‘Sisterlocks’ stylist gives natural alternative to haircare
By MaLia Gaddy
Special to the Michigan Citizen
The number of salons dedicated to natural hair styles is increasing as more African American women seek natural hair care resources. Angela Hammond, owner and stylist for Ms. AaH’s Natural Hair Care in Ypsilanti, has developed her business to help Black women maintain a hair style authentic to their natural selves.
“We put a lot of money in other people’s hands to be something we’re not. And it’s a façade,” says Hammond, who wears her earthy golden brown hair in Sisterlocks, a proprietary technique for which she was specially trained. Much thinner than dreadlocks commonly worn by men and women, Sisterlocks — mostly worn by women — allow the hair to remain light and manageable, similar to having hair freshly blow-dried.
In an era where mainstream media objectifies and encourages a synthetic Black female image, Hammond sees many of her customers coming to her after realizing they have spent thousands of dollars maintaining their hair with dangerous chemicals and in a style unnatural to their ethnicity.
“God did not design us to look the same and be robots,” she says. “He made us different because we all bring different things to the table.”
Hammond is a certified loctician, specializing in styles for men and women. Her years of experience has led her to work with clients in various stages of transitions with their natural hair styles. She works with her clients to help them understand their hairstyle can be a part of living a natural holistic lifestyle by providing information on improving healthy behaviors, “scalp, mind body and soul.”
“What our Black people don’t realize is our hair is very, very soft. And when we perm, texturize or color our hair, it makes it hard because it strips out oils. It strips things out of our hair and makes our hair hard, tough, brittle, with a tendency to break,” says Hammond.
She uses her personal experience wearing the Sisterlocks style to help other women understand the choice they’re making about their health when they transition away from destructive hair care products.
“Anything dealing with your hair, it’s a cost to the grooming of your hair. And when you add all of that up, you could spend (thousands of dollars) a year on your hair. Whereas the average person who does something like this (Sisterlocks) to their hair, they spend less than $1,500 a year on their hair,” says Hammond. “People are starting to recognize it’s becoming more and more of a strength we are coming into our own. There is such a liberation, such a freedom. They feel better, they look better.”
Ms. AaH’s Natural Hair Care Salon is located at 872 South Grove, Ypsilanti. For more information, call 313.268.3621 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.