After receiving a few emails from anxious black girls who are about to leave the UK to set off on their Canadian adventures, I thought it time to touch on the subject of hair. I can completely relate, as before I arrived in Canada, I was one of them, asking the all important question as to ‘Where the hell am I going to get my hair did?’. I remember desperately trawling the internet in search of a decent hairdresser that I could go to once I arrived in Toronto.
Finding a black hairdresser in London is so easy and you’re often spoilt for choice. Word of mouth is usually what I opt for when considering where I will next be get my hair done or seeing random girls on the street and asking them where they got it done. You can do the same in Toronto but you will find that many places and people who do hair live in the suburbs as oppsed to downtown Toronto. I have on two occasions trekked all the way to Scarbourough just to get my hair done, sometimes with questionable outcomes.
I have gotten my hair done in Canada on five occasions, each time in Toronto. I usually opt for weaves or braids/twists, so I will try my best to answer the most frequently asked questions as best I can.
1. Are there hair shops in the city or do you have to buy it online?
Like all major cities, Toronto has black hair shops. There aren’t as many as I am used to and they are hard to find on the internet but they are definitely around. My favourite one is Clore Beauty Supply on Bloor Street West.
2. Is it more expensive to buy hair in Canada than in the UK?
Buying hair for braids and twists is just as cheap, if not cheaper than in the UK. A bag of Expressions bulk hair will set you back around $4. As for better quality hair such as Brazilian or Peruvian, I have not yet bought any in Canada. I still opt to buy mine from the same place in the UK and get it shipped over like a diva. For 3 bundles of hair and shipping I usually pay between £180 and £250.
3. Should I take bags of hair out to Canada?
Presumably people who ask me this are talking about hair used for a weaves. I would reccomend taking hair from your reliable source and bringing it to Canada until you find a trusty place to buy it here. I would not just find a place and buy it on the internet. It is always more reliable to ask someone whose hair you love, where they got the hair and where they got it done.
4. Where do you get your hair done?
As I mentioned, I have had my hair done in Canada on five occasions (3 x weave / 2 x twists). I have only been completely happy with the outcome on two occasions, both of which are noted below (number 2 & 5).
5. How do you care for your hair?
For my Brazilian weave I would wash it once a week with Motions shampoo and then leave in the Motions CPR conditioner for as long as I could (usually an hour). After drying naturally (preferable to using a hairdryer) I would put a little bit of argon oil. When straightening my hair I would protect it using Olive Oil Hair Protection Serum.
For my twists, it is SOOO flipping easy. I basically do nothing except for put in some Coconut Castor Oil every other day, which smells so good and lasts for ages.
Here are my hairstyles and where I got them done.
Weave is from Love Hair Online (Brazillian natural straight in 1b- 3 bundles) http://www.lovehaironline.com/. I got it done at Luxury Hair Care in Toronto http://www.luxuryhaircare.ca/ ($150). It was okay but she cut the fringe too short, which meant I had to get creative with how to make it look good.
This was the second time I used this hair from Beauty Locks (Brazilian natural straight – 3 bundles 1b) https://www.facebook.com/Beautylocks. It’s my favourite hair to use for weaves as it’s so full. . The second time I used the hair, I got the hairdresser to dye some of it it caramel. Turned out well-ish. The hairdresser’s name is Chiggy and she can be contacted on 416-619-5477. Even though I liked the end result, she was late by two hours AND was super stressed because her babysitter didn’t show up, so I also played nanny for the day lol.
This hair was also from Beauty Locks. It is brazilian body wave (colour 1b). It looked great for the first few days but then got tangled really easily and shed quite a lot, therefore I would recommend going for the brazilian natural straight. The hairdresser (Nora) is lovely and the trip is always entertaining. You will arrive planning to get your hair done and leave with the latter plus all sorts of oils and brushes that you probably don’t need. Nora is a real saleswoman. It cost $95. Nora can be contacted on 647-428-6520.
I loved going back to twists after having weaves for so long. Although I ended up loving how it looked, the hairdresser was clearly in a rush and the twists ended up being all different sizes and I redid some of them myself while she was still there! It cost $70, which is cheap but the hairdresser who did my latest twists, is much better. Guess you get what you pay for.
Hair (5 bags) – Expressions / Colour 4
Immediately after taking my twists out, my natural hair looked so cute but of course after combing all the months of dirt and curls out, it didn’t look like that anymore – hence the second picture. lol.
I was happy with the twists I recently got done. She did them a bit thin but that was my own fault. She was super fast but lives in Scarbourough. It cost $120 and took seven hours. The hairdressers name is Comfort and she can be contacted on 647-821-5129.
Hair (6 bags) – Magic / colour 4 & 6