If this last week has taught me anything it’s that a)Kenya’s nightlife (predominantly made up of Uber drivers and guys too old to “shoki and dab”) is way too lit b)short A-line dresses aren’t necessarily the OOTD of choice on 28º days experiencing monsoon winds and c)weaves, I repeat, WEAVES are in no way considered a standard protective hairstyle for anyone other than commercial models paid to smile for 60 minutes and get it over with…Believe me!
In a generation where Black has become a Movement distinctly highlighted by Black is Beautiful slogans coupled with constant reminders to embrace your curves and kinky natural tresses; bathroom cabinets now resemble convenient stores stocked with coconut/olive/castor/tea tree/shea butter oils, YouTube bookmarks – Make up for coloured girls, DIY crotchet faux locs, conrows and the overzealous caption on almost every girls routine Instagram post #melanin as if to solidify our stamp of existence in Trump’s world like being Black isn’t potent enough, I woke up one morning convinced that maybe…just maybe the 3rd time would be a charm! Evidently someone forgot (conveniently) to flag my obsessive runs through the Internet watching back to back episodes of Antony Cuts on Thursday night instead of attending to my Conveyancing “to do” list wouldn’t magically transfer his skill set to dearest Wanjiru.
The Plight of the Naturalista!
Now let’s be real, we all have that album dabbed “hairstyles” meant to test our loyalties. Pinterest isn’t real life and neither is Rihanna!
In between classes whacking my head like some lunatic, the magical scratchy pencil and WTF rants, I finally came to terms with the fact that weaves, cheap or expensive ones with lace fronts are not meant for me as I proceeded to pin one more style (okay five) for old times sake :O
17th Feb, 2016 a little over a year ago I made the second hardest decision (after where to eat) to cut my hair. One that not even my stylist of 15 years could comprehend seeing as trimming my ends was like a lesson through World War History explained here. It finally dawned on me that I’d be that girl stuck between a combination of hope and excitement and ‘I used to have long hair’ as a conversation starter in a bid to associate with something bigger than Indie Arie insinuated. Now here we are, shoulder length facilitating routine inspirational talks along buzzing corridors and WhatsApp groups on the art of perfectly moisturized two strand twists, wash days and how to get over that doodle feeling just 4 days after you got your braids installed and you simply need to see how much it’s grown since. The apotheosis of having natural hair!
I’m surrounded by files of women with natural hair these days including my mum – the greatest skeptic of them all ranting about the recent inflation of coconut oil prices and numerous requests to family abroad to send a couple of boxes of Shea Butter products. Saturday plans now include hours under the sun with black polythene bags wrapped unapologetically over our heads and mandatory froyo breaks to keep us sane! C’mon Muthoni, just do it! We are all routing for you. I mean what’s a girl squad if deep conditioning sessions don’t count as therapeutic?
Love and love,
Pictures by Al – Amin
White off shoulder top – Valleygirl // Jeans – Topshop // Yellow strappy sandals – Gift