My sis and I have been experimenting with the threading technique. It seems to be making a comeback. Well, I think it seems to be getting recognition outside the areas it is commonly found in. So the Americans and British are discovering it and are talking about it. However, it never left Nigeria. We have been, and still are, using the thread technique in this country. Also, the majority of the Bloggers and V-loggers use thread to stretch their hair. Here in Nigeria, we actually use the thread to style our hair. So we can keep in a thread hairstyle for a few weeks.
Using thread to make (or "plait" as we in Nigeria say it) is quite common in Nigeria. You have basic styles and you have some psychedelic styles too. I am hesitant to say that you find more children using thread than adults in Nigeria. I hesitate because I did a rough count last week and noticed just as many adults wearing hairstyles with thread. The thread technique is simple. Basically, you take some thread and wrap it around your hair. You can wrap up the whole section completely with thread or you can leave some gaps in the sections so it looks like twists.
|Cornrows in front and Chinese thread used to wrap the back|
Types of thread
In Nigeria, threading hair can be done with Chinese thread, or rubber thread or wool.
Chinese thread needs a bit more skill to use. This is especially true when, after the hair is thread, you want to style it by twisting and bending the hair. If care is not taken, the already thread hair can come loose and this means you have extra work of re-doing the hair.
The rubber thread looks shiny after it is done. The rubber thread is less expensive to buy.
|Rubber used to thread hair also known as Polyvinyl tube (alibaba.com)|
Wool seems to be the new kid on the block. Using wool to thread hair is getting more popular than using Chinese or rubber thread. A ball of wool costs about N100 (One Hundred Naira), which is less that $1, and can be used several times. Of course the amount of use you will get from your ball of wool depends on the length of your hair and the size of your sections. In fact, wool is being used for a lot more than threading hair. It is also used as extensions to twist and braid hair. It is also easier to manipulate wool after threading your hair with it.
I hear that using the wool to thread hair can be painful. If the Stylist has "a painful hand" then you might be in for double pain!
*When getting your hair styled with thread remember to keep it properly moisturized before styling or else you can loose a lot of hair when you undo the thread.
*Also pay attention and encourage the stylist not to thread too tightly especially the front and nape areas. It might help to hold the base of the section of hair when it is being thread so that you are able to reduce the tension a bit during the hair making process.
*Make sure you use leave-in conditioners on your hair when it is in thread so that your hair does not get too dry.
|Wool used to thread the hair at the back and small braids in front|
*If you are using a Stylist to thread your hair for the first time, consider taking a painkiller before or after your hair is styled. This is because you will be going through a new hair making experience and your hair will be tugged and pulled in new ways so you may feel a new type of discomfort.
And of course, be creative and make this technique work for you. It is a nice way to add some variety to your styling arsenal.
Keep it natural!