Outspoken

OUTSPOKEN: Let’s Be Realistic, Natural Hair Is Not For Poor Women

   

natural hair

A lot of Nigerians and Blacks generally are embracing their natural hair. Don’t get me wrong, every single strand of hair from one’s scalp is natural but the natural I am referring to in this context are limited to unpermed hair strands.

One of my friends, Ivy, showed my sister and I a photo of an African girl with this big beautiful afro and we fell in love with the hair. When she saw how thrilled we were, she persuaded us to join her as a member of Nigeria’s natural hair community. We agreed to meet weekly for hair related discussions. All these happened almost 3 months ago.

During our fifth meeting, my sister had an announcement to make. She had transitioned for five weeks and had come to the conclusion that relaxers are her thing. She backslided on our faces and wished Ivy and I success on our natural hair quest. Ever since my sister backed out, I have lost the motivation to go natural. (Is this why most team naturals limit their circle to only team natural girls?)

Let’s be realistic. This natural hair hustle is not easy for not-so-rich people. I’ve made my research on the internet (natural hair blogs) and I’m going to use myself as a case study.

Can’t Share My Breakfast With My Hair.
Where I live, breakfast during weekends consists of coffee, bread and one egg which is a complete balanced diet. Take out the egg which is the ghen ghen of the meal and the ‘balanced’ is gone. I’d be left with just…diet.

Take out the coffee and I’m left with just carbohydrates to keep my tummy sane.
Before you begin to ask why I’ll have to do that, NH blogs insists raw eggs and a coffee/tea rinse are pertinent for healthy hair growth and I don’t remember mentioning I own a poultry farm.

Channels TV won’t teach me how to moisturise and seal
In the beginners’ stage of trying to grow out one’s natural hair, YouTube is supposed to be my god on earth. Since Nigerian hairdressers know nothing on how to stretch my hair using the tension method, I’d have to consult YouTube for videos on how to prepoo, co wash, twist outs, t-shirt dry, bantu knots etc. but all that comes at the expense of my dear mb and you know the high cost of accessing internet in Nigeria. Let’s not mention how people guard their WIFI like gold. If I can’t find these videos on data-free-zones like MiTv, OnTv and the likes, I see no reason why I should go natural.

One hundred hair products, One hundred naira.
CON argan oil shampoo, Keracare and carol Cleansing Cream, eauty Formulas Apricot conditioner, L’ozrael Hair Rescue. How much is in my pocket? The only affordable products I can spare for this hair are ORI, coconut oil, kernel oil, olive oil and palm oil.
As for the prices of natural hair extensions, I’m not sure I’m ready to indulge in blood money. Not yet.

I Am Not Jessica Sims
When I read the hair diary of some of these bloggers, a couple of them end their posts with ‘off to work’, ‘off to lectures’. You see, these people have a job already. I don’t!
And God help me, if I wear my natural hair and I get called for a job interview in a shipping company, a razor and a relaxer pack would be in my pockets in the event my prospective employer says “you’re way too nappy for this job” “This your hair is not professional our work environment” or ”we are not letting you sail this Titanic until you get into the rest room and flush out that nappiness”.

Naturals Don’t Jump Danfos
Is it not awkward how there are so many naturals online yet I rarely bump into any of them offline, on the streets of Lagos. Why? Probably because all of them move around in their air conditioned limos with their prepooed hairs. If I happen to wear my natural hair, I’ll be alone…trekking…looking like MC Hammer…with all of my tangles… since I don’t have a motor. Then my hair would be exposed to low and high humidity. And every extra hour I stay out draws me closer and closer to shrinkage. (I hate how that stuff makes one looks like a burnt cake). And since all the mad men & women that roam the streets of Lagos are either naturals or transitional, one of them might mistake yours truly for their colleague. No thanks!

I am not a patient person
Assuming I cut off my permed hair and my natural hair gets stunted at 4,5 6 inches (Black hairs are full of surprises). My frustration might induce midlife crisis like it happened to Bummi, my natural hair friend. I spent two weeks at her place and her poor soul was hurting cos of her stubborn hair. She had applied every hair product on her hair to no avail.

Then she began to go ‘diabolical’. Bummi started mixing egg with peak milk for the hair. She would blend fruit salad and empty it on her hair. She would subtly slip into the bathroom with a pack of 5 alive juice. Bummi, the fresh tomatoes in the fridge were for our stew. Why is it on your hair?

I hope with these few points of mine, I have been able to convince you guys only rich Nigerians should go natural. Thank you. Arguments are welcomed in the comment box.
*empties relaxer on hair*

6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. tbs4real@yahoo.co.uk'

    Tunbosun

    February 16, 2015 at 1:25 am

    Crazily good write-up. You had me rolling in laughter 🙂
    Loosening my hair, and I was caught in the thought of ‘will I ever be able to go natural’, answer was a very clear and concise no.
    Reason: I am one lazy butt and natural hair is hard-work + natural means permed to me, will rather spend more time being natural on my skin.

    • ebonyoma4eva@yahoo.com'

      Idomagirl

      February 18, 2015 at 3:40 am

      It’s not as hard a lot of people make it out to be tho….

  2. Joieuche@gmail.com'

    Joy

    February 18, 2015 at 12:59 pm

    I guess this article is just meant in good fun cos people have been rocking their hair natural for ages with no hullabaloo. My mum of blessed memory never relaxed her hair since she was born and she had crazy long hair. Neither did she do all the egg treatments or use Shea moisture or Carol’s Daughter products and she was fine. I guess it’s the num of ladies jumping on the bandwagon that are making the most noise. You don’t need youtube. Google is your friend really and there are Facebook groups that help. There’s nothing difficult about it.
    People are walking around with very unhealthy looking relaxed hair and still criticizing naturals.

  3. plentygold227@yahoo.com'

    mgbeke

    February 18, 2015 at 4:34 pm

    one do not have to use store brought product to stay natural.like you said shea butter, palm kernel oil, coconut oil cost nothing sometime less than your so called relaxer kit.

  4. juristbose1@yahoo.co.uk'

    bose

    February 18, 2015 at 6:47 pm

    My 1st thoughts are that u are right! My 1st experience as a natural in 2012 makes me conclude so. I did not know how to care 4 my hair, talkless of products to use. Hair became damaged beyond repair, massive breakage. I scrapped again in March 2014. Now my 2nd thoughts are that u are not totally correct. Natural hair can be tended on a budget. Those things which she mentioned are d basics:coconut oil, palm kernel oil, shea butter & palm oil. If u cannot afford all d products, get native black soap with honey as ur shampoo, fermented rice water as conditioner. Palm oil 4 prepoo. If u don’t have spray bottle, mix water + coconut oil in a cup & use ur fingers. Just moisturise ur hair b4 u get dressed. Hair cream=ori+coconut oil. Now d DC is d tricky part, u will have to buy eggs @ least once a month. Every other week, u do honey + olive oil moisture DC. U should still be able to buy satin & sew ur bonnet urself. So Natural hair is not 4 d rich but 4 those who have seen d riches-beauty of natural hair & are willing to explore & discover those riches by accepting their kinks. This is just one of d reasons that I went natural. I used relaxers last in late 2011 when I had Anita Baker haircut. My relaxed hair was breaking so decided to get d cut. Made up my mind to do away with relaxers in March 2012 & scrapped off my hair. Scrape like Esedebe Cynthia’s look good on me.

  5. adelolaedema@gmail.com'

    Adelola

    August 23, 2015 at 5:43 pm

    Hahahaha. I stumbled on your blog recently, and I have had a good laugh going through the different articles.

    I agree with you that being a naturalista is quite expensive, although some comments here have debunked it. But there are many naturalistas that don’t have cars o. I see them in buses and on the road. Relaxers and permed hair are for me as well, and I can only wish the naturalistas around me good luck

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