It seems a pretty drastic measure to cut all of your hair off and film the process of it growing back again but that’s exactly what Whitney White did. The 29 year old set up her YouTube channel, Naptural85, in 2009 having made the decision to embrace her natural hair type.
Now with over 650,000 subscribers, Whitney’s channel is dedicated to hair tutorials and product reviews. But that’s not where her talent stops; Whitney is using her influence to change the way brands and consumers see black hair and her entrepreneurial skills have seen her strike lucrative deals with L’Oreal.
The celebrity influence of Solangé Knowles and Janelle Monae has no doubt been part of the reason why – in the States at least – there’s been a huge dip in the sales of chemical straightening products. But YouTube also plays a huge part.
Whitney’s channel was born out of creating the type of content she wanted to see, something we’ve heard time and time again from some of the most successful YouTubers out there. Blogs and YouTube videos didn’t exactly cater for her hair type so she began sharing her tips online, back when YouTube was never seen as a viable career opportunity.
Speaking to Business Insider, Whitney spoke of her initial step into the YouTube sphere: “The thing about YouTube is that it wasn’t a career back then. It was just a bunch of weirdos. If I told anyone I made videos on YouTube, they’d look at me like I was crazy.”
Whitney now has an entire team helping her run her business.
When it comes to working with brands, Whitney claimed that she’d only ever work with brands who she’d genuinely recommend and she’s incredibly picky about who she does work with: “I’ve turned down a lot of money. I’ve turned down deals from huge companies because I didn’t like the ingredients in the product.” she told Business Insider recently.
So as well as her influence with brands and helping people understand natural hair better, Whitney is also as authentic as they come. “Even if YouTube stopped, if there was no such thing as monetization, if we weren’t getting paid, I would continue making videos because it’s what I love to do.” said said.
Whitney’s ultimate goal is to teach both brands and her viewers more about natural hair and we’re interested to see the natural hair movement grow more both on and off the Internet, most likely with YouTubers pioneering the way.