Monaé Everett’s client list reads like a who's who of A-list celebrities: Michelle Obama, Serena and Venus Williams, Taraji P. Henson, Mariah Carey, Viola Davis, and Connie Britton. She was one of the artists featured on Season 12 of “Project Runway.”
We spoke with Monae about some of the top trends she’s seeing with curls, coils and waves.
NC: You work with a wide range of celebrities. How many opt for natural styles?
Monae: I can not remember the last celebrity I worked with that had a chemical relaxer, and I love that they are opting out of a process that can be so harmful to the body and hair. Some of my clients still wear their hair straight on occasion, but we are able to achieve these looks with hot tools without compromising their personal and hair health. It’s always exciting when my clients embrace their natural curls and coils, allowing me to play in their texture without using heat.
Image: Getty Images
NC: What are some of the natural hair trends you've been seeing on the red carpet?
Monae: Curls crafted into big, textured updos are a red carpet trend that I’ve been loving. It was a pleasure to craft Dominique Fishback’s kinky updo crafted with bantu knots for the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) that she wore on the red carpet. I also had the pleasure of creating a textured faux bob on Danai Gurira on the BAFTA red carpet in London, which showcased blown-out classic waves without straightening that embraced her natural texture. I also enjoyed working with Daniella Perkin’s big beautiful curls on the Nickelodeon HALO awards red carpet, which I accented with a braid.
NC: Tell me about some recent shoots you've been involved with and how you got different looks?
Monae: Some of my most recent shoots have been my most exciting! I had the chance to style Sonequa Martin-Green for an ESSENCE cover shoot, and I styled Danai Gurira for the British Academy Film Awards (BAFTA). Both of them allowed me to have fun playing with their natural texture. I also got to style the singer H.E.R. for Billboard Magazine and Rolling Out,. It’s always fun to craft her signature big, wavy hair.
When I styled Sonequa Martin Green for her cover story with ESSENCE, we played up her kinky and coily hair with a variety of styles and lengths. We created a ballerina bun, a waist length wrap around braid, a kinky stair cased wrapped ponytail that would make Rapunzel jealous, and a spiral braided updo.
And some of the most fun I have is when I partner with media outlets to showcase my work! I was the first U.S. hairstylist on international hairstyling radio show How To Cut It, and of course I had so much fun being featured on Naturally Curly’s On the Road with Monae: Disney Star Sofia Wylie
Image: Getty Images
NC: Are there any considerations when working with natural hair?
Monae: One of my mantra’s that I often repeat to stylists who are looking to work within the fashion and entertainment world is that hair is hair, and natural hair requires more tender love and care than tough love as it can be more delicate than some stylists assume. I teach online classes through The Monae Life Academy, and one lesson I always teach is how to work smarter, not harder, through the proper planning and techniques that’ll carry you through on-set work as you collaborate with various artistic talents and models.
NC: What attributes do you look for in the products/brands you work with?
Monae: When it comes to working on set, versatility is key, which is why I like products that can work on all hair textures. I find staple products within a brand that I can use on clients, regardless of whether their hair is straight, wavy, curly, or coily/kinky. Additionally, I choose to work with brands who embrace hair diversity and display all hair textures within their ads, social media, and education. I love working with brands that delight in my ability to speak to beauty professionals and consumers alike.