Today we’d like to introduce you to Raquel Robertson.
Hi Raquel, thanks for joining us today. We’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
I never imagined I’d be where I am today. Growing up, I did hair continuously, specifically on my siblings and let’s just say, bless them for being my dolls. I grew up wanting to own a business, a hair salon at that. I knew that when it was time for me to go to college, I would study business so I was prepared for what was to come. Fast forward a few years. Although I did end up studying business in school, I majored in Ethnic Studies and received a minor in business. Along the way, I learned that a business degree was not necessarily needed to start a business. Fast forward again a few years to after college. No one really prepares you for life after college but I knew I wanted to attend cosmetology school to fulfill my childhood dream of owning my own salon at the capacity of what I had seen growing up.
While in cosmetology school, I experienced the lows and highs of being a cosmetologist. Knew I loved to style hair and found a love for makeup – primarily self-taught because the time spent on makeup during school was slim. I learned that I didn’t want to own a salon at the capacity I dreamed of growing up but yet combine hair and makeup at some capacity. In 2017 I decided to start freelancing which consisted of doing hair and makeup. Bless the folks who trusted me at the beginning of my journey because we all had to start somewhere right? Over the years, I continued to perfect my crafts and “niched” down a lot. So where am I today? In 2019 I decided to go full time in my craft and was living out my dream of owning my own business. Since relocating from Denver in 2020 despite the pandemic, I have made connections in Atlanta and focused on growing my clientele. Today, I am a mobile hair and makeup artist specializing in services for weddings, special events and photoshoots, the owner of a hair accessory boutique and beauty content creator.
Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It has not been a smooth road by any means but I’m a true believer that everything happens for a reason. Despite what I had learned in college, I still had no idea where to start because of the “traditional” way that was preached. Get a business loan, create a business, etc… I had very little knowledge about how to do any of those starter pack items and failed to take advantage of the resources available to me. I had very little people around me at the time who had their own business so I was learning along the way. When you’re self-taught, you teach yourself most things and hope it’s right. When I started freelancing in 2017, I had no idea what I was doing and my experiences taught me what I should be doing. I’ve lost money, thought about quitting, struggled to market myself and to this day, I struggle with delegating tasks, trusting people and being a one woman show.
All that said, all those struggles happened to get me to where I am today and I’m continuing to break those barriers to help others not experience the same hardships.
Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
My business is Raq Natural Industries which has three buckets underneath it. I am a mobile hair and makeup artist that specialized in hairstyling + natural makeup for weddings, special events and photoshoots. My goal is that for each person that sits in my chair feels confident, like themselves and wants to come back. As far as hair goes, I primarily style hair with a focus on natural hair. As far as makeup, I love a good natural makeup look with a few enhancements. Most of the people who sit in my chair don’t wear makeup often so I want them to feel like themselves while also standing out from the crowd. I’m most proud of how far I’ve come and the confidence that comes with experience. I think back to when I first started, I did services for little to no money. I was not confident. Now, I can charge rates to match my experience. What sets me apart from others in my field is I’ll make sure I have all skin complexions and hair types in my portfolio. This is how I can continue to build clientele and be ready for different opportunities.
With hair and makeup being a priority, I do also have a hair accessory company that provides luxury to everyday basic pieces for women who don’t have time to style their hair fancy but want to throw something on to feel confident of have an event coming up that calls for an accessory that will have heads turn. Accessories have been a part of my hairstyling routine since I started doing hair.
Lastly, I create content, beauty content for natural hair, skin and makeup. I provide tips and tricks that allow beginners to feel confident when starting their journey.
Do you have recommendations for books, apps, blogs, etc?
Currently reading Rich Dad, Poor Dad which has been around for a while but I’m at a stage in my life where I could understand the story and references more than before. Some apps I use in my business are Asana, Canva, HabitShare (which allows you and your friends or family to become each others accountability partner/s – this is a new addition and has been convivial) and any social media scheduler/poster like UNUM.
This is not necessarily a tool but I’m intentional about who I follow on social media and keep like-minded business individuals in my circle. Ultimately, I’ve learned that effective systems make business more streamline and attract ideal clients.
- Bridal Packages starting at $300
- Email: email@example.com for appointments or firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: raqnaturalbeauty.com
- Instagram: instagram.com/raq_natural
- Youtube: youtube.com/raqnaturalntwk
- Other: nadoraiman.com
Yuel Shots Chrissandra Jallah