A commentary on girly stuff. Normally I do not write often about my issues with Turkey, or with feminine issues. However, living in Turkey, sometimes there are challenges. Especially with the girly stuff. What I mean by that, is that in many areas of life my husband can aid my cultural assimilation, but he really has no idea what the Turkish terms for some of the things I ask him, especially when they pertain to women’s health or beauty issues. I research things on my own, but sometimes the translation for beauty items is not direct.
Some of the challenges pertaining to women’s products, is lack of variety. For menstruation products, they sell pads and OB tampons (without the applicator) ONLY. There are several brands and sizes of pads. There are several sizes of tampons as well, but OB seems to have cornered the Turkish market. I know this is a problem for some of my friends. Also, tampons are not sold in all grocery stores, which can definitely be a bummer. Though, they do sell condoms EVERYWHERE.
Well, away from feminine products and on to girly stuff. The other day I really needed a special shampoo. The saga went on for a few weeks. It all started like this…
I have very fine, fly away hair. I tried out a new product I had bought in the US. It is supposed to take care of flyaway hair and make it look smooth and sleek. Well—It does just that, all too well! This product was made of silicone and I could not seem to get it out of my hair. My hair looked lank and greasy even *right after* I washed it. Gross. Also I was limited to pony-tails, as otherwise I looked as if I had poor hygiene. I washed and washed my hair, but it did not improve. I looked it up online. I was supposed to use Clarifying Shampoo–whatever that was. Bülent did not know what it was, I asked some friends (in Turkish) and they were confused too. There was no direct translation. So I decided to do something I am know for—improvise.
First: I used Dish Soap (Dawn)—I thought, well it cleans dishes right? No go! Just dry and dirty hair!
Second: I used Dish Washer Detergent—because you know that stuff literally dissolved food left in pans. Didn’t work. Now I had a dry scalp and dirty hair.
Then I tried an apple vinegar and lemon juice mix which was supposed to “clarify” hair. The result—the bathroom smelled like vinegar, Oh Yay!
So then, I decided to bite the bullet and go to some super fancy hairdressers. I did buy some Kérastase Bain Clarifiant (Because Clarifying DOES translate more directly into French! Woot Woot!) So for 50 liras I got a bottle of fancy shampoo about twice the size of a travel bottle. Worth every penny. But if that hadn’t worked, my friend had given me some kitchen degreaser to try. We even tested if it would bleach my hair. I am SO glad I didn’t have to bust that out.
Moral of the story…
1)Bring clarifying shampoo in suitcase when travelling to Turkey,
2) Don’t use products in your hair that contain ingredients used for heavy duty engine protection.
3) Dishwashing Detergent is not meant for hair.