Star Fashion: Dancehall style is ‘hair’ to stay
The over-the-top hairstyles that defined dancehall style, neon or unicorn colours, daring haircuts and intricate braids, seemed to tone down between 2010 and 2017.
As international celebrities started to follow the trends of local artistes, the scene here became more foreign using more wavy (Brazilian) hair, natural looking wigs, neutral colours and simple styles.
Nonetheless, the dancehall culture keeps world-renowned hair brand Bijoux interested. Marketing executive, Tim Lee told The STAR, “The creativity of Jamaica especially in hair and cosmetology has Bijoux Hair fascinated; it’s the reason we continue to engage the stylists with the contest.”
The hair brand recently held its People’s Choice Hair Style Competition for the 10th year. New and returning competitors were graded in three categories, weaving, braiding and fantasy hair styling.
The programme also included a talent show segment for up-and-coming dancers, singers or deejays.
Racquel Lee, who was one of the judges, said that hair is used by the people to show personality.
“People use hair to express themselves in the dancehall just as much as dance and music; we see where hair and dancehall really coincide and used to tell the type of artiste one is,” she said.
The beautician explained that the hair along with dancehall culture is a standout characteristic for artistes and it is redeveloping.
Bijoux has also reintroduced to the market its Realistic X-pression hair with a multitude of colours.
“If I were to award a dancehall artiste for hair it would be Spice. She has remained true to the culture with the signature colour, the royal blue. It has become a more mature look, clean and professionally done,” said Racquel Lee.
Other artistes that various patrons and stylists named for representing the dancehall ‘hair-ra’ well are Shenseea, Tifa, Raine Seville, Khalia and Elephant Man.
It was obvious who the winners were in each round before the competition even got halfway through.
Last year’s winner in the fantasy category, Shanique Richards, walked away with the first place prize of US$500 again for her detailed ‘stop gun violence’ hair design.
“Dancehall comes with excitement and always sends a message so I decided to focus on a hairstyle that reflected the drama but with a positive message,” Richards told The STAR.
Stacy-Lee Ben Hassen was awarded first place in weaving and Shanna McGhan’s royal plaited style with hues of blue was a steal in the braiding category against over 20 other hairstylists.
In addition to the cash prizes, the winners are given the title Bijoux Hair Official Hair Stylists and will also be featured on posters for the brand.
The designs were judged based on neatness, creativity, details, significance of style and the use of Bijoux hair products.