Imagine yourself in a study abroad program in China during college. Dope, amirite? Now imagine standing in a room of people with a $500 wig on and glue dripping down the sides of your face. That exact scenario happened to Freddie Harrel until she excused herself and blamed it on an 'allergic reaction.' Needless to say, from that moment on, Frédérique 'Freddie' Harrel stopped wearing wigs.
Harrel recalled seeing a BBC 3 documentary Whose Hair It Is Anyway?, by British singer Jamelia, and learned about the hair trade industry and, more importantly, the not-so-silky parts.
Eventually, in 2016, Harrel created a line of extensions catered to people with 3C-4C hair. Big Hair No Care offers clip-in extensions made for black hair. The clip-ins are divided in two categories: Zero Drama Queen and No Stress Princess. The former features clip-ins that embodies the texture of natural hair. The latter mirrors a black blowout — long, luscious and voluminous. The sets of clip-ins are synthetic but don’t come coated, so you can say goodbye to ACV wash before the install.
"You don’t need to wash, condition or detangle. It's for people who are poor on time, poor on skills and poor in money. Yes, Big Hair No Care is a hair business, but it's also a self-confidence business, a self-love business and a business by and for black women," stated Freddie Harrel to Elle.
For many black women, hair can be the cause of their stress and also be the key to their happiness. Harrel is very aware of this and aims to use her business to change the perspective on black hair but also allow it to lower stress.
"For some people, it's too expensive to spend $70 on an hour with a therapist, but they'll spend $1,000 on a wig." Harrel's humble suggestions: "Buy cheaper hair, feel better about yourself and save your money — for therapy or otherwise."
The French-born, London-based Freddie Harrel hopes to expand her business into the United States being that 30% of her sales come from the U.S. Her extensions can only be purchased online via her website but the dream is to have Big Hair No Care stocked in retailers to have it be more accessible for black people everywhere.
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