Inspiration corner with Cleopatra Koheirwe!

December 30, 2012

The year 2012 is coming to and end and what better way to end it than with a hair inspiration! 
Our last hair inspiration of the year is Cleopatra Koheirwe. She is a beautiful, multi talented & successful young lady from Uganda. As you read on, you will see and read about her lovely locks which I find fascinating. 
Most women who actually like the idea of having dreadlocks fear that they might not look professional if they style their hair in that manner. This interview clearly proves this misconception WRONG! Dreadlocks if well done and well kept do not only look professional but also elegant.
Thanks to Cleopatra for agreeing to do this interview despite her busy schedule. We really appreciate that :)

Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am an actress (I have starred in The last king of scotland, Changes, Be The Judge, State Research Bureau among others), Singer (working on my solo album & I have a single out titled Party On My Mind”), Writer (I’ve written for African Woman Magazine) & I’m a Radio presenter at Radiocity 97fm. I host a show titled THE JAM from 3pm to 7pm every Monday to Friday with a colleague known as Hakeem the Dream. Generally, I am an entertainer. I am a cheerful person, at least most of the time. Lol… I have my moments. Those interested in knowing more about me and need advice or want to share thoughts, find me on:
Twitter @CleopatraCK
Link to my music video “Party On My Mind”
Describe your hair before and after getting it locked.
Before I started growing dreadlocks, I used to braid my hair a lot or put in hairpieces, weaves and wigs. My hair was treated too but it never grew this fast. In fact, I never thought my hair had the potential to grow this long. How I wish I could just comb out my dreadlocks and it becomes an afro. Lol. Having the dreadlocks over the years has made me look more African, I do not hustle to comb my hair but I make sure it is neat and clean. I find natural hair much better and easier to have than treated hair though it can be a bit costly to maintain.
What is your hair type? Describe your curl pattern.
I am not sure about my hair type or curl pattern. It’s soft African hair.

What was your starting length and what is your current one? Would you say you have retained more length now than you did before getting the dreadlocks?
I cut my hair really short to start growing dreadlocks. Now, the length is much longer than it was before I got the dreadlocks. The dreads are slightly below my shoulders.

Do you have a hair routine of some sort? How do you maintain your locks and how often? How do you fit hair care into your busy lifestyle?
You could say I have a hair routine. I go to the salon to relock my dreads once a month, sometimes twice a month if I am very busy with photo shoots and interviews and my hair needs to look good. Usually, my hair stylist takes about three hours to do my hair so I make sure I spare three to four hours in the morning either on a weekday before I go to do my radio show, or preferably over the weekend on a Saturday.

Are there any products your hair can´t do without or that you totally love?
I guess my hair can do without them but I totally love using “Jamaican Mango & Lime” products. I feel as if they make my hair stronger as well as grow faster.

Are there any myths about dreadlocks that you have confirmed to be true or not true?
There are none that I know of.

What was the reaction of your friends and family when you decided to lock your hair? And why did you decide to get this hairstyle?
They were okay with it but when I cut my hair, they teased me for looking much younger than I am and having a small head. Before locking my hair, I actually asked my guardian what he thought if I had dreadlocks and he said, “It is okay. You will look good because you are a girl. It’s men who look unserious with dreadlocks.” I personally believe there are men that look great with locks.

Since you are an entertainer (singer & actress), are there some roles you wouldn´t get to play because of your hairstyle? Does your hairstyle fit in all aspects of your career?
With music, my dreadlocks are not an issue but when it comes to acting, some film projects require me to have certain type/style of hair; but thank God for wigs, stylists and make-up artists. They make it possible for me to still play a certain role I am chosen for by conveniently changing my look. On the whole, my hairstyle has been able to fit within all aspects of my career. I have it styled differently for events and that makes it seem like I have braids.

What do you like about having dreadlocks? Is there anything you don´t like about them?
I like the fact that I do not need to worry about combing my hair. I hate that I do not know how to style or lock my own hair. I always have to go to my professional hair stylist. I also hate that sometimes they break.

How long has it taken you to reach your current length?  
It is now five years.

Do you believe anyone who adapts the correct techniques can grow fabulous hair or is there such a thing as bad hair?
I believe any type of hair can be redeemed into great hair so yes, if you adapt the correct techniques then you can grow fabulous hair!

What would you advice a Newbie NOT to do?
Do not listen to that crap about putting raw eggs or Omo in your hair in order to lock it. Someone told me that and actually did it to my hair but I immediately washed it out because I looked like a mad woman. I then looked for a professional not someone pretending or claiming to know what dreadlocks are all about! Having dreadlocks does not mean having dirty hair.
So are you hoping to grow your locs to ankle length? What are your short term and long term goals?
No way! I plan to change my look someday. I asked my friends and fans on Facebook if I should cut my dreadlocks but the majority were against it so until I figure out what I will do with my hair, dreadlocks it is for now.

Your dreadlocks are lovely! Have you inspired anyone to get dreadlocks?
Thank you. Yes I have inspired many. Some write to me on Facebook asking where I do my hair and how they want to lock theirs too. Others, I meet at random and they tell me I am the reason they have locks. It is touching because all I did was love natural hair and I went for dreadlocks.
I noticed that you colored your locks. It looks fabulous. Which color is that? How often do you color it and what kind of color is that?
This was the second time I was coloring my locks and I colored it all unlike in the beginning when I sampled a few locks. The color is called Copper gold and it is permanent dye which fades out with time as the hair grows more. My stylist did not color my locks from the roots because that can break and damage the hair.

What is the most heart-felt advice you would give to other African ladies thinking about but not so sure about getting locks? These are my tips to them:
a) Dreadlocks are not cheap.
b) To lock your hair, it is best if it is natural.
c) Dreadlocks require a lot of patience. The start is the toughest because the locks do not quite hold and it also depends on the type of hair you have. It’s not until they lock and start growing longer that your visits to the salon become less.
d) Be fully sure that at least you will have your dreadlocks for more than two years, because what is the use of cutting your hair short to do locks only to remove them before they grow? Dreadlocks are like a story unfolding, an adventure. With every year that passes, there is an attachment to your hair.

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