From a young age, Nikki O'Rourke-Hoyt was called to become a hair stylist. Growing up around her African American and Latina friends and family with natural hair, Nikki was naturally drawn towards helping them. Becoming a hairstylist seemed to be a natural fit, and now Nikki is one of the few stylists in Bay City, MI who focuses on natural hair care.
In Bay City, minorities account for only 11% of the population. Before Nikki set up shop in 2010, women with natural hair were forced to travel to far away cities like Detroit to find stylists who could properly style their hair. Bay City residents were often forced to travel to different cities for different aspects of their natural curl care or would go to unlicensed salons in the stylist's home. This was a problem Nikki began helping to solve when she began booth renting at Goodlife Barbershop and Salon.
Nikki began gaining a faithful clientele while at cosmetology school. Other students at Bayshire Beauty Academy would turn away clients with natural hair. When her classmates were unable to work with their clients with natural hair, Nikki rose to the challenge and scooped them right up. Since there are so few stylists in Bay City who know how to style natural hair, Nikki is often completely booked. She has become one of the most trusted stylists in the city, and has also made natural hair care much more accessible to her clients. Prior to her arrival, women with natural hair were traveling up to 100 miles to find salons that could accommodate them.
While she didn't imagine she would be one of the only stylists in Bay City who served the natural hair population, Nikki feels a responsibility to her clients. She wants the women who come to see her leave her chair feeling happy and confident with their natural curls.
Want to learn more about Nikki? Check her out here. Do any of you have a stylist who's transformed your curls? Share your best stylist stories in the comments!