Singer, Muma Gee, tells ‘Nonye Ben-Nwankwo about her fashion and style
Your hair is always full; you must have invested so much in it?
I agree. I invest a lot in my hair. A lot of cash, energy and time go into my hair. It takes like eight hours to get my hair done. Basically, it is a special and patient person that can do my hair. Not everybody has the patience or can be meticulous enough to do my hair.
On the average, how much goes into your hair?
The hair piece alone costs a lot of money, especially in these days of human hair. I normally use 11 packs of human hair and each piece is not less than N60, 000. At the end of the day, I end up spending about N500, 000 to do my hair at once.
Do you have to wear such a hair-do because you are an artiste?
It is my style. I like to have that kind of personality. I just want a particular kind of look. At times, my hair might look scanty but a lot would have gone into it.
How long does each hair do last?
It usually lasts three weeks to one month or even less. If I have to do a photo shoot or something that would require my wearing a different look, then I make another hair.
You make hair for N500, 000 and loosen it after one month?
Don’t get me wrong. It is actually the hair pieces that can go for that amount and those hair pieces can last for years. I have had hair extensions that have lasted for over 10 years. Each time I remove the weaves, I take it to hair companies and they treat the hair and they are as good as new.
Have you or will you ever wear low cut hair?
I have never worn low cut, even as a child. A woman’s hair is her grace and glory. Even though I am an artiste, I am a born-again Christian and my Bible tells me a woman’s hair is very precious. I have never cut my hair. Even now my hair is as long as 20 inches and it is very black. But I don’t carry my natural hair at all.
Even apart from your hair, your dressing is outrageous…
I influence the production of what I wear. I don’t even buy clothes because I make them. I buy more of shoes and bags.
How many pairs of shoes do you have?
I have about 500 pairs and still counting. There are some I have not worn for over two years and they are still trendy, I love heels.
How daring can you get when it comes to your fashion?
I used to be very daring but with my current status as a wife and mother, I am not that daring any longer. Gone are the days when I had to dress crazily because I am an artiste. Now, I am crazy but with a touch of class. Then, nobody cared about class, you just wanted to be crazy and be an artiste and dress like one. Now, I am a CEO and I have to dress responsibly. Even as I wear full hair, I still have to pack my hair. As a housewife, I wrap it up somehow. But when I am on stage, I can go wild. It depends on the kind of show anyway. If it is a corporate show, I have to look responsible and wear a classy dress. At a time in my career, I couldn’t care if the event was classy or corporate; I just came out as Muma Gee. Now, I have to depict the mood of the event.
Even in your ‘craziness,’ are there things you cannot be caught dead wearing?
I don’t think I can wear micro mini. I don’t think I should expose the contours I should protect as a woman. I don’t expose my boobs and other sensitive parts of my body. No way! I don’t believe in that school of thought. But then, I remember there was this Christmas carol event organised by Ovation Magazine when I wore an extremely micro mini skirt.
I think we were all given uniforms. Everybody was going to wear the same thing and I wanted to be different. With my level of understanding now, I could have been different in a different way. But I had bow legs and I wanted to flaunt my bow legs for the first time so I even wore black tights under the skirt and the fashion police snapped me. Some said I exposed my private parts but that is not true. I wore black tights and that was what was in the picture.
Apart from that, have you made other fashion mistakes?
I have committed fashion blunders several times. Looking back at some pictures I took, there were some I looked like a lion with the hair style especially in that era where there were no human hair extensions. I wore beads over and over that I would have turned to beads. I think I have made many fashion mistakes. But I know that I have never worn the wrong thing to an event before but I could be overbearing.
What of now?
Now, I am a typical lady. I don’t make such mistakes.
Do you indulge in perfumes?
Yes but I could wear one perfume for five years. I am a very committed person. When I do something, I try to do it well. I am dedicated when it comes to perfumes; I don’t jump from one to another. I am not the experimental type either. Probably that is why it is reflecting in my marriage. When I am with you, I am with you and if I am not with you, I am gone for good. I don’t share. I am only adventurous with clothes and colours.
Why don’t you wear tattoos?
I am sorry to say this but I believe tattoos are evil. I might be naive and I am not trying to be hypocritical. You leave your skin in the hands of another person and you don’t know what the person is hiding under that inscription on your body. You don’t know when you are given a mark that God wouldn’t want you to have. I don’t wear it and I don’t intend to. If I must wear tattoo, it must be temporary and just for the show of it.
That means you don’t subscribe to cosmetic surgery.
If it is corrective surgery, I don’t think it is bad. But I don’t believe in unnatural things. I don’t like fake things. I don’t believe in fake boobs and butts. The little you have, God has complemented you with what you have, so you should be contented with those ones.
But people say you are a fake person…
It is quite unfortunate. I don’t know why people see me as a fake person but I don’t believe in such. People think I faked my age and lied that I was younger than my real age. Everybody in the industry claims they are ‘20’ and because people have been hearing about me for a long time, they think I should be 70. I am unfortunate in things like that. During the celebrity Gulder Ultimate Search, some of the contestants said I was fake because I came to the forest with my make-up kit.
Do you love make-up so much to go to the jungle with it?
I like to be real, I am myself. Sincerely, I sleep and wake up with my make-up on.
Why do you sleep with make-up?
I say to people that I make-up and go to bed in case I die in my sleep, I want to still look beautiful. As a nursing mother, I could leave the house without make-up but not completely. I must have my powder. When you see my face look bare, I am wearing make-up. I cannot sleep and wake up and take my bath without wearing make-up. Even before I come out of the bathroom, I would have had my first make-up on.
How long does it take you to dress up?
It takes me an average of three hours to dress up. If it is a red carpet event, it takes me all day to dress up. I would need to fix up myself. I would need to give myself a treat and pamper myself. But if I have a meeting to attend, I have to start dressing up at least three hours to the time I leave for the meeting.
What is happening to your lingerie business?
After a while, I decided to go on a higher level of that business. I travelled abroad to investigate how I could produce the wear abroad. We now have locally made ones and the ones done in Bangkok. But I also realised I have been so much a musician that I needed to be educated on how to market the products. I decided to take a break and I have gone back to school to study Marketing at Rivers State Polytechnic. Punch