low bun on traditional Bangla women..

‘Phenomenal women’

 ~Maya Angelou

“Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.

I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size

But when I start to tell them,

They think I’m telling lies.

I say,

It’s in the reach of my arms

The span of my hips,

The stride of my step,

The curl of my lips.

I’m a woman

Phenomenally.

Phenomenal woman,

That’s me.

I walk into a room

Just as cool as you please,

And to a man,

The fellows stand or

Fall down on their knees.

Then they swarm around me,

A hive of honey bees.

I say,

It’s the fire in my eyes,

And the flash of my teeth,

The swing in my waist,

And the joy in my feet.

I’m a woman

Phenomenally.

Phenomenal woman,

That’s me.

Men themselves have wondered

What they see in me.

They try so much

But they can’t touch

My inner mystery.

When I try to show them

They say they still can’t see.

I say,

It’s in the arch of my back,

The sun of my smile,

The ride of my breasts,

The grace of my style.

I’m a woman

Phenomenally.

Phenomenal woman,

That’s me.

Now you understand

Just why my head’s not bowed.

I don’t shout or jump about

Or have to talk real loud.

When you see me passing

It ought to make you proud.

I say,

It’s in the click of my heels,

The bend of my hair,

the palm of my hand,

The need of my care,

‘Cause I’m a woman

Phenomenally.

Phenomenal woman,

That’s me.”

While trying to write about this topic, I realized how little I know about it. It’s a very unusual but an interesting topic for me! So let me try as best I can.

The hairstyle of Bangla women is has a lot to do with tradition and culture (at least it used to), with their dark black long hair!  

To dig more about this, let’s shuffle the brain cells; I recall random social movements, quotes from novels, references in poetry, memories of conversations with grandma (she witnessed sifting of the country through decades). She wore her long hair to below the waist (very traditional). Something you don’t see so much now a days though.

In recent time’s hair style are influenced by fashion and trends. It will be easier for you to see a hairstyle exhibition by visiting local weddings, cultural gatherings and such. During an event like that apart of the Shari & ornaments, hair is the top pride…

Traditional hair styles do still exist though, and to care for the hair, there are different types of herbal oil and combs to use. Ohh the type of combs & oils! So many funny adverts on these in telly, really..hahaha.

Sometimes they decorate and wrap the hair with Jui aka Jasmine or rajnigandha aka Tuberose over the hair! Bit of flower vase at the top 😉

In images depicting home / domestic scenes, you would often see mother-daughter hair therapy (oiling-combing each other’s hair with intimate mommy daughter times), sometimes accompanied by grandma or aunts and such.

This happens during lazy afternoons or before bedtime …and they are cosy women moments. Beautiful as these moments are, men aren’t really allowed to play a role in those moments! God knows what they talk about  😉 

We have many traditional festivals over here and during those times you’ll get to see the retro and traditional hair styles. But I think nowadays these are mostly done in one of the many beauty salons/parlours around the city. Most of the women tend to blow their money on beauty salon these days!

So much for a fashion, hehe! I’m sorry to say these women have got their priorities mixed up and are wasting their time on a weekly visit to the parlor, in my opinion. If you are really a smart woman, you don’t need to go so often and your man knows it. There are so many healthy home remedies for hair and stuff so is it really necessary to visit the parlor every week (unless you are really in to that: show biz)? Or is it just a social status- check in on real time FB !?..

I’m not against salon though; especially because it provides job for many and an independent business for some. But going to a fashion house, paying hard earned money and time over a style you know already. Your were already beautiful with the way you did your hair!

Of course, for special reasons and for occasional treats; please do pay a visit. But you don’t need to make you hair done for every social & cultural event.

Office going women have trendy hairstyles, college and university students have much experimental hair style here as well as everywhere I guess. You can tell a bit about themselves though by their hair, if i may add. Hair has been symbolic in  poetry, novels, stage show or in theaters.

There is a proverb in Bangla about women’s skin and hair (dark/fair) that goes: If black is ugly then why do you cry, when your hair gets white !

O woman, you are not merely the
handiwork of God, but also of men;
these are ever endowing you with
beauty from their hearts.
Poets are weaving for you a web
with threads of golden imagery;
painters are giving your form ever
new immortality.
The sea gives its pearls, the mines
their gold, the summer gardens their
flowers to deck you, to cover you, to
make you more precious.
The desire of men’s hearts has shed
its glory over your youth.
You are one half woman and one
half dream.

                     ~rabindranath tagore

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