Monday, 17 December 2012

If we really knew what we have…


I have not really written a light hair post in a while. I had an experience recently, and I thought it will be nice to share.

While trying to get resources for some of my products I just rolled out, I went to the market to meet the local herb woman I usually get my Shea butter, and coconut oil from (I usually buy local supplies from only this woman, because I know her stuffs are unadulterated).  I decided to try my luck, to see if she had nettle leaves. I firstly got the common local names for nettle in Nigeria, which are Ewe Esinsin in Yoruba, Agbara or Akuwa in Igbo, and Osokporode in Urhobo. If you want to patronise these local people for herbs, it is important that you know the local name of what you want to buy, lest they sell something else to you. I was delighted to find out that she had nettle leaves.

So back to the main gist of the matter…

Immediately the herb woman saw my hair, she just pointed to her daughter’s hair begging me to help her with suggestions, cos she knows I make hair products. Her daughter was just about a year old, her hair was relaxed, scanty and very very unhealthy. She had lost most of the hair on her front edges. I told her not to have relaxed the girl’s hair, cos she was too little for that. Talk about ignorance.

As I was gathering up all my hair consultancy skills, she opened her own hair, she had lost all the hair in the middle of her head. I asked her what happened, and she said it was somebody that used a certain popular relaxer (name withheld), and then she lost the hair. I really doubt that it was the relaxer she used, I think it’s more of ignorance on the part of the person that relaxed her hair, but she was convinced it was the relaxer. Looking at her and her helpless daughter, I just opened my mouth, and I said to her…

Why would you have all these resources on your hands, and still have problem with caring for your hair, and be subject to relaxer issues?

I mean this woman sells, Shea butter, coconut oil, other natural oils, uncommon herbs of all kinds… stuffs that Natural Nigerian would die to have her hands on, so she could do all her experimenting on. She replied saying it’s not her fault, that the skills she learnt were to care people’s inner body system, that she did not know all these things were helpful for the hair. So I did not blame her. It was due to ignorance. I just kept thinking of Natural Nigerian, lol, who by the way, I think should give the woman a lecture.

At the same time, all the people there were looking at my hair, pulling at it, arguing if it was kinky braids or my real hair. I told them it was my hair, they found it hard to believe until many of them had to touch it. I wondered what they would have said if the hair was exhibiting its real length, as it had about up to 70% shrinkage in twists (story of my hair). It means my hair actually shows about 30% of its original length on a normal day.

This pic was taken the day the so-called hair
was causing the uproar 

The almost-true length of the hair (70% shrinkage).
Notice the length of the unstretched twist on the
right, when compared to the one I stretched.

After telling the woman what she should do to her hair and her daughter’s hair, she decided that she would buy my hair butter. I mentally shook my head, cos she is the one that sells Shea butter to me.

My question is this… is it not funny how we seem to have all these resources at our door step, and we don’t know their worth? Then we decide the only way we have to look good is by subjecting our hair to torture we eventually pay for by getting it damaged? I say this because all the other herb women around her also had bad hair. They literally gathered around me, asking several questions for how to care for their hair, what to use on their damaged, and if possible they wouldn’t have let me leave. I could see the glue under one of the ladies’ weave, as it had been on her head for some time, another had dyed scanty hair… these are women and girls that specialise in herb trades.

I shook my head as I left. These women really did not know what they have.

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P.P.S: In the meantime, don’t forget to enter for the chance to win one of our giveaway prizes in our African Naturalistas 10-Mega giveaway, if you haven’t already done that.

14 comments :

  1. So sad, we don't know what we have and its useful to our hair. I guess awareness is the way out

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yea, we need massive awareness o. We are so rich in resources

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  2. Ahhhh what a pity, they should even know these things better, it goes to show how we as africans have lost our heritage by embracing something else and forgetting our own.... smh

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's true. The fact is that foreigners wish they have the kind of resources we have

      Delete
  3. sad!

    awareness is key...that is all

    ReplyDelete
  4. like many others have said....only education/awareness about hair care can stop this

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Nigerian locals need the awareness in large doses.

      Delete
  5. You are so on point with this post. We tend not to appreciate what we have until someone else (usually foreigner) points out the benefits to us. Lol! You know me well, I would have sat down with that woman and tried to open her eyes...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Serious o, I was thinking about you all through the conversation.

      Delete
  6. My question is...
    Where can I find this woman? I'm looking for a new 'natural products' supplier.
    Thanks

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What exact products are you looking for? She is a herb dealer in Bariga market.

      Delete
  7. Thanks alot to u guys bt i need a favour from u, my hair is very short and i want it to long very fast pls wat are d nigerian indigenous hearbs i can use and how pls ill prefer thier yoruba native names

    ReplyDelete
  8. All my front edges hair are gone, pls what natural herbs can I use 2 make it grow and full?

    ReplyDelete

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