Since the dawn of time, issues around black African women’s hair have been very controversial. At one point an African woman wearing African hairstyles was deemed as ugly and unattractive, next minute black women are scrutinized for wearing extensions, weaves and braids. You begin to wonder what society really wants from black women. From what I have seen, heard and read. Hair choices have been built on the politics of race-based oppression. On one hand a black woman embracing her God given hair would be looked down upon and criticized and on the other hand, if she were to straighten or treat it she’d be accused of not staying true to herself. Question is what hairstyles should black women wear to run from criticism? No one knows really but one thing for sure, you can never satisfy humans that’s why some black women are bringing back hairstyles everyone thought weren’t good enough. Hairstyles like amabhanzi/magodi.
Over the years we have been worried about presenting ourselves in the workplace, on social media and around friends. Amabhanzi were a definite no for any of the above. But guess what, the tables have turned and people are rocking them. I’ve seen them all over social media Twitter, IG you name it! I guess it’s because they have been pimped up a bit but “Okusalayo” they are still amabhanzi. I did a mini survey to understand what has really inspired the return of amabhanzi and I got interesting feedback. I thought I should share just in case someone’s been wondering what’s up with this hairstyle. So basically, people are bringing back amabhanzi/magodi to embrace Africanism and fight white superiority, return #backtobasics and save money and just for the love of the pimped up mabhanzi/magodi hairstyles.
Embracing Africanism and Fighting White Superiority
Being African means you should love it and that means doing everything the African way I guess, even hair itself. Hair should be part of what defines you and where you come from. So someone said “I think we have reached that stage where we are now proud of who we are as Africans and embracing our culture.” I feel like everything vintage is coming back into fashion because we want to go back to our roots, back to the hairstyles our mothers and grandmothers were wearing before we were diluted by the western culture. Amabhanzi have then made it to being part of the things that have “Returned” or should I say brought back to us.
Back To Basics
A wise man once said beautiful women are natural, they are simple and just do basic things. I am starting to believe this is what’s influencing the “return” of amabhanzi. Women are probably realizing that one doesn’t need to go through a lot of trouble to look beautiful. Just some neatly done mabhanzi can get a John out there to Vul’ gate for the nice looking stoko if you know what I mean.
Inspiration @Mazwilla_Zwilla pic.twitter.com/kOjTnP1N1j
— kudziapril (@kudzaiishebusu) February 21, 2019
For The Love Of Hair
Amabhanzi are trending because people are loving their new look. The pimped magodi are not as “embarrassing” as the ones our mothers used to plait back then. These ones are on another level. It’s like they transferred from a public school to a private school for further improvement. If you haven’t seen them trust me when I say you will love them and want them for yourself or even your bae lol. When you love something you want to be a part of you so I guess this is why we are experiencing the “return” of amabhanzi/magodi.
I did my version of my Riri inspired Mabhanzi with my recycled grey braids, because I didn’t want to throw them out yet 😅
Let’s bring this hairstyle back shall we?👀
Video link: https://t.co/HVSdpYQOSB
— Eleanor_H (@eleanor_h__) August 21, 2020
Amabhanzi could still reign during this lockdown because they are cheap, less laborious and convenient. I mean we are at home most of the time, no need to wear fancy hairstyles just do what will save you money and time. Convenience – I mean they work for any occasion plus on days you feel like you need “ukubangena” with a Brazilian wig, you can still wear it with your mabhanzi on so no harm caused at all. After all has been said and done I say phambili ngamabhanzi, let’s love our culture and embrace it. Once everyone accepts that amabhanzi are a part of us, no one will say ill things about them or people who wear them because they are what makes us unique, African and beautiful!!!