Patrice Grell Yursik (Afrobella)
When I think of my journey since going natural, I immediately think of Patrice Grell Yursik. I never met her in person and yesterday was the first time I ever heard her voice. Unbeknownst to her, she was pivotal in my transformation from self to true self by giving me a gift so profound that it led me to a barber’s chair on a hot July morning three years ago. I gave that barber permission and the privilege of cutting off all my overprocessed, perm-poisoned hair.
You see Patrice gave me Afrobella, an awesome beauty/hair/culture blog that has inspired me to forge a path of my own, which has led me to this very important moment. I had the opportunity to sit down with the woman behind the blog and ask all the questions a loyal bella was dying to know..
The Sit Down presents…Patrice Grell Yursik, known to legions of bellas everywhere as simply Afrobella. Check out how Afrobellla elevates the Top Floor.
How she came up with the name Afrobella…
Actually I did not come up with the name. My husband and I were with some friends (including our landlord) one evening just enjoying a bottle of wine and each other’s company. I knew that I wanted Bella somewhere in the name. It was a name that always stayed with me because it means beauty. If I had a daughter I would love to name her Bella. We needed something to go with it. I considered Cocobella but then I started considering various spellings and figured it would not work. Then my husband suggested Afrobella. When I heard it, it just sounded right. A friend checked the Internet and the domain was available. It has been Afrobella ever since. The more my blog grew, it just confirmed how right that choice was.
Always infusing her Trinidadian/Tobagan heritage…
This was one of my main goals with the blog. When you think of the Caribbean, many people immediately think of Jamaica. With the huge success of Rihanna, many people also think of Barbados. I am so proud of my country and my heritage! Our culture is so rich, so it was necessary to make it a part of Afrobella since that is a part of me. I simultaneously have to balance infusing my heritage and culture with the fact that most of my readers are natives of the States.
On her process when testing scores of beauty products: one at a time or an Afrobella spa day?
Usually I like to take Sunday as a day for an afternoon beauty ritual. It is something I like to stick to and hopefully if I have a daughter, this is something I would like to share with her. As women we are so into our 9-to-5, the daily grind, as well as our side hustles. We never set aside “me” time. So I try to carve out that niche on the weekends and encourage all women to do the same.
When I test products I tend to take a different approach. Usually most people will see a product press release and immediately want to try that product and report on it quickly. I make it a point to never report on a new product after only trying it once. I have to try/use it at least two to three times in order to write an honest review. I am very fortunate that readers take my reviews seriously, so I am careful to be as constructive as possible.
On testing and doing a review on her “dream product(s)…”
Obviously, I do have my list.There are some Chanel products and as well as Creme de la Mer that I would absolutely love to test and critique. Most of my readers are Bellas on a Budget, so I have to honestly look at the price of the product and ask myself, “Is this feasible?”
There some more affordable lines I would like to try such as Karen’s Body Beautiful, Qhemet Biologics, Oyin, and Wen Haircare. I am all for entrepreneurship and the “Mom and Pop” establishments. They are regular people just like you and me who took awesome ideas and came up with good products. Just think, Estee Lauder started her business at home and look at how her company has evolved into a powerhouse.
I also get e-mails from readers who encourage me to try products because I’ve been blessed to have readers e-mail me, saying that they would like to purchase a product to try but have hesitated because they have not seen a review on Afrobella. That’s a good place to be…
Wow! Another Sit Down under the belt! Now here’s my favorite part where RiaRob does the RUNDOWN. Continue to support this beautiful sister. In short, sisterfriend is MAD BUSY!!! Check out the stats:
Patrice blogs for AOL Black Voices on hair. Check out BV Hair Talk at www.bvhairtalk.com
Check out Patrice (an avid music lover) on Blip FM – http://blip.fm/afrobella
Patrice also freelances for Rumbum – www.rumbum.com
There are also some really great things that Patrice has in the works, but it’s under wraps for right now. Keep up with Afrobella for more great news in the future!!!