1 March 2017
- How do I participate in a parade?
I don't organize the parades and festivals, I only keep a calendar of them.
To see if you can participate in a parade, you have to contact the
organizers. In my Hispanic parades and festivals
calendar, for each event I list contact information for the organizers
if I have it (if the name of the event is underlined, it is a link; click on
it). If the event you are interested in is not listed in the calendar,
check the previous years' calendars: 2014, 2013, 2012, etc. Good luck!
- How can I be a vendor at a festival?
- See the previous item. Everything I know about each festival is on my
Hispanic parades and festivals calendar,
including any contact information I could find for the organizers: phone
number, email, and/or a link to the website for the event, or that announces
the event. If the name of the event is underlined, it is a link; click on
it to see if the information you require is there. If all else fails,
search Google to see if you can find what you need.
- Where are all
the parades and festivals for this year?
(This question is usually asked in the early part of the year.)
Each parade is sponsored by its own organization, and each organization has
to raise funds, apply for permits, and so on, before a date can be
announced. So in the early months of each year, very few events are
scheduled yet. Once an even is scheduled, it will appear in Aleida.net
on the Hispanic Parades and Festivals page.
When the parades take place, we hope to be there photographing them,
like every year.
- Where are all
the parades that we used to have?
A few years ago there were a lot more Hispanic parades and festivals than we
have now. Why? The economy. The money simply can't be raised.
Nevertheless, if you know about a Hispanic parade or festival in the New
York City area that I have not listed on my
page, please let me know, thanks.
Dominican Hair Salons
- What is a Dominican Hair Salon?
Dominican women are famous for their long beautiful hair, and for the good
care they take of it! Almost every dominican woman goes to a Dominican hair
salon at least once a week, where Dominican stylists have their own special
method of straightening and styling hair, perfected over 500 years, that
does not involve harsh chemicals or direct heat, which damage the hair and
Read about Dominican Salons ←Click
- Where is a Dominican hair salon in my area?
In the USA, most Dominican salons are in the New York City and Miami
areas, but they are spreading all over the country... and the world!
List of Dominican Salons ←Click
The list shows the salons where I have my own hair or nails done, which is in
New York City and Connecticut, because I know personally that they do a very good
job and if you visit them, you will not be disappointed (tell them
Aleida sent you!)
The list also contains salons recommended by my readers. If you
don't see a Dominican salon in the list that is near you, it means nobody
has recommended one to me yet. If you find a good Dominican salon that is
not on my list , please send me your
recommendation and a mini-review with the name and address of the salon
and I can add it to my list. Good salons deserve all the publicity they can
I don't know about any Dominican salons that are not already on the
list. But I do have a Dominican Salon Locator that you can use
to look for one in your area; click on this button to use it:
Dominican Hair Salon Locator ←Click
There are two custom searches: One in Google, the other in in the
telephone book. Try them both; the Google search works for all
countries, the phone book one works only in the USA.
If you find a Dominican salon you like, please
send me your
recommendation so the next person will be able to find it. This way
your salon will get more customers and won't disappear because nobody knows
- What is Aleida.net?
- There is a whole page about this;
CLICK HERE to see it.
- Can I sell your products?
Can I buy your products wholesale?
- Believe it or not, I receive a LOT of emails every day from people who
want to sell the products on my website, even though I do not say anywhere
that I am a distributor, wholesaler, or importer. I'm not! As far as the
hair products, shoes, perfumes, jewelry, clothing, and accessories are
concerned, I am a sales agent for Amazon.com, which is
strictly a retail business.
I don't buy or import anything, I don't have a warehouse, I don't ship the
products. Amazon does all that; all I do is recommend certain
products that I believe in and make referrals through links on my website.
It is strictly a retail business.
I don't deal with wholesalers or distributors, I don't even know
who they are. I can't offer wholesale pricing. Nor do I have the capacity
to make you into an importer or distributor or seller of these products, or
to offer discounts to beauty parlors, nail salons, shoe stores, or boutiques.
I don't have free samples for resellers.
Anybody can order the products from my website, but only at the prices
listed for each item. If you want to sell these products, you can order
them from the website at the regular price, or
you can see if you can locate a wholesale distributor in your area, or you
can try to establish a direct relationship with the manufacturer. I do not
have information about the manufacturers or distributors or wholesalers
because I deal only with Amazon.
But even though Amazon does not offer reseller prices:
- Some items are available in large salon sizes.
- Some items are offered in economical 4-packs, 6-packs, 12-packs, etc.
- Even for single-quantity items, Amazon prices are generally lower
than you'll find elsewhere.
- It is usually cheaper to order in bulk because for most items there
is a shipping charge per order as well as a charge by weight
and/or by item.
For many years I was Beauty Consultant specializing in makeup and
skin care. Although I am not a hairdresser or a manicurist, I believe that,
in addition to makeup, hair and nails are essential components of a
women's beauty. And as a Beauty Consultant who was also from the
Dominican Republic, I received a Lot of requests for Dominican
hair products, which are famous all over the world, and so I have put a page
on my site that gathers together in one place the brands and products that
are popular among Dominican women:
as well as some pages highlighting specific brands or products:
plus a page that tells you about Dominican hair salons from an insider's
and even English-Spanish glossaries for English speakers who want to try a
Dominican salon, where a little Spanish goes a long way!
But with every new page or service come more questions, more than I could ever
answer personally every day! Here are the questions I receive most often,
2. Dominican hair care and products
- What is the best hair care line?
Nobody can tell you what The Best hair-care line is, because there
are too many of them to compare, and because different products can be better
for different women. But...
if I had to pick one brand to recommend to everybody, regardless of
type or condition of hair — straight, curly, nappy, chemically
straightened, dyed, bleached, damaged, overprocessed, thin, thick, dry,
oily, young, old and grey, frizzy, falling — it would be
Alter Ego by Pettenon Cosmetics S.p.A (which happens to be
Italian, not Dominican) because:
CLICK HERE to read more about Alter Ego
and see some featured products.
CLICK HERE to see a long list
of Alter Ego products (clickable links).
And if you ask me what is the most indispensable of all the Alter Ego
products? I would have to say
the reviews!). By the way, this goes under various names, depending
on the packaging: Impac Ego, Hot Oil Treatment, Garlic Mask, etc, but
they are all the same.
And to fight hair loss? The
hair loss combination set
On July 9, 2012, there were 166 Alter Ego product listings in Amazon.com.
Of these at least 100 were duplicates (because, for example, the same
product supplied by two different distributors will be shown as two separate
products). Of the 166 products, 29 had customer reviews. The average
customer review was 4.7 stars, out of 5, based on a total of
130 separate reviews. To read the reviews, click on the link "you
can and should read them", and you will see all the products. To read
the reviews for any product, click on the stars, and then click on "See all
20 reviews" (or whatever the number is). For any given product, the higher
the number of reviewers, the more reliable the rating. A rating based on
one review means little; a good rating based on 20 or 50 or 100 does not
guarantee that a product will work for you, but it is a good
indication that it probably will. But you should also read
the reviews, pay particular attention to those written by people are "like"
you — for example, with the same kind of hair in the same condition.
- What is so special about Dominican hair care?
- Dominican women are like the “stress test” for hair
products! We have African hair, mixed with European Spanish and Native
American (Taíno / Caribe / Arawak) in all different proportions and
combinations. And we come from a tropical paradise where it can get
very hot and the sun can almost cook our hair!
Over hundreds of years, Dominican women have perfected hair care techniques
based on the healthy natural ingredients of our country like coconut,
cinnamon, avocado, oregano, and rosemary, that beautify our hair and allow it
to grow without using harsh chemicals or direct heat (hot combs). In the
modern age of electricity and hair dryers Dominican stylists, always
ingenious, have developed what Americans call the “Dominican Blowout”, but we just call the
levado y secado (wash and dry), that makes our hair smooth and lush and
silky without hurting it.
- What is it about Dominican hair products?
- These products were developed to satisfy the diverse needs of Dominican
women and their different hair textures. A lot of Americans have hair
like ours, and so do many Puerto Ricans, Cubans, Venezuelans, and others.
We use these products because they work so well for us without harming our
hair. We also use some brands that are made in other countries, such as
Italy, Spain, Brazil, France, and even the USA – if it works,
it doesn't have to be Dominican!
- What are the Dominican hair products?
Shampoos, rinses, deep conditioners, leave-in conditioners, relaxers,
detanglers, emergency repair treatments, anti-hair-loss treatments, growth
stimulators, plus special shampoos for dandruff or oily hair or dull hair,
and other products for special purposes like adding shine, covering gray,
and so on. Some of the best selling brands are
Avanti Silicon Mix,
Boé Crece Pelo,
Toque Mágico, to name only a few.
Some brands made in Italy, Spain,
France, Brazil, and other countries are popular too, such as:
UNA by Rolland,
CLICK HERE for a more detailed
list of the hair products that Dominican women use.
- Who can use Dominican hair products?
Do I have to be Dominican to use these products? [no]
Are they only good for Dominican hair? [no]
Are Dominican products good for African American hair? [yes]
The hair products on this website are mainly
intended for two kinds of woman (who are often the same woman!)...
- Women with textured hair, Caribbeans like us, or African
Americans, or West Indians, or anybody whose hair has some “African
roots” or is coarse, or very curly or unruly. It doesn't matter if
you wear your hair natural, if you have it blown out like me, or chemically
straightened or straightened with direct heat.
- Women with hair that has been damaged by overprocessing, hot combs,
harsh chemicals, exposure to the sun, or excessive bleaching or coloration,
and is dry and brittle, or won't grow, or might even be falling out.
But many of the products can be used by anybody. Even men! When you go to
a product order page
this one, you can read about the product: what it's for, how to
use it, any customer reviews, and (in some cases) the ingredients.
Be sure to read the product description on the product page before
ordering to make sure the product is appropriate for you. For example, some
products are for professional use only, meaning they should be used
only by licensed hairdressers. Others, especially relaxers, might require
you to wear rubber gloves and avoid contact with the skin (I do not
recommend you apply relaxer to your own hair; see
conditioners (like Apretadora) must be used
before you shampoo, others (like Crece
Always read the instructions (and follow them!) You might also
want to look around the Internet to see what people are saying about a
particular product; search for it in Google, or check some of the hair-care forums.
- Can the anti-hair loss products by used during
pregnancy and breast feeding?
- It depends on the brand:
- Alter Ego:
According to a company representative,
"Yes, all the drops may be used while pregnant and while breast feeding."
- BOÉ Crece Pelo:
According to a company representative,
"Yes, of course, they are made from natural ingredients that don't
affect the health in a state of pregnancy or lactation".
- René Furterer:
According to the product packaging, this company's anti-hair loss products
should NOT be used by pregnant women.
- Others: Check the product labels. If they don't say anything
specific about pregnancy or breast feeding they are probably OK but
if you need confirmation, let me know and I
will try to obtain clarification from the manufacturer.
- How can I get these products?
- Follow the links on my pages to order them, such as the main hair products page. The order is processed safely
and securely by Amazon.com and shipped directly from Amazon or from one of its
subcontractors. I do not handle the products personally. If you can't
find a product that you are looking for, let me
know, maybe I can help.
Since each product might be shipped by a different company, the shipping
policies and costs can be different for different products.
Check each product page for details.
- Can I get these products in a store?
- Most of the hair products – especially the Dominican ones –
are hard to find in stores. Perhaps some of them are sold in some stores
but I do not have a list; there is no way I can keep track of which products
are sold in which stores all over New York City, the United States, and the
entire world! Sometimes some of the products are sold in Dominican beauty
salons. But it is because these products are hard to find that I made my
hair products web pages, where you can find almost all the brands that are
popular among Dominicanas in one place where they can be ordered
conveniently and securely. Similarly for shoes and other products; I have
no information about all the places where a particular product might be sold.
See this page for further information.
- Can products be shipped outside the USA?
Please visit my Amazon page
for a complete explanation of international ordering and shipping.
- Can you recommend products for me?
First, see above about the Alter Ego
line. Then, in the following questions I try to give you some suggestions, but
I can not tell you which product will work best for you, because every woman
and every head of hair is unique, and different products work differently
for different women. That's why there are so many products! What I do
recommend, however, is that (unless you really know what you are doing) you
don't mix and match shampoos, rinses, and conditioners from different
companies, but instead use the ones that come together in a
because they are designed to work together. For example, see the
instructions for the La Bomba Deep
Treatment or Boé Crece Pelo.
HERE to see a Lot of Combination Sets.
- Can I read reviews?
- Amazon includes all reviews submitted by customers for each product,
good or bad, right on the product page. You can even write your own
reviews there. For example, see the Alter
Ego Hot Oil Treatment with Garlic page, that includes a very helpful
review from a customer who lets us know that our “hair will NOT smell
like garlic after using the product!”
You can also find a lot of information about Dominican hair products and
salons on Internet discussion sites where women share their experiences,
Black Hair Planet,
Long Hair Care Forum,
and probably lots more!
- What products can I use for dry, damaged, or
- All the brands listed on my pages are specially formulated for women
with damaged or overprocessed hair that is dry or brittle. Everybody has
their favorite brand. I can't say that one brand or product would be better
for you than any other one, but I can say that I have had very good results
But that's just me! Anyway, I also recommend you read this
page from the United States Food and Drug Administration Office of Women's Health about hair
dyes and relaxers. Here are some of the products you can order here
that are specially formulated for dry, damaged, dyed, or overprocessed hair:
When choosing a treatment, keep in mind it is best to use it together with
a shampoo, rinse, leave-in, detangler, etc, of the same brand, that are
designed to work together. Usually these are sold as combination
sets, such as the ones from
La Bomba, etc.
“But these products contain alcohol, won't that dry out my
hair?” There are different kinds of alcohol. Ethyl alcohol
(ethenol), SD alcohol, propyl alcohol, and isopropyl alcohol can dry your
hair out; these are used in a lot of drug-store hair products.
On the other hand, the “fatty alcohols” such as lauryl alcohol
(dodecanol), cetyl alcohol, stearyl alcohol, and cetearyl alcohol are
emollients that help to hydrate and condition the hair and make it soft and
manageable. The fatty alcohols are the ones that are used in the Dominican
products and other products listed on this site.
Sometimes when you read the ingredients of a hair product,
you wonder about the long chemical names. You can look them up in Google. For
example, cetyl alcohol is natural, nowadays usually made from palm kernel or
coconut oil; ditto for lauryl alcohol. Stearyl alcohol comes from animal or
vegetable fats or oils. Cetearyl alcohol is a mixture of cetyl and stearyl
Some people think every chemical with a long name is dangerous or harmful.
Some of them might be, but how can we know for sure? I don't think we can.
Every person is different and can react differently to different substances.
The best way to tell if a product is right for you is to READ THE REVIEWS.
The more reviews a product has, the more trustworthy the rating. But you
should still read them. For example, maybe a certain hair product is very
good for Caucasian hair but not so good for African-American hair, and the
rating might not reflect that because all the reviewers were white. Maybe a
product has an ingredient that some people consider harmful, but if hundreds
of people use the product with good results and no complaints, maybe the
ingredient is OK after all.
- What products are best for hair growth or to prevent hair loss?
- There are lot of products for that! Many of them are especially
formulated for women whose hair has been damaged by years of strong
chemicals or direct heat for relaxing their hair. Some of these companies
are devoted exclusively to hair growth / hair loss issues, such as Boé
(“crece pelo” means “grows hair”).
These products can be helpful in many cases, but remember:
- Different products work differently for different people;
- Hair can be lost for many reasons and not all of them can be
treated by over-the-counter products. Examples include infections
and hormone imbalances.
It should do no harm to try products such as these first; they could save
you the time and expense of medical treatement. But if nothing seems to
help, you should consult a dermatologist or endocrinologist.
I can't guarantee results or tell you which brand will work best for you,
but I can tell you that the Alter Ego, Rolland UNA, and Boé
Crece Pelo brands are big sellers and have ratings from Amazon customers.
Remember that a woman's hair grows only about half an inch a month
(about a centimeter), so even when a product works well, it takes a long
time to see the results. The most important thing to look for in the early
weeks is that hair loss stops. If not, you should consult a dermatologist
because women's hair loss can happen for different reasons and not all of
them can be helped by over-the-counter products. For more information, CLICK
- What about relaxers?
As you probably know, relaxers usually contain strong chemicals that can
damage your hair or your scalp. There are some gentler ones that I talk
about below, but
if you live near a Dominican salon, you might not even need a
relaxer! A lot of Dominican women (including me) go to the salon once or
twice a week for the levado y secado (wash and dry), that relaxes our
hair without chemicals and leaves it with a lot of body! You can read about
that in my Dominican salons page.
line is a favorite in
almost every Dominican salon.
which comes from the seed of the shea tree.
Shea butter is good for the hair and for the skin and for the
scalp too. There is also a special version of the Linange relaxer for women
with sensitive scalps. According to the directions, the Linange relaxer
must be used with the
Linange Neutralizing Conditioner and the
Restructuring Hair Mask. You can get the three together in the Combination
Set. I also highly recommend the Alter Ego
Impac Ego Treatment with Garlic conditioner and the Alter Ego Botanikare Shampoo for your
everyday hair care; for me, and for most people, they really do improve the
texture and manageability of our hair while putting the brakes on hair loss
Tolbert "Miki" (Atlanta, GA USA), Amazon.com review:
I must say that I am very pleased with the results of this relaxer
[Linange]. I purchased the relaxer online and I took it with me to the
salon. I did not have to worry about any hair damage; because it is so
gentle and mild. There was no burning or tingling at all; and my hair was
not in the least bit overprocessed. My hair is beautiful, shiny, healthy,
and stronger after the use of this relaxer. I have received several
compliments; and I plan to re-order in a couple of days as a matter of
fact. I am even thinking about looking into the texturizer version
Other highly regarded relaxer brands include
My best advice, if you are going to use a relaxer, is don't do it
yourself — go to a salon and have a professional take care of you.
The money you save by home treatment is not worth the risk of losing or
damaging your hair or hurting yourself. Even the no-lye relaxers come with
lots of warnings. The only reason I have relaxers on my website is in case you
want to purchase a particular kind and bring it to the salon where they can
treat you, either because the salon doesn't have the products you want, or
to save money.
- How do I protect my hair from the chlorine that's in tap water?
I have been here in the USA for a year now and people tell me that
the water has a lot of chlorine. Do you think the water can damage my
hair? Because I always wash it in tap water.
Everybody does it that way, what else can we do? Even bottled water,
if we bought it, probably came from faucets just like the water in your house.
I'm not a doctor or a chemist, but everbody knows that chlorine can damage
the hair, not to mention the rest of the body. It depends on how much
chlorine is in the water where you live, the parts per million (ppm).
(Usually the concentration is higher in swimming pools than in tap water.)
The chlorine kills bacteria in the water. The less chlorine, the higher the
risk of infection. The more chlorine, the higher the risk of toxicity.
You can read more about chlorine in water purification
The effect of chlorine on the hair is to dry it out, leaving it brittle.
It can also affect the color.
The ideal solution is to remove the chlorine from the water as it
comes out of the faucet. That's what water filters do. You can buy
them for your shower too:
HERE to see a good example, or see below.
There are also hair products that neutralize the chlorine, used mainly by
swimmers; for example this
shampoo and this
conditioner, but these are not specially formulated for texturized hair.
- Do hair products have expiration dates?
Hair products don't have expiration dates, the FDA does not require them.
Supposedly these products are stable until the container is first opened.
Then, once they are exposed to air, water, fingers, etc, they have a certain
number of months of safe use. This should be shown on the container in a
little icon of an open container with a number inside, For the UNA Protein
Treatment (shown at left), the number is 12. So you can use it safely for
up to 12 months after you open it.
Conditioners like the Rolland protein treatment (see image) are especially easy to
contaminate when you keep them in the shower. Water can collect when you
open them, and when you scoop some out with your fingers, some bacteria can
be added. Then when you close the jar, the bacteria can multiply.
That's why some makers are starting to sell conditioners
in tubes or in jars with pumps like this one from Alter Ego
(see gallery photo).
Here are some other examples of "months of safe use" icons from other hair
(Click on each image for a larger view.) Not all hair products have