Sisters sharing knowledge – There is not a hair issue that I can not solve in 5 minutes.

From Lori van Echtelt in the Netherlands

I started Mariposa Import because I was frustrated at the lack of quality products in Europe in 2004. I took the matter into my own hands. I also knew that having natural hair was not a fad for me but a way of life. I was used to folks making their remarks about my hair within earshot ,”Girl, You need to get a relaxer!’ I giggled out loud and shook my head. Their remarks had no influence on me. I did not understand why a total stranger had something to say about my hair. It said more to me about their own discomfort with natural hair.

We all know that it can be fun looking at You Tube videos or photos of hairstyles.  There is nothing wrong with that. You can’t help but admire the sheer talent that is on these videos. Many of these YouTubers have more talent than so-called “hairdressers” who are afraid to touch natural hair. And the ones who do touch your hair are quick to rake a comb through dry natural hair. I am a patient woman but when I witness that, I loose my patience. Hair care is not supposed to hurt.

But what happens if that fascination turns to obsession?  When minutes turns to hours on the internet. You lose track of time and days turn into weeks and then months and then years. Has “hair” become your obsession? Does it own you instead of you owning it? Do you have any other hobbies? What about personal relationships or social political events or self-development? Do you see what I am getting at? On the Mariposa Import Facebook page, I show the many hobbies that I engage in. My hair takes less than 5 minutes maximum. That frees up so much personal time to do other things that I love.

I love hair just as much as the next person standing next to me, but there is so much more to life than hair. I see hair just like plants. I treat my plants the same way I treat my hair, give it moisture, quality ingredients, Love and then leave it alone to let it grow. This principle applies to all hair types, no exception. Love the hair that you have right now, at this very moment with no conditions. You would not say to a child, “I will only love you when you reach 1.47 meters”. This is no different. Replace obsession with Love and your hair and life with thank you for it.

Product feature of the month:

Oyin Greg Juice

I love how this keeps the hair moisturized throughout the day. You can use it on babies to adults. It keeps your fro and twists feeling so soft. Let’s not forget about locs. This is a favorite of loc wearers.

Love Your Hair!

Mariposa Import

www.mariposaimport.com

Europe’s First and Original webshop for people with curly and afro hair

Lori van Echtelt

Lori van Echtelt is the owner and founder of Mariposa Imports (MI), based in the Netherlands. She was on the Black Women in Europe™ 2010 Power List. Mariposa Import started in February 2004. It is the first and original shop focused on curly and frizzy hair in Western Europe. MI specializes in unique, high quality, hair and skin products from America and Afrika. We only sell products we ourselves use. The products we sell do not contain mineral oil or petrolatum, ingredients which block moisture absorption by the hair. We select products is based on our personal experience and that of our friends.

Sisters sharing knowledge – Simplify your your life – Hair Routine

From Lori van Echtelt in the Netherlands

There are parts of life that I enjoy unexpected surprises. Not with my hair. I have my hair routines that require no thought. Having a hair routine simplifies your life and frees up time to do other things. It also reduces stress. Your hair routine has to be one that is easy to maintain. Here are my tips to a Simplified Hair Routine:

1) Am I able to do this routine and get out the door quickly in the morning?
2) If I have to travel on vacation or business; are the products easy to take along? Do I have to put them in different travel containers? Are these containers set up and ready to take at a moments notice?
3) Do I have a seasonal hair routine? One for the warmer months and one for the colder months?
4) Is my home area where I keep my products neatly organized? Do I hold on to products that I no longer use. Is it streamlined for efficiency?
5) Do I have a hair routine for formal events?
6) Do I have a lazy hair routine for days when you still want to look great but do not want to invest time. Hair accessories are great for lazy days.
7) Time, Time, Time. Your hair routine has to be set within a reasonable time limit. Who wants to spend hours with their hair. My routine is down to five minutes or less in the morning. I feel wonderful when I step out the door.

Once you have simplified your hair routine, you will be absolutely amazed at how much time you save. It will free up your brain space to think about things and to stop worrying about your hair.

Now here for the product feature:

Bee Mine soap

Bee Mine Rhassoul Clarifying Shampoo Bar. This shampoo bar not only softens the hair but smells great. I have gone swimming and my hair did not feel crispy afterwards. I just love it and I know you will as well.

Lori van Echtelt

Lori van Echtelt is the owner and founder of Mariposa Imports (MI), based in the Netherlands. She was on the Black Women in Europe™ 2010 Power List. Mariposa Import started in February 2004. It is the first and original shop focused on curly and frizzy hair in Western Europe. MI specializes in unique, high quality, hair and skin products from America and Afrika. We only sell products we ourselves use. The products we sell do not contain mineral oil or petrolatum, ingredients which block moisture absorption by the hair. We select products is based on our personal experience and that of our friends.

Mariposa Imports

Sisters Sharing Knowledge – Love Your Hair!

Lori van Echtelt from the Netherlands

When I use the term “Love Your Hair!”, it has two meanings to me. One is to give a compliment to a person to tell them that you “love their hair!” and the second is more of a command, “Love Your Hair!”. Sometimes we do not appreciate something until it’s gone. Ask a chemotherapy/alopecia totalis patient about the loss of their hair and they will tell you how their perspective has changed.

What would it take for you to be just happy about your hair? I think we as women are way too hard on ourselves when it comes to our hair. It is as if every strand has to be in place, every corn row has to be perfectly straight. When we look at nature, we see the scattering of flowers, they are not in perfect order but nevertheless they are beautiful.

Why not develop a quick routine to free up yourself? I do not spend hours on my hair. I started this business for the woman/man who does not want to fuss with their hair. I have an array of hobbies from knitting, crocheting, sewing, reading, studying languages…I just can not be bothered with messing with my hair for hours. It is no wonder many women become stressed out with their hair because the hair regime is too long. Simplicity=less stress=more time to do the other fun stuff in life.

Last week I opened the door to a friend. I had done my hair in less than 5 minutes and the first thing she said when she saw me was “Your hair is so cute!”. I had the biggest smile. She did not know that I took less than 5 minutes and I felt wonderful.

We are experiencing a gorgeous weather pattern here in Europe. Now is a time better than ever to simplify your routine and to love what is, so that you can spend more time enjoying life. If you want free advice, please feel free to contact me via the Mariposa Import website (www.mariposa-import.eu).

Lori van Echtelt

Lori van Echtelt is the owner and founder of Mariposa Imports (MI), based in the Netherlands. She was on the Black Women in Europe™ 2010 Power List. Mariposa Import started in February 2004. It is the first and original shop focused on curly and frizzy hair in Western Europe. MI specializes in unique, high quality, hair and skin products from America and Afrika. We only sell products we ourselves use. The products we sell do not contain mineral oil or petrolatum, ingredients which block moisture absorption by the hair. We select products is based on our personal experience and that of our friends.

Mariposa Imports

Sisters Sharing Knowledge – Hair Loss – Stress

Lori van Echtelt from the Netherlands

One of the biggest causes of hair loss is stress. Stress caused by moving, loss of a job, death of a loved one, health problems, etc. can result in hair just laying all over the house. It is normal to lose 50 to 100 hairs per day. We also lose hair right after giving birth with the fluctuation in hormones. This is to be expected. This type of hair loss will immediately rectify itself once the hormonal balance returns to normal. So there is no need for concern. However stress will affect your adrenal glands. Your adrenal glands are little kidney like organs that sit right above your kidneys. These little powerhouse glands produce cortisol. Cortisol in excess sends your body into a fight/flight response. The adrenal glands produces 50 other hormones such as progesterone, estrogen, testosterone, etc. When you are under constant unrelenting high stress, this increased level of cortisol will affect your fertility, immune system, thyroid function over time. Stress is no laughing matter.

This is why it is important to be conscious of the stress that one is experiencing. If you feel that you have been under a heavy load of stress, that may be the cause of your hair loss. Do not despair, there are a couple of things that you can do:

Ask your doctor to test your cortisol levels. The best way is through a 24 hour urine test.

You can also take a look at your lifestyle. Which parts of your life needs a tune up? Are you a priority in your life? Martydom is so passe.

Do you feel utterly exhausted? How much sleep are you getting? What can you cut back on so that you can get yourself to a calm, peaceful state?

Are you eating lots of fried foods and foods high in sugar? Do you crave sugar? Try supplementing your diet with protein; lentils and mung beans are wonderful sources of protein. You can sprout them and add them to salads. Replace table salt with sea salt. Increase your intake of dark leafy vegetables. Drink 8-10 glasses of water daily. Take a multivitamin.

Breathe. Be aware of your breathing throughout the day.

Get a hobby to lower your stress levels.

Most important, slow down….we will often find that we can get everything done but at a slower relaxed place.

The benefit of the above practices will not only make you feel great but also stop the hair loss if stress is the cause.

I practice the above techniques and my nails are also loving the benefits.

Nails March 2011

Are you ready to Spring start your hair, please visit Mariposa Import, Europe’s First and Original web shop for people with curly and afro hair (www.mariposa-import.eu). We same day ship everywhere throughout Europe and out North America.

Love Your Hair!

Lori
Mariposa Import

Lori van Echtelt

Lori van Echtelt is the owner and founder of Mariposa Imports (MI), based in the Netherlands. She was on the Black Women in Europe™ 2010 Power List. Mariposa Import started in February 2004. It is the first and original shop focused on curly and frizzy hair in Western Europe. MI specializes in unique, high quality, hair and skin products from America and Afrika. We only sell products we ourselves use. The products we sell do not contain mineral oil or petrolatum, ingredients which block moisture absorption by the hair. We select products is based on our personal experience and that of our friends.

Mariposa Imports

Sisters Sharing Knowledge – Deep Conditioners

Lori van Echtelt from the Netherlands

A deep conditioner is priceless in the haircare regime. With the right deep conditioner your fingers should slip through your hair. I use a deep conditioner once a week on my hair. I do color my gray so I feel that I just can not do without a deep conditioner. Make sure that you leave your deep conditioner in for at least 30 minutes. Make sure that the conditioner is combed thoroughly through the hair. You can use your fingers for this process. You can give your deep conditioner a boost with the use of a plastic cap of plastic foil on your head. Use a heavy cotton towel to seal in the heat. This is part of my weekly regime. Rinse with cool water. If you are suffering from hair breakage, consider getting the best deep conditioner that you can afford.

Here are some really high quality deep conditioners that Mariposa Import (www.mariposa-import.eu) sells:

HPO Spa hair conditioner: Even if your hair has been in a weave for weeks, your fingers will glide through with this conditioner.

HairVeda SitiriNillah Masque: Essence magazine rated this as one of the best conditioners. This is a must have for those who have hair that breaks very easy (fine-haired types as well).

Curl Junkie Curl Rehab: If your hair has been relaxed and is broken off or if your hair just feels crispy after the use of a shampoo, this is the only type of Rehab that you want to go to.

Mariposa Import offers many more deep conditioners, this is just a few from the offering. Make sure your dead/split ends are trimmed for the best results.

Love Your Hair!

Lori
Mariposa Import

Lori van Echtelt

Lori van Echtelt is the owner and founder of Mariposa Imports (MI), based in the Netherlands. She was on the Black Women in Europe™ 2010 Power List. Mariposa Import started in February 2004. It is the first and original shop focused on curly and frizzy hair in Western Europe. MI specializes in unique, high quality, hair and skin products from America and Afrika. We only sell products we ourselves use. The products we sell do not contain mineral oil or petrolatum, ingredients which block moisture absorption by the hair. We select products is based on our personal experience and that of our friends.

Mariposa Imports

Sisters sharing knowledge – Let’s talk openly about weaves

Lori van Echtelt from the Netherlands

If I had a euro for every time a guy called me up and asked me what he can get for his girlfriends hair because “she is wearing a weave and I hate it”. I would be on a private island somewhere. We have seen the explosion of weaves not only within the black community but with white women as well. I can understand that there is a convenience to wearing weaves. It is “get up and go” hair but we are paying an emotional and financial price.

I have dealt with way too many women who are just plain addicted to their weaves. They will not stop weaving their hair even though they are losing their hair to weaving. I have seen women with absolutely no hairlines. First off, not every hairdresser is skilled at weaving. If it is pulling on your hair that is just not good. Some customers like it tight because they feel the weave will last longer. However the weave is pulling on the customers own hair. After a time the customer will develop traction alopecia. What is traction alopecia? It is baldness as the result of pulling on the hair. This can also be caused by tight ponytails and braids. In some cases the hair will not come back. I have seen women in their early 20’s with complete hairline baldness. The scalp is completely smooth, no hair. Hairdressers will see this and ignore this because they are making the money. At this point the customer will then go to lace front wigs because the permanent damage has been done.

Also the hair is often neglected under the weave. Too often when the weave is taken out, a huge amount of hair breaks off. The hair has not been moisturized while wearing the weave. Wearing a weave is not an excuse for neglecting the hair underneath. Sometimes the customers own hair is accidentally pulled out during the weave removal process. It is upsetting.

I had a hairdresser say to me, “why do women wear weaves, it just does not look good”. I told her that she is honest but not all hairdressers are honest. I am against weaves but if you do choose to temporarily wear a weave, it should look undetectable. It should be “be-weaveable”. Nothing looks as bad as a weave that screams fake Asian/Brazilian hair.

Weaves are not a solution to not loving your hair. If you do not love your hair, other people can see it and feel it. You are not fooling anyone. There is an interesting show on TV where they asked total strangers to give their opinion about a person they just saw. It was amazing how accurate they were. We are sending out a message to the world when we step outside the door about how we REALLY feel about ourselves.

Children and weaves…. I am totally against seeing children with weaves. Children are still developing. I think it is just ridiculous to put fake hair in the head of a little girl. She is beautiful just the way she is. She will learn to love herself from her family. I felt beautiful as a little girl because I learned that from my mother. Even though I was an underweight and a bit odd looking. I felt beautiful in the world. If you are a parent, do not let that critical period in a child’s life slip by.

The hair from weaves is often not hygienic. Forensic scientists have found skin cells from the hairs original owner attached to the weave!!! The hair should be washed prior to use. They are treated with chemicals before transport.

Weaves are not an excuse for proper hygiene. I have asked women, “when was the last time that you washed your hair/weave?” and I would hear silence. The smell of the weave was just stomach turning. A weave should be in for a short time, not for 6 months!

The amount of money that we are spending to walk around with someone else’s hair is staggering. Really.

I cannot stop thinking about the economically disadvantaged women who shave their hair because they need the money. We as women know how emotional hair is. I could not walk around with that energy on my head.

I have worn weaves in the past. I stopped when my partner told me how it really looked. I thank him for his honesty. Sometimes the truth hurts. Never again for me.

Please visit the following link “Whose Hair is it anyway?” By pop artist Jamelia. It is a 6 part video

If you need help breaking your weave addiction, do not hesitate to contact me via Mariposa Import. I have helped so many women to end their weave addiction and to enjoy the freedom of their own beautiful hair.

Love Your Hair!

Lori
Mariposa Import

Lori van Echtelt

Lori van Echtelt is the owner and founder of Mariposa Imports (MI), based in the Netherlands. She was on the Black Women in Europe™ 2010 Power List. Mariposa Import started in February 2004. It is the first and original shop focused on curly and frizzy hair in Western Europe. MI specializes in unique, high quality, hair and skin products from America and Afrika. We only sell products we ourselves use. The products we sell do not contain mineral oil or petrolatum, ingredients which block moisture absorption by the hair. We select products is based on our personal experience and that of our friends.

Mariposa Imports

Sisters Sharing Knowledge – Winter hair tune up

From the Netherlands, Lori van Echtelt

Yes it is cold outside, so we snuggle up to the indoor heating. It feels so cozy and comforting but the indoor dry air can wreck havoc on you hair. Here are some tips to keep your hair moisturized during the dry winter days.

Drink 8 glasses of water. In the beginning you will go to the bathroom a lot and then it will taper off. A cool way to remember to drink your water, is to drink a glass of water at the top of every hour.

Using distilled water in a spritz bottle to add moisture to your hair. You can also do this right after you have conditioned your hair. Spray your entire head with distilled water.

Using a leave- in conditioner every time after conditioning your hair. This will make a world of difference. The leave- in conditioner protects your hair before you use a styling product. Many folks get a scrunchy hair feeling when they use a styling product, this is because they did not use a leave-in conditioner before using the styling product.

Protect your hair before going outside the house. Adding silk or satin to the inside of your woolen hat will keep your hair from frizzing up. Time to get handy with your sewing needles!

Use a more moisturizing hair moisturizer; some of my favorites for the winter are Qhemet Biologics Amla & Olive Heavy Cream, Jane Carter Solution Nourish & Shine, Qhemet Biologics Burdock Root Butter Cream, etc. Please check out moisturizers on my website www.mariposa-import.eu for more moisturizers. Choose one according to your hairtype.

Use a deep conditioner once a week. Wrapping your hair in plastic and applying a towel over your hair will help the conditioner to penetrate. One of my favorite conditioners are the Curl Junkie Curl Rehab and the HPO Spa hair conditioner.

Remove the dead ends of your hair. If you are serious about having great hair, the dead ends have got to go. They will only travel further up the hair shaft.

Wear a protective hair style, such as twists, braids, flat twists (one of my favorites), comb coils. There are many videos on YouTube to teach you how.

Check your vitamin D levels. Supplementing your diet with a d-3 vitamin will not only improve your immune health. It will help to strengthen nails and hair. A multivitamin can also make a huge difference. Look at your nails. Your nails are a good indicator of your health.

Let the weave go. Yes I said it, weaves do so much damage to the hair. The hair is usually so crispy, dried and breaking. It is not worth it. I will speak later about breaking the weave addiction

Last tip: Mix 3 drops of Jane Carter Hair Nourishing Serum with Jane Carter Solution Nourish & Shine and apply all over to hair. Those with Relaxed and Natural hair can use this combination. Soft hair galore!

And Most of All
Love Your Hair!
Lori
Lori van Echtelt

Lori van Echtelt is the owner and founder of Mariposa Imports (MI), based in the Netherlands. She was on the Black Women in Europe™ 2010 Power List. Mariposa Import started in February 2004. It is the first and original shop focused on curly and frizzy hair in Western Europe. MI specializes in unique, high quality, hair and skin products from America and Afrika. We only sell products we ourselves use. The products we sell do not contain mineral oil or petrolatum, ingredients which block moisture absorption by the hair. We select products is based on our personal experience and that of our friends.