your.html )
I find Africa fascinating. People across this magnicificent continent are remarkably diverse by just about any measure! "The name Africa came into Western use through the Romans, who used the name Africa terra — "land of the Afri" (plural, or "Afer" singular) — for the northern part of the continent, as the province of Africa with its capital Carthage, corresponding to modern-day Tunisia.
The origin of Afer may either come from:
-the Phoenician `afar, dust;
-the Afri, a tribe—possibly Berber—who dwelt in North Africa in the Carthage area;
-the Greek word aphrike, meaning without cold;
-or the Latin word aprica, meaning sunny.
The historian Leo Africanus (1495-1554) attributed the origin to the Greek word phrike (meaning "cold and horror"), combined with the negating prefix a-, so meaning a land free of cold and horror. But the change of sound from ph to f in Greek is datable to about the first century, so this cannot really be the origin of the name. Egypt was considered part of Asia by the ancients, and first assigned to Africa by the geographer Ptolemy (85 - 165 AD), who accepted Alexandria as Prime Meridian and made the isthmus of Suez and the Red Sea the boundary between Asia and Africa. As Europeans came to understand the real extent of the continent, the idea of Africa expanded with their knowledge."
But enough with that academic stuff, am here to talk about our hair types! The maintenance of afro textured hair to be precise. Each strand of Afro hair type grows in a tiny spring-like, corkscrew shape. The overall effect is such that, despite relatively fewer actual hair shafts compared to straight hair, this texture appears (and feels) denser than its straight counterparts. Due to this, it is often referred to as 'thick', 'bushy', or 'woolly'. For several reasons, possibly including its relatively flat cross section among other factors, this hair type also conveys a dry or matte appearance. It is also very coarse, and its unique shape also renders it very prone to breakage when combed or brushed. Adjectives such as "firm", "kinky", "nappy" or "spiralled" are often used to describe natural afro-textured hair in Western societies.
Source: Wiki (look this is true, am a real life example :P)
I am thinking of resorting to my natural, spiral, thick hair, but I am worried about maintenance.The picture in this posts is my younger brother having his hair done.
Anyways, here are a few tips from a fan page
// Someone asked me about twisting your own hair. i do small twists with my hair dry and then i wash it (the twists - and i use both shampoo and conditioner). It comes out really nice after washing, it shrinks giving it more shape and the ends get curly etc but... if you have kinky hair it can get your hair tangled and so cut a bit, so when you are loosening it you have to be very very careful and patient.
I have extremely kinky hair which was painful and impossible to comb especially after the baby so i had no choice but to soften it. I used a texturizing softner. It gave me my still natural hair but softer, easier to comb, not painful and with a softer curly look. It may feel like you are using a relaxer but i assure you it wont perm/straighten your hair (except maybe your hair is really soft and maybe if you process it for a long time, i can't say) but you'll see if you look at my profile pic, i still have an afro. Its called Soft and beautiful just for me texturizing softner (its for kids)
i recommended it to someone who has long and soft natural hair and she is so happy with the results. i like it too. you can try it and it doesn't make you loose your natural look... i still have my afro.
Then to style my hair, i use a leave-in conditioner that defines the curls even more. After i shampoo and condition my hair, i comb it in the shower, towel dry and then i apply the leave-in conditioner and rake thru with my fingers to keep the curls. Its called mixed chicks http://www.mixedchicks.net/leaveinconditoner.html.
its been really good for me and i recently bought a litre bottle of it!
Another alternative is Botanicals hair moisturizer for natural and textured hair. Pretty good as well, its what i had used in the pic with my baby. But i feel you need to moisturize your hair with some kind of oil with this one, cause my hair feels a little rubbery when it gets dry.
Same process, comb hair in shower after washing and conditioning, then apply to wet hair, rake thru with fingers and let dry naturally
I moisturize my hair with shea butter. Pink oil i think is horrible for natural hair. I hear that you can steam your hair with shea butter, never tried it, but shea butter is good for hair so it shouldnt be a bad idea.
So that in a nutshell is my entire hair regime. Hope it helps, let me know if you try it and how it comes out. Sorry for the long mail, i tend to be detailed. all the best o! I know how it is, natural hair is not easy :-)
Mixed Chicks leave-in conditioner
Source: www.mixedchicks.net //
What do you think?