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The Rise Of The Black Hair Coach

The coaching industry is worth an estimated two billion dollars. From life to health and even business, many people are turning to experts to help them achieve their goals. The latest kid on the block is the Hair Coach, but what exactly does that mean? Klerissa McDonald; a Hair Coach and founder of the brand, Curly By Nature, describes it as a professional who supports you on your hair care journey and holds you, “accountable so that you can achieve the results you desire.” It is therefore a service aimed at women seeking to improve the health of their hair and can take many forms. The emphasis however, is that it is a professional one, something Stephanie Sey, a Consultant Trichologist agrees with. “I think a Hair Coach can offer a valuable service if they have taken the care to learn their craft.” 

For a myriad of reasons (some tied to the effects of western colonisation), valuable knowledge on how to care for Afro-textured hair has been lost. Many black women struggle with both the negative associations surrounding their hair and the practical techniques and tools needed to properly care for it. All of which has led to our hair being labelled ‘difficult’. For some, going to the salon provides a suitable remedy, but for others a salon is a place to fear. Speak to enough black women and you will hear harrowing salon stories and the lack of proper regulation within the UK of the hairdressing industry doesn’t help. “In previous years, my bad salon experiences have included hair loss from burnt hair and over processing, or being ignored by a scissor happy stylist,” muses Karen Powell, a Mentor and Family Support Worker who has used the services of a hair coach. Nkemdirim, a Communications Consultant who also uses a hair coach echoes this experience: “What bothers me is I knew better, I knew my hair didn’t need much heat, but I trusted and deferred responsibility to the stylist and ended up with heat damage.”