Kinks & Kurls Expo 2017

Before I got to the Kinks & Kurls Expo on Saturday, I tried to envision what it would be like. From the social media prompts I had seen, I knew there would be tonnes of things to see, and many really experienced natural hair gurus speaking. When I walked into the gardens at Maria’s Place in Naguru, I almost had to pick my jaw off the ground, because all of my expectations were surpassed.
 I saw exhibitors of all sorts of things. Natural hair products, body wellness products, crafts, art, food…and the list goes on. Not only was the Kinks & Kurls Expo informative, and eye opening, it was fun, and I can say I left with some newfound “Kurl Friends” as this group of Ugandan entrepreneurs call themselves.
 I love it when I see women finding their passions and making moves to be successful at them (I’ve spoken about this in so many past blog posts) and I can wholeheartedly say that I left this place feeling like almost everyone I met was so passionately involved in what they were doing, it was like soaking myself in a sea of inspiration.

The ladies from Nzuri Textures

I took my time and stopped at every stall, spoke to almost every single exhibitor, smelt, felt and touched their products and listened to their stories. My questions were not just about what their products do, but I as usual found ways to try and get to their Imigani’s (short tales). “Are your products made in Uganda?” to which the majority of the response was yes, “how did you start doing this?”, “do you do the packaging yourself?”, all of which had uniquely positive answers.

 

With Sheila Ndinda

The afternoon was warm, everyone was chatty, the music was upbeat, the space was predominantly decorated in pink and white, with touches of gold and we all flocked in in huge numbers with the overall intention to learn more about our hair, about our bodies, about how we can live better quality lives, and fully learn to accept who we were made to be. There was a kids corner where whoever came along with their children could drop them off and be sure that they would be entertained. I swear I saw a live sized Princess Sofia, and the children I saw in this corner were so engrossed they didn’t notice that I, or anyone else was close to them.

 I remember thinking to myself that the ladies behind the Kinks & Kurls Expo, who had managed to pull off an exceptional second edition of the event, probably spent a lot of time and resources putting it all together, and the fruits of their labour were paying off. The natural hair community in Uganda is huge, and it seems to only be getting started.
 My take away from Saturday was that, I am extremely proud to be living in Uganda alongside so much zeal for entrepreneurship, non acceptance for mediocrity, and a lot of self love. I’ll let you see for yourselves in all of the pictures that I have in this blog post. (I had such a hard time deciding which pictures to include in this post, and which ones to leave out!) Hats off to every single one of you ladies!
 PS: To style my hair, I dunked my hair in water to achieve a short Afro like look, did flat twists and finished them off with Bantu Knots. I find that flat twists give my hair perfect separation and fluffing it out is so much easier.  Also finishing it off with Bantu Knots gives me brilliant curls. Let me know if you want to see a tutorial, and I’ll attempt to do one.
 Till next week,
Joan.
Photography by Stone Photography.