Problem Hair and Park Jun’s Salon
When my curly roots started showing, I went to Henry Calayag in Greenbelt to have the rest of my hair permed. I did not want my head to look like a mushroom: curly on top, stick-straight at the bottom. They refused to perm the chemically straightened parts because they said exposure to more chemicals will kill them. They did, however, cut my hair in such a nice way that I was able to deal with my head until all the straightened parts grew out. To their credit, they really did a good job of shaping my head. The cut worked with my awkwardly growing curls.
On GOOD days back in 1999 before I subjected myself to straightening methods. Photos below are my passport and US visa pictures, taken almost 11 years ago.
These photos showed the very rare instances when my strands would seem to be in harmony instead of waging war with me. The thing I’d hate about getting my mane trimmed during those times was that I’d have beautiful hair when I get out of the salon but I’d loathe washing my head because I’d know it would be back to its disastrous state the next day.
See, here’s the source of my problem. My dad had an afro in the 70s, before he married my mother. My mom has fine locks with big waves. My sister inherited my mom’s curls and my brother inherited my dad’s. I was unfortunate enough to have my hair, as with my skin color (mom is yellowish fair, dad is reddish dark), be somewhere in between. For most of my younger years, I constantly struggled with my forever frizzy hair. Brushing it to “distribute the scalp oils”, as what most grandmothers advised, seemed to make things worse. If you do not believe that static electricity is true, you will start believing when you see it manifest itself on my head. Oh, there were good days when the strands would group themselves into lovely ringlets…until the wind undid them. Hence, when I was old enough to afford splurging on my hair, I immediately had it rebonded.
Me in Painting class. See those broom-like ends and the awkward curls growing out from the top of my head? My hair looked really nice when it was first straightened, but it was only nice for the first four procedures. After those four, my strands started looking like a broom’s: straight but totally dry, brittle and frazzled. Going back to curly after 8 years of having straight hair wasn’t so bad. In order to tame my locks into moving to a definite direction, I would apply mousse to it then braid it every night. In the morning, rebellious baby springs would sprout out of my head but a little water and mousse went a long way.
This is how it looks like when I remove my braids. Of course, it’s irritating to be perpetually asked why you had your hair permed. Gad, I spent my entire life struggling with my curls, took a break from them for 8 years and when I finally go back to them, I get asked why I permed them WHEN I DID NOT! You’d be annoyed too if you were in my shoes, especially when you see women with beautiful fake curly hair. (Oh, after so many years of chemical bombardment, I can actually tell who the fake curlies and the fake straights are. Much like the way my gaydar functions. LOL.) The ones with fake curls never have to deal with rebellious baby springs because their roots just fall naturally downwards and that annoys me. Haha!
This afternoon, I paid a visit to Park Jun’s at my classmate Jenny Ortuoste‘s recommendation. I told them I wanted big curls (insert thoughts of my mom’s beautiful mane here). They removed my pony tail and checked my roots. The Korean woman at the reception area said, in the best English and Tagalog she could muster, that it’s bad because I have very strong, little curls (by “strong”, I think they mean “tight”). If I kept my naturally tiny curls at the top and they did big waves at the bottom, I would look like a disaster. They suggested that I have the top of my head rebonded then they can do big waves at the bottom. I vehemently said no. I do not want to have my hair rebonded yet again because then I’d still be worrying about the “strong” roots growing out and ruining the shape of my face. I also don’t want to iron my hair every morning as I used to do whenever my roots began to show.
The guy who shampoo’d my locks remarked that it was very thick…can you imagine having to run a straightening iron through that stubborn thickness everyday? So while the girl and I were discussing my options — apparently I have very few, given the stubbornness of my hair — I decided to just have the remaining fake straight strands cut off and wait for the real ringlets to dominate. She also exclaimed that my hair was very dry and was hesitant to add more chemicals to it. I asked her if they had any treatments for dryness and she gave me more options. The only available stylist at that moment was Maiya Noh, their creative director, but Jenny recommended her specifically and I was only too happy that she was available. A cut from her was P1,300, but I think it’s worth it because she seems to really care about hair.
I had to go through a five-step process that utilizes a Japanese shampoo method that involves opening the cuticles of my hair and treating them from the inside out. The shampoo dude also provided me with cold green tea, which I chose from the other drinks he offered, and gave me a massage to relax me. He was very thorough with the back massage and I appreciated that.
When they were blow-drying my hair, Maiya taught me how to make my curls big. I must twirl and squeeze it while my hair is damp and I must twirl it into small groups repeatedly till I finished drying it. Then I should apply a bit of Kerastase: Oléo-Relax and some curl cream. Maiya’s assistant told me that this is only effective for people with natural waves because straight hair would go back to being limp after a while. Apparently, they do not have the natural springiness of wavy hair, so even if they achieve the big curls effect, it would not last the whole day.
Thing is, I don’t want to have to twirl my hair on a daily basis so that they’d obey in small groups. And the process also involves ironing the top of my head still. I don’t want to have to do that again. I want to wake up to nice bouncy waves like those seen on girls with fake curls. We’re going to talk about what to do with my “strong” curls the next time I come back because I really would like to live with what I was born with instead of subjecting it to more chemical cruelty. As of now, I am lamenting the dryness that resulted from all that straightening. And I still have about 3 inches of rebonded hair left. Maiya didn’t want to cut all of it off because when my hair dries, it will be appallingly short.
I like my hair now, actually. I love what Maiya did to it. I think she’s making it possible for my hair to go back to the way it was without me plodding through the awkward stage. I will have to check back if my hair is still this nice tomorrow. In the meantime, I have my Finesse Self-Adjusting Curl Defining Mousse (Alcohol Free) on hand in case the cut fails. I recommend this mousse because it has the least number of synthetic chemicals compared to the leading brands out there. I wish someone would come up with an organic mousse for us with problem hair, but I don’t see that happening anytime soon. Not in this country, anyway.
UPDATE DAY 2:
So I woke up the next day and took a bath and this is how it turned out. I don’t know if it looks good or not, since I’m still struggling with renegade baby springs (although people don’t seem to see them if they aren’t standing close to me). I should have asked what Maiya used to make the curls soft and obedient yesterday.
Park Jun’s Contact Information
Park Jun’s Beauty Lab, Inc.
G/F Glorietta 3, Ayala Center Makati City
Tel: 819-3003 to 02
Rowena Wendy LeiJanuary 10, 2010 at 2:04 pm
Uy okay siya! 😀
skysenshiJanuary 10, 2010 at 4:21 pm
Hopefully tomorrow maganda pa rin. Tsaka mura ah. Kasama na treatment and the Kerastase inabot lang ako ng P5,500. I needed a trim so that my hair would grow out faster. I'm planning to go back next month.
skysenshiJanuary 10, 2010 at 11:45 pm
oh and one other reason why i refused to have the top rebonded and the bottom be given big waves: i don't want to look like every other fake curly out there. i really have to find a way to work with what i was born with.
MollyJanuary 13, 2010 at 2:13 pm
Not bad actually. I think you'll just have to let it grow a bit 🙂
And yay we use the same mousse XD
AnonymousJanuary 14, 2010 at 9:17 am
Mas bagay na bagay sau ang curly hair ms bea^^-tin
skysenshiJanuary 14, 2010 at 10:57 am
AlexandraJanuary 15, 2010 at 8:39 am
Cool! I'm going to write about curly hair din eh, and I agree with a lot of things you wrote here 😀 Your hair looks better nga! Actually cute nga rin pag nakabraid on the sides of your head. I wish I knew how to do this sort of thing on my own: http://spoiledsociety.net/wp-content/postimages/aug2009/nicole%20richie%20braid%20style.jpg
skysenshiJanuary 16, 2010 at 7:34 am
I wish I knew how to do a bun and stick chopsticks on my hair the way you do, though. @_@ The chopsticks fly when I try. T.T
AnonymousJune 17, 2010 at 12:34 am
hi! we have the same problem. i have curly hair which i have been rebonding since 2004. i want to go back to my curly hair again but i think my hair isn't too long enough yet. i have stick dry straight hair at the bottom (around 6 inches long) and curly hair on the top. may i know how your hair is now? and would you still recommend park jun hair salon in glorietta? would you know of other salons which do naturally curly hair in qc since i live in that area? hoping for your response. — barbara
skysenshiJune 17, 2010 at 8:13 am
The ends of my hair are still very much frazzled, but thanks to Ms. Maiya, it became manageable. I actually went to another salon a few months later (Studio 546, I blogged about that here: http://www.skysenshi.com/2010/05/studio-546.html) but then I went back to Ms. Maiya when my hair got longer and a bit unmanageable.
Park Jun really does wonders. I have very thick hair so it can be a pain. Ms. Maiya shapes it very nicely. 🙂
AnonymousJune 17, 2010 at 10:35 am
thanks for your quick reply! will try park jun as soon as i have the time. by the way, how long did they take to treat your hair (including haircut and all)? – barbara
skysenshiJune 17, 2010 at 3:07 pm
Roughly 3 hours, methinks.
My hair is very thick. There was one time in another salon that I had my hair rebonded, highlighted and treated…well, I was there from 8AM till closing. I never went back to that other salon, though…it was too far.
Park Jun is accessible to me. Hm. I think I should write another review. I had my hair highlighted there recently.
AnonymousJuly 26, 2010 at 2:03 pm
hi! you're hair now is nice and better.. =) my hair's also naturally curl, but still haven't found the right product for my hair.. could you suggest some natural or any good and effective ahir products for curly hair? thanks.
skysenshiJuly 27, 2010 at 9:34 am
Thanks! I was just thinking of a one-stop post that might be able to help other naturally curly-haired girls like us. I've been noticing that many Google searches that land on this site are asking about curly hair. There's just one more product I need to try then I'll post it. 😀
In the meantime, I would suggest you try HumanHeartNature for bathing. 🙂 These are organic.
Jordan HSeptember 18, 2010 at 8:54 pm
Sorry for the late reply:( You know what? You did a very good decision. I went there yesterday had my haircut with Jenny and voila I have a cute Korean cut;) And in fairness, i love your curls. post some pictures so we can see kung matagal siya
skysenshiSeptember 18, 2010 at 10:51 pm
Hello! Oh, I always post my pictures when I have events. You can check the main pages for my hair. So far nagtagal yung curls in their state because I sort of developed a bad mannerism — I twirl them unconsciously. Haha! Kaya nadedefine siya the whole day. Wag lang mahanginan.
Here are some of my recent posts, where you can see my hair:
Timezone with the Sibs
Ice Watch Event
AnonymousOctober 22, 2010 at 4:58 am
I also got my hair rebonded and now the top of my hair and around the neck part there started to go curly. I want to cut all of my rebonding hair off and go curly back. But how short should i cut my hair?
I thought of cutting my hair around the shoulder length since the hair around my neck and shoulder is already curly. What do you think?
Hope you reply.
skysenshiOctober 22, 2010 at 5:07 am
Hm, whatever you decide with that cut, make sure that it's layered. A shoulder-length cut is a good idea. That's what I had done with mine. But having an expert layer it and shape it can help define your curls. My curls are now below my shoulder bones but they seem to be growing out well.
There are times when I feel my hair is being unruly (I get really annoyed) but people would think they look adorable. Maybe it's just me.
eissDecember 29, 2010 at 2:51 pm
Hi! I was just lurking around the net looking for a mousse that would suit my hair then I stumbled in your blog… I think we have the same problem. My real hair is wavy, then buhaghag, poofy, the best description I could have is like a witch's hair. I had my hair rebonded for 5 times since 2005 and now I don't want to rebond my hair again, I wanna see if I can already wear my naturally curly hair. I had my remaining rebonded hair permed last sunday, it turned out okay, but still my hair is poofy. I dunno if it is just me or what, pero nacoconscious ako sa poofy hair ko even though it looked okay. I've been battling with my hair since I was a kid, I dunno what to do anymore… Hopefully a mousse can fix it…
skysenshiDecember 29, 2010 at 3:10 pm
One of my newer posts about maintaining curly hair might be of help: http://www.skysenshi.com/2010/08/how-to-maintain-naturally-curly-hair.html