I wear a weave proudly. I'm not ashamed by the term, the process or the purchase. When it comes to "dah weave," I believe the hair is absolutely mine dahhling... because I bought it. However, I only recently realized that I was an addict. After being hit by the nasty recession monster last year and having a drastic change in my career, I had to reevaluate my hair decisions because my entire bottom line was going to fund my mane. This was problematic to say the least.
On January 1st, when everyone was proclaiming their resolution, I was telling everyone that I vowed to bring in 2010 with my natural hair. But the first time I looked in the mirror and didn't see my hair cascading down my back, I had to reevaluate the whole natural hair reevaluation.I pay a good penny for my mane masterpieces, not including the price of the hair to be purchased. A lover of natural-looking weaves only, I knew I couldn't start buying 19.99 packaged hair, and I surely wasn't going to let my homegirl Alisha, who just YouTube'd how to weave, work on my hair.
Met with the difficult decision to either go broke maintaining my weave every two months, or find an alternative that allowed me to save cash but still keep my 'do done, I did some research (yes, it gets that deep). I came across a technique called a Brazilian weave
, a process very similar to microlinks
. Like the links, or cylinder process, your hair is parted row by row in small sections/boxes, and then the weave is attached with a thin nylon tie for a barely noticeable weave. Cue the angelic music -- my prayers had been answered! After digging deeper, I realized this technique of weaving has been used by Caucasians and others of Spanish decent since the beginning on time. Expensive? Yes, but it was a ridiculously natural-looking weave that didn't include glue, braids, needle or thread, and it can be worn for up to six months.
Yes, six months. So I jetted to Brooklyn to pick up hair from True Indian Hair Salon, then headed back to New Jersey to get it put in, not by Brazilian woman, surprisingly, but by a Dominican beautician named Belia who had mastered the technique.
The complete process took two visits, and on the second one, tragedy struck -- Haiti was hit with a devastating earthquake. With the Dominican Republic within such close proximity to Haiti, people in the shop were in an uproar. Here I was, trying to get my Brazilian wavy on, and the crisis in Haiti and the concern on the faces of everyone snapped me out my hair trance. I had a moment where I asked myself, why am I trying to determine if there should be a few more rows added to my crown when there were thousands who had just lost their lives?
Honestly, my moment of clarity didn't stop me from wondering if Belia was going to return to my head after she excused herself to make some calls to her family back home. Sadly, it was then that I realized I was an addict for real. With only a half a head of weave in my hair, Belia asked me to return to the salon at a later date. This gave me a few days to scold myself for having a one-track mind when there were obviously much bigger issues in the world than purchasing a 16-inch or an 18-inch. Frustrated with my economic situation, I had been excited to get a weave that didn't have to be maintained as frequently, but I was now saddened that with the amount I had spent on my hair, I could have texted "Yele" 70 times. After all of her family had been accounted for, Belia called me back in the shop to finish what she had started. I had come to terms with the whole situation, hoping that when the six months were up I could make another attempt at rocking my natural hair -- this time for a whole different reason. I left the shop with curls, length, and bounce, knowing that even though the process was an expense, everything I realized was the investment.