Nappy Hair Pleasure #02 – AWO LICIOUS

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All women whether white, black, Asian, Caucasian, can relate when it comes hair and how we agonize over how to wear it, to add some colour or not to, and the flinching thought of the hair growing rather slowly if not growing at all.

This episode of Nappy Hair Pleasure features Stefanie Duse, popularly known as Awo Licious, a sweet spirited woman and one of the motherland’s up-to-the-minute Graphic Designers. A one on one conversation with her revealed that for the young black woman, hair is not just something to play with, it is something that is weighed down with messages, and it has the power to dictate how others treat you, and in turn, how you feel about yourself.

AWO’S HAIR IS…

Lighter, looser on the crown, course on the temple… still a type 4 hair.

AND ABOUT THE STEREOTYPICAL VIEW OF THE NAPPY HAIR

I wouldn’t call it stereotype. People are rather more comfortable with saying they have natural hair today. It’s a good trend. I have nothing against it. The biggest approach is not being too concerned about the hair; it’s a psychological thing. Naturals are not hair-obsessed, at least most of us aren’t.

There were times I’ll worry about it when it was shorter, because you cannot explore varied styles with it.

GROWING UP…

Mother didn’t perm our hair because back then in Ghana, you had to cut your hair until completed Senior Secondary School (today’s Senior High School). She’ll take us to the salon and one ‘auntie’ would braid our hair, so I was never used to handling it myself even after completion, so perming the hair was the easiest alternative.

DECIDING TO GO NATURAL…

…that was 3.5yrs ago. Before then, I’d explore different haircuts with my permed hair, until it stopped growing past a certain length and got lighter. I guess I decided on going natural because I felt my hair wasn’t healthy anymore.

BUT MY FAMILY…

Mother wasn’t happy in the beginning. She said people will view you as a “mad person”, but when it started to grow, no one had to point out how enthralled she was. She’ll even recommend some products I used to other family members.

My sister wears her permed hair alright, but after she saw the progress with my hair, she begun to use the natural hair products that worked for permed hair too, and I must say IT IS WORKING FOR HER!

AND ABOUT THE LUXURY OF KEEPING NAPPY HAIR

The expensiveness is the angle at which you see it. It’s both ways actually. It is expensive in regards to the amount of TIME spent with it. You can actually discover remedies that are not store-box. There are also DIYs online and Shea butter is all over Ghana, THANK GOD!

HOWEVER…

…if you don’t know how to take care of your own hair, you’ll have to go to the salon. Unlike some, I do not trust just anyone with my hair. Treating nappy hair takes patience. Most of the hairdressers only wash with limited amount of water and towel it anyhow. Nappy hair treatments take patience.

I USE

I avoid the pomades and thick liquids because it is easier for them to get built up in my hair since I’ve got lighter hair – so the oils work impeccably.

Makola Virgin Coconut oil (Cold Pressed)
Now Solutions Sweet Almond Oil
Henna-Si Oil Enriched Clarifying Shampoo
Tresemme Moisture Rich Conditioner
Sunny Isle Organic Jojoba Oil
Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Extra-Moisture Detangler
Mountain Rose Herbs Rhassoul Clay
Mountain Rose Herbs Hibiscus Flower Powder
TGIN Honey Miracle Hair Mask Moisture
Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie
Shea Moisture Jamaican black castor oil strengthen grow & restort treatment masque
Shea Moisture Tahitian Noni & Monoi Smooth & Repair Nourishing Hair Mask
Herbal Essences Hello hydration conditioner

Evidently, black hair is thicker, curlier, and often frizzier compared to Caucasian and Asian hair. It is also more sensitive to excessive manipulation, requiring a different set of styling techniques.

Hair can be happy when its appropriate desires are met. When hair is happy, the head on which it rests is happier – I guess that explains the expressions “good hair days” and “bad hair days”.

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Instagram: Awo Licious

Photographer: Charlene Asare


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