African head wraps have been around for centuries. It is believed that head wraps came around during slavery to avoid the spread of head lice by black women, and to increase productivity because women were busy working in plantations and had no time to style their hair. However, wraps were an important part of the West African fashion way before the days of slavery. They originated in sub-Saharan Africa and served as an fashion piece that gives women a sense of power and femininity. Nowadays, in some places in west Africa, married women are required by religion to hide their hair in these wraps. In these cases, the word hijab is usually used to describes the headscarves worn by these women.
To many women today, the wraps are an important fashion accessory. From one individual to another, the style in which head-wraps are worn is very different. While some use it to completely cover their hair, by holding it in place and tying the ends into knots, others use it as a hair accessory by wearing it as a headband to match a dress or any Ankara outfit. Some women wear them to special ceremonies only, and others chose to wear them every day as a queen wears her crown.
African American women have also embraced head wraps in a big way in the last few years. Celebrities like Beyoncé, Alicia Keys, Solange, Gabrielle Union, and others have been seen wearing them. This is not surprising because they are a great way to be fashionable while hiding a bad hair. The good thing about them is that we cannot really tell why someone is wearing a wrap. No matter why you wear yours, you make a statement everywhere you go. It is all about expressing yourself to the world.
There are countless ways to style your wrap to reflect your style. From Gigantic Bows, Looped Headband, to Sophisticated Knot, wraps add an elegant touch when wrapped around a ponytail or worn as a headband. Different fabrics can also be used for your wraps. People usually trust African print Kente, Ankara Prints, Dashiki Prints, Colorful Silk for their wraps. Some want their Ankara fabric to be stretchy to better hold the wrap and other just want a cloth big enough to cover their head or style it the way they want.
If you want to try a headwrap but don't know where to start, look no further than iramdesigns. We sell gorgeous African inspired Ankara, Kente, Dashiki in the perfect size for creating your favorite looks. Check out our Instagram galleries @iramdesigns for visual inspiration.