Entrepreneur Vivian Kaye never intended for her company KinkyCurlyYaki to be a real company. It started off as a side hustle.

Initially, she ran a wedding decor business alongside the KinkyCurlyYaki business before her popularity blew up. She realized that there was a market for a natural hair extension brand that features six textures ranging from sleek to straight to kinky and tight curl patterns. In 2010, Kaye's Canadian company became her first priority.

But there was a catch; she didn't know a whole lot about the industry. So Kaye did her homework. First, she joined forums and took part in beauty groups. Then, she talked to industry professionals and created a rapport with manufacturing groups that would help her business grow. 

Photo: KCY

"Many times we’re scared to talk about what we’re working on or to ask people questions because we fear that someone will steal our ideas or turn us away," she told Black Enterprise. "And yes, both of those things may happen but you can’t be afraid of that. You have to put yourself out there, build relationships and talk with others who’ve experienced success in your market or in a similar space."

Her company, based in Toronto, wanted to create a new option for women who are tired of the "African in the front, Indian in the back." KinkyCurlyYaki sells high-quality wigs, wefted hair for sew-ins, clip-in extensions, frontals, closures, Ghanaian head wraps, and they also create custom products that other companies have failed to give the consumer looking for a natural look. 

There is a reason Kaye is called the "Queen of Kank." It is time for black people to create products that will be used by black people. 

Kaye said that you are never too old to learn and "you can change the definition of what success is and what it looks like."