Q&A | A word with the founder of Natural Hair Education online school, Corinthian Carouthers II
Hair and beauty have been key staples in Flint native Corinthian Carouthers II's family for over two decades. Her mother, whom she is named after, founded the Creative Hair School of Cosmetology that has been serving the Flint community since 1999. As a licensed cosmetologist, instructor and co-owner of the school, Corinthian is also creating a legacy of her own with the launch of her online beauty school, Natural Hair Education.
The decision to create the online school came when she noticed that licensed stylists would reach out to her for her expertise in natural hair care. She knew that it was a lack of education in that particular area and set out to do something about it. Her goal was to ensure that cosmetology students and new hairstylists were equipped with the knowledge to service the natural hair community.
Along with the online school, Corinthian also started the popular Natural Hair Education podcast and published the e-book, 5 Principles To Understanding & Performing Natural Hair Services. She's even preparing to release a collection of mannequin heads with naturally textured tresses to help stylists perfect their natural hair techniques.
We caught up with the busy beauty boss to learn more about her background and extensive career. In the encouraging interview below, she talked about how the pandemic has surprisingly brought an increase in enrollment, her passion for natural hair care education, plans for 2021 and much more. Keep reading to get “the goods” on Corinthian Carouthers II.
The GOODS: What is a typical day like at the Creative Hair School of Cosmetology, and how have you been navigating through the pandemic?
Corinthian Carouthers II: “Well, the pandemic has really changed a lot within the business. When the world was open, a typical day would look like students in classrooms and on the clinic floor, busy with all the clients. There was always work to be done. My favorite days were Saturdays. We would have so many clients and the building was always filled with good vibes and great energy. I definitely miss the energy!
Since the pandemic, our classes have moved online, so our students study remotely. The great thing about this is that students and staff can remain safe during these uncertain times. Surprisingly, enrollment is still increasing. We have several other programs besides cosmetology such as manicuring, natural hair, and esthetics, which currently have a waiting list.”
TG: What inspired you to start creating content that educates people, specifically hairstylists, about natural hair care?
CC: “Since a young girl, I was always drawn to natural hairstyles. At that time, not too many people were wearing their hair in natural styles. I would see flat irons, curls, sets, braids, cuts, and colors.
It was around 2003-2004 as I completed my cosmetology and instructor training and began working in the salon. I noticed an interest in locs, braids, and natural hairstyles. A lot of people were giving up relaxers and looking for healthier ways to take care of their hair and scalp. I did the big chop and began learning my hair and then I started getting clients that wanted natural hairstyles as well.
With the lack of textured hair education, I knew there were many other students and stylists that was searching for this information but was not getting the answers or results they wanted.
Standard cosmetology curriculums do not cover textured hair, and if they do, it’s very brief, so I created a program within the beauty school that is specifically for individuals that want to learn natural hair care. I wanted to bring the education of our roots and culture to beauty schools. Once I started the program locally, people started reaching out from all over wanting to take the course."
TG: Tell me about your Natural Hair Education podcast and what kind of information you aim to share on the show.
CC: “The Natural Hair Education podcast was created to empower, educate, and embrace our essence through the love of natural hair. My goal is to help women, men, and children learn to accept their natural beauty regardless of what society says. And that can take work. Anyone can tell you what you should do, but I wanted to provide a place where we talk about self-love, acceptance and, of course, natural hair.
I have guests on the podcast that bring their expertise, share stories, and break hair myths.”
TG: How has the response been from the community since launching the podcast, webinars, and online courses?
CC: “Man! I knew it was needed, but the response from the community and other places has been amazing and not just within the United States, but South Africa, Germany, India, United Kingdom and so many other countries.
My podcast made #4 of the top 25 Natural Hair Podcasts on the internet. My online courses have enrolled over 80 students just in 2020 and I recently held my first webinar to help people better understand what products to use on their hair and how to use them properly.”
TG: What are some of your plans for 2021?
CC: “This year, my plan is to focus on my Natural Hair Certification Course and my hands-on course. I recently created my own brand of natural hair mannequins that I plan to incorporate in both programs. I feel it’s important that we learn our hair on textures that are very similar to our own. I plan to release a couple more textured hair mannequins this year, but for now, I have Adah and she already has an exciting journey ahead!
I also have some very interesting topics and special guests for the podcast this year. Each month will have its own theme. For example, hair discrimination in the workplace, loc journeys, children’s hair, men and the versatility they are having with their hair, and many more. And, of course, to continue to provide a great education at the beauty school. It makes me so happy to see graduates licensed and in the real world making it happen for themselves and their families. Creative Hair School of Cosmetology is my first love. It birthed who I am today.”
TG: What advice would you give to someone aspiring to progress and succeed in the beauty industry?
CC: “My advice would be to invest in yourself! If that looks like more education, get it. If it looks like hiring a coach, do it. You are your best investment and if you do the inner work (believing in yourself, creating systems in your life, and having professionalism), people will see that in you and be drawn to you. The beauty industry is a big market, but there is room for everyone.
You are your best and biggest investment and once your cup is full, you can then attract what you want out of this industry and pour into it.”
TG: Any shout outs?
CC: “Most definitely! My mother, Corinthian Carouthers, is the pillar of our family. She started this legacy and by her answering to her calling, it gave me permission to walk in my truth and walk out my purpose. My brother, Quintin Carouthers, who has always helped me see the growth I had over my life since a young girl. He has been one of the biggest supporters in my life’s journey.
My fiancé’, Quin Shumpert, who always encourages me to get back up and fight! When I feel defeated, depleted, or discouraged, he always finds the right words to say or help me with a shift in perception. My son, Christian. He is such a good balance of compassion and strength. All I do is for him. And finally, my coach, Patrice Washington! I took a leap of faith and invested in her and she invested so much more into me!”
To stay up to date with Corinthian Carouthers II, follow her on:
Also, visit her website: naturalhairedu.com
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