By Johanna Ferreira
When it comes to fulfilling our life purpose, sometimes the universe sends us little hints along the way. For Jamila Powell, the beauty industry had always appealed to her even after she started law school. In her first year, she struggled with whether or not that was really the path for her and even started exploring the option of becoming a nail technician. Powell, who is still a practicing attorney decided to continue pursuing a career in law, but beauty eventually found her. After becoming a first time mother to her daughter, who she named Magnolia Rose, Powell started to recognize the lack of Black women represented in the beauty industry. In an effort to fill the gap and encourage Black women and girls to love and embrace their unique hair texture, she opened Maggie Rose Salon. Today it is one of the top texture salons in the country.
It was through running her salon where Powell started paying attention to the ingredients in hair products targeting Black women. Not only was she discovering concoctions that worked with natural textures, but she was able to create them from ingredients that are natural, sustainable, vegan, and eco-conscious. This all led to the creation and launch of her very own natural hair care brand Naturally Drenched. The brand strongly stands for inclusivity and aims to work with underrepresented communities with the goal to encourage Black women to embrace, love and preserve their natural textures.
Powell’s products include natural and sustainable ingredients. The Rebalance (Pre-Conditioner Treatment) is packed with almond oil, bamboo extract, calendula, and papaya to help nourish curls back to health.
“I decided to start Naturally Drenched because I wanted there to be a comprehensive curl care line that really works and is available to all textures,” Powell tells thirteen lune. “My philosophy is to wear and do what makes you happy. Don’t succumb to the pressure of what others may think about how you look or dress.”
Get to Know – Jamila Powell
Where are you from originally? Where do you live now?
I was born in Columbus, Ohio, raised in Columbia, Maryland and moved to sunny South Florida in 2004 after finishing law school.
What were some of your first memories of beauty growing up?
My first memories are playing in my mom’s makeup and making a complete mess. I loved eyeshadow and blush. I vividly remember the smell of Fashion Fair lipstick and visiting their counter when my mom would buy makeup. My earliest beauty influence is my Aunt Gay. I remember laying out and tanning with her and really learning the value of taking care of your skin, hair and living life to the fullest.
What does self-care look like in your life?
Self-care to me is literally knowing and doing what makes me happy. I love cuddling with my daughter, a great face mask, brunch, and a good fête.
What inspires you most about the beauty landscape and industry today?
I’m inspired by creating a lane for myself that was not being provided. As a salon owner, I got to see all textures and I think BIPOC-owned salons do not get enough credit for knowing what actually works on textured hair. I’m grateful for the opportunity to create products that are tested on all textures and putting out products that work.
What has been the biggest challenge in starting your business?
I would definitely say fighting the fear of running out of money to keep the business moving forward. It’s definitely a balance of wanting to spend money to make money and being realistic about what is in your bank account.
What has been the biggest win thus far?
My biggest win is people telling me they love rebalance and building a community that genuinely supports me and what I’m doing.
What would you like to see more of in the beauty industry when it comes to diversity and inclusivity?
I would love to see genuine interest in brands created by people of color and a thought out push to include and promote them.