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Monday, April 22, 2024

The act of writing about hair was only the first step for Nikki Walton

Nikki Walton had a booming website, a best-selling book, and a calendar crammed with promotional events and appearances on TV talk programmes in 2013. In addition, she had a best-selling book. Despite this, she had the impression that something was off.

She had a difficult time getting to that stage in her life. She was raised in and around St. Louis, and when she was a little girl, her mother or grandmother would use a heated comb to smooth and straighten her hair as she sat in the kitchen. Ms. Walton noted that by the time she was 10, 11, and 12 years old, “we had a stylist who came to the home with a flat iron, and it was my entire existence.”

As there were very few salons that catered to black women in that mostly white college town, she was forced to take care of her hair on her own when she began attending Truman State University in Kirksville, Missouri, where she eventually earned a degree in psychology.

Soon after she graduated from the University of North Carolina with a master’s degree in rehabilitative counselling and psychology in 2008, she launched the website CurlyNikki.com and began blogging about her natural hair journey. She went into great length in her postings on the different kinds of hair and the many methods of hair care, including the L.O.C. method, which consists of using liquid, oil, and conditioner to help the hair maintain moisture.

Many black women, including this reporter, have made the conscious decision to stop getting their hair chemically treated and instead focus on regrowing it in its natural state. The market for chemical relaxers saw a precipitous decline as an increasing number of women rejected the “creamy crack” in favour of embracing the natural volume, curls, and kinks of their hair. The number of items available in stores for ladies with curly and kinky hair increased throughout time. The number of possibilities available nowadays is overwhelming.

Things continued to ramp up for her, including meetings with internet executives, individuals working in the beauty sector, book editors, agents, publicists, party planners, and TV bookers, until she had that “what does it all mean?” moment in 2013.

She used to write articles on hair care, but now days she focuses on producing podcasts about spirituality instead. She gets up at four in the morning and meditates for an hour before heading down to her basement to record the latest episode of “Go(o)d Mornings With CurlyNikki,” a daily series consisting of episodes that are between five and ten minutes long. She does this while living with her children in the townhouse that overlooks Clearwater Bay.

The programme, which draws from a wide range of religious and spiritual traditions, has the intention of assisting listeners in entering the day with a calm and peaceful mindset. “Go(o)d Mornings” distinguishes itself as a retreat from the noise in a medium that rewards partisan rants, heated discussions of hot-button cultural issues, and true crime narratives.

As part of an agreement that she just inked with Spotify, beginning on June 28, her audience will have the opportunity to pose questions directly to her during the broadcast of a brand-new live podcast. According to Max Cutler, who is in charge of overseeing the content and partnerships for talk creators at Spotify, “There is a lot of competition in the health market, which indicates that there is a lot of desire on the consumer and listener side.”

According to Ms. Walton, it would have been more advantageous for her to continue working in the profession that first gave her fame instead of switching careers. She said that her progress had resulted in the loss of six-figure engagements with several cosmetic businesses.

She began her work in 2005, when she started publishing her ideas on natural hair in online forums, and she sees her transition into health and spirituality as the next logical step of the work she has been doing since then.

Jonathan James
Jonathan James
I serve as a Senior Executive Journalist of The National Era
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