Going Natural presents Natural Styles by Thierry Baptiste
An amazingly talented brother who creates a unique styles and has his own philosophy about Natural Hair
Questions to Thierry
What is your earliest memory of doing hair?
I’ve been licensed for a lil over 10 years and prior to going to beauty school, I had never touched anyone’s hair in my life. I grew up in a household with all boys and my father always kept our hair short. My mother wore wigs and/or curls, so I didn’t know anything about hairstyling or salon life.
Beauty school was very difficult for me, because we are trained on how to do “other” hair textures and the only thing that we learn about our texture is how to manipulate it.
So subconsciously I believe that I have always known how to do hair, I just didn’t have the opportunity to utilize my skills. IT CAME NATURALLY!
How, why and when did you get into natural hairstyling?
After mastering styling straight hair textures, I wanted to incorporate natural hair into my services. On that quest, I was blown away with how so much easier it was to do our own hair texture.
What is so special about natural, nappy, kinky hair?
The history of our hair is been documented back to beginning of time. It can be seen in tombs of Kings and Queens prior to the bible. I remind my clients that they are decedents of royalty when I service them and show them the proof in historical books.
Did you ever relax your hair? If yes, what made you decide to stop? If no, why not?
I was lost during a period of time when I was watching television and which I haven’t done for the past 4 years. My definition of good hair wasn’t kinky, so i had a texturizer. It only took me one time to get a chemical burn to quit doing that. lol
I know the service industry is quite demanding. There are some nasty customers out there. So can you give us a few behavior tips and describe your ideal customer?
a. someone who understands that they are unique and don’t want their hair to look exactly like someone else.
b. Excellent time management. I don’t overbook, so it’s very important that they be on time.
c. Someone who is already happy and looks for me to enhance that, not create it.
d. Someone who understands that healthy hair is the direct results of the consumer and myself working together. If the consumer isn’t doing their part at home, my work isn’t going to look it’s best.
And the worst one?
Those that are unrealistic about their hair texture and what it can achieve
What is your signature style?
I specialize in coloring and cuts
If you could give any celebrities a hair makeover who would it be, why and how would you style that person?
Everyone I do is considered a celebrity to me. I treat my corporate clients the same way that I treat my blue collar clients. Following behind one person and being a groupie and being talked to crazy because they are a star has never appealed to me. I do believe that their are some benefits to doing that, but it’s not worth losing myself in the process. lol
Can you name one or more highlights of your achievements up until now?
Embracing my HAIRITAGE is the proudest thing I’ve done. The media has it out for us as a people, but you can’t rewrite history and the more we study and read, we as a people can see the truth.
Natural hair seems quite hip right now. Locs are everywhere, it looks like the afro is back. Do you think its just a fashion phase? That this will pass just like the afro in the 60s 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?
In reference to fads, I think natural hair has always come and gone, but it’s one of the few that always comes back strong and with a new twist. Some followers will stop going natural when the trends change, but each time it comes back, we naturally keeps some forever, which brings our count greater with each decade. There is a large number of people in our community who have been natural from the beginning and never played into it not being fashionable. Those who were straight hair slaves before will find it very hard to go back once they have seen the infinite styling possibilities of our natural hair.
And your motto is?
I’m a loctician and I educate my people to understand that locs are just larger stands of hair. You can obtain almost any hairstyle that someone with straight hair has with your locs if you have the required length for that style.
Thanks. The questions were very thoughtful and I enjoyed this.