Nana Bee Scribes

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Ladies Corner

Ladies: Harmattan and your hair



Harmattan is a season when things get off the edge; like moving off the table completely and falling off, if you know what I mean. According to wikitionary it is “a Parching dust-bearing land-wind in December, January & February”. In this season, things take different forms/shapes and the woman hair happens to be one of them.


“dust-bearing land-wind” would sure have rang a bell if you didn’t know what harmattan is about. There is usually a lot if dust as well as fog in the atmosphere. You are imagining what that combination would look like? Or perhaps, what comes to your mind right now is mist? You are not lost friend. Harmattan flows with mist by dawn till before sunrise – mostly – and in the afternoon, the dusts move in. This changing of guard is not limited to mist and dust alone, as the cold atmosphere you would experience on a harmattan morning, would turn out to be a hot harsh afternoon later on.


As a lady, the hair is one of the elements of beauty which requires care and attention. On a normal day, a woman – specifically in Africa – would have to make her hair regularly, wash and cream it from time to time as well. The hair is like a baby to be nursed. Like a child to be bred. During harmattan however, this child goes wild and would need stimulants and goodies to keep it calm. In other words, your hair during harmattan requires extra care.


Last harmattan, my hair suffered a surreptitious downcast. Having lived in Lagos for the most part of my life, I didn’t know what harmattan was capable of doing to the hair. I am currently at Ilorin, kwara state and if you have been here in December, January into late February before, you should understand what I mean. I stood by the mirror to comb my hair and alas! Some of it had gone on a strike; unannounced! I wondered what happened, no pre-notice, no visible breakage, just a sudden deduction!


I spoke with a friend about it and she pointed it out instantly “it’s the harmattan!” Even at that it was hard for me to believe. Harmattan was just a season after all, why would it pay me a different kind of visit. And then I knew the answer, almost straight away but well enough after it was pointed out.


During that period, I styled my hair mostly in town, I seldom did in school. Hence in a month, there is usually a week I would just comb the hair and bun it up. Simply put, the bunning was where the whole thing started. It was exposed to.the harsh weather and it got its own fair treat – loss.


I didn’t take extra steps like oiling my hair daily and letting it greasy as much as I could. I just did everything normal as usual, not knowing that harmattan doesn’t only chap lips, it slices the hair strands as well. So sad yeah? 😦 well, that’s history now.


If you are still wondering why I am writing this lady, this is for you. Well, that’s if you are an amateur like me, and of course an African! Your hair is important and you need to treat it so. Last year it was my turn to swim in the pool of breakage but this time around the table has changed. It is my duty to prevent not just mine but anyone’s from breaking, through this little way of course.


This year’s harmattan came rather calmly, but then, it always does. The season strides in harmless and low key at first, but its just a plot. Don’t give in dear! Ensure that your hair is made at every time and grease it well enough. For me, I apply oil to the scalp and hair cream to the hair. As a result of tight schedules, I do not even have the time to do this everyday so I make sure my hair is barely exposed. Even at this, the hair can still break if one is not careful enough. Ensure your hair stylist pulls lightly at your hair when making it. The scalp gets softer because of the weather and a little pressure could uproot your hair.


I am no expert at hair tips or lectures, but I am sure this little wouldn’t hurt. Rather, it would help retain a couple of hair strands leaving neither you nor I at loss.


Harmattan is a beautiful season. Gracious and benevolent. Yes! It is benevolent 🙂 it just has its own complications and what month doesn’t anyway?


Wash your hair as required, cream your hair regularly and never make your scalp run out of oil/grease.

Do have a wonderful harmattan 😉


NB: specifically for natural hair

Aisha Harun (Nana bee)


Off-Salah isn’t Off-Ramadhan (To the menstruating sister during Ramadhan)

i wrote this Article last Ramadhan but i didnt publish it. And since then, it’s being lying in my folder. it’s basically about the activities a muslimah should engage in during Ramadhan while she is on her period. many ladies actually think not being able to pray exempts them from during reward earning activities during Ramadhan.

In sha Allah, this post is to enlighten the womenfolk and help set straight the misconception as regards the religious activities to be engaged in while fasting.

I hope that this benefits everyone10169208_813132492084915_3195985740292937621_n.

Zainab, reciting a verse of the Quran walked in quietly. She expected to meet no one at home as everyone in the quest to finishing the recitation of the Quran in the first 10 days of Ramadan must have gone to the masjid. Contrary to what she presumed, she did meet someone in the house. Ruqayyah!
Ruqayyah was lying on the sofa watching TV. While everyone thought they barely had any time to spare for un-necessary activities, Ruqayyah was calmly watching “I hate Love Stories”, an Indian film, in the afternoon of Ramadan. Finding this eccentric, zainab couldn’t help but ask…
“Zainab: do you realize it’s Ramadan? You have to fast not only with your taste buds on strike but also with every organ of your body, which vividly include your eyes and ears. Why should you waste your time watching movies?
Ruqayyah: Subhanallah zainab! I am off salah. There is no act of worship that I can engage in right now and besides it’s just a movie. In fact, I have planned to watch at least 5 movies before I finish menstruating in sha Allah!”
In sha Allah! I hope you took note of that word. The truth is this is a perfect example of how we spend our menstruating days during the month of Ramadan. If it’s not movies then it’s about music! May Allah protect us all.
70% of ladies during menstruation see themselves as been free from all acts of worship and they spend the whole day doing things that are imperceptibly rewarding. Ramadan is a month in which the Quran should be the most conspicious item in virtually every home. There is a distinct moral levitation and a calm atmosphere that usually envelop the whole environment. It is a month of virtue which spares no time for frivolities. In other words, there are numerous acts of worship a menstruating woman can and should engage in during Ramadan.

At each salah time, if a menstruating woman performs wuduu, sits and makes Dhikr and as well perform tasbih (Subhanallah, Lailaha illallah etc) for as long as it usually take her to perform Salah, she will be given as many rewards as she will get if she had performed Salah in the best manner. Listening to the Quran is also permitted as it is the perfume for the soul, the calmer of the heart and the food for the spirit. Allah says in Quran 39verse 17 – 18 “so give good news to my slaves, those who listen to the word and then follow the best of it.” With this, listening to the Quran is prescribed for menstruating women.
In ibn kathir’s tafsir of suratul a’raf verse 179, “the similitude of the one who memorizes the Qur’an but does not act in accordance to it is like a donkey which carries a load of books but does not understand what it entail.” The menstrual period is indeed an opportunity to take time and reflect upon the Quran, just like the sahabahs used to do.
Mu’adh bn Jabal (RA) said the prophet of Allah (SAW) said “the people of paradise will not regret anything except one thing alone, the hour that passed them by, which they made no remembrance of Allah.” Narrated by Bayhaqi bn Shu’ab alimran (1:392 512-513). This is proof that a menstruating woman, day and night is permitted to make plenty of dhikr. We should set for ourselves daily targets during our menses, to do as much dhikr as possible throughout the day; at work, while cooking, shopping and even while relaxing. We should ensure we always remember Allah with our tongue as well as our Hearts. Moreover, the highest ranks in Jannah are for those who remember Allah the most.
Also, be of best manners, character and conduct. The Rasul said “the best loved by me and the nearest to me in the seats on the day of resurrection are those who have the best manners and conducts amongst you, who are intimate, are on good terms with others and are humble. And the most hated by me, who will be on the farthest seats from me are those who are the talkative and arrogant.” Tirmidhi.
It is important that a menstruating lady increase in giving out charity, as it eliminates sins and relinquishes one from Hell. In a narration, the Rasul (SAW) said: “charity wipes out sins as water extinguishes fire.” In another narration he (SAW) also said: “Righteous deeds protect a person from an evil end; a charity spent in secret extinguishes Allah’s wrath; and maintaining good ties of kinship increase one’s lifespan (Tabaran). Remember! Charity doesn’t necessarily mean giving out money or material things. Removing harmful objects from people’s way, providing for one’s family, spreading the message of Al-Islam via texts, facebook updates, tweets or thought provoking pictures on instagram are also acts of charity.
In conclusion, a woman on her menses must never feel that she is unable to gain the blessings and rewards of the month of Ramadan. There is virtually nothing stopping her from gaining immense reward equal to that of a man. All that is required of her is effort. Effort throughout Ramadan, and with the belief that Allah will accept all her supplication. On the inquiry of Aisha (RA), Rasul recommended that we should say “Allahuma innaka afuwun affuwun tuhibul afwa fa ‘fu anee – Oh Allah, you are pardoning and you love to pardon, so pardon me.” May Allah in His infinite mercy pardon us all and enable us gain the best of rewards in this blessed month. Amin.


🙂 Have A Blessed Ramadhan

Nana Aisha Harun. (Bee)

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