Interview with Serena – Founder

So tell us how the idea for Detangled Hair came about?

I guess it was part of my developing natural hair journey. I had a lot of people asking me what I used in my hair and where they could buy products and due to my research I knew of quite a few great UK brands, saw a gap in the market and recognised the opportunity to start the business.

That leads us nicely onto to our second question which is how do you choose the brands that are part of the Detangled Hair Community?

For the vast majority of the brands on the site I contacted them personally after finding out about them, reading their back-story and looking at their social media platforms. I really wanted brands on the website who fitted with our ethos of providing quality natural hair and skin products that are organic, vegan/vegetarian, handmade, free from chemicals etc. If a brand contacted me asking about being part of our community I would go through the same process of looking closely at the brand to see if they fit with our ethos. My team also follows the same guidelines as I do when looking at brands we would like to be a part of our Detangled Community.   

Can you tell us about your own natural hair journey?

“I started doing my own hair when I begun secondary school although I really didn’t know what to do with it. My mum didn’t know how to canerow so I literally had to experiment and teach myself which meant there were days at school when my hair was…lets say…. interesting (laughs to herself). My hair was really short at the back and often the plaits that I did in the morning at the back of my head would unravel throughout the day because they were too short to stay in a plait.

There were a couple of girls at school in the year above me who use to laugh at my hair and make a few mean comments. I remember one lunchtime they were behind me in the lunch queue and I could feel them touching my hair and laughing which of course made me feel terrible. Not long after that I remember asking my mum if I could relax my hair as most of the black girls in my class had relaxed hair. She said I couldn’t which with hindsight was a blessing. I just remember using lots of hair grease to try and ‘slick’ my hair down, using gel to try and create waves and using lots of hair bands and hair clips.

By the time I got to college I had found some better products and saw my hair grow a little which was great. I also dyed my hair and experimented with braids but often left them in for too long which resulted in traction alopecia at the sides of my hair and now I have a couple of patches. I moved on the straightening my hair with heat which I thought was great because it looked so slick and shiny. But again I did this too much and experienced really bad heat damage. One of the sides of my hair stayed permanently straight and thin regardless of how many times I washed it. My hair was also breaking and I had so many split ends. I reached a point where I knew I had to educate myself better about my hair. I read a few books, bought some natural oils and Shea butter and started to look after my hair and I’ve seen a great improvement”.

Detangled Hair Launched at the end of June last year, what were you doing before you started the company?

“I was and actually still am working with young people; I mentor young people with behavioural problems. My background is in youth work and I’ve been supporting  young people in various forms for well over 12 years. It is definitely one of passions so you will see that reflected in Detangled Hair as well as we grow. I was also busy being a mum, I have an 19 month old who is very active so I have to keep up with him! (she says with a smile and fondness in her eyes) I have always wanted to work for myself so this was a great opportunity to do so and I did it”.

What’s the best thing about being the Founder of Detangled Hair?

Connecting with different people through the premise of hair but then building really good relationships. Being able to encourage and give people good advice about hair care and recommend great products. I was able to attend a few events last year and was also invited to speak at an event and I really enjoyed meeting people, sharing advice and stories and ‘bigging up’ the different vendors on our site.

So do you have a favourite product?

I’m a very natural girl in the sense that I like to use a few base ingredients and mix my own products. My top 2 products would have to be Pure Unrefined Shea Butter and Jamaican Black Castor Oil which I can mix and use on my hair and skin. I have been using Jim and Henry’s ‘Eight’ leave in conditioner for my son’s hair as he has, to me, the most beautiful coils and ‘Eight’ works wonders for them! The fact that it’s light and non-greasy is a bonus. I also really like the alcohol inspired lip balms from Half Ounce; with the cold weather in full force at the moment they have worked wonders for my lips! All of these products are available on the site.

So what are your plans for Detangled in 2018

Well firstly to grow! We really do have some great vendors in our community so we will be shouting as loud as we can about them because their products are amazing. Of course we’ll have some great giveaways and give our customers and followers on social media the opportunity to try and review some of the products on the website.

I’m really excited about launching and developing the blog as this will really enable us to answer a lot of the questions we get about natural hair care and skincare issues. We’ve got some great interviews from some fantastic bloggers lined up who will be sharing some of their tips on hair and skin care and we’ll also be working with hair care professionals to provide great advice.

We’re also looking into running our first event this year but it’s not something we are going to rush into for the sake of it as we want to get it right. We’ve been gathering feedback from customers and vendors on positive and negative points from events they’ve attended so want to learn from that before we finalise our plans.

Can you share one of your top hair care and skincare tips with us?

For hair I would say make sure you finger detangle and be gentle and patient with it. Secondly, deep conditioning is a must, try and do it once every 2 weeks if not more regularly.

For skin, drink plenty of water and find a facemask that can really draw out the impurities.

What’s your final words of encouragement?

Embrace your hair whatever length, texture, colour and curl pattern it is because it is uniquely yours. Hair should never be a chore it should be something you enjoy doing because there is so much you can do with the right products and a little inspiration. Whether you have natural, coloured or relaxed hair, look after it well and you will see the results you want.

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