Doing natural hair is like painting a different picture everyday.
Can you please introduce yourself and tell us about your salon and the services that you offer?
My name is Janice Brown aka TARBABY. I’ve been in styling natural hair for over 25 years and love every moment of it. I cater to clients from all walks of life and ethnicity. I offer a variety of services and treatments ranging from freestyle cornrow design, kinky two strand twist and loc extensions.
Why, when and how did you get into natural hairstyling?
I started styling natural hair when I was nine years old. I sort of transitioned over to natural hair from visual arts and fashion design. I love all art forms and doing natural hair is like painting a different picture everyday.
What is so special or different about African hair?
The texture by far is the most interesting. Natural hair comes in a variety of textures and curl patterns. It can be molded, shaped, twisted, braided, locked etc. There is no other hair like it on this planet. It can transform from straight to coily in a matter of moments just by adding moisture. It’s beautiful.
What is or are your signature styles?
My signature style is the freestyle cornrow design infused with lots of color and loc extensions.
How do you greet a new customer? Moreover, what can a person expect when coming to your salon the first time?
All clients are always greeted with a smile and good morning, good afternoon, etc. Also a consultation is always conducted before any services are conducted.
Our members keep asking us where the good natural hair salons are. We have an index but they don’t know how to select one. So can you please tell us this; how can we ordinary people distinguish the good salons from the bad ones?
I always say to a client to check out the overall appearance of the salon. Inspect the surroundings as if you were a health inspector. ” Are there barbicide on each station? Are there any exposed trash bins? Sanitation and sterilization is very important when a stylist is working on your head to prevent cross infection.
Janice models: Jaleelah Rahim, Subhana Rahim, kadira, Cherise Windley, Athena
Makeup Artist: Sibongile Kenyatta
What would you say to people who say that natural hair care salons are just too expensive?
I would say that considering the amount of hours that it takes complete a full head of natural hair and length of “wear time”, you actually come out saving more than if you had permed hair and visited the salon once a week. The client
actually saves more in money and in time.
Which hair care services would you say should people absolutely not cut back on, even in economic challenging times?
Treatments and trimming ends.
What would you say to someone who is on the fence of going to a salon because the person is embarrassed by the condition of their hair/scalp?
I would recommend that they go to a salon that can give a private consultation. And l would also let them know that our business is a healing business and we are not here to judge.
In your opinion, what should a customer share about his/her hair when seeking hair care services?
The client should let the stylist know about previous color history, medication and vitamins that are being taken.
If they have high blood pressure, any allergies, are they working out, are they going through menopause, etc.
In your opinion, what question(s) does a customer need to ask a hairdresser before she allows the hairdresser to style her?
What is his/her specialty, how long have you been styling hair, are you heavy handed, do you have images of other clients that you’ve worked on, etc.
What can we clients do to prevent a gone-wrong hairdo?
This is hard o explain because I never had one of these. lol!
The service industry is quite demanding and in all honesty, some of us customers do have behavioral problems. So can you give us a few behavior tips and describe your ideal customer?
My ideal client is a client who is clear in there communication skills and can voice what they are trying to achieve in a decent, friendly and mature manner.
What is absolutely intolerable or your worst customer?
Violence and profanity towards myself or coworkers is not tolerated.
You have been in business for a few years now. Can you tell us what makes your salon or services so distinctively special? What are the reasons why clients keep returning?
My purpose is to beautify and inspire others along there life path. My services are about nurturing and healing. I love to give my clients a beautiful and funky style along with hope and inspiration.
Natural hair seems quite hip right now. Locs are everywhere, it looks like the afro is back. Do you think it’s just a fashion phase?
That this will pass just like the afro in the 60’s and as soon as the fashion is over we will all go back and straighten our hair again or do we really begin to embrace our natural hair?
It’s not a phase, it’s alive and transitional, going from one natural style to the next.
Do you provide children’s hair services?
What do you think of children with relaxers?
Chemical treatment should not be applied to children under the age of 15. Their hair has not fully matured until that age. It can cause a lot of damage to their hair along with self esteem issues. Teach them to love themselves wholly.
What is your goal as a person, hairstylist or salon owner?
To teach my art to others and work with Oprah in her schools in Africa, teaching the young girls cosmetology.
And your motto is?
Happy to be Nappy!
More styles from Janice: Dreadlocks Updo for Men