In Nigeria, tattoos, dreadlocks and piercings can sometimes be, at best, perceived as a sign of non-conformism, at worst, associated with criminal behaviour. To fight prejudices and stereotypes, a new campaign, #MORETHANINKANDLOCS, raises awareness around the dangers of standardised beauty.
"I do not drink and I do not smoke as people will be surprised to hear," these are the words of Editor-in-Chief of TechCabal.com and co-Founder at Big Cabal Media, a Nigerian digital media company, Bankole Oluwaferni, a subject in the #MORETHANINKANDLOCS campaign directed by Chidera Muoka, a Lagos-based creative director, consultant and writer, and in collaboration with Niyi Okeowo and Kayode Idowu.
According to a BBC article released on the 2nd of April 2019, a Nigerian person with dreadlocks (and/or tattoos or piercings) will likely be arrested as they believe it may suggest criminal behaviour.
"I have short coloured hair, I have piercings and tattoos so now automatically, they believe I am fraudulent or I am a prostitute," Muoka says.
Fighting for her right not to conform to more European-looking beauty standards, was the starting point for a broader campaign to raise awareness around normalised standard of beauty in Nigeria and widespread prejudices. The campaign aims at looking deeply...