#HerLifestyle: Char Wilson

Puma and DTLR team up for this line-up of amazing women. | Baltimore, Maryland

My name is Char Wilson, born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland, celebrity hairstylist for Love and Hip-hop Atlanta. I’m also the owner of Hair by Char Salon in Charles Street Suites.

How would you describe your job/business?

I would describe my job as being hectic, it’s 24/7—you’re on a constant grind, but I enjoy the process. I’m a visionary and I like to see things come to light, so I do whatever I have to do to make it happen.

When did you recognize your purpose?

I knew that hair was my purpose when I was about 19 years old. I was in Arizona, basically majoring in a field that I had no interest in, and nothing that I did worked for me until I did what I knew best and what I had a passion for, which was hair, and it really took me no time to build up a clientele because I was doing what I wanted to do. I did my best at it, and my clients loved me because I put in all of my effort into my job. That’s when I knew that this was going to be something great.

Are there any unique challenges you face in your industry as a woman?

One of the biggest challenges that I’ve faced, or women in general face in this industry, is stereotypes. But I don’t look at them as stereotypes—I look at them as opportunities to create businesses. That’s what I do here at Charles Street Suites with my businesses. I create opportunities for other business owners, especially women, to start their own businesses and stuff like that. What many people look as a challenge, I look at them as opportunities for me to be better and for me not to stereotype people. I meet different people all the time and I’m never going to stereotype people based on what they look like or anything because you just never know. I’m being stereotyped when I tell people I’m a business owner and I own salon suites and stuff. It’s unbelievable, and to me, that’s a stereotype. Because you look at me, and you see a young woman, and you think that I can’t obtain these things. As a matter of fact, I can.

What advice would you give to women interested in your industry?

Some advice that I would give to women in the industry, or that want to be in the industry, is you have to really love the grind just as much as you love your work because there are going to be days where you’re not making anything and you still have to show up. You can’t give up and you have to put a lot of time and effort into perfecting your craft and know that it’s a process and nothing is going to happen overnight. Just ‘cause it gets slow, you still have to move like it’s fast. You have to keep going, keep recreating, and you also can’t get distracted by social media and stuff like that which rushes you to make you think that you’re not moving as fast as everybody else. You have your own pace, and progress is progress, whether you take 1 inch or 10 feet, you’re still progressing as long as you keep trying to educate yourself, keep trying to grow, take classes, do everything that you can do to be the best version of you.

Why do you think it is important for more women of color to be represented in your industry?

It is extremely important for women of color to be recognized in this industry they’re pioneers, and there would be no industry without women of color. We are the culture.

I’m Char Wilson and this is HerLifestyle.