Wednesday, April 01, 2009
The parents of adopted Afrocolombianos and particularly Afrocolombianitas will appreciate a discussion of hairstyles. Afrocolombians consider hairstyles, particularly braiding, a cultural expression.
The traditional Afro-Colombian hairstylist would work from home. She would use special combs and conditioners to style, hydrate, and color the hair. Most of the products that they use are natural and are found in the flora and fauna of Colombia.
Escoba Babosa or Malvacea -- Conditioner http://www.flickr.com/photos/22012266@N02/2730552744/
Otoba -- Conditioner http://fm2.fieldmuseum.org/vrrc/med/MYRI-otob-lati-col-1340785.jpg
Guasimo -- Shampoo http://www.jardinbotanicocali.org/boletin/semillas08.pdf
Going to the hairstylist is considered a social event. From the times of slavery, information was passed along at the meetings. In addition, information was passed along in the hairstyles. Whether the braids were curvy or straight, long or short, each detail of the hairstyle meant something. For example, the hairstyle could show a map to a secret meeting spot or to freedom.
Just in case you want to take your child to get his/her hair done -- so they will look awesome when they meet their new friends and family back home -- you'll want to take them to a professional Afrocolombian hairstylist. In Bogotá, the best Afro-Colombian hairstylists are found on Calle 17 & 19 between 7th and 10th. You can try Galaxecentro 18 located on Carrera 10 con 18.