This teenage entrepreneur, who goes by the name of Lexi P, wrote her first book on natural hair care (Curly Girls Love Your Curls) at age 11, and just two years later is selling hair care products at Sally Beauty.
The road to Curlanistas began after Lexi P made a decision embrace her curls. Having watched a great video on YouTube, she wanted to learn more about caring for natural hair, but could not find a book at local library.
“I couldn’t find any on Amazon either,” she told Happi during that Monday night phone call in late October.
So, Lexi P wrote her own, and with the help of her mom (Monica Proctor) launched a line of liquid products in early 2018.
Then, in September 2018, Curlanistas won the top honor in the Sally Beauty Cultivate-For Women by Women accelerator program to help women beauty entrepreneurs grow their business. Her brand received $25,000 in financial support, and product distribution at SallyBeauty.com and inside select local doors in Maryland and Virginia, as well as mentorship from the Sally Beauty management team and fellow female brand entrepreneurs.
Now, Lexi P is set on following that lead with her own crowd. She’s embarked on new initiative called the Curlanistas BO$$ Network , which aims to not only empower young girls and teens to love and take care of their natural hair but become their own bosses by establish their own Curlanistas online business.
At press time, about one month after the launch, approximately 60 had signed on to the Curlanistas BO$$ Network. Her goal is to have 1,000 girls on board by the end of the year.
Not too shabby for a CEO who still needs to balance being a high school freshman with a busy social life and academic pressures, in addition to running a small business.
According to the brand, the girls in network “showcase the Curlanista lifestyle” and share tips for natural hair care and talk about the problems they encounter along with their Curlanista solutions. Participants are mentored by Lexi P. and a host of other “kidpreneurs” who share business leadership tips and resources.
“I started Curlanistas from the need to embrace my own natural hair after a childhood of being teased," states Lexi. “Through self-love and personal empowerment, I overcame my hair struggles and even turned them into a lucrative business opportunity. There is nothing wrong with being natural. It is who we are, and we should be confident in our natural state. For this reason, I wanted to create a movement among other girls just like me where they too can learn to love their natural curls while taking their power back and pursuing their dreams.”
Available online, the Curlanista BO$$ Package includes the brand’s three products: Magic Curl Defining Custard, which provides all day curl definition; Magic Frizz Fighting Detangler, which is formulated with shea butter, olive oil and vitamin E; and Magic Curl Cream, which is designed to restore moisture, create shine and condition hair. The cream can be used daily enhance natural styles or maintain braids, twist, or dreads.
The kit also comes with a t-shirt, monthly coaching calls with Lexi and commission on sales of Curlanista products that originate from each girl’s unique member code or URL.
While Lexi P.is set on growing her network globally, she’s also expanding her line of products.
“I’m working on formulas now,” she said, noting that she plans to add three products in the not-too-distant future.
New product development is taxing at any age, and everyone knows how much teens like to sleep-in.
“There are days where I literally lay in bed and do not want to do anything, but planning everything out helps,” she said.
But Lexi P said her role models— Beyoncé, Aliyah, Oprah, Michele Obama and her mom (of course)—provide inspiration. “They are all women who empower people,” she said. ”I really love Beyoncé—she’s a singer, actress, she has perfume and she does many other things. She encourages me to never stop.”