You know I love me some good hair....by that I mean healthy hair! I caught up with Oyin Akiniyi founder of The Good Hair Club a new online store dedicated to natural hair products made here in the UK, this isn't yet another E-commerce store but a platform that looks to redefine hair for black women.
"AT THE GOOD HAIR CLUB WE BELIEVE THAT GOOD HAIR IS HEALTHY HAIR AND SO OUR MISSION IS SIMPLE; REDEFINE THE HAIR CARE EXPERIENCE TO CHAMPION AND INSPIRE GOOD HAIR."
I love the concept of The Good Hair Club, where did it stem from?
Thanks it’s so exciting to bring something to life and see people embracing it.
The concept came from a desire to take back ownership of something that’s so sacred to black women, for so long now black hair care (in the retail environments) has been controlled and owned by people who aren’t the end user, who I don’t think care about us and our experiences.
I wanted to create a platform that passionately cared about our experiences, that cared about us and believed that we deserved only the best. I'm extremely and tirelessly passionate about black women and I created The Good Hair Club so that we could navigate beauty on our own terms, with products made by women like us.
Why is it important to champion home grown talent?
There are so many amazing hair care brands out there, but there is a growing number of UK brands who are independent, passionate and crafting products with black British women in mind. I think there’s something so special about that, they are making their products for us, they understand our experiences and care about what we need. So for me it’s a no brainer, they make incredible products, which are free from nasty chemicals, environmentally friendly, and they care about women.
What are your top UK brands?
Well I’m biased! My favs are all the ones that you can find on The Good Hair Club off course (in no particular order):
- Big Hair Beauty
- Afro hair and Skin Company
- Sheabutter cottage
- Hug my Hair
- Crown pride
- Root 2 Tip
- Anita Grant
What are your thoughts on the U.K. Natural Hair scene?
I love love love the UK natural hair scene, any scene which enables women to embrace who they are on their own terms gets a thumbs up from me. To be honest, I’m really excited that black girl magic is even a thing. It’s so important that as women we continue to celebrate and embrace who we are on our own terms.
Like never before we have so many amazing platforms to own our narratives and that is so special. The natural hair scene is just part of this global movement that is empowering black women to redefine the conversation. So yes to black girl magic.
Starting your own business is a huge achievement any advice for budding entrepreneurs?
Okay so I’m a newbie entrepreneur, so I don’t have a wealth of experience. But I have learnt a few things along the way:
- Just do it
If you have the fire in your belly, the passion and believe in your idea and yourself, then do it.
- Ask for help
Speak to as many people as possible and ask for help, some people will say no and that’s fine. But many more will say yes and that’s all you need really. You can’t do it all on your own and you won’t know everything. So ask for help.
- Keep yourself motivated
Of all the things I thought I was going to experience as I embarked on this journey, I didn’t for a second contemplate that losing motivation would even be a consideration. As a solo entrepreneur, I run out of steam, I get fatigued and I lose confidence. All these things can make you lose motivation. But whenever I feel like this, I speak to people; friends, family and other entrepreneurs.
I know that the feeling will pass but it’s important to recognise that it’s hard and you will question whether you can do it, but you won’t know if you don’t try.
What are the key points of different that set the good hair club apart from your competitors?
The Good Hair Club is first and foremost about celebrating black experiences. It’s about creating a platform that enables women to define their hair care experiences on their own terms.
It’s about quality and craft, we’re a platform that cares.
We’re 100% passionate about organic and natural products from independent brands. We care about quality of ingredients how they are sourced and the impact they have in our world. so if it isn’t good, it won’t get on.
It’s about throwing out the rule books and saying that healthy hair is good hair.
I've noticed from my experiences with returning to natural that this is often synonymous with using all natural products, is this something you have witnessed?
I think there tends to be more of a curiosity in regards to figuring out what to use to help 'manage' natural hair. I think it's important for people to experiment and find what works for them. Using good products is just the first step, in the way we care about what we eat to maintain a healthy body I think people are becoming just as thoughtful in regards to hair care.
Tell us a little about your own hair journey?
For as long as I can remember I've always had relaxed hair, short pixie, long weave or braids it's always been relaxed. I moved to Nigerian for a little while and I found the heat pretty intense so I decided that I needed to shave my hair off. I didn't intend to go 'natural' I was just hot and my hair was adding to the heat. When I moved back to London I decided that I wanted to grow it out and so it just made sense to grow it natural. Since then I've tried tons of hair recipes, oils and products under the roof and realized that for me simplicity is key.
Whats your regimen?
On a daily basis:
I moisturize my hair with Modie hair Creme and then seal in with either Hug My Hair -VINTAGE MOISTURE SEALING HAIR BUTTER or The Afro hair and Skin F L O U R I S H – Totally Nourishing Hair Butter
I Co-wash, weekly with Anita Grant, Curl Cleansing Co-Wash Conditioner (Rosemary mint)
I have a sensitive scalp so I need to ensure that my scalp is clean so I wash my with shampoo and condition every two weeks and I'm currently using Big Hair Soft Clean SLS Free Shampoo and Soft Curls Conditioner.
I'm pretty naughty but I try and deep condition at least once a month, sometimes I'll do a Henna mixture, or some hot oil treatment. but I'm a bit lazy so I just draw for the Big Hair Deep Conditioning Hair Treatment instead.
Visit the home new home of UK natural hair products www.thegoodhairclub.com