Hello my beauties! We’re back again for another segment of ‘Noire Excellence’. This week I want you to meet my girl Latoya Daniels. A dope east coast chic who has a passion for hair and beauty and it shows in her creations of her wig line called Vanity Insanity. I was able to catch up with her last week and really got to know the woman behind the brand. Latoya is definitely a woman of many talents and in this interview you can get a peak into her journey from where she came from, where she is now, and also where she is going. Want to see what I mean? Just keep reading…
ATBEL: Well looky looky.. *Shanaynay from Martin voice* lol Well hello Ms.Fabulous! How art thou?
VI: lol you are so silly. I’m good! Thanks for asking! How are you?
ATBEL: I’m good girly. I know you are super busy with everything so for you to take the time out to just even sit down and chat with me means a lot so thank you.
VI: It’s no problem. Thanks for having me
ATBEL: Let’s get this party started shall we? Ok so I know who you are and so do thousands of others based off your follower count alone lol But for those who may not be aware, let everybody know your name, where are you from/ reside and what it is that you do.
VI: my name is LaToya Daniels and I am from Queens Bridge Projects and I currently reside there as well. I am a wigmaker. Owner of Vanity Wigs!
ATBEL: I first found out about you because I was just scrolling through IG popular page and then I stumbled upon a picture of THE silkiest, sassiest, with just the right amount of curl jet black u-part wig unit I have ever seen. It was so pretty and from that point on, I hit the follow button and been a fan ever since. Lol Where did the desire to start making wigs come from? Have you always done hair? If so when did you start and why? Is it hard to learn?
VI: I’ve been doing hair all of my life. Growing up I practiced on dolls, I did my own hair and then started doing my friends hair. French rolls, box braids, cornrows, EVERYTHING! lol I am self taught though so I’m not sure if it’s hard to learn because it just came natural. It’s not impossible to learn, but like anything practice makes perfect. I did hair because it was something I loved to do.
ATBEL: *Sings* “Uh I’m a sucka for cornrows and manicured toes, hey
Fendi capri pants and Parasucos, alright” Ayyyeeee..that’s still my jam! lol After I found about your IG, I also found out you have a YouTube channel. I log on and instantly realize sooooo I’m late? Lol You have been doing YouTube videos for a while now. What made you want to start doing one of those? I for one glad you did because I can get all of the tea on the best hair out there.
VI: One day I stumbled upon a hair tutorial on YouTube and I was surprised because I never knew that people did those type of videos on there. I thought YouTube was only for funny videos and music videos. I was instantly inspired but I didn’t start making videos until after I gave birth to my son and wanted to share my take on the hair that I wore. I always got questions on my hair, how I got the style & etc so I thought that making videos would be an easier way to show how and what I did. Since I was buying new hair every month anyway, I thought it would be cool to share my take on the different hair I was rocking.
ATBEL: I love how none of your wigs are the same with just minor differences. From color, to curl pattern, length, and texture; each one has its on uniqueness that really in a sense portrays its own type of personality. When you make your units what goes through your mind of what you want the end result to look like? Does it go off what you feel like wearing or just how you are feeling at the moment? I’ve seen you go from long and dark hair with deep curls or loose waves, and I have also seen you with short, big and curly with a lighter 2- toned color and even a little funky with long hair but with a turquoise ombre. So what influences your styles?
VI: I just try to do something different from wig to wig because I don’t see the sense in making the same wigs over and over for myself. If I’m going to collect them I would rather have them be all different styles so that when I’m feeling like that style I can just switch out the wig. Sometimes I want to be extra cute so that might mean something more dramatic or maybe I’m just chilling so that means I want something more calmed down. It definitely is just about how I’m feeling at that moment in time but I always have different vision ranging from month to month. I’ve been like that all of my life.
ATBEL: So how did you come up with the name Vanity Insanity? Does it have any particular meaning?
VI: Vanity came from my 2 things first I have always been in love with them (Vanity mirrors) so it means a reflection of one’s self as far as my meaning. Also my favorite movie of all time is “The Last Dragon” I was and still am obsessed with “Vanity” from that movie so incorporating it into my YouTube channel it was just sort of like “going insane for beauty or all things that may seem vain” (hair, makeup, clothes etc)
ATBEL: I know that a lot of companies send you samples and ask you to do reviews on their products. Have you ever had any hair that you just did not like at all and did a review about it? Or do those just never make to air?
VI: I have a few reviews up on my YouTube channel of hair that I have absolutely hated and I professionally stated why and I also offered suggestions on how to deal with those problems. Of course the companies didn’t like it but if you’re sending me hair for an honest review that’s exactly what you’re going to get. I am not a liar so what you see is what you get. I do contact the company before I give a bad review to let them solve the problem because it is possible to receive a bad batch of hair but sometimes they don’t care or they get defensive instead of trying to fix the issue. That’s when I will put up a bad review because if they are treating me like that as a reviewer, chances are they will treat customers the same or even worse. However I am at the point in my life where I do not feel obligated to rock any hair for the month that I don’t like so it might not make it to air in the future. But if for any reason I wear hair that I don’t like I will definitely say what I experienced in my full review.
ATBEL: What are some things you look for in the hair that you use for your units? There are so many textures, lengths and brands to choose from that it can become overwhelming because you want to make sure you are going to be happy with that purchase. So gives us some tips if you would on what to look for. The Do’s and Don’ts of the weave shopping 101..Lol
VI: Well first I would suggest that they get an idea of the texture they would like and style. Then research the different textures that can emulate the look you are going for, and then start researching the companies that sell that texture. Watch as many reviews as possible on the exact company and hair texture you are looking to purchase, and then check out their social media outlets to get a better understanding of customer’s experiences with them. Check over everything before you place an order including the actual site and all of their policies including shipping an price points. When you are 100% comfortable with everything, then and only then should you make your purchase. It’s not always about what the hair looks like but will you be getting your money’s worth. Buying really good hair is definitely an investment.
ATBEL: That makes a lot of sense and great tips to go by. Correct me if I’m wrong, but aren’t you natural? Protective styles are a great idea for your hair because they help with the growth of it because you’re not putting all that heat and different chemicals on it everyday. Have you noticed any changes in your own hair with using the units you create?
VI: Yes that is correct. I am 100% natural and I have noticed a big improvement all across the board with my hair. It’s definitely the healthiest I have seen it since I was a child. I had really thick long hair when I was younger and my hair is back to that state and I’m even gaining my length back.
ATBEL: That’s awesome! Alright Latoya Daniels; it’s pop quiz time! In 10 seconds, name the must have hair products you cannot live without and that you swear by. GO!
VI: The only product that I feel like I can’t live without honestly is organic carrot oil crème. Everything else can be replaced by a different a product in my opinion.
5…4…3…2…1… Times Up!
ATBEL: Organic carrot oil you say? Hmmm..I’ll have to look into that. So I was looking through your Instagram and I see so many happy customers who have ordered their own custom made units from you. You literally slay it every time! I don’t think I have seen any pieces that I did not like. Once a customer places their order, how long usually does it take from start to finish? Can one send you a pic of what they want and then you make it from there? Or how does that whole process work?
VI: It’s a 10-business day process to have a wig completed. The more the customer is sure in what they want and are looking for the quicker and smoother the process will be. When someone is indecisive and has no trust in me, then that’s when the process gets bumpy. I have had customers send me a picture telling me what they are looking for, and if I am or if I am not able to do it I let them know because I will not experiment with anyone’s hair. That’s for me to do on my own time. Lol Once a customer has their hairstyle all mapped out, I send them a total and then they send me the hair. Once I receive the hair the process begins. I construct the wig, style it, and I also send the customer updated pictures of their unit as well. If I happen to experience anything with the hair worth mentioning I will tell the client my thoughts and then I package and ship out their wig on my next post office run which is on Tuesdays.
ATBEL: Besides being a weave guru, I see you are also into makeup a well. What are some of your must have go-to’s products that you swear by? Your faces do be beat boo! *z-snaps* Lol
VI: Lol I’m just really getting into makeup and it’s becoming addicting. I remember when I would throw on a face powder, liner, lashes and gloss and be out the door. Now the product list seems infinite! Lol hmmmmmm must haves would be a great concealer, foundation, brow pencil, brow mascara, face powder, strip lashes, and lip gloss. Those are just a few things that I think will give you a quick beat for occasions when you are in a rush.
ATBEL: Every woman wants to look pretty and to feel beautiful. With the feedback your customers have been giving you on your product, I realized you are one of those people who can make that happen. Now someone might just look at it like ok…she makes awesome wigs….and? But it’s much more than that. Every woman I know feels like new person once their hair is done along with their eyebrows and nails and with the custom units you create, you are making women feel and look like a million bucks. How does it make you feel knowing that you have that type of impact on these women’s lives?
VI: It feels so amazing. This is something that I have been working so hard at for 3 years. I had a vision to make wigs for females and I put it in action and I didn’t give up. No matter how slow business was in the beginning I always kept pushing myself to keep going. My practice was making wigs for myself every month with the hair I received to do reviews and from there I gained more knowledge, more skills and even more creativity. I love being able to see my growth and even though I’m not where I dream to be quite yet, I do feel like I’m on my way.
ATBEL: That’s so awesome! Being able to see your own growth and to look back and be like huh…I did pretty good didn’t I? That sense of achievement is like no other and I’m very proud of you. So what’s next for you my dear? I know you have are some plans in the works for your business in 2015. Coming out with your own hair products? Makeup line? What are something’s that is on your to-do list?
VI: Gaining more clientele is on my to do list. The hustle is real and I would like to make my business grow so I can get a tax id, an amazing website made, and so many other things. It’s been 3 years but I’m still in the beginning stages. However, I will not give up on my dreams. When the cash starts flowing I am going to do it up big for my business. Maybe one day I’ll even be able to do classes and share my techniques with other people who enjoy doing the same thing. My vision is for it to grow and actually be able to build the business and have workers who also make wigs and for it to expand from there. Dream big or not at all!
ATBEL: I heard that Ms.Daniels! You keep speaking it to existence and it will happen in due time. So what can the world expect from Vanity Insanity? And if you could sum up who you are and your life’s purpose… what would you say?
VI: You can expect me to be me. Something so simple and yet it will mean so much because I am the same down to earth person I have always been. I don’t let my large follower count on social media get to my head. I am so appreciative to all of my supporters so I feel it’s my duty to stay humble and always remember that it’s because of them on why I do what I do. So no getting a big head over here. Being loyal, real, professional, relatable and honest will always be who I am.
ATBEL: Indeed! Well, I believe that sums up the questions I have for you today. Where can my viewers find you on social media so they too can get hooked up Vanity Insanity.
VI: My Youtube channel is VanityInsanity119. My instagram and twitter are the same at @So_F_ing_vain.
ATBEL: Once again, thank you so much for chatting with me today. You are such a sweet person and with all the success you have obtained, you still make sure your fans know that you don’t take them for granted. You get like a gazillion likes on a photo and then you get all the compliments in the comment section and I have seen you take the time to thank and to show your gratitude to as many of them as possible. I have to say that’s very commendable of you. A lot of people take all these IG likes, followers and comments and let them get to their head and you are the exact opposite of that and I really respect that about you. You’re a beautiful young woman inside and out with a great heart whom does AMAZING work when it comes to hair and I wish you nothing but the best in the future. We must keep in touch love! I’ll need a follow up interview in the future Lol Sound good?
VI: Awwww E thank you so much! What you just said really means a lot to me and I appreciate your support so much. A follow up interview sounds great. I’m down!!! Lol
ATBEL: Woop woop! Lol It’s a date! It’s only up from here for you girly. The world has not seen the last of Vanity Insanity and I wish you many blessings. Keep being awesome!
VI: Thank you so much for choosing to interview me. This really means a lot to me! Blessings to you as well love!
ATBEL: The pleasure was all mine my dear. Talk with you soon…XO
That pretty much wraps up this weeks segment! I love seeing women doing what they love and doing a bomb job at it as well. Latoya is a great example of how working towards your dreams can pay off and how you can blessing to others with those same dreams. I know this just the beginning for Vanity Insanity and I can’t wait to see what doors open up for her in the future. Have a fabulous week my beauties and I’ll see you back here next time.