5 little-known ways to navigate the dating scene like a Nollywood baddie

date like a Nollywood baddie

I bet you did not know this about the early Nollywood women, but they were pioneers of mainstream feminism in Nigeria. For a culture like ours, the bold colours, the miniskirts, the lingo, and the entire vibe of these women are something uncharacteristic for an acclaimed conservative society like Nigeria. Today, their influence persists, as the Nolywood baddie has become everyday slang in Nigerian pop culture. 

We’re diving into what I have called the psyche of the Nollywood baddie and how modern Nigerian women can channel some of these character traits into their dating lives. Let us begin, shall we?

The quintessential Nollywood baddie embodies the femme fatale archetype, captivating with her allure and decisive pursuit of her desires. She navigates the patriarchal landscape adeptly, assuming roles that underscore her versatility—from feigning naiveté to asserting her formidable strength when necessary. Her actions are not just about achieving personal victories; they’re a testament to her unyielding drive and nuanced understanding of power dynamics. This character is not merely a participant in her narrative but a driving force, redefining strength and intelligence on her own terms.

So, what does this have to do with dating?

The answer is everything; it has everything to do with dating. In the age of Twitter and rampant opinion-sharing, Nigerian women are inundated with advice on how to behave, creating a complex dating landscape. This discussion explores the reality of dating for Nigerian women amidst a sea of prescriptive societal norms. While the following insights focus on dating experiences, they represent broader patterns rather than the entirety of a Nigerian woman’s life experiences. Let’s delve into the nuanced realities of womanhood in Nigeria and its impact on romantic relationships.

  • Fact one: You are typically only respected if you are affiliated with a man.
  • Fact two: You are the moral police; the ashewo label is always one tiny misstep away.
  • Fact three: You are expected to be a superhero; your life should never really be about you.
  • Fact four: You are saddled with cultural expectations that try to creep into your personal life.

You might resonate with the perspectives shared, but living as a woman in Nigeria often means adhering to expected roles. Stray from these, and you’ll likely face societal backlash from both men and women. That’s precisely why this guide is indispensable for Nigerian women navigating the dating scene. It’s not just advice; it’s a survival toolkit tailored to help you thrive amidst the expectations and realities of dating in Nigeria. Trust me, it’s the only guide you’ll ever need.

What is the deal with Nollywood baddies?

I started by talking about their confidence, which is paramount to this conversation because they had the type of confidence that did not come with a price tag. It was from an understanding of the role they played in society. They were women, we are women, and while that word means different things to us based on our personal experiences, we are united by a shared struggle- the weight of expectations.

Prime Nollywood babes understood the times they lived in; they were portrayed to understand hyper-gaming and made it work to their advantage, and the ones who were lover girls also made it work. While we can’t directly apply the scenarios from fiction to real life, they do offer valuable lessons for enhancing our romantic relationships. So, here are five strategies inspired by fictional narratives that you might find helpful in enriching your own romantic connections.

Take off your glasses and have a long look at the room:

You are the main character; you walk into a room, you take off your glasses, you glance around the room intensely, and everyone is enthralled. 

This is a dramatic depiction of what I am asking you to do. Also, in reality, taking off your ‘glasses’ would be one of the most painful things you would ever do because it requires you to put on your big girl pants and be truthful with yourself. So ask yourself the following questions:

  •  What are your strengths and weaknesses?
  • What social class do you belong to?
  • What type of men are available to you at your social level?
  • What do you need in a partner?

Now, let us create a plan:

Honestly, before you feed me to the wolves for the questions above, I need you to follow this illustration.

If Sade is a twenty-four-year-old woman who lives in Mushin and has only completed her secondary school education, the dating pool she can pull from would be different from Sandra, who lives in Ikoyi and has her master’s degree from an Ivy university in London. Remember, we are trying to be realistic.

You plan to measure your information against what you desire in your partner. If the type of man you want is in Zone A, how far off are you from Zone A, and what do you need to get to get there? 

Do you need to get a degree? Or change your environment or start a business? Identify what you are missing and work towards positioning yourself for the type of partner you desire. 

Confidence is your baddie outfit:

I saved this one for later because if confidence is a journey, the steps listed above are what you need to pack before you begin your journey to being the Nollywood baddie you dream to be. A woman who is aware of her reality is dangerous. You cannot lie to her because she knows what is true; she knows her truth.  

Confidence is not a final destination. The more you practice and show yourself that you are who you think you are, you begin to develop trust in yourself, which in turn would build your confidence.

Baddies only dream in diamonds and pink glitter:

That is enough talk about reality. Who likes reality when you can dream?  All jokes apart, for balance, you need to sprinkle reality with it with a little bit of delulu. I am talking about faith, manifestation, and calling the things that are not as if they were. Also, for this new level you are about to be on, you hear no evil. 

Meaning that mantras like “all men are scum” have to go out of the window. Scum men exist, but they do not exist in your reality. Your reality will welcome and accept only excellent and nurturing men, okay?

Speak love to yourself, speak with the reality of who you want to be, and be delusional with your dreams.

Don’t forget to give them one heck of a show:

Hey baddie, *wink, wink*

Yes, you. I am referring to you in the present continuous tense, and I need you to understand that you must rise and embody being the type of woman you envision to be. Only you understand the complexities of your dreams and why they mean so much to you. So please show up like you are a big deal.

Your life is a show, and you have to give them one hell of a performance, dress up like you are the main character in your life, smell nice, implement a 10-minute daily workout, and keep being awesome.


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