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Gocha Hawkins has been in the hair industry for a quarter of a century now and is schooling everyone on how to succeed in the business with her book Gocha’s Blueprint to Business 101.

I was at the book release party back in January at Gocha Salon Midtown; there was also a screening of the last season of L.A. Hair which Gocha is a star on. I returned to the salon to get to know more about Gocha and what business means to her.

She reveals that doing hair was never her passion. It became a passion over the years, but it was not the original dream. She describes a girl in her class at hair school as her angel. “She was a paralegal and was really good with weaves. She showed me all about weave. From there, I just blew up. I had a large clientele before I even graduated cosmetology school.”

On how she got started in the hair business.

 I got into some trouble at 18 and was incarcerated for two years. When I got back, I decided I still wanted to do something that was making fast money. My hairstylist at the time would have a list, you would sign in and the first 20 people would be all she did for the day.

On how L.A. Hair changed the dynamics of her business.

I had a full clientele before “L.A. Hair,” once I went to film “L.A. Hair,” it was an eight month process of me filming so I lost some of my clientele. So I really had to start my clientele over once I came back.

On being considered a celebrity hairstylist.

 Everybody wants to attach themselves to the title “celebrity stylist” I mean I’ve worked with celebrities before but I would like to say I’m just a stylist. My core clientele is my “regular clients”.

On Gocha’s Illumination Foundation.

Gocha’s Illumination Foundation is for kids who’ve been sexually molested or physically abused and what we do is provide free counseling, self esteem building skills, etiquette classes, and makeovers; we try to rebuild them from the inside out.

 Some of those things are things I’ve dealt with personally and I know that if I had gotten counseling for those things at a younger age, I would’ve not done half the things I was doing. Looking for love in all the wrong places. I would [have] never married someone 11 years older than I was.

On what’s next for the Gocha Brand.

 I’m in the process of writing [another] book with hopes of a June release; it will also be about business. I am also writing a book about my life, a memoir; it’s really a motivational book. I also go to different high schools and talk to kids and shelters to talk to homeless women.

gochasalon.com