After a year of natural hair, a Maryland woman was ready for a new look.
She went to a salon in Waldorf that she had never tried — a salon that appears to be operated by a stylist without a proper Maryland licence.
Christina Code told the stylist she wanted her hair to look like a photo she brought, showing a woman with blonde highlights at the ends of her hair.
The trip to the salon turned terribly wrong — huge, damaged chunks of Code's hair fell out.
"She fried my hair!" Code told News4, picking up long strands of the hair that she had wrapped in foil.
Code went to Aleyda Organic Dominican Hair Salon and everything went well at first. But then she was in pain.
"My scalp was getting hot. So then she took me out, and she started washing my hair. And when she started washing my hair, then I could hear her mumbling things that frightened me. And I jumped up and I saw all of this," she said, picking up long clumps of her hair.
The owner of the salon, Aleyda Almonte, said the problem was that Code had previous color in her hair.
"When a person is coming for first time, you really never know what kind of products, what kind of process this person [did] before," she said.
News4 found a larger issue: the owner of the salon is not licensed to operate the salon or do hair, according to the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation.
News4 asked Almonte about her credentials.
"Do you have a license to operate a hair salon in Maryland?" News4 asked.
"Yes, yes," Almonte responded.
"How long have you had a license," News4 asked.
"I have license from New York," Almonte said.
News4 could not find a license for her in New York or Maryland.
Almonte said she was waiting for her license to be finalized.
"I send all the information to the state board, and I'm waiting only for the paperwork," Almonte said.
But according to the Maryland labor department, the owner of the salon has not started the process to legally operate her salon or to do hair in the state.
When you visit a salon, you should be able to see its license. If you think a business is operating without a license, you can file a complaint with the Maryland Board of Cosmetologists.