I am so excited about this very special interview with accomplished celebrity hairstylist Gabrielle Corney. I have been a fan for a few years, beginning with my attempted recreation of one of my favorite styles from Gabrielle’s longtime client R& B songstress, Olivia. Gabrielle has such an amazing personality and was equally excited to speak with me and share her insights and a few tips with L4L readers, so let’s jump into the interview!
L4L: As a fan of your work and healthy hair enthusiast, I love being able to follow your travels and view your work via social sites such as Instagram and Twitter. How do you feel the world of social media impacts your work as a celebrity stylist?
Gabi: Oh wow…so much! I mean, it really has changed in recent years. I used to only use it here and there. Then people forced me to get on Twitter and Instagram and I love it! It really is a good way for beauty professionals to showcase their work.
For beauty professionals who would like to learn how best to utilize social media to expand their brand, a great source is a book by friend and social media expert Terez Baskin, 11 Beautiful Tools: The Social Media Guide for Beauty Professionals.
L4L: You are one of the few celebrity stylists that seems to embrace the beauty blogging community.
Gabi: Oh yes! I love my blogger friends! You guys are awesome! And you really do know a lot. I have such respect for bloggers. To be honest, I give credit to bloggers for much of my success in Manhattan. I was originally based out of Queens and when I relocated, I lost pretty much all of my salon clientele. [Danielle Gray of] The Style & Beauty Doctor did an article about me around that time and shortly after, my phone never stopped ringing. So, people can say what they want but I love bloggers!
L4L: That’s great to hear, I think mutual respect is a big part of being able to work together and I definitely respect your training. However, as a licensed professional are there things you don’t like about the internet hair explosion (hair blogs, YouTube, etc)?
Gabi: Sometimes it can be too much information. I know some women who start trying to read and they lose their minds! Some ladies get so flustered that they don’t know what to do because they want to try everything that they see.
L4L: What do you feel is the most important part of a healthy hair regimen?
Gabi: Well, as a stylist for my clients it is all about education. I can lay their hair in the salon, but what are they doing at home to maintain it? I feel like if I educate them first then they will be well on their way to maintaining healthy hair.
L4L: What are your favorite go-to products?
Gabi: I am a junkie when it comes to hair products but my go-to as far as repair and conditioning is the Carol’s Daughter Monoi line. I have never used a shampoo and conditioning system quite like Monoi. That is my favorite!
L4L: What do you feel is the biggest mistake women make when wearing weaves as protective styles?
Gabi: Getting it pulled too tightly, sacrificing the integrity of the hair and scalp for style. Our women are getting alopecia from that because its abusive. Sometimes the misconception is price point over quality. I get it…not everybody can afford a certain price point but unfortunately you get what you pay for. (Check out Tips on Getting a Tension Free Weave)
L4L: What is the most important part of keeping chemically treated (relaxed/color) hair healthy?
Gabi: Having a beauty regimen that fluctuates. What I mean by that is hair does not always need the same thing. As long as she is deep conditioning, applying minimal heat, rollersetting, doing her treatments – whatever it is her hair needs at the time – then I think she’s going to be good to go.
I also tweeted a few faithful L4L supporters to see what questions YOU may want to know as readers. You never know with whom I’ll be speaking next, so make sure you are following me on Twitter @ECPrincess1 for up-to-the-minute updates and you may get your question answered in the next interview! The questions received via Twitter and Gabrielle’s responses are below:
L4L: What is your favorite red carpet style?
Gabi: I have so many! I don’t think any woman can go wrong with her hair pulled back into a sleek chignon, that would be my favorite because every woman can wear that style. But I also live for a messy updo!
L4L: What advice do you have for women with kinky hair types growing out their hair?
Gabi: Condition, condition, condition! You have to love on the hair. Kinky hair is more fragile then straight hair. A lot of people don’t realize that cuticle wall of kinky hair is a lot weaker is because the elasticity is different. So when you have kinky hair you have to love on it, condition it, detangle carefully.
L4L: As a celebrity stylist, do you feel any pressure to keep up with current hair trends?
Gabi: No, I feel absolutely no pressure to keep up with trends. It’s so funny – let me rewind a little bit – a friend of mine said to me “Hey do you realize that you set a trend?” And I was like “Uhhhhh, what are you talking about?” and they were talking about Olivia. I was so in it, not even realizing what was going on around me, busy working and trying to create a new look for her and doing something different. And then when I Googled it, I was like ‘Oh my goodness!’ I had no idea! So I guess I was a trendsetter without even knowing it! I was just trying to make the client happy and what I felt looked good on her. So, no I don’t feel any pressure at all. If the client is happy and her hair is healthy – that is a trend to me.
Well there you have it folks, Ms. Gabrielle Corney certainly knows her stuff! I love her enthusiasm about her craft and how much she stresses the importance of educating her clients. She is based out of Manhattan in Styles New York Salon. You may schedule an appointment or consultation by phone to 212-730-6488. She does it all – relaxed, natural, transitioning, color, cuts, weave and more; her motto is “Hair is the ULTIMATE accessory!” You may also view Gabi’s work and follow through all her social media outlets: