Introducing lashesia holliday, natural hair guru + momPRENEUR
At Naptural Beauty Supply, we encourage woman to embrace their “naptural” beauty by offering a one stop shop for hair care products, and protective hair care accessories!-LaShesia Holliday, Naptural Beauty Supply
Lashesia shares her story on why she made the choice to go naptural
Ta’lor: I am so excited to connect with you LaShesia. I always like to begin with getting to know you, so who is LaShesia Holliday?
LaShesia: She is ever evolving, growing and learning herself. She has experienced trials as well as triumphs. LaShesia Holliday is a woman who loves deeply. She holds many titles including: full-time Mompreneur, Board Member, & Mentor.
Ta’lor: So, as a mompreneur you own your own beauty supply store. How would you define natural beauty or as you say “Naptural Beauty?
LaShesia: My definition of Naptural is, ‘the essence of embracing your natural kinks and coils, unapologetically. Being unapologetic is not living or abiding by anyone’s standard but your own. I believe in this because on my natural hair journey I found power in embracing my hair.
Ta’lor: Well you are definitely a powerful black woman. It’s the end of Black History Month, and I would love to know, as a black woman, what are some of the struggles you have faced embracing your natural hair?
LaShesia: Oh where do I start? I had relaxed hair for as far back as I can remember. I remember having Vaseline smeared around my face & ears to protect them from being burned by the relaxer. I remember the sting of having it in too long and having to pick scabs afterwards. I also remember how a fresh relaxed wrap made me feel; with not one hair out of place, I would say, ‘I look GOODT.’ So, when my hair stylist suggested I should stop getting them I laughed. Sis, I love my hair straight I don’t have time for puffy nappy roots. NO.
After a few months I allowed her to convince me it would still be straight without the relaxer. This was maybe 2012. I was too scared to do a big chop, looking back it would have saved me a lot of headache from the transition process. As I started to become more interested in natural hair I would try more “natural” or kinky styles, but I had so much heat damage from constantly straightening my hair that I had to use perm rods to get my ends to curl.
Out of frustration I decided to do the big chop and just wear protective styles while it grew back. It was still a struggle for me to accept my hair naturally. I challenged myself to do my own hair more, this is when I started to fall for my hair. I would research styles and attempt them and I gained confidence through this process.
Ta’lor: That is so inspiring, I went through a similar process when I finally stopped using relaxers. So, is this where your desire came from to open your own natural beauty supply store?
LaShesia: Well, there are three reasons. Firstly, frustration. I grew tired of having to go to five different stores to complete a successful wash day. From my frustration came the idea of what is now know as Naptural Beauty Supply. I wanted to provide the convenience of having all the products in one place. Another reason was confidence. A statement that always confused me was “natural hair is not for me.” How? How could the hair growing from your scalp not be more for you? I realized there was a lack of confidence in our community surrounding natural hair. Lastly, empowerment. I want to empower people to love themselves naturally.
Ta’lor: I love it sis. What are your top three favorite hair + skin care products in your store?
LaShesia: This is a tough one! I put a lot of love into making each product, but if I have to choose:
Holy Grail Hair Oil– I call it Holy Grail because my daughter Taylor was born 17 weeks premature. She was bald and she also had to have her head shaved for a procedure. Once she was old enough for me to work with her hair I mixed what is now known as Holy Grail to grow her hair, her hair is down her back.
Suga Suga Shea Butter – Because butters are life and it smells amazing. It’s amazing on my dry eczema ridden skin.
Beard Bae – I love it because beards are amazing when groomed correctly! Guys go from having a beard, to being a #BeardBae.
Ta’lor: Well you know I am an advocate for the Suga Suga Shea, and I can’t wait to try all your products. What would you say is the best part of what you do and the most challenging?
LaShesia: Pouring into people is my favorite part of having Naptural Beauty Supply. I love to empower people. Teaching and being able to provide people with the products to take care of themselves and their loved ones gives me an awesome feeling of satisfaction. The most challenging part is finding the balance in my work life and personal life. I’ve been working really hard on my business so I do not have much free time right now. I produce products, do trade shows, run the store and have my hand in every other sector of my business. I have three amazing kids that have been on this roller coaster ride with me, but I’m working on some things that should give me more free time.
Ta’lor: Finding the balance is never easy, but the grind looks so good on you. So, where do you see your brand + biz in the next 3-5 years?
LaShesia: Naptural will be a household brand name, such as Shea Moisture & The Mane Choice. We will have wholesale accounts regionally & seeking to expand. One of my favorite quotes is, by Muhammad Ali who said, “If your dreams do not scare you, they’re not big enough.” My vision for Naptural Beauty Supply is to be the go to natural beauty supply store. I will also carry other brands products so that Naptural will be a one stop shop for all the needs of a Naptural or BeardBae. Carrying an array of hair and skin products is important to me because I want us all to win; the mom that is putting her heart into the shampoo she created, the dad who just wants to know what he’s putting on his child so he created his own. Naptural will be global online and have at least two Pittsburgh stores and be expanding to other states.
Ta’lor: Proclaim it sis! Is there any advice you would give to a black girl or woman who is having trouble embracing her natural hair and natural beauty?
LaShesia: To love yourself naturally, you must first be okay with the raw, unfiltered you. Love on her, date her, figure out her wants, needs, likes and dislikes. Have confidence in knowing that you are enough. Once you have mastered that you’ll find power in your hair as well as in your naturalness.
Ta’lor: I couldn’t have said it better myself. That is so powerful. My last question for you is what would consider a Leading Lady to be?
LaShesia: A Leading Lady is you, me and every woman who is going after her dreams and kicking butt while doing it. To truly lead, you have to groom others to be leaders as well or you’re just a manager. I do not strive to be a manager, I strive to lead and leave a legacy behind me for others to come up as well.
More About LeShesia Holliday + Naptural Beauty Supply
LaShesia Holliday is a Momprenuer & CEO of Naptural Beauty Supply LLC. She is a Pittsburgh native who strives to inspire confidence, provide convenience, all while empowering others to love themselves naturally. She is a graduate of Catapult: Startup to Storefront Program, which granted her a retail space in the heart of East Liberty. She is Pursuing a Business Management Degree and a Certification in Entrepreneurship at CCAC and helped to create a Black Student Union Chapter at the Homewood campus. LaShesia is involved in many social & business groups including, The African American Chamber of Commerce of Western Pennsylvania, Small Business Development Development Center, Chatham’s Women’s Business Center, and the Urban League of Young Professionals. She is also a Board Member of the Women Entrepreneurs of Pittsburgh.
Naptural Beauty Supply is located in the heart of East Liberty on 5935 Penn Ave. Pittsburgh, PA 15206(
Naptural Upcoming Events:
- March 2nd– Vending at Dreamz Hair Salon and Barbershop 1-5pm
- March 17th – Vending at St. Trappers Day Yoga 12-4:30 & at CKV Suites 5:30-8:30pm
- March 20th – Naptural Will be vending at the CCAC Homewood Campus Business Luncheon! 3-5pm
- April 6th – Vending at The Dreamz of Music Festival- Ace Hotel 6-11pm
- April 7th – Goalfriends Brunch! 1-4pm with Imihi Designs
- April 10th – Naptural vending at the CCAC Homewood Campus Business Luncheon! 3-5pm
- April 27th – Vending at the August Wilson Block Party!!!