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Jamaican Hair
The Styles and Its Care

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Jamaican Hair Care, contributed by Tracie Blake

Each race of human being has a distinctive physical feature which includes our very hair!


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There are specific features of each hair such as silky and black for Asians and Indians, and blond or brunette for Caucasians.

The African race, which 90% of Jamaicans are derived from, has a rougher texture of hair which is evident in sight and touch.

Although we are highly multicultural, for the most part, texture is what defines our hair.

We the female Jamaicans do find it a bit difficult to maintain our hair. And as such, there tends to be a lot of time placed on the processing the hair to make it more manageable.

Over the years, however, the desire to be and to show ones true self has emerged into Jamaicans wearing their hair "unprocessed" or "natural".

In this effort, we will have specific hair styles, treatments and maintenance regimens in place. This includes:

  • rope twists
  • braids
  • and plaits

Today's hairdos can potentially last anywhere from 3 to 6 weeks depending on how well we care for and maintain them.

The need to maintain our hair has resulted in hair salons dedicated for the care and maintenance of "natural" hair.

jamaican_hair_braids jamaican_hair_dreadlocks_styled

[selected pics courtesy of flickr]

The standard treatment recommended by the hairdressers are shampooing, steaming and oiling hair weekly.

In addition to these treatments, our hair has to be moisturized to prevent it from becoming brittle and dry. Also, our hair has to then be covered with a silk or cotton head wear during sleep to prevent it from picking up lint and getting fuzzy.

A very "natural" hairstyle is Rastafarian. Rastafarianism is a religious sect that, among other fundamental beliefs, includes the fact that the hair mus be worn "natural".

Therefore true Rastafarians do not cut their hairs.

The Rastafarian look however has since become a style and is being worn by many others outside of its beliefs. These hairstyles are usually referred to as dreadlocks or locks.

There a variety of ways to wear locks. Some people adorn their hair with beads, metal clips and other hair ornaments to enhance the style.

The Rastafarian hairstyle is so popular that persons all over the world in other races have been wearing their hairs this way.

This gave way to professional hairstylists a way of capturing the visual effects of the locks by adding extensions and chemicals to non-African’s hairs.

Today the 'locks' is more than a fad, it is fashion and is sought for the world over.

jamaican_hair_dreadlocks_boy_back jamaican_hair_locks

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A patriotic Jamaican who adore its culture, Wellesley has been using this medium to share what he calls 'the uniqueness of Jamaica with the world' since April 2007.  

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