Happy Saturday lovelies!
Lawd hammercy I have had a busy day! I've been on the go since about 6 this morning. Part of my day was spent in a salon chair. I recently found out that Birmingham has not one but 3 Dominican salons!! I have been itching to have my hair straightened without me being the one to do the straightening so I guess you can call this revelation kismet, perhaps? Either way, I wanted to give this salon a go.
Let me just say a word about Dominican salons. Personally, I am a fan of them. In undergrad, a Dominican salon opened up close to campus (Elegante Salon in Norfolk, VA) and I was there at least once a month. However, the thing with these salons is that they use a lot of heat. A LOT OF HEAT! LOTS. MUCHO. Y'all get my drift. While I think they are excellent for getting a nice blow out style every once in awhile, I would not recommend for anyone to go their frequently in general but especially if you are transitioning or are natural. You risk potential heat damage and that is just not cute. As with everything, this is something to do in moderation. Oh and I don't recommend getting a relaxer from there either.
Now with that disclaimer out of the way.....let's get down to the nitty gritty!
Name: Dominican Salon (no, seriously. This is the name!)
279 West Valley Ave
Birmingham, AL 35209
* It's in the Summit Square shopping center. It's a little bit past the Wells Fargo and across from Herzing College *
I arrived at the salon about 30 minutes before it was scheduled to open. This wasn't a problem because I got to eat my yum-tastic Chick-fil-A breakfast in the meantime. At about 10 after 8, someone finally showed up to open the salon. Since there was a group of us already waiting, we figured out who showed up first (which was me) and signed our name in the book. Since I was first, I was immediately escorted to the shampoo bowl. The shampoo girl did a pretty good job at washing my hair, although she was a bit rough at times. Once the shampoo was rinsed out, she place conditioner in my hair and proceeded to comb (the fact she waited to comb my hair until it was loaded with condish scored major points with me!) my hair. Unfortunately, she was attempting to detangle my 15 weeks and some odd days post hair with a smaller tooth comb. I had to stop her and hand her my Jilbere. It made the process easier. By 8:30, I was under the hood with my DC. During this time, a number of ladies had been escorted to the shampoo bowl and were well on their way to sitting under the dryer. By 9am, the condish was rinsed out of my hair and I was waiting for the next step. So normally, following the rinse of the DC, roller setting is next. However, because these chicks deemed my hair to be natural, they did something different. First, the girl sectioned my hair off and detangled ( kinda roughly and with a small tooth comb). Then, she twisted each section ( kinda like a bantu knot but not quite knotted...that's the best way for me to describe it) and clipped them. I can see what it did in terms of providing tension for the new growth, I just thought it was an interesting way of doing things. For the ladies who had pin straight relaxed hair to begin with, they did a regular ol' roller set.
After I sat under the dryer for some minutes, the blowout process began. I have to say, the girl did an excellent job! She got my hair straight with that blow dryer AND she did not fry my scalp in the process! That was huge for me! I have been to Dominican salons where they put the heat of the blow dryer directly on your scalp. And it hurts. And I never went back. Anyway, she finished up by passing a flat iron through it and I loved the results. She mentioned that I needed to get my ends trimmed but I declined....to have it done there. I mean they can do work with some heat and all but I took my tail to SuperCuts to Danyelle (the only stylist I trust to put scissors to my hair...real talk.). After all of that, I wound up paying $50, which was kind of disturbing but understandable. Birmingham isn't like New York where there are Dominican salons on every corner so they aren't really required to charge a super low price. Also, I think I paid more because my hair is a) 'natural' (according to them) and b) long so that would make for an extra cost. All and all, I have to say I had a very pleasurable experience. I would definitely go back in the future.
Take a look at the results! It looks like I just got a relaxer don't it? :)