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October 19, 2015

By Sayaspora

Jeune entrepreneure, Antonia Opiah est la créatrice de : un site dédié à la femme noire et au cheveux afro. D’origine nigérienne, elle vit actuellement à Paris. C’est avec dévotion et enthousiasme qu’elle a au travers de sa platforme, mis en place deux projets/conversations aussi inspirants et intéressants les uns des autres : “You Can Touch My Hair” et “Pretty“. 


The following interview will be in english. You can still transalate it with the google translator available on your right. 

SAYASPORA :Introduce yourself in 3 words.

ANTONIA. O :Hello I’m Antonia!

SAYASPORA :  What is Un’ruly ? Why did you feel the need to create it ?

ANTONIA. O : Un-ruly is a place for Black hair and women. I created it because I am always looking for ideas for new hairstyles because I like changing my hair a lot and I felt there was room online for a website dedicated to inspiring and celebrating Black hair. Additionally, I see hair as a way women to connect with each other. No matter where I go in the world, if I meet another Black woman, hair is one thing that we’ll talk about. It’s a great way to break the ice. So I also see Un-ruly as a place for women to connect with each other as well.

SAYASPORA : Explain to us where comes from this interest for the issue of Afro-hair ? Growing up as a kid, Have you always loved your hair?

ANTONIA. O : Growing up, I never really thought about my hair. I didn’t have a sentiment toward it. It was just there. Even today, my hair is often an afterthought, only because I’m too occupied with other things to be thinking about it, that can be said about my appearance in general, LOL. Now that I’m older I understand the history of Black hair and the politics attached to it and I know that my hair is a product of events that happened before I even existed and I’m proud of that.


Le site Un’ruly tient son nom du mot “indomptable”, qualificatif souvent -à tord- utilisé pour caractériser le cheveux afro. Cette plateforme réunit en ligne, des astuces de beautés, des histoires qui ont pour sujet la couleur de peau noire et même les questions identitaires. 

SAYASPORA: Since the creation of Un’ruly you have set up two projects « You can touch my hair » and « Pretty » , introduce them to us ! 

ANTONIA. O: I like to call You Can Touch My Hair and Pretty “conversations.”  Both of them are geared at stirring conversation and analyzing a topic that’s affecting people’s lives. You Can Touch My Hair was a public art exhibit that looked at the way Black women are objectified because of their hair. Pretty looks at the larger topic of beauty globally and what it means to different women around the world.
The biggest challenge with these projects or any project is making sure that you do them justice, making sure that you handle the subject matter well and that something is learned from each conversation.
SAYASPORA : As an african woman , what do you think about the relation between african women and entrepreneurship ?
ANTONIA. O : I can’t speak about African women in general, but I’m more familiar with Nigerian women. One of the reasons Nigeria is so dear to me is because Nigerians (and this is a generalization, but I like to believe it), Nigerians are sooo enterprising. Most of the Nigerians I know are creating something, building something. We hustle and I love that about us. It puts us in a great position to be great as individuals and greater as a nation.

SAYASPORA : What does the word woman inspire you ?

ANTONIA. O : Power.

SAYASPORA : What impact do you want to have on women worldwide ?

ANTONIA. O : The most important thing I learned in college was to question everything. I feel that being inquisitive and not accepting of the world as it is, is the first step toward being able to mold the world into something better. I want to get more women, more people to question the world we live in while also being introspective and examining themselves. I want to be able to help people realize just how much power they really have as individuals.

SAYASPORA : So what’s next for your projects ?

ANTONIA. O : I’m focusing on doing a good job on my present work at the moment. I want Un-ruly to be the best that it can be and I think next steps will reveal themselves to me :-). 

What is Pretty in Tel Aviv ? 
“We’ve headed east and landed in the sun-filled city of Tel Aviv, Israel. Here we meet Gabby, Gloria, Yityish, Mayana and Efrat who discuss the distinct spirit of Israel, the vibrant and open nature of Tel Aviv and the controversy surrounding Israel’s first Black beauty queen” 
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Find more about Antonia Opiah on her

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