I am Jessica “Jazzamond” Berry, Founder and CEO of Jazzamond’s Place, and I aim to promote and cultivate natural beauty amongst black women. I understand as a black woman, that we have a unique experience in society and we must embrace what makes us different and exercise our personal power. Since the age of five, my hair has been relaxed, hot-combed, and flat-ironed. One time, as a little girl, so much heat was applied to my hair, that I saw a chunk of my hair melt off. I spent much of my teens trying to get my hair as straight as possible and at one point; I took it as a compliment when I was told by my little cousin that my hair was always straight.
I have now been natural since 2009 and it has been a journey. I did the big chop in June 2010 and since then, I have had loose natural and loc’d hair. I started my business because after I loc’d my hair, I Skyped someone I used to date and he said, “I just can’t get past the hair”. I thought I was beautiful but my self-esteem took a hit after hearing those words. It was then that I decided to create tees with phrases on them to combat what natural naysayers say about natural hair. I knew that if a confident woman like myself could experience feeling badly after hearing a negative comment about their natural hair, I could only imagine the newly natural hearing the same thing. I really wanted to help my sistas who desire to be natural, to have the easiest transition possible.
I was led to get into the natural hair industry because I was often asked questions about my natural hair by sistas who desired to go natural but they were afraid that they couldn’t maintain their natural hair, that black men wouldn’t be attracted to them with natural hair, or that they wouldn’t have the time to properly care for it. Once I realized that I could actually give back to black women by helping other sistas go natural, I realized this was the industry for me.
My favorite item available on my site is the “It’s loc’d, so what?” tee. That tee was crafted by my passion to ward off the naysayers and reclaim my self-esteem and personal power.
My advice for aspiring entrepreneurs is to work on improving your mind-set for entrepreneurship, get really clear about what it is you want to do, envision your goal, plan, and work towards your goal every day. Don’t allow the lack of finances and “know-how” to hold you back. Money can be borrowed and just about everything can be researched online. Build a team of supporters and a following. Lastly, seek out a business mentor or coach to help you become profitable sooner.
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