From Homelessness To Successful Black Hair Care Brand Owner

In late November 2009, Angel Okumu-Creech the founder of Native Kurls checked herself into a homeless shelter in Cambridge MA. Just a few months prior, she had given birth to a beautiful baby boy named Victor and gave him to her mother to return with to Uganda at only 2 months old because she was afraid losing him to Child protective service since she was unemployed with an expired visa. At that time, these were her only options because it was either that or remain at the mercy of a sadistic emotionally abusive man who had abandoned her the moment, she mentioned the pregnancy.

For the next 11 months she would watch her hair slowly fall out as a result of extreme stress, harsh winter conditions, limited hygiene opportunities and even more so, very few-hard to access hair care products for hair like hers. During that period, as she hoped around form shelter to shelter (there were no permanent living arrangements), she depended on donations from various organizations but obviously the donations received lacked items for hair hers.

She recalls waking up one morning and making the painful decision to cut all her hair off because at this point it was so damaged with no hope for revival. For the next couple of months, she resorted to wearing hats or head wraps daily which robbed her of a big part of her identity because she felt less “beautiful” with a bald head.

When she finally successfully navigated the US immigration process and got her first small studio in Marlborough, MA, she embarked on a journey of self-healing that involved skin care, weight-gain and last but not least, growing her hair back. She committed herself to a chemical free revival based on her African heritage that is embedded in an organic or natural lifestyle. As she shopped for hair care products, she slowly came to the realization that chemical free vegan hair products formulated specifically for textured hair were far & few. She was surprised at how hard it was to find such haircare products in most department stores so she either ordered online or had take trips to black owned beauty stores that were almost an hour or more away from her city. That is when the idea to start her own natural haircare company for textured hair downed upon her-she could literally be “the change she wanted to see in the world”. 

As you know, it’s one thing to dream, and another to execute so it took her a couple of years to juggle school, raising a family (yes, she finally met someone and got married) while researching and sourcing products for this dream to come true. In early 2020 along with her husband D’Andre, they finally launched the Native Kurls dream with their savings, but no sooner had she distributed her first samples, when thee covid pandemic reared its head. They then made the painful decision to defer this dream until the world, especially their target market was “back” on its feet.

Fast forward, she relaunched her company last year in 2021 and today she is proud to introduce to you Native Kurls. The name Native Kurls pays homage and celebrates the rich hair texture of the first inhabitants/natives of the earth. Her haircare brand was built with the strong belief that “Every Type of Hair Is Beautiful” because each one of us is wonderfully made. Native Kurls reflects Angel’s core beliefs being organic, cruelty free, vegan, and non-toxic.

The product line features more than 40 products for women, men and children of color with textured hair. She leads with the deep conviction that that beautiful hair comes from a nourished, healthy scalp so these gentle products are formulated with ingredients that target dryness, flaking & itching to promote natural hair growth & retention. Her goal is to encourage more people of color to feel happier and more confident through embracing their unique hair.

As she likes to sign off on every communication, she wishes you a great hair day-every day!

Media Contact
Company Name: Native Kurls
Contact Person: Angel Okumu-Creech
Email: Send Email
Country: United States