Slice of life: Of durags and a rapping boost

The other day my business venture caught the attention of one of South Africa’s prominent up-and-coming rappers: Shane Eagle. I had seen him at the airport and decided I needed to take the opportunity to say what’s up.

As it turns out his team had noticed me as well. My durag specifically. Shane Eagle asked me where I got it. I told him about my recent journey. All about how I had been looking for a hairstyle that would be able to convey my personality in a way that was as natural as possible. So I decided that I wanted to get waves.

After a bit of research into the style I realised I needed two essential utensils: a brush and a durag. So I went to Clicks, I went to Dis-Chem, I went to Shoprite … all in the effort to look for a brush. I found myself having to compromise with nail brushes and toothbrushes.

When I looked around at my peers I realised most of them are doing the exact same thing. When it came to durags that was even worse. Durags were so rare to find that most people imported them. Those that did sell them had very limited variety and very questionable quality.

That’s where the vision for Blax Grooming Essentials originated from. I gave Shane Eagle one of my yellow samples and he liked it so much that he posted a few pictures of him in it on his Instagram page to promote his Yellow Tour.


I began the initiative to service what I believed was a gap in the market. I never imagined it would literally adorn fame in a matter of weeks. — Bulumko Napakade, University of Cape Town student and entrepreneur, as told to Luke Feltham

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Luke Feltham

Luke Feltham runs the Mail & Guardian's sports desk. He was previously the online day editor.

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