- Edition 7, Chapter 5 -
One of the people Monica Brand follows on Instagram reposted a picture of our Gina, and a fascination with Hairstory began. Being a curly-haired woman, Monica has always been suspicious of shampoo because it dries her hair out and leaves it more frizzy than curly. She has spent more than her fair share on conditioning and moisturizing products to combat the effects.
Monica is an art director, and with her husband, co-founder of Mogollon, a design firm focused on the music industry. Her ambition of creating overarching concepts for entire experiences beyond a simple CD cover or invitation was fed by her Hairstory experience: “It was like going backstage at the theater and seeing all the parts that go into the whole. Seeing what everybody does is fascinating,” she remarks.
I tried unconsciously to be normal too, but now I realize it’s cool to be different.
Thanks to artistic parents, Monica’s childhood hair story was remarkably trauma-free even though she was raised in South America; Venezuela isn’t a racist society – in fact it’s quite diverse – but, she explains, “It is very classist, and people want to look like they belong to a certain class. They are fixated on ideas of beauty, and afraid to make unconventional choices. It’s the fashion to have really long, straight hair – and I was different because of my curls, which I never straightened.” But Monica comes from “a family of rebels, so I didn’t have family pressure to conform.” Her friends’ parents were lawyers, and more “normal” than her own, and like so many other curly people, “I tried unconsciously to be normal too, but now I realize it’s cool to be different.”
However, Monica feels that hairdressers play it too safe with her hair because they’re afraid of cutting curls. She always dreamed about having bangs, “or something edgier, cooler, more daring, sexy even?” She also described her curls as unmanageable, and came to us hoping for a cut to change that. As a mother, she had no time for “fussy hair.” Her previous color experiences were far from creative, serving only to cover gray.
Wes gave her an entirely new shape, and Roxie added color to accentuate and support it. Monica was amazed at being able to comb through her hair after using only New Wash and none of the usual conditioners or serums. She marveled at how such a small dab of Hair Balm could do so much to refine curl. “I’ve been ready for change for so long,” she says. “I love it! It’s an improved version of me.”