Reflecting on my business and how I started feels like a dream. Being that I’m originally from Flint, Michigan, opportunities were limited growing up. I graduated in the early 2000s, and during that time, entrepreneurship wasn’t really a thing. A majority of my graduating class had either picked which college they would attend or knew which branch of the military they would enlist in. I wasn’t interested in those options.
I had always wanted to be a hairstylist. In fact, I started doing hair at age 12 and began making money doing it in high school. I loved seeing my clients’ self-confidence go through the roof. Once I graduated, I moved to Gulfport and attended Chris’s Beauty College. Once I completed the program, I worked at JCPenny salon and stayed there for five years, building up a clientele to later become co-owner of Unique Touch Salon.
Things moved fast once I figured out my niche. I went from a healthy hair specialist to a wigologist within four years. Looking back over my cosmetology career, I never thought I would be into wigs. So how did I embark on my wig journey?
It all started with having very fine hair myself. Of course, that means you’re limited style-wise, especially with the humidity on the Coast. My curls would fall limp within seconds of stepping outside. My flatiron style always would be frizzy or make my hair look thin. I was over not being able to get styles to last or look the way I pictured them. After all, 99.9 percent of the styles we see on our favorite celebrities include hair extensions.
Dealing with this frustration prompted me to start practicing on the perfect wig for myself. I went in super confident only to find it required more than just thinking I could do it. I had to actually learn how to sew on a cap, measure my head and lay the tracks a certain way for the outcome to look natural. It took me awhile, but I was determined to get it right.
I began wearing my custom wigs, and people started stopping me to ask, “Where do you go to get your hair like that?” When I said it was a wig, their mouths fell open in disbelief.
Here’s one question that never gets old: “How do you get your wigs to look so natural?” Eight years ago, wigs were not as popular as they are today. Never did I think I would make a career out of doing something that helped me. I begin to connect with so many women who shared the same hair issues that it only made sense. I fell so in love with doing wigs that that’s all I wanted to do.
Wigs connected me to all types of women. I became the first to call when someone was losing her hair from cancer, alopecia or other conditions. Who would have known that dealing with my own hair issues would be the foundation of my empire? People approach me often wanting to know how to start a business, and my best advice is that your niche can be something you do daily. People are attracted to businesses that bring value to their life. So, if it works for you, it most likely can bring benefit to them.
I would recommend writing down things you like to do. This way, you can stay within an area that’s comfortable. However, don’t be afraid to try new things. If you would have told me 10 years ago what I’m doing today, I would never have believed you.
My last bit if advice is don’t be afraid to start over. Everyone’s journey is not meant to be the same. With any business, being consistent will get you a long way. I didn’t start off making great wigs, but I continued to practice and enhance my skills. Having talent will get your business noticed, but being consistent will make it grow.