In time her hair surpassed her shoulders and began to drop down, covering her higher back. She hopes her dreadlocks can continue to grow longer and longer.

“I love my locs,” she beams.

Marica began making some tough hair choices from the age of 13 – years before a generation of woke digital natives fuelled the natural hair movement into a blazing fire in Mzanzi. As a teenager Marica decided she was done with chemicals and hair driers. She realized at the time that her type 4C-supercoils were virtually unrelaxable. They were, as she calls it, “kroes”. Straightener would not last longer than a day. In addition the hair’s high porosity caused damaging breakage.

At the time, after another failed effort to uncurl her hair, Marica dug in her heels. “My hair was not agreeing with what society prescribed,” she recalls.

She went natural and started to wear a fro and curls. Fortunately for Marica the high school she attended in Woodstock in Cape Town were not policing hair as rigidly as has been the case at other schools in recent times. This was a hair-friendly space.

But it would take a few more years before she would have the locs she desired.

“My Mom said it was too difficult to maintain and at school they don’t want it. Once I was at tertiary level I decided I am doing it. I have always wanted dreadlocks.”

Finally, she could begin to loc her hair – from baby locs to a head of rocking locs. Her dreads are an expression of Marica’s individuality, her personality and above all the fact that she is totally at ease with her hair.

As a professional single mom of a four-year-old, the Capetonian says she finds it easy to care for and considers her dreadlocks to be virtually bad-hair-day-resistant. Even if her locs are out of shape, they are still in great condition.

In fact, for her proper hair care and a sound hair regimen is non-negotiable. She takes a hardline when it comes to hair health – which was one of her primary consideration when she opted to go natural.

“I don’t wash often because obviously I don’t want to take the natural oils out. I wash once a week and add butter or moisture twice a week. For my hair line I use pure oil, also for my scalp.”

Although more and more natural hair products are released into the marked, such as My Natural, she believes hair care still comes at a price. More so if you are a discerning consumer who do not want harsh chemicals to touch your head.

For Marica the investment is worth her while. She wants her hair to look good, feel good and to be bursting with health.

She goes to a salon twice a month to maintain her dreadlocs. They are twisted as they grow longer.

Marica is stamping her commitment to hair health on her young daughter.

“She has an afro. I use My Natural products on her hair. I wash her hair once a week, plait it twice a week. On a Wednesday, I take it out until Saturday and put back on Sunday. While I am taking it out, I don’t wash it. I just put moisture on it. I put oil on her scalp and I put oil on the hairline so that it does not break, I plait it. That is her routine every week.”

Despite a snide comment here and there about her mob of hair, Marica believes that society’s attitude towards natural hair is changing.

In fact many people whose hair are too soft or straight to be transformed into dreadlocks are sometimes longing after hers (you have to have type 3C, 3D, 4B and 4C for locs).

For Marica this is a positive change. Indeed, dreadlocs are no longer dreaded. Afro’s are no longer frowned upon. Society has been accepting that natural hair is “in”.
Not that Marica cares about that. After all, this locdiva has long gone solo.

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