When you start taking better care of your hair, one of the first things you’ll discover is the lack of salons who really know how to handle hair properly. It’s even more difficult finding salons which cater to natural hair. Fortunately, some ladies are now setting up natural hair salons to fill in this void. One of such is KL’S NATURAL BEAUTY BAR. The salon owner, Kemi, graciously answered our questions and allowed us take some pictures of her salon. A big thank you to Omolade from Rehairducation website for going along with Nkiru (our store manager)!
1. Tell us a little about yourself and the history of the KL Naturals salon. (When and why you started the salon).
My name is Kemi Lewis and started off my career as a lawyer. I’ve always loved hair and beauty – I didn’t just start and stop with my dolls while growing up but extended my practice skills to my friends in Secondary school, helping them weave and braid their hair. When I was pursuing a master’s degree in the UK, I was in a town where there was a lack of black stylists so I would relax my hair myself and also braid my own hair with extensions sometimes.
This led to me helping a few other ladies out as I’d help relax, braid and weave hair (braiding for both black and caucasian friends). Fixing weaves was never my strong point (maybe because I’m not really a weave wearing person myself) as I once did that for someone and it was quite… well, shall we just say she took it off the following day! LOL. I started a healthy hair journey in 2011 while I was still relaxed as long, healthy hair has always been a dream of mine but years of damage had caused my hair to be very thin and (to me) beyond redemption so I decided to start afresh.
At this time, I’d developed a strong fascination and love for hair – researching, mixing products and styling my hair in different ways. I transitioned for 7 months and did the ‘Big Chop’ in May 2012. I started the Salon in August 2013 due in part to my frustrations with stylists in Lagos not knowing how to care for natural hair and to address what I saw was a gap in the market as more and more ladies were and are going natural.
2. Where is your salon? Your opening times?
The salon is located at 29C Ikorodu Crescent, Dolphin Estate, Ikoyi and we’re open from 9am to 6pm on Tuesdays to Saturdays; 1pm to 7pm on Sundays; and 11.30am to 6pm on Environmental Sanitation days. We are closed on Mondays.
3. What sort of hair treatments do you do?
We offer a variety of treatments depending on a client’s hair needs. From light protein treatments to heavy reconstructive treatments, Ayurvedic treatments, scalp treatments and natural hair coloring treatments.
4. What sort of styles do you do? Are there any naturals that request for their hair to be straightened?
At the moment, we do variations of two strand twists, flat twisting, weaving, goddess braids, braiding with extensions, perm and flexi rod sets, straw sets, Havana braids and kinky twists. We also style hair in elegant up do’s using braiding extensions (for wedding’s and parties) We also maintain locs (but don’t do starter locs at the moment). Shortly, we shall be offering yarn braid extensions and Bridal hair for our Natural Brides. Yes we do have naturals that want to get their hair straightened (even though the level of humidity we experience is not kind to straightened hair)
We also try to ensure that we don’t cause any heat damage by adequately protecting the hair before using any tools to apply direct heat.
5. Do you also have ladies with relaxed hair visiting your salon?
We do have a number of relaxed and transitioning customers who want to take better care of their hair and want to try out different styles using their own hair.
6. Why should we visit your salon?
You should visit us because we say so! LOL…. just kidding. With excellence and innovation as our core values, we strive to treat each customer with the respect and attention their hair deserves – Gentle detangling and styling, quality products, soft t-shirt drying as opposed to abrasive towel drying. We understand that a one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t work in handling hair as no two heads of hair are the same.
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