Small businesses are often cited as the backbone of the American economy, and in African American communities, this couldn’t be even more true. However, there is something special about the hair salon. It’s not only a place that offers the vital service of hair care, but it’s also a site where communities and bonds are built.
Latisha’s Childhood Dream
Latisha Campbell, who is East New York-grown, is the owner of HairWithFlair in Brooklyn. A licensed cosmetologist and instructor, her IG page displays examples of her creative and exceptional work, inspirational advice, and the occasional promotion of a natural hair care webinar.
HairWithFlair started as a childhood dream. The sentiment deepened when she first moved to New York as a young child and lived on Lott Ave. in Brownsville in Brooklyn.
A graduate of the Hair Design Institute and Kingsborough Community College, Campbell put her dreams into action by pursuing her cosmetology license and a two-year business degree. Nevertheless, school nor any licensing could prepare anyone for the struggles 2020 has brought to small businesses like hers:
“During this pandemic, my business has decreased tremendously. I am servicing one to two clients a day, and that isn’t every day. Back in June, when the quarantine was lifted, the business was great, but it slowly started to decrease,” Campbell then added, “I’ve seen the shift starting about two months ago. I have been seriously thinking about shutting down because of this.”
Campbell has received some federal pandemic-related funding, but the funds are running out.
“It’s just not enough to cover all of my expenses…”
Campbell has owned and operated salons in North Carolina through partnerships, taught cosmetology, and even participated in hair battles. Still, this particular fight has left her and many others struggling to find new strategies to supplement income.
Nevertheless, much like those hair battles, Campbell hasn’t given up the fight. Campbell is still accepting clients and is also looking for two stylists to rent chairs to for $550 a month each.
Displaying the Resiliency of East New York
For two years, Campbell has served East New York community residents, and she hopes to continue to do so. The knowledge she possesses has allowed her to bypass the salon chair to offer education and hair care help online. Her @HairWithFlair Instagram profile page is a wealth of knowledge about hair care education and a spotlight on all the work Campbell has done for clients in the community.
Whether digitally or in-person, Campbell is offering a valuable service in East New York, but she is in the battle to stay open like many other small business owners across the country. Each day is a testament to the strong spirit of entrepreneurism that makes up the fabric of this country and the people of East New York.
Again, Campbell is currently taking new clients at her HairWithFlair Salon Studio at 637 Hegeman Ave Brooklyn, NY 11207. If you are looking for a stylist, and want to support an entrepreneur in the community, be sure to look her up. You can Call for an Appointment at 718.676.0050.