Hair styles are a form of expression, an additive to a fly outfit or a signature of one’s individuality and residents in the District have made their mark with colorful hairdos, locks and a “nappy boy image,” that hardly goes unnoticed.
Alecia Maddox, 22 of Southeast exited the Anacostia Metro station sporting lavender and black yarn twists that matched her lavender pants and black sneakers. She said it took her two to three days to complete her hairstyle.
Nicknamed “Apple,” Maddox said she was expressing her inner-self, her “alter-ego,” formally known as “Red Bones,” whom she described as funny, unique and passionate.
“Hair is a form of expression. You wanna be different,” said Hairstylist Roberta Morton, 29, of Temple Hills, MD.
Morton works at PJ’s Cut & Style Salon, a hair salon located at 2410 Martin Luther King Ave., in S.E. She rocked a head-full of Nubian copper-colored twists that she did herself.
“Instead of the solid color, I wanted to get something bright,” Morton said.
Morton isn’t the only one who wanted to experiment with color.
Jayson Diggs, 34 of Southeast showed off his Mohawk which was black at the base and blonde at the top. Like many in the District, Diggs had locks but as a child he had always wanted a Mohawk. Now that his mother no longer has a say about his hair he decided to let his best friend create the hairstyle of his dreams.
Also out of the ordinary were the black and blonde locks displayed by Hairstylist Rochelle Lewis, 25, of Southeast.
“Good morning. Thanks for calling Jasmine’s,” Lewis said as she answered the phone inside of Jasmine’s Hair Gallery located at 2202 Martin Luther King Ave., in S.E.
Lewis’ locks were curly with black in the front and blonde in the back. The colors are usually displayed vice versa but Lewis said she “always liked different things.”
Lewis started doing her own hair at the age of 8 because she said her mother didn’t know how to do it. She began by braiding friends and family members’ hair.
“It was something I just got into,” Lewis said.
She attended cosmetology school and has been working at Jasmine’s Hair Gallery for two years where she specializes in all natural hairstyles.
Lewis has been growing her locks for three years and like herself, she has noticed that many Washingtonians have locks.
“It’s like a fad,” Lewis said.
Besides locks, Morton said that various twists, short styles and highlights have also become popular within the District. But especially unique to DC are African twists, which Morton describes as fat, circular yarn twists.
Despite the present state of the economy, salon owners and hairstylists said it’s still business as usual.
“Even as the economy began to dwindle, we got busier because you’ve got to get your hair done,” said Patricia Boykins, 47, of Southeast. Boykins is the owner of PJ’s, cut and style salon.
“When your hair is done, you feel good,” Boykins said.
Dubbed as PJ’s “weave specialist,” Morton agrees.
“It’s like an image and if you don’t have your hair done you’re not together,” said Morton. “You could have sweat pants and a t-shirt and if your hair is done, you still feel good. That’s top priority. Before someone gets new shoes, they’re gonna get their hair done.”