15 Nigerian Natural Hair Bloggers You Should Know!

Hellooo beautifuls!!

How is the going going?

I was at work this morning when notifications started trickling in. Facebook, Instagram, WordPress. I was a little puzzled because I hadn’t recently posted anything on the interwebs. So I went to my stats to help me understand, and they led me to Bella Naija. Yours truly was mentioned by KlassyKinks in her article ’12 Natural Natural Hair Bloggers You Need To Follow’! You could go see it here. I felt excited, happy, fulfilled, I truly never hesperred it! ^____^

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A very BIG thank you to Ijeoma for the love!! and also for prompting my procrastinating ass to put out my own list. This is something I’ve had sitting in my drafts for a while.

Sometimes in your natural hair journey, you could feel lonely. Afro-textured sistas may not be as easy to spot on our streets as you would in say, Brooklyn- but I’m here to let you know that in our Nigeria, you aren’t alone. To borrow The Kinky Apothecary’s slang/ hashtag, #NaturalsDey.

Nigerian hair. Nigerian Naturals, Living right here, in Nigeria. We are here. Very happy, and we are thriving.

So this is a shoutout to all my Naija-based natural hair bloggers. You should get familiar with them 😉

This is by no means a conclusive list, but here in no particular order:

1. The Kinky Apothecary.

Nigeria’s first one-stop shop for your Natural hair needs has been here from the very beginning of this ‘movement’ so to speak. Actually, in anticipation of my Big Chop, my first product haul ever, was from the Apothecary! Visit the blog for hair talk, and follow the Apothecary’s FB and Instagram (/kinkyapothecary) for a steady stream of well-curated natural hair inspiration.

2. Rachel of Beautifully Nappy’s enthusiasm for keeping her kinks and body healthy & beautiful as naturally as possible is contagious!! For natural hair growth, organic skin care & healthy living, visit her blog– and keep up with her on Instagram (@rachelasakome) & Twitter (@BeautifullyNapy)

3. Natural Nigerian brings you “Natural” from a holistic point of view. It’s not just hair, she’s very very committed to living as naturally as possible. For healthy hair care, clean eating and generally healthier living, you want to bookmark NN’s blog. And just so you aren’t the last to know when next NN organises another hair meet-up, you should do the same. Between blog posts, keep up with NN on Facebook.

4. She whose face must not be seen! NatMane blogs about her hair journey at Deep Brown & Kinks. She’s a super talented stylist, I can personally testify. If you’re in Abuja, tweet her to make an appointment: @NaturalMane. You will not regret it.

5. Hadassah is a proudly Igbo girl, living it up in the ‘Buj with her very healthy, bouncy, curls. She writes at Nappily Nigerian Girl, and she instagrams too: @NappilyNigerianGirl. You could also tweet her: @NappilyNigerian.

6. Fola is a Natural Nigerian living in Lagos. She was on a healthy relaxed hair journey before she decided to embrace her kinks. She blogs about her hair (and fitness and healthy eating) at Fola’s Oasis.

7. Fellow 4C sista Acharacha blogs about her hair journey at Acharacha By Nature. With Acha, it’s simple straight to the point haircare, and she makes youtube videos too.

8. Beautiful Ifeyinwa is the Brain behind handmade skin care product line Ajali. She is a beauty & lifestyle blogger, who writes about hair, and other pretty things at Love, Ifeyinwa.

9. Kemi Lewis runs her own Natural Hair Salon in Ikoyi, Lagos. Visit her blog KL’s Naturals and you can just tell the woman KNOWS hair. That post about her laid edges? Paradigm. Shift.

10. African Naturalistas is the greatest collaborative blogging effort in the Nigerian natural hairsphere. Several bloggers write about African hair and all things related for AN, so you’re sure to see something new every time you visit!

11. The Mane Captain, Adeola lives in Toronto- but do visit her blog and see if that makes any difference. She blogs about the true basics of hair care- techniques and tips- things we can all implement, regardless of what we have or what we are using.

12. Sandeeey has been natural for several years. Her luscious locks (of life!) have even been featured on Curly Nikki. She’s on Instagram: @hairoflife and she writes about her hairscapades at HairOfLife.

13. Ore a.k.a. Ms. Cookie is a full blooded Yoruba girl with beautiful big curly hair. She talks hair on her blog Cookie’s Real Hair Care. If you’re in Lagos & need a little help with your real hair- natural or relaxed, hit her up to schedule a salon session. Tweet her: @thecurlycookie

14. Jan blogs about her healthy relaxed hair journey at Today’s Naira. She is also well invested in the maintenance of her nieces’ natural curls. Definitely a blog you should see for you, and the little curlies in your life.

15. 17 year old Nafisah is an aspiring architect. On her blog, Coily Head of Hairshe chronicles the ups and downs of being natural (in Nigeria) and from time to time, you can catch her doing some DIY too! 🙂

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On Tuesdays, Natural Nigerian shares photos of other Nigerian naturals on her facebook page. You could share your photos with her too. On Instagram, you could search the #NigerianHair and #NaturalsDey #NaturalNigerian tags.

For information about where to find Natural Hair Friendly products and salons in Nigeria, do visit the Where to Find Directory. Healthy Hair Awareness is growing like crazy, and in good time, I’m positive every state will catch the bug. But for now, most stores deliver. If a store isn’t in your city, don’t be shy to contact them. They may be able to accommodate your request or customise a solution for you. 🙂

From time to time, hair meet-ups are organised and from my experience, they’re full of great fun, warmth and kinky-curly inspiration!

If you live in Benin City, please please, read this short announcement.

Woah. This has been a super long post. I hope I’ve been able to convince you and not confuse you that… Naturals Dey! We are here!! If I didn’t mention your natural hair blog or your favourite hair blog, please bless us with a link in the comments!

Shout out to new The Kink and I followers! I’m always an email away- thekinkandi@gmail.com. I’ve only had my ‘fro for a little under 2 years, but I’m here to help as best as I can, and I always respond.

Till next post,

Love,

AB

Xx

Styling Adventures: Crochet Braid Extensions

Hey guys!

How is the going going?

On Saturday I typed up a long ass tirade about how Protective styling has been a drag, but now that I think about it today, it’s only February the 17th. Keep calm AB! You drama queen, you. I blame my hormones ( ._.)

Yes, I’ve had some challenges, but things are looking up. At the risk of getting too comfortable or lazy about styling again, I am happy to announce that I may have found my new default style!

See, I was really upset that I had to take out my braids so soon, so I desperately trolled the internet for a magic trick, any secret that would let me braid in peace and ensure my kinks don’t wiggle their way out. And that’s how I found out about the wonder of crocheting!

What is Crochet Braiding?

Crochet Braiding or Crocheting in hair speak is basically a technique of installing extensions (with braiding hair or weave) that requires you to cornrow your hair (you can flat twist too but it may not last as long), and then attach your extensions directly to the cornrows, by braiding. Stay with me now…

It’s like fixing your braids (or weave, but in this case, no thread or glue is needed). Yes. Don’t go, Hang in there.

The benefits?

Less pressure on your hair, it’s much easier to access your scalp and moisturise, and it’s definitely more natural looking! There’ll be more about crocheting on the blog in the near future, because I’m SO ready to go in!!

Right now, I’m wearing hair inspired by Jouelzy. You know “pick and drop”? That’s really what I have on now, only crocheted.

I got my hair done by very talented nashura hair stylist NatMane, but crocheting is actually super easy, you could totally try it on your own! NatMane isn’t resident in my city though *sob, sob*, so the next time I do this, I’ll be doing this myself.

This is usually done with a latch hook, but as we had none, she improvised with a bobby pin, with the aid of this Jouelzy tutorial I showed her. (Jouelzy’s tutorials are the bestest!!) You could also use improvise with a beader, but I’m sure you’re more likely to have a good old bobby pin. 🙂

What you need:

A bobby pin. Yes, just one.

Kinky extensions (I used Supreme Royal Silk Afro Twist Braid, the same old ones I used for my Havana twists)

How-To:

Watch this quick Jouelzy tutorial and you’ll be feeling like Superwoman.

And that’s really it, friends. Easy peasy. I didn’t leave any hair out, but you totally can, if you feel like, if your hair is long enough.

As you can now see, this is a very simple style, but it was complicated by one thing- the extensions!

Wahala and Crisis Management

Before then, I didn’t realise that Supreme extensions are so bluddy stiff! I noticed when I was prepping them for my Havana twists but it didn’t really register. SO SO stubborn a material. Ha!

This wasn’t actually the original plan. I planned to have Marley/Havana twists crocheted like fellow wordpresser NaturalHairFanatic has here, but the hair was much too coarse, so stiff and so bulky, we could only crochet one single strand at a time. The end result? Crazy big hair. Which I love, but given the inflexibility of the extensions may have been too much of a burden.

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what would you do with this much hair?

So the only thing left to do was to do skinny loose twists with the crocheted single strands. NatMane had another appointment and I had things to do myself, so we just pulled out some of the braiding hair, and then she styled the rest.

Still. The hair wasn’t ready to be styled as it was.

Oh I forgot to mention that to work with the hair at all, before it was crocheted, NatMane had to spray it with a water and oil mixture to soften it a bit. By the time we were ready to style, the softening effect of the water-oil spritz was already gone. So, she had a bright idea. She attacked the hair in sections with Aloe Vera Gel (Fruit of The Earth), and very firm finger detangling. The hair was weighed down a bit by this and it was pliable enough to style.

Styled by NatMane!
After the battle was won, Styled by NatMane!

In the past week, I have done the gel and finger-detangling thing 3 times and I was left with like a handful each time. I wonder what will be left after 3 more weeks, we’ll see.

Anyhoooo. I’m enjoying my new big hair very much. Getting compliments left, right, centre. X_X LOL. To think that this is a super easy, and relatively cheap look to achieve! No fancy kinky weave from Mongolia or anywhere.

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On my way to a wedding on Valentine's Day
On my way to a wedding on Valentine’s Day
Is this an updo? Southern bun, work-formal and stuff
Is this an updo? Southern bun, work-formal and stuff

And I love how it blends in perfectly with my own hair!

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No need to struggle with Edge Control or anything. Love it!!

If you’re going to do this, to save you the stress, I strongly advise you find softer kinky extensions than Supreme Royal Silk. I hear Noble Dreadlock is softer, but I’m yet to try. If you’ve tried and tested any brands of soft kinky braiding hair, please be a darling and leave me a comment, tell me!

Okay luvvies! That’s all for now.

Till next post,

Love,

AB

Xx

P.S. If you’re in Abuja and you want your hair styled, make a date with NatMane at Lumo Naturals Salon. Tweet her: @NaturalMane. Contact deets for Lumo Naturals are in the Where To Find Directory. For more of NatMane’s handiwork, see this post, and also visit her blog Deepbrown & Kinks!!

Hair by Lumo Naturals: My First Updo

Hey guys!

Let’s play a game called ‘Name The Style’ ? 🙂

Here are photos of how I wore my hair at the Call ceremony two Fridays ago and for a week after.

Braids up the sides that ended in twists, and twists in the middle.

Then the braids and twists were married with some more twisting and held up with several bobby pins, to make an updo that I at first described as a mohawk, but now that I’m looking at it, the front looks like a flat-top haircut.

Anyway, I loved it. If you have a name for my updo, holler in the comments!

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Maintenance: I simply oiled my scalp with coconut oil to prevent itching and dandruff, every two days or so.

Tip: If you’re considering recreating the style, it’d look even nicer with longer hair. Look at this photo of a natural with longer hair wearing almost the same style:

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And one of my favourite styling tutorials from Laila-Jean (youtube: FusionofCultures) – Channelling Johnny Bravo.

Her hair is much longer of course, so add kinky extensions to the middle as much as you need; a lot for a more dramatic top or if you aren’t a fan of the flat-top finish, just a little.

The Credit

My hair was styled by NatMane at Lumo Naturals Salon,

Suite G8, Mbouty plaza, Marcus Garvey street, behind emirates hotel, 5th avenue, Gwarinpa.

Call 08094823173 to book an appointment and make enquiries.

Quick Review

I had to call the salon in advance to set up an appointment.

Nat has been natural for many years now, and as expected, she handled my hair like a pro.

She helped me choose the style; this was very much appreciated because I had no idea what to do. I needed to keep my hair off my face and a hair band was definitely not an option. In my mind, there was no way a braided style could fit a suit or an adult. ( ._.) But she definitely changed that! I’m looking forward to my next braided style 🙂

Lumo Naturals is a new salon and the owner Farida was interested in getting feedback.

At Lumo Naturals, customers are given a consultancy form to fill. There you state your hair concerns, any issues you may have. I filled mine out and Farida talked me through the points raised. She also promised to email in a few weeks to see how my hair is doing. 🙂

The service was great and I was very happy with my hair.

It’s an awesome protective style because my hair is totally out of my manipulative reach, and my ends that need the most protecting, are further tucked in.

How much did my hair cost? 2000 naira.

Would I visit again? Yes.

Oh and for the Abuja natural, Natural Nigerian products are sold there.

For more information about where to find Natural Hair Salons and Products in Nigeria, visit our growing directory here.

Have you been to Lumo Naturals? How did you like it?

Till Next Post,

Love,

AB

xx