In this edition of Baby Heir Speaks, we're chatting with Ashley B. Adams, the founder Uniquely Crwned. Uniquely Crwned is a newly launched subscription braid box service that curates a bi-monthly, exclusive & convient braid experience for braid lovers. In this interview, she dishes on her top tips for maintaining healthy, protective braids with flourishing edges, and shares how her experience with traditional beauty supply stores lead her to create her own brand to correct the narrative. Check out our interview below.
Tell us how you started Uniquely Crwned. How did you know this subscription service needed to exist and what is your mission?
Where do I start? I’ll do my best to keep it brief, haha.
Uniquely Crwned is a labor of love and the culmination of my cross-country moves. I’m a native New Yorker, so I’ve always known where to go to source the synthetic hair required to achieve my next protective style (if you’re thinking 125th street, you’re right!). Yet my experience of living in Los Angeles and Atlanta exposed me to new pain points and areas of opportunity within the traditional beauty supply industry that I didn’t recognize in my comfort zone of New York City.
My personal exploration into new cities magnified the need for the beauty supply industry to evolve beyond poor in-store experiences and the traditional time-consuming approach of buying synthetic braiding hair. And who best to challenge the status quo to solve our common, entangled relationship with beauty supply retailers, than a Black woman? That Black woman being, me. I’ve bought synthetic braiding hair for over a decade from beauty supply stores and have witnessed and experienced the inequities towards Black women as patrons and beauty entrepreneurs.
Now more than ever, customers want convenience, affordability and pleasurable purchase experiences. Our subscription braid box service is that, and more.
We replace the traditional beauty supply store experience of purchasing braiding hair with a modern braid box alternative to help women reclaim their time and go straight to the salon with their braid box or achieve their next braid look themselves.
Our mission is to diversify the beauty supply industry via a personalized braid box service that caters to Black women's protective style needs with a fun, high quality, on trend, braid style delivered to their doorstep.
For many women-of-color, braids are key to hair health and ease of maintenance. What are 3 key tips Uniquely Crwned shares with it's audience to make sure their protective styles continue to be a healthy option?
- Speak up for yourself if your braid stylist is braiding your edges/hair too tight.
- Routinely cleanse and moisturize your scalp and braids to keep your hair healthy.
- Use a satin/silk scarf or bonnet to maintain your braid style and keep those stray hairs/new growth contained.
What are some things to avoid when wearing protective styles?
- Braid styles that are too tight
- Keeping your braid style in for too long without a touch up or letting your hair breathe.
- Washing your hair after a protective style without detangling your hair first, a big no-no!
What's the Uniquely Crwned tip for having most comfortable sleep without ruining a protective style?
Our tip for having the most comfortable sleep without messing up your protective style is to wear a satin/silk scarf or bonnet at night. A scarf or bonnet helps to protect and maintain our hair while we sleep. Also, with the creation of satin caps that are longer in length, our braids no longer have to be bunched up at the nape of our neck in a small satin cap causing discomfort when we lay our head down at night.
Tell us your personal morning hair ritual, including the baby hairs!
My morning hair routine consists of removing my satin scarf and bonnet (I like to double up in the event my scarf decides to move during the night), oiling my scalp, using water and edge control to slick down my edges and place my scarf on my hair once more to lay down my edges before I head out for the day.
Tell us the 5 songs you're listening to when you're in your beauty ritual.
The songs I currently have in rotation are
- Leave the Door Open (Bruno Mars)
- Blessed (WizKid)
- Peng Black Girls Remix (Enny)
- Sweet Shop (Kaidi & NK-OK)
- I Agree (Y’akoto)
As a beauty founder, what's one piece of advice you always give to people who aspire to be in your shoes?
Trust your vision and your process and have faith that all you have is all you need to start your entrepreneurial journey.
To learn more about Ashley B.'s founders journey, find her over at UniquelyCrwned.com!
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