Natural hair and beauty personality, Kimberly Cherrell has over 50,000 followers across her social media platforms, more than 200 videos on YouTube, and has been in the game for close to ten years. She currently resides in Atlanta where she works as a recruiter for digital creatives. Her stats are impressive, but even more impressive is her willingness to sacrifice greater popularity for integrity and balance. Kimberly shares these gems with SHEEN along with tips for choosing the right products, achieving the perfect wash-n-go, and growing longer hair.
How did you get into creating natural hair and beauty videos on YouTube?
I’ve been doing this since I was in college and the natural hair thing came a little bit later as I really just got into it but I’ve been styling my hair forever. Even in high school I had long hair but I would use a perm, in college was when I got to be like “Oh… my mom isn’t paying for my perms anymore so I don’t want to pay for my perms” (laughs). From there, I met one of my best friends and she does hair and from there she was like ” let’s not do perms and let’s just do sew-ins,” and that’s when sew-ins became very popular for me in 2009. I constantly did sew-ins and it got to the point I didn’t have any perm anymore. Last year I got a diva cut. But all throughout college as I was transitioning. I would post videos based on what I would watch. I started shopping, doing fashion, and I and a lot of the videos aren’t there now but I would put anything out there on YouTube. I got serious when I moved to Atlanta and made sure I transitioned my brand a little earlier and I got a better camera. Seeing those other YouTubers saying and doing what they wanted, I wanted to do it too.
I know you have experimented with weaves and wigs and color, how do you maintain healthy hair? Do you have a go-to look in the midst of that?
It’s hard to maintain healthy hair with color, that’s the first advice I can give anyone. If your hair is a tighter curl, it’s going to be hard to keep. If you’re in the Type 4 hair category your hair is prone to dryness, color is going to strip the moisture out of your hair so it’s harder to maintain, especially if you’re low porosity. But doing rod sets kept it healthy. Because the best thing to do for healthy hair is DO NOT TOUCH YOUR HAIR as much. That is the ultimate thing. Find any way to not touch your hair…that is the number one growth tip that I can possibly give anyone.
The best wash-n-gos comes when you sit under a hooded dryer, no blow drying, no air drying, no diffusing, just sit. You notice in the hair salon they sit you under a dryer and it feels like your hair just lasts forever? That’s because that heat is taking the roots of your hair and it’s drying it first, and that’s allowing for your hair to set all at once and it just lasts a lot better. When you’re air drying, your hair dries from the tip; if you notice, your roots are never dry. I just started a series of one-brand wash-n-gos. There are so many brands out here, even black-owned businesses with new natural hair care brands that are coming up, so every Sunday I upload a one-brand wash-n-go because if a product does well for a wash-n-go, it will do well for a twist-out, a rod set, anything.
You’ve been on YouTube for 7-10 years, you allude to struggles with having enough time and juggling all you have to do, is that one of your biggest challenges being a content creator?
It is getting the things done that you want to get done, getting the videos you want to get up, making sure you have everything in the video that you want them to know and making sure you clarify everything. That’s kind of another challenge because I don’t want anyone to walk away from the video thinking they know something and I missed out on something… it’s not going to be a beneficial video for them. And THAT takes a lot of time. It is juggling. When I started YouTube I was single, now I’m not single anymore, and it’s making sure that I still have my personal life, with my job, with my YouTube, you know. That is very hard when you’ve got an extra person you need to make sure is great; I can’t even imagine having kids. It’s definitely about keeping yourself on a schedule.
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