The History & Benefits of African Hair Threading

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african hair threading is a traditional styling technique that goes back decades. It originated in West Africa and is still very common in Africa today. The technique involves, taking a small section of hair and wrapping a black thread tightly and evenly around the section from root to tip. The hair becomes stiff and this is repeated until the whole head is threaded.

“threading is the overlooked hairstyle that is making a stylish comeback”

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before the Colonial era, for many Africans, well at least West Africa Communities, fashion mandated that women wore their hair natural. Natural hair was the most desired hairstyle for women. As for young girls they had to shave their hair off. This was mandatory while at school because it was believed that your hair was a distraction from their education.

Therefore big hair represented a young girl’s coming of age and maturity. This was celebrated and their hair was often used to create sculptural styles and intricate up-dos, using braiding, and threading techniques. In the late 19th century, after the European influence Afro hair was less desirable than silky, straight hair. As a result many turned away from natural hair and techniques of hair sculpting, and turned to wigs, weaves and relaxers. Hair threading became less and less popular never fully surviving the travail of colonialism. Currently, in West Africa, weaves, wigs and relaxers are still the most popular sought after hairstyle to this day.

African hair threading is the forgotten hairstyle, but thankfully it is making a stylish come back.  Not just for hair stretching, but for it’s protective style qualities, for it’s edgy look and for it’s many hair health benefits, and for this reason it is increasingly gaining popularity in the natural hair community.

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1Divide your hair into sections, the size and number of sections depends on you.

2 Take a long section of thread roughly 4 times the length of your hair. You want to either double it or triple it, and tie a knot at each end.

3 Take the section of hair from the root and began wrapping the thread around the section. Make sure it is centered so that you do not feel any pull in any direction

4 Complete this all the way down the hair until you reach the end of the hair. Carefully cut the thread and tie a knot.

5Continue this until you’ve completed all sections of your hair. Then style as desire.

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Uses for African Hair Threading

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circle1Stretch the hair without heat.

Threading is more effective at stretching the hair than twisting or braiding.  The results like just blow out.

circle2  Protect the hair from tangles.

The threading technique will help to reduce single-strand knots, tangling, and manipulation.

circle3 An alternative to blow-drying.

To reduce excessive heat when flat-ironing hair threading can be done as an alternative to blow drying to get your hair as straight as possible.

circle4 Protective styling. 

Treading is low maintenance once installed, this gives your hair a break from daily combing and manipulation, preventing damage and helping to retain length.

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se6sh1Straighten your hair without the use of heat

se6sh1Combat shrinkage

se6sh1Reduces breakage

se6sh1Works as a protective style

se6sh1Helps retain hair length to grow long hair

se6sh1Reduces frizz and tangles

se6sh1Reduces single strand knots

se6sh1Coats the hair to prevent loss of moisture

 

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