Huffington Post proudly proclaimed that Beyonce has brought braids back and showed a picture of her from 2001 with the “Alicia Keys” cornrows! Beyonce was wearing box braids at Nas’s album release party, which prompted the article.
The picture from 2001 stirred up a lot of memories for me! I remember when Alicia Keys bust onto the scene with “Songs in A Minor!” She had the most intricate designs (see below). Well, that same fall I thought that it would be a great idea to bleach my whole head blond with the African Pride highlighting kit. I had some pretty highlights, but I wanted my hair to be ultra blond (heaven help me … ), so I skipped school, trekked to Walmart and bought the kit. I did it and when I finished it looked like a haystack. I was very disappointed. I went to sleep hoping that when I woke up, my hair would be back to normal. No such luck. I went back to Walmart and dyed my hair jet black and decided to wear it in cornrows to foster it back to health. My cousin Terrell proclaimed that I would be lucky if I woke up and the plaits weren’t on my pillows!
Enter the Alicia Keys photos. I would take them to the braider and have her braid my hair in designs. I remember my girlfriend Rokeea did the same. Her stylist was able to attach the hair elsewhere so she did not have the “ball” at the top where the fake hair was looped around the plait. I still have never figured out how to do that …
Anywho … I wore my hair like that for the winter then decided having a quick weave was a great idea. I wore my hair like that over the summer and then when I left for college, I had my hair cornrowed again … then I had weave for a few weeks. In early October 2002, a year after the ill-fated bleach job, I decided to wear my own hair (which was pretty healthy, surprisingly), which I had cut into my infamous bob and have worn my own hair ever since (sans a few times when I wore a half-wig for fun)!