FREE shipping for orders over $30.00

Durag : History & Significance

Posted on

Durag : History & Significance

History of Durag

The history of the durag or "do-rag", is probably one of those topics that would never occur to you. You've seen them for years, worn by your favorite stars and rappers, a friend, or maybe even yourself.

The durag is simply a kind of scarf worn on the head to protect your hair or is used for fashion.

Men often wear durags to keep their haircuts and braids in place, while others wear them as part of their outfit. If some of your favorite artists have worn durags, the trend is not new.

Through this article, we will reveal all about the durag:

  • where does it come from?
  • what is its use?
  • for whom and how to wear it?

If you want the answers, read on...

durag eminem

Origin of Durag

The origin of the durag dates back to the 19th century, when poor workers and slaves needed something to tie their hair back. In the 1930s, during the Harlem Renaissance and the Great Depression, the durag then evolved into a hair curator.

Then, shortly after the "Black Power Movement" in the late 1960s, through the 1970s and into the 2000s, the durag became a fashion phenomenon. Rappers, athletes and the rest of America's youth, especially young African-Americans, began wearing them 24 hours a day, not just while sleeping.

see durag collection royalbandana

It was common for young men to wear durag in public. The durag became available in different colors and was a staple for typical evening wear. Durags became so popular and common in America, that the National Football League banned the wearing of any durag, scarf or bandana on the soccer field.

Former Minnesota Vikings coach Dennis Green believed the ban was aimed at black players, although the NFL's reasoning was to prevent any player from being mistakenly associated with a gang.

Durag man royalbandana


The durag today:

Today, there are even universities in the United States that prohibit the wearing of certain clothing on campus, such as the highly regarded Hampton University, where men (or women) are thus not allowed to wear any type of headgear, including bandanas, hats or stockings. They are only allowed in their residence.

Currently, their public wearing in the US has declined in popularity and many rappers have left the "durags" in 2001. But, despite its diminishing presence in recent videos and the "no durag" policy, its existence will remain as one of the most popular men's fashion statements of our time. Just as leggings have returned for the ladies, the durag may well reign again in twenty years.

buy durag black

Who invented the durag, and why?

There is no specific inventor of the durag. That's like asking who invented the comb. But using a scarf or cloth to keep your hair in place and frizz-free took a big leap forward in the 1970s.

Darren Dowdy, president of So Many Waves, says his father, William J. Dowdy, invented it as part of a hair grooming kit.

He called his durag a "link"-he hated the name durag-and it was first sold widely in 1979.

"He realized he really wanted to have something to hold hair in place," he said. The idea was that you didn't want the hair to revert to its natural, tightly curled structure after brushing. The durag was thus worn to protect the hair structure.

 durag man hair

Durag and hairstyle

It's all about the "waves" that spin, more commonly known as the "Waves".

Indeed, for many durag fans, one of the goals is to compress their hair in order to obtain the famous "Waves" hairstyle. Waves are actually defined curls.

For those who have frizzy hair, this means brushing your hair continuously in the same direction, then you find the natural pattern or implant of your hair and then continue brushing it with your pattern.

Some people use pomade for example and brush their hair a lot. You then put on your durag to compress your hair and hold it in place.

afro man hairstyle waves

While we are here, it is interesting to note that the spelling of durag is a bit controversial. Some people write it and pronounce it "do-rag", noting that it is a cloth used to protect a hairstyle. But most, like us here, call it and write it "durag", as a matter of taste.

This is the general use of durag. To keep your waves intact.

The formula to get those spinning waves is different for everyone. The key is often to brush your hair. But everything is different for everyone: the different strength of the bristles of your brush, if your hair is wet, damp, dry, it all counts.

Durags and Fashion: A Brief History

The durag was a staple of hip-hop style in the 90s and early 2000s. Rapper Jay-Z wore it with the strings tied behind his back, for example.

But the accessory has since made its way into the high fashion stratosphere.

Rihanna had her silk durags, and now people wear them for fashion - not even tied properly but just to fit in with the culture.

These silky, shiny styles are the most popular, but durags can also be made of velvet, for special occasions, as well as polyester, which has the advantage of being more durable, for example.

purple durag man royalbandana

There is no right way to wear it or tie it. Some tie the strings on the side, some leave the cape out, some tuck the cape in, some leave the strings untied and the cape out, with the durag lying loosely on the head.

However, when you put on a durag and look in the mirror, you feel a kind of "gangsta" power engulfing your soul; you know that no one can stop you.

So if you want to achieve a unique look, or just keep your hair in order, the durag is for you!

If you are looking for a quality durag feel free to browse our collection of men's durag.

These bandanas may also interest you!

← Older Post Newer Post →

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published.