In The Chair With: Angela Stevens

courtesy of Cantu

“In The Chair With” spotlights the incredible hairstylists in our community who are giving us major inspiration. Each week, they discuss their personal hair and career journeys, what they’ve learned from their clients, and their top hair care tips. 

As her Instagram bio suggests, Angela Stevens does it all. Outside of being an Emmy Award-winning hair stylist, the Chicago-native is also an author, founder of Conscious Curls, and creator of Cantu’s Protective Styles line. “What I love most about what I do is the problem-solving component of things. We don’t have a lot of time in the morning to get ourselves together. If I can help you feel confident and attack your day, I feel like I’m really doing the Lord’s work, you know?”

Her hair journey began at five because “my mom didn’t really know how to do my hair,” she says. “I’m a Virgo to a tee, so I learned how to style my hair at a very young age,” Stevens continues, adding that she’d often use her allowance to buy hair products instead of toys. Before working with icons and brands– like Kim Kimble, Mielle, and ORS– at 19, she attended Pivot Point, a cosmetology school. “That’s when I began to understand the science and chemistry behind hair. It just kind of blew my mind. I was hooked.”

Below, she discusses hair care tips, myths, and more. 

Her favorite products:

I helped create my favorite product from my Cantu line called Hair Bath Cleanser. It is an apple cider vinegar cleanser, so it’s amazing when you are wearing braids. It’s amazing for cleansing your wigs, your extensions, etc. I also love the Set & Refresh Foam. I just put it on my curls, let them air dry, and it gives me definition.

Her favorite hairstyles to do:

I love giving my clients versatility. I love doing color. Color is something that I’ve championed over my career, and it’s something that really helps bring individualization to someone’s look. I also love giving people texture. A lot of times, people are afraid to wear extensions that are really curly. I like to get them out of the shackles of wearing only straight hair.

Her top tips for healthy hair:

Any time you’re doing a protective style, if it’s too tight, it’s not right. Say something, speak up, and acknowledge the pain in the moment so that it can be settled before you get home. I also can’t say enough about how important it is to get a trim regularly. Don’t let more than three months go by without getting one. Lastly, healthy hair is clean hair.

What she’s learned from her clients:

Honestly, when I hear my clients tell me how much they value when I educate them on things, it inspires me and pushes me to do it more. I love hearing how helpful I can be. I think that’s what keeps me going. 

How she uplifts them:

I just remind them that they can wear anything. I think sometimes we get stuck in looking and feeling one way, and sometimes that causes depression. I like to instill in my clients that you can switch it up and become a “new” woman. It’s okay to make yourself feel new, you know? I think it’s important to get out of our comfort zones. Hair just does that so well for us.

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