Friday, September 7, 2012


The Tanzanian's hair fascinates me. Every week I see women sitting for hours as someone braids their hair into a new style.
Dreadlocks is a popular way of doing hair here. The little girl above has about 2 years growth of dreadlocks. Her mother's hair is very long, all the way down her back, and is in dreadlocks too. I asked one of the Tanzanian teachers yesterday how long she would have be growing it, and she said over ten years. A style that requires patience.

The first known examples of dreadlocks date back to East Africa and some parts of North Africa. Maasai men found in the regions of northern Tanzania and southern Kenya have been wearing dreadlocks for as long as they have survived. There hasn't been official date of the "start" of Maasai dreadlocks, but it is a tradition that has been going on for thousands of years. Even today, Maasai men can be found easily donning their dreadlocks, with a tint of red color from the soil. (Wikipedia)

I also asked about the process of making the dreadlocks.
The hair is sectioned off and tied at the roots. Dread lock oil is applied to the palms of the hairdresser's hands (or the mother's or sister's hands) and the section of hair is rubbed or rolled between them. Depending on how quickly the hair grows, the process is repeated every few weeks.


  1. Just wow wish i could have got them done before I left but we didn't have the spare 3 hours.

  2. I'm imagining Cath B with red dreadlocks! Heheh. I didn't know they rubbed a particular oil into them! Interesting!