Nakia Rachon came from a family lineage of hairstylists. Her grandmother and great-grandmother were both hairstylists. Nakia started at an early age by cleaning brushes and eavesdropping on the beauty talk that goes on in hair salons. Every weekend Nakia would stay with her grandmother for church, but one weekend she found herself going to King of Curls with her foster cousin as moral support to get a job braiding hair. At 12, she landed her first job in a hair salon. Nakia crafted her skills for many years doing hair at school, in church, in the neighborhood before enrolling at Sacramento State to study biology.

Given that multiple members of Nakia’s family dealt with autoimmune disease, Nakia was inspired to become a doctor. Seeing how her family members were easily judged by their outer appearance, how outside looking in there could appear as if there was nothing wrong, Nakia was driven to be a voice and help those who went through the same things. Then, one day something changed Nakia’s life. It was the day when passion and purpose met unexpectedly.

On a day where Nakia was simply supporting her sister in possibly enrolling at Paul Mitchell’s beauty school, the story of Paul Mitchell inspired Nakia to register as well. Paul Mitchell saved a woman’s life one night by simply doing her hair and opening her eyes to her true beauty. This opened Nakia’s eyes to the importance of hairstylists and how much of an impact they can have on an individual. I know as a client in that beauty chair sometimes, I can walk in a salon feeling my lowest, without hope or strength to move forward. However, by the time that chair spins around and I’m passed the mirror, it changes how I feel about myself. We’ve all heard that I am not my hair, but hair gives confidence to a woman.

Getting your hair done can make you feel sexy. It can make women feel desirable. A new hairdo is a story by itself, and at this moment, it was a story that pivoted Nakia’s life. At that moment, Nakia started thinking about the cost of hair school vs. becoming a doctor. Nakia wanted to make a difference. The joy of seeing moms and daughters get their hair done together, visiting the room filled with beautiful women letting their hair down from a long day at work, or even the stories that came with working in a salon was all the inspiration she needed. Going to Paul Mitchell opened Nakia’s mindset to doing hair for films, weddings, and so many other things. There was no limitation of what she could do in the hair industry.

After watching the end credits of BAPS, Nakia recalled seeing Kim Kimble’s name as the lead hairstylist. After reaching out to Kim for advice and possibly being mentored, Nakia realized that nothing was too farfetched for her. After months of planning, Nakia made the big move to Los Angeles to work at Kim’s salon. She remained very humble by learning the business and accepting whatever job she could in the salon. No task was ever too small. Her big break came while she was working the desk at the salon, and all the stylists were booked. That is when Nakia got her first opportunity to work with a celebrity client.

Patience is a virtue and when it is your time, be ready to seize the moment. Her position as an assistant taught her the value of working, appreciating where she was, and continuing to learn until it was her season. Sometimes, exposure to the environment allows you to see what is next before arriving. It prepares you for your next season. Nakia believes that the opportunity to be an assistant helped her on so many levels. As her work is introduced to the world on many platforms, her growth allows her to prepare for the good and the bad that could come with it. There is so much pressure because there will always be negative and positive feedback in anything. However, you must accept the good with the bad and accept what comes with the assignment. You must be strong and believe in yourself to make it in this industry. If not, your spirit could be easily broken.

Nakia has worked hard to get to where she is. She is a beautiful individual and aspires to be an inspiration to others. She has grown so much over the years. Like many others, she had her share of ups and downs but learned to keep going despite what life threw at her. Through perseverance, she learned how to balance family and put them first. Nakia understood that she wouldn’t always take every offer. Often, the struggle is for entrepreneurs because they feel like no money should be left on the table. It is ok to value peace over money any day. Nakia also found her voice and allowed her light to shine bright. She started to become who she was created to be. Nakia didn’t only become the personal stylist of one of the most powerful celebrated female entertainers, “Who Runs the World.” She has also become someone who believes in giving love and sowing back into people. Never has she forgotten the people that have helped her along the way.

Nakia and her family have a nonprofit organization that gives to the homeless. She stated that while doing outreach, people would share that they didn’t need money or food. Sometimes they just needed a hug. Nakia wants to allow people to feel seen, heard, safe and loved. Nakia exemplifies what community means, and she wants to let people know that you are not your circumstances and that you are not alone on your journey. No matter what life has challenged you with, you determine what happens next. Do you remember the old saying, “it takes a village to raise a child?” Nakia believes that saying goes further. It takes a village to be a parent. It takes a village to be a successful entrepreneur or anything. She feels you need the love and energy of others to help push and pull you. When the right people surround you, it changes everything. People will begin to see the love and passion and freely give and reciprocate it. Nakia’s message has taught us to live our dreams, DREAM BIG and do what we are passionate about. Don’t ever place yourself in a box; think outside of it. Life has so much more to offer, and never be afraid to reach out to someone because they were once where you are now. We all must start somewhere. Be sure to reach back and help others once you’ve made it because you’ve now become a part of a village.



Photography by Cecilè Boko 
Makeup by Mayeley Paez
Hair by Michelle Richardson