In the documentary, I explore the truth about the use of relaxers in Nigeria. With all the talk about Natural hair going on now among the diaspora, a lot of people don’t know that the use of relaxers in African countries is actually very prominent and that similar natural hair “movements” have started taking root IN African countries as well, but for reasons many Americans may not expect. In telling the the history of black hair in Africa and THE story of relaxers in Nigeria, my goal is to also tell a story of Nigerian women as a whole, bringing light to Nigerian culture and ways. Africa has a lot of under-told stories, and the story of hair, and especially as it relates to the natural hair movement happening in America right now, is one of them.
I talk about African hair culture and the natural vs. relaxed hair debate that is happening in Nigeria. By going through African hair history through the stories of my grandmother and others in the video, the documentary walks you through things like traditional Nigerian hairstyles, some history of braids in Africa, ancient African hair care, African hair styles, and traditional African braids, down to modern day practices of how hair is currently done in Nigeria.
The video goes through the history of black hair in Africa, African cosmetology history, and how it relates to African American hair history, facts, the history of black hair discrimination, and black hair and cultural identity. It also goes through things such as an examination of what is “good” hair in the black community from the African perspective, the importance of hair in different cultures such as the Nigerian culture, black hair story, black hair salon culture and braiding culture in Nigeria, and some of the politics or lack of politics surrounding black women’s hair in Nigeria. By showing the history of relaxers, the evolution of black hair in Nigeria, and African hair culture, this documentary explores the truth about what is actually happening with hair in African countries such as Nigeria and why.