Views on Natural Hair in Kenya

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Hi all,

I just had a sudden urge to blog on the views of natural hair in Kenya. Whenever I met anyone when my hair is in a wash and go or a twist out.. they always ask what have you done to your hair? Most of the time I just say "Nothing my hair is just this way". I have gotten all types of comments e.g. my hair is like a somalis, nywele makamasi ( i find this disgusting), some people say I have good hair or nice hair,I remember even being asked if I was full black Kenyan..which I proudly am. We as African ladies have always been under the illusion that natural African hair is not curly and is just a tough mass of cotton wool on our head. This is not true we have all types of textures and we all have good hair. In learning to manage our hair we can all have huge kinky curly afros..and I think we as africans should rock afros!!!!! In the First post Mary and I said that good hair is the one that grows out of your head and I believe in that fully, just because you hair is a different texture it does not mean you have "bad" hair.

In Kenya the natural hair scene is not huge but has slowly been growing. Most Kenyan women or girls are so used to having relaxers that having natural hair is not an option. Also when you go to a hair salon with natural hair they always ask "why dont you put a perm?" or "why do you like your hair like that?". I once went to a hair salon in Nairobi and the hair dresser said he could not roller set my hair coz It would end up being too big/wild dint he know I love me some wild hair lol..I did not let that upset me and I went to another hairdresser and had a gorgeous roller set with some huge Diana Ross hair.

We as African, Kenyan ladies should be proud of the kinks,coils and curls that adorn our heads and should not let anyone put our hair down. Natural hair is easy to manage so whats the problem??
Voe said...

Bravo Nyash!!! i totally agree and support this story you shared. Its too bad some people want to remain in the dark about the wonder and beauty of wild curly hair.
I mean its just too sexy :-) :-)
I love this story


Maria said...

Hey girls,
I'm so glad I found this blog - def. going into my reader! I've been natural for a little over a year, but over Christmas, I made the mistake of going with my sister to her fancy salon in tao. Big mistake. I just wanted to trim the split ends and have a wash and shampoo, and blow dry (with low heat). First the guy kept asking what I was going to "do". Was I going to get it braided or weaved elsewhere? No. Was I going to relax? No. Oh, so you're just natural. Yes. Are you making some kind of statement? (!) No, this is just the way HAIR GROWS OUT OF MY HEAD! Anyway, he cut off at least two inches(!!!) off my head since he could not estimate length on curled up hair. Then he would not listen to turn the heat down low, so I made him stop the blowdry when my hair was like half done. I was so upset I was almost crying, and gave him a piece of my mind before I left.

Long story short: 1. Black people, even Kenyans, have to change their attitudes to natural hair. 2. Back to home-styling for me. Love your tutorials and posts!

Nyachomba Kariuki said...

Hi Maria.

Glad your loving the blog, I know how difficult it is to get people in Kenya to understand that natural hair is versatile and acceptable. In fact on Classic FM they were saying that having natural hair is a no no and its too difficult to maintain.
Most people just see natural and think.."girl you need to get a relaxer or hide it under some braids"
I am so sorry for that bad experience but now you know never to go there again and soon enough you will be like me...I cant stand people touching my hair. I do everything for myself.
Will definitely do more tutorials!!
Thanks alot

Cyl said...

ive been rocking a fro since 2010 Jan and im loving every minute of it! dont let nobody dictate the way you dress or the way you wear yo hair! fros rock and more power to all the girls out there who dare to go natural. more power to you and remember to always stay natural!

Neire said...

I kinda agree with you, it;s easier to maintain natural hair than permed or fully blow dried hair. I once had permed my hair but then I let it grow back to its natural self because perm is a waste of money and time and it ends up ruining hair if not well maintained. Now my sister wants my hair because I learn to style my hair everyday though I don't really know a multiple number of hair styles.

athena said...

Hi Nyachomba,

I am transitioning and in dire need of advise. SOS

Anonymous said...

Nice blog. it is taken me a whole to years braiding and weaving my hair continuously till the relaxed bit is all gone and am now with my natural African hair. The 1st day i went to college and everyone is like what happened to your hair, are you going to braid or weave? and am like no. My boss asked me the same question the other day she was like "i don't like this natural hair thing, or you may have to be blow drying now and then, or go weave it" and am like neither of the above! she just left. My question is, the same same people who will seem to campaign for 'natural' hair don't seem to know how REAL natural hair look like. As i write my hair dresser as threatened to relax my hair soon, he has refused anything natural. Where can i get a natural Kenyan hair saloon within Nairobi?

Elsa Kuria said...

Hey! Nice blog! always had natural and I love it :)

inoelyne said...

I have transitioned from permed hari, cut my hair short and started growing it all natural again. It's very long by the way. I went on to weaves for almost five consecutive years and NOW I'm on wigs ONLY. My problem is I would so much love to just rock my natural hair, no wigs or weaves or braids et al. I have a receding forehead which does not exactly work to my advantage. I'd like help finding a really good, professional stylist to help style my natural hair. Pleasse help a transitioning sister. Thanks all.

Linda Nyantika said...

you can check out transitioning hair tutorials on you tube

Linda Nyantika said...

Please check out hair transitioning videos. on you tube. Wish you the best

Anonymous said...

Can anyone recommend hairstylists in Nairobi that actually know how to do natural hair? I just moved here from the USA and I've already tried two places both with terrible experiences. I'm tired of hairdressers here looking down on me for having an afro, and I'm tried of having to physically grab their instruments to stop them from trying to shave my head. I want my hair to grow long and need a hairdresser who will help me do that with style. Suggestions?

Anonymous said...

Good day girls, I moved to Nairobi recently and I am looking for a natural hairsalon. Any address?

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know of a good natural hair stylist in Nairobi?

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