AFRO ALICE HEBDO – FANM MON OR THE ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM

Afro Alice has interviewed this week an exquisite young Haitian woman with natural hair who lives in Turkey and use her gift to create original clothing, accessories, shoes and jewelry.  Read on as you get to know the face behind FANM MON: Sophia.

  • Tell us about you.

I am a woman, mother, wife, lover of life, nature and all living things except mosquitoes. Lol

  • Tell us about Fanm Mon.

Fanm Mon is a brand with a primary focus on handmade designs. The brand offers quality, one of kind products mostly. The designs are extremely original, and capture the attention of a selective few.

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  • Why the name FANM MON?

I wanted something organic that all Haitians would automatically understand once heard. I decided on the name because it felt right. I identify with such women/people of my culture. I was not brought up in a closed zuzufied environment. So growing up in Haiti, I had the opportunity to witness the difference between a woman who had her maids do everything for her, verse the machane promenading the streets with heavy loads on their head in order to take care of everyone, and most of the time, they are not able to take care of themselves. So at a very early age, I deeply embraced such efforts, resilience, and strength. When we talk of a Haitian woman, a Fanm Mon comes to mind for me automatically. History proves that I am right up to this day, lets take a look at Haitian art, it is not the woman going to get her hair and nails done every week that is drawn, rather the ones caring the heavy load, the farmers, those who were not educated in the class room but have been nature’s most attentive students. So Fanm Mon is my attempt to help Haitians to see the value of our people regardless of their back ground. Nomads exist all over the world and are respected for what they have to offer their countries and the world, we need to embrace our own the same.

  • Tell us about your creations.

They are what they are, for who they are meant to be. This is what I love about what I make. I did take the advice of my husband and try to make some clothes that were “regular to most’ but I have decided stick to my calling, Fanm Mon is not about catering to the mass, I prefer its essence to be raw from all aspects. I am not a person who thinks, sees, and live life, like the majority of people on earth, and there are many individuals like me, who would connect to my art. I much prefer to create for myself and such people, not the majority. The designs that are liked by the mass are easy to find, so I will let mine work remain the elephant in the room!

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  • When and why did you return natural?

I have always been natural, entering High School, I wanted a perm so bad, but I mom was against it. When she finally said ok, she permed my hair and allowed me to burn, the feeling of my scalp melting of off my head, was enough for me. From that experience on, I have been either balding my head, or rocking my hair as is. It was not easy in the 90s, imagine in 1994, when all girls wanted to look like Aaliyah, I was walking around with no hair or a fro. Needless to say I had many bad looks, and murmurs, and even being pulled aside by some Haitians advising me, my hair style is not lady-like, lol. My aunts would try to talk me into a perm, but I remained true to myself and I think everyone accepted it after some points. I was not bothered by their dislike, and even at 14,  I was so head strong, my aunts and other neighbors accepted, but considered me the “grin gauche”.

  • How did people surrounding you react to the change?

They could not understand it, but I made it clear it was their issue and not mine.

  • Who were your supporters? Your hairspirations?

In 94? No one. I was my inspiration! My heart would rejoice at the sight of another natural or bald sister, but that was it. It was not so common.

  • What is your current hair regimen?

I used soaps made in turkey by the nomads, and also baby shampoo (rarely). I put aside all of my vegetable/fruit peals, I have lots of aloe vera, cactus, hibiscus, and other plants/herbs that I soak in hot water, for rinse.

  • What are your top 5 products to care for your hair?

None, I use only what I make, I have castor plant in my yard and make my own oil from the green and red plant. In the event I run out, the option would be natural oils from the herbal shops.

  • What do you like most about being natural?

For me it is convenience, by the way, I will say I am not the type who worries much about my hair, I do not put so much time into styling it, I just let it be. I recently cut my hair, and will do a style per month, until I reach the point of balding it, hopefully by July.

  • What do you think about the growing natural hair community in Haiti?

It is wonderful, it is very much needed in our culture, we need to embrace ourselves, natural beauty, and approve our beauty based on our standards and that of our ancestors!

  • A message to the existing, upcoming and potential natural hair community?

To remain true to who you are, do not make temporary decisions based on what is in vogue; embrace yourselves and sisters as we naturally are. Most importantly, be beautiful and natural from within.

DEEP CONDITIONING / PROTEIN MASK

DEEP CONDITIONING MASK / PROTEIN MASK (ENGLISH VERSION)

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Ingredients you need:
1/2 glass of greek yogurt
3 tablespoons of coconut oil or olive oil
8 tablespoons of raw chocolate or cacao powder

Preparation
Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl.

Application
Wash your hair with your shampoo or cleanser of preference. Apply the mixture on your clean hair. Put on a plastic bonnet. Leave it for one hour. Rinse the mixture out

Results
Olive oil nourishes your hair scalp, moisturizes your hair and makes it shine. Coconut oil does the same and adding to it, prevents dandruff and bacteria and fights them too. Chocolate is rich in vitamins, magnesium and oxidants. As a result, it leaves the hair shiny, voluminous, strong and manageable.

Who can do it
Transitioning and natural individuals only can use this recipe.

This is a protein treatment and can be done ONLY once per month on healthy and balanced hair unless otherwise requested after a wet hair test.

Don’t forget to share pictures of how you used the recipe with us.

We wish you all a nice weekend and look forward to sharing another recipe with you next Friday. For suggestions, please email us at afroalice@gmail.com or 34878664

MASK FOR SHINY AND MOISTURIZED HAIR

Ingredients you need:

1/2 tablespoon of conditioner (whichever you use)
1 tablespoon of coconut oil or olive oil
1 cup of mixed fruits (whatever you have available and want to use)

MAS POU IDRATE EPI FE CHEVE KLERE
Preparation
Stir or blend the fruits. Then, add the conditioner to the mixture. Mix well then add the oil and mix it again.

Application
Wash your hair with your shampoo or cleanser of preference. Apply the mixture on your clean hair. Put on a plastic bonnet. Leave it for one hour. Rinse the mixture out with lukewarm water and lastly rinse your hair with cold water.

Results
Olive oil nourishes your hair scalp, moisturizes your hair and makes it shine. Coconut oil does the same and adding to it, prevents dandruff and bacteria and fights them too. Your conditioner will surely smoothen your hair.

Who can do it
Transitioning and natural individuals only can use this recipe. If you have permed hair, just mix olive oil and your conditioner to apply to your hair

Please make sure, the mixture is well blended to avoid flakes in your hair.

Don’t forget to share pictures of how you used the recipe with us.

We wish you all a nice weekend and look forward to sharing another recipe with you next Friday. For suggestions, please email us at afroalice@gmail.com

PROTECTIVE STYLING FOR NATURAL HAIR 101

WHAT IS A PROTECTIVE STYLE

Is called a protective style by the natural hair community, any hairstyle where your hair ends are tucked away from any factor that could damage it (manipulation, environment) to retain length as your scalp hair grows

Some examples of protective styling are the cornrows, the roll and tuck, the bun, braids in general, etc.

WHAT PROTECTIVE STYLING IS NOT

Protective styling is different from low manipulation styling. Finger coils, for instance, are low manipulation but not protective. While there are some hairstyles who are both protective and low manipulation, low manipulation and protective styling are different.

IS YOUR PROTECTIVE STYLING REALLY WORKING?

Your hair cannot be breaking, tangling and falling if your hair was on PROTECTIVE styling. However, it happens to several women with natural hair after protective styling. Others do not handle their protective styles appropriately. In the following posts, we will consider some dos and donts of protective styling

FIRST – MOISTURE
Your hair always needs moisture whether in protective style or not. Make sure you protective style clean and moisturized hair and continue moisturizing your hair while protective styling. If not, your hair will be dry, which will cause breakage.

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SECOND – SEAL THE MOISTURE

Put aside water, you need to use oils to lock the moisture in your hair. You cannot achieve any length retention without moisture retention.

THIRD- TIGHT HAIRSTYLES

Although some people like to set their hair very tight, it is not recommended for effective protective styling. Tension on the hair causes the scalp to be irritated and to fall. You can achieve beautiful styles WITHOUT tightening your hair.

Bun

Bun

FOURTH- LENGTH & MAINTENANCE OF THE STYLE

You surely do not protective style to grow a wild flora in your head. Therefore, make sure you regularly clean your hair and you keep your hair for 6-8 weeks to the maximum. Otherwise, your hair will be matted and tangled which will cause it to break. If you really want to protect your hair, keept it clean and don’t overkeep it.

ALL IN ONE NATURAL HAIR MASK

COMBO HAIR MASK: MOISTURIZING – STRENGTHENING & CLEANSING

What you will need:
1/2 cup of flat beer
1 tablespoon of coconut oil
1 raw egg

MAS ZE

Preparation
Add all ingredients to a bowl and mix them well.

Application
Wash your hair with shampoo or cleanse it then add the mixture to your hair. Leave it for 15 minutes and rinse it thoroughly.

Results
Beer restores damaged hair, gives it body and shine, make it thick and strong. Coconut oil moisturizes, nourishes your hair, prevents breakage, fights dandruff and split ends and makes your hair shine. Egg increases oxygen supply, improves blood circulation, fight dandruff, makes your hair moisturized and shiny.

Who can use this recipe
Natural, transitioning and perm hair can use the mask. It is very recommended for people fighting dandruff

The mask consistency is liquid, make sure you do not mess around while applying it. It’s a protein treatment and should be applied once a month (for healthy hair) and twice a month (if you have protein unbalance).

Don’t forget to share pictures of how you used the recipe with us.

We wish you all a nice weekend and look forward to sharing another recipe with you next Friday. For suggestions, please email us at afroalice@gmail.com

EXFOLIATING SCALP MASK WITH OATS AND OLIVE OIL

Our mask recipe for the week:

HAIR SCALP EXFOLIATING MASK

eksfolyan po tet

Ingredients you will need:
2 tablespoons of oats
3 tablespoons of olive oil

Preparation
Mix the oats with the olive in a blender to avoid flakes in your hair.

Application
Apply the mixture to your hair scalp. Massage it in for two minutes and leave it for 15 minutes. Shampoo/cleanse and condition your hair afterward.

Results
Olive oil moisturizes and nourishes your hair and makes it shine. Oats is a great protein and fiber source for your hair and exfoliates the scalp.

Who can use this recipe
Any transitioning, permed or natural hair individual can use that recipe.

Please make sure, the mixture is well blended to avoid flakes in your hair.

Don’t forget to share pictures of how you used the recipe with us.

We wish you all a nice weekend and look forward to sharing another recipe with you next Friday. For suggestions, please email us at afroalice@gmail.com

Preventing & Treating Thin Edges – The Causes, Dos & Donts

We decided to share Sabrina Perkins‘ tips in her article about avoiding and treating thin edges with you all because we’ve noticed how frequent it is for Haitian natural women to have thin edges.

We will go over the causes of thin edges, the dos and donts.

Here is a list of possible causes of thinning edges: perm, weave, aging, pregnancy, postpartum, surgery, hypothyroidism, permanent illness like iron deficiency, scalp conditions, improper food intake and excessive styling of hair.

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The does to avoid and treat thin edges
– Massage the hair scalp to increase blood circulation as blood flow brings nutrients and oxygen to the scalp, which aid in growth.
-Oil massage the hair with growth oils like castor oil, rosemary oil, Vitamin E oil, Avocado oil, coconut oil, etc.
– Avoid the edges when applying makeup or skin care products
– Sleep on a satin or silk pillowcase or with a satin or silk bonnet to retain moisture in your hair and avoid hair breakage

scalp-massage

The donts for fuller edges
– Don’t wear tight hairstyles
– Don’t use glues, adhesives and wig caps (they prevent your scalp from breathing)
– Don’t use tight satin bonnets
– Don’t use brushes and edge control gels. Leave your edges alone.

Annie Christine Emilcar

Afro Alice