Shaz & Kiks Connects Me To My South Asian Tradition


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As a queer Pakistani lady residing in America, it’s arduous to really feel totally linked to my tradition. I expertise it in small methods, like once I put on Desi outfits to weddings or jhumkas in my ears, however I’m additionally extremely impartial, outspoken about cash and monetary freedom, and dedicated to constructing one thing for myself—my ancestors can be stunned, but in addition proud. One of many foremost methods I’ve linked to my tradition is thru my grandmother, who embodies unconditional love in the best way that she cares for me, usually cooking me my favourite Pakistani dishes like kitchari or chapli kebabs. To today, every time she says that she loves me, she jogs my memory to go on the message to my fiancée too.

As a toddler, I bear in mind sitting on the foot of her chair as she massaged oil into my hair—an Ayurvedic apply often called hair oiling—to assist it develop longer and stronger. Though part of me knew that the method linked me to my tradition, I initially resented it as a result of it made my hair greasy and “othered” me within the predominantly white colleges I attended. In my preliminary pursuit of becoming into Eurocentric magnificence requirements, my South Asian traditions didn’t appear to have a spot.

It was solely as an grownup that I discovered a brand new appreciation for my grandmother’s strategies and the cultural ties that got here together with them. After experiencing fast thinning on account of stress, shade injury, and too-tight ponytails, I noticed it was time to provide my hair some much-needed rehabilitation. I ended highlighting my strands and began to embrace their pure darkness, and as soon as the previous dye grew out, I used to be left with a robust basis that I might begin tending to with masks. This was across the similar time that I began planning my wedding ceremony, and located myself with a deep need to carry South Asian customs again into my life.

Enter: Shaz & Kiks, a line of Ayurvedic hair-care merchandise with an origin story that mimics my very own magnificence journey. The model’s co-founders, sisters Shaz Rajashekar Kiku Chauduri, found hair oiling by means of spending summers with their grandmother within the Himalayas. There, she would concoct a selfmade hair masks with vegetation and herbs that had been indigenous to the world, tailor-made to the climate and season, and made with Ayurvedic ideas in thoughts.

These learnings influenced the event of the Shaz & Kiks Scalp and Hair Prewash ($40), which makes use of conventional hair oiling components however reimagines them in a approach that doesn’t depart behind a greasy residue. “Many of the components have roots in Ayurvedic rituals, and we give new life to them within the lab to create the ultimate method, all with out utilizing artificial dyes or fragrances,” says Chaudhuri. “The scent will take you again to the place the components come from.”

Shaz & Kiks Scalp & Hair Prewash Masks — $62.00

Many Ayurvedic hair masks comprise components like turmeric oil, neem oil, and amla oil, that are designed to enhance blood circulation, steadiness the scalp’s oil manufacturing, and cut back irritation with out stripping the hair or scalp. The Shaz & Kik Scalp and Hair Prewash comprises all three, plus kokum butter, which permits strands to raised soak up all of these much-needed vitamins.

Similar to the hair rituals I used to do with my grandmother, this masks is supposed to be utilized earlier than showering in order that it may possibly soak up into the hair earlier than being washed out. I usually put it in my hair over the past assembly of the day or throughout an at-home exercise to permit it to soak for at the least half-hour. And each time I take advantage of it, it looks like I’m bringing an previous ritual into my present life. Even when I don’t have time to concoct my very own method, utilizing one from a South Asian enterprise that’s made with components indigenous to South Asia has given me a stronger hyperlink to my roots.

In Sanskrit, the phrase for oil—sneha—roughly interprets to “love,” which looks like a nod to the extent of care that goes into having a cherished one therapeutic massage oil into your scalp. My grandmother did it for me, and along with doing it for myself, I now additionally do it for my fiancé. It’s a approach for me to point out my love for her whereas additionally making certain that her hair is wholesome and nourished. The ritual helps each of us calm down after an extended day, and is one small approach that I will help her care for herself.

Reclaiming hair oiling has linked me with my tradition extra deeply, and in a approach that matches into my life at present. Plus, my hair is all the higher for it.

Our editors independently choose these merchandise. Making a purchase order by means of our hyperlinks might earn Nicely+Good a fee.


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