Hair and identity are often two inseparable concepts.

Society has been conditoned to think of women’s hairstyles in certain ways.

This series is about how individuals create identity through their various  hair styles.


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Debbie Falana, 19, did a stint over the summer at FAB magazine. When we all met her she had natural, cropped hair. But she hasn’t always has a couple cute inches of Afro, here she shares her hair story.



 “I’ve always had kind of long hair, it’s naturally really thick and full and I like it. I would braid my hair and have weaves – most people around me liked it when I had the long hair.  But in 2010 I decided to do the Rihanna style where the back and side are shaved. The only thing was that I found that this style was time consuming what with the regular cuts and relaxing to keep it looking fly.”


Rihanna style, Jan 2011

“Then when I was back home in Nigeria in July 2011 I saw that when the relaxer was growing  out I cut it down to the roots, I didn’t go bald or anything but it was still a bit scary.  I liked my little Afro so thought ‘Hey, I can pull this off’, so I went a little bit shorter. “


“As many of my friends from Uni had only known me with the Rihanna hair they were shocked to see it cropped short. The guys at first were like ‘Why did you cut your hair? Not that you don’t look good, but we’re just wondering why’ But every agreed that I was ‘so brave’.”



“I don’t like weaves. I don’t have the time (or the money) to maintain a weave, to be honest. I don’t want to be put in the category of girls who have all this fake hair –  I don’t like the idea of everyone knowing that it’s fake hair. Some girls do it for guys, but I think that guys are really getting over this whole weave thing.  Guys now appreciate that you have to have a certain boldness to have your natural hair.”


2010: A weave before the Rihanna style

2010: A weave before the Rihanna style



June 2011


“Right now my hair is in kinky twists. I’ve got it like this at the moment because to be honest I wanted something bit longer. And my Mom is coming over soon and I didn’t want her to kick up a fuss. But with this braiding style it’s also helping my hair grow.”



Debbie's current hair


“I’ve kept it chemical free since then. The texture of my hair isn’t soft until I add a little bit of water to it. I can’t to comb it out in the day as it’s just so tough. But I do like my hair as it’s really thick and full. For the time being I’m just going to let it grow naturally.”



“I’m really into having scarves around my hair. I love to pack my hair up, so I like to have braids so that I can do a nice scarf style and feel  comfortable – like ‘me’.  It is definitely less stressful having short hair though.”


“I’m not sure what I’ll go for next, but it definitely won’t be a weave.”


Well Debbie, we think you look FAB!

One Response

  1. kimbles

    i love your new look, i am also thinking of going all natural but i wanna use a soft kinky weave that i can wash and condition. any suggestions please? big ups to u gurl!


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