Friday, September 2, 2011

Feature Friday: Stacy Smith of I Design Beauty

Welcome to our first Feature Friday story. Today we're talking to Stacy Smith of I Design Beauty. Join us as we talk to Stacy about her product line and her personal journey as a naturalista 

Feature Friday: Stacy Smith of I Design Beauty

How long have you been a naturalista?  
I first went natural in 2005 after my second child but I wasn't ready, so I got a relaxer. Now I’ve been natural since June 2009

What/who influenced you to start this journey? 
I was tired and my hair was breaking off. I also wanted a change.

Did you decide to do a BC (big chop)?
It was kind of a big chop... I had been going natural for nearly a year before I did the big chop, so it wasn't a surprise.

Now I know that you’re not only a naturalista but a hair stylist as well.  How long have you been a stylist?
19 years

That’s a long time. What types of hair do you work with? 
I work with all hair types, from straight all the way to tightly coiled (what some call kinky).

I know some stylists don’t seem to have time to care for their own hair. How do you currently maintain your beautiful tresses?
Keeping my hair maintained is essential as a stylist. I am my own marketing tool! I get a lot of compliments on the color and texture of my hair, which helps to build my clientele. I typically make sure my color is refreshed every 8 weeks roughly. I co-wash my hair every other day or every three days, and I either wear it wet and pushed back in a pony tail or I do the twist out.

In addition to being a stylist you also have your own beauty line. Tell us about it
My beauty line is called I Design Beauty and I started it in 2010

What inspired you? 
 A friend of mine told me she saw me with my own product line in the future. I didn't really pay her any attention. Then one day I made a body butter and it came out pretty good. My inspiration comes from women who have broken racial barriers, started their own businesses, and have become icons for many African American women: Carol's Daughter, Oprah Winfrey and of course our first lady, Michelle Obama.

The name I Design Beauty is definitely a bold statement and pretty unique. How did you come up with that name? 
The name was originally I Design Hair. Sometime afterwards, I realized that there was no way to incorporate the beauty side of my business (I am a makeup artist as well). So in 2011 I decided to change the name to I Design Beauty, LLC so it would be all inclusive of hair and beauty.

Very smart!!! So where can we find your products? 
My website launch is scheduled for this September. You will be able to go to order products. You will also be able to go to and purchase products there as well.

What have you learned about your own hair so far on this journey? 
I have learned to appreciate my beautiful texture. If I had known at the age of 14 what I learned at the age of 34, I would've been relaxer-free all my life. I love my hair. I can go straight, where it tamed in a curly pony tail or let it loose and be wild with a twist out. It has so much personality and it is so versatile.

You sound like so many of us naturalistas out here (lol). What do you love most about your hair and what do you like the least? 
What I like the least about my hair is my edges. What I love most about my hair is the curl pattern.

Have you faced any challenges with your own hair?
After the birth of my second child my edges near my temples came out. It's been a challenge since then trying to grow them back.

If you could use one word to describe your hair what would it be? 

What’s the best advice you could give aspiring naturalistas? 
Don't Give up! Figure out the easiest and safest way to make the transition and stick to it. Embrace the change, be creative and have fun with your God-given tresses.

That’s great advice.  Anything else we should know about you? 
I am extremely passionate about hair and beauty. My aim is to help women seek out the inner beauty in themselves.

And lastly, when can I make an appointment to have my tresses pampered?!?!?!  
You can make an appointment with me starting this September! I can be found at the SimpleeBEAUTIFUL Boutique Salon in White Plains NY (

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