When I started “The Confessions of a Hairstylist,” it was out of boredom. I really missed educating and wanted a unique way to inform my clients. I was working part time inside the salon because my first child was little and I was half time stay at home mom. While she napped, I would plug away with work. At first, I treated it as a hobby, I just wanted to educate someone… anyone about hair. After the first few months of doing it, I realized that people were listening and coming back for more. I quickly understood that I had gotten my chance to be a voice in my industry, something I had yearned for my whole career.
As the blog was gaining attention, I worked with several websites as a guest or a contributor. That’s really how I got my name out there. I also teamed up with local bloggers to cross promote my work. Early on, I recognized that consistency in my posts would be the key to my success, and I needed to be posting once or twice a day. I made sure that I was sticking to posting what I excel in, braids and up-styles. Because of this, I made myself a go-to person for that type of work. You really have to think outside of the box and once you see people liking a certain thing you are creating; you need to head in that direction. Another thing that remained consistent was my brand, people think I have a whole team when really I just work really hard at keeping everything cohesive. I’ve always stayed true to myself and my style. When I started my blog and YouTube, I just did work that made me happy and not necessarily what the celebrities were wearing on the red carpet. Now, people look to me for inspiration.
It’s been really amazing to be considered a “social media star,” it’s changed the trajectory of my career in more ways than I could’ve imagine. In my eyes, though, I’m not a star, I’m a hairstylist who is extremely driven and has a passion for reaching her dreams. I teach my children the same concept. Just believe in yourself and go for it. I was lucky, I came in right before people started making it into a business. Now, it’s so much harder to be noticed as things have gotten more and more saturated but I’m a firm believer of you can do anything you want to do if you put your mind to it and have positive intentions. If you want to make viral videos and become a social star...you can.
Building that following wasn’t as strategic as you may think. It was A LOT of trial and error! If something didn't work, I tried a different style or approach. As silly as this sounds, I think that sometimes you almost have to be "street-smart" to gain a following. You have to have your ear to industry at all times, know what’s trending, who to follow, who gives shout outs and be consistent with tagging and hash-tagging the appropriate people. It’s plenty of long late nights. When I don’t have my children, I’m someone who works from 5am-10pm. It required sacrifices that you can’t know unless you’ve done it. I had to skip out on time with my husband or binging out on Netflix like my peers to work on blog posts, and respond to emails. I had to cut my time back in the salon with clients just to make sure I didn’t go crazy with all the work. Career success doesn’t happen overnight. My blog took almost a year to even catch on, but by never giving up, I’ve built something that I am proud of. One time I met a young girl who followed my work and she actually cried when we met. I was with my family that time and my husband finally realized the impact all those long nights plugging away at my dreams has had. Don't get discouraged. You can do anything you want to do. I can't count how many times people have told me no or that I’m not good enough, and instead of letting that get to me, it gave me the fire to become who I am today.
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