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Conversations with the Inspiring Patrina Haupt

Today we’d like to introduce you to Patrina Haupt.

Patrina, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
My career began as a Public Health Researcher. I focused on health disparities within under-served communities and worked to reduce the rate of comorbidities, specifically within the African American population. My area of focus has always revolved around disease prevention and health promotion for the community.

As I researched healthy hair care practices for my own hair, I started to dive into ingredients in hair care products and how they play a role in our health. The products that we use on our hair and body play a bigger role in our health than most people think.

Growing up, I didn’t know a lot about hair care, as my mother would process my hair with a perm to change my hair from kinky to straight. I wasn’t educated on “proper” hair care practices or how to maintain healthy hair. I practiced what I was taught and that was straightening and perming my hair. Unfortunately, I became more and more frustrated with my short hair that was dry and constantly breaking off.

After years of research into healthy hair care practices, I was able to develop techniques that worked for my hair type and porosity level. Through a lot of trial and error, I was able to learn how to take care of my hair and which ingredients worked for me. The result of this was my first all-natural product “Butta Butta Cream”, which helps to soften and moisturize the hair. 

This was a breakthrough for me, since it helped to solve the problem with my own dry and breaking hair. In 2016 I decided to share my knowledge though my own website NaturalHairQueen.net. Since then I have been educating thousands of women on healthy hair practices. My website led me to offer healthy hair coaching sessions and in 2018 I launched my first product “Butta Butta Cream”, due to my readers’ requests. I’m currently working on expanding my product line, so I can offer a complete healthy hair care system to women of color.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
My road to success has not been easy – neither as a public health researcher, nor as the owner of a hair care business. There were times when it was very difficult to navigate through negativity as a researcher in a world dominated by Caucasian men. As a new business owner, the learning curve causes a lot of frustration. Learning new skills can be difficult but I had to learn to trust the process and actually embrace it. When you come out on the other side, you are more experienced than you were prior; and that is empowering. 

One of the best decisions I made was to seek out advice from others who were more successful than myself. Whether it was writing my master thesis in school or strategizing in business, I cannot stress enough the importance of a mentor. This is someone, who is not only successful in their own business or profession, but who is willing to share the real ins and outs of their success. Growing up I was not surrounded by family or friends with advanced degrees nor owned a business; so I had to seek out individuals who had the expertise and knowledge that I was looking for. 

We’d love to learn more about your work. What do you do, what do you specialize in, what are you known for, etc. What are you most proud of as a brand, organization, or service provider? What sets you apart from others?
I am the CEO and Founder of Natural Hair Queen, which is an online store for natural hair care products and an educational platform for women with textured hair. I am a natural hair coach, as well as the creator of Butta Butta Cream, which is a hair care product that helps to achieve soft and manageable hair. 

I am most proud of my brand, as its foundation is to connect with other naturals who are seeking out hair care information or solutions. As a community, we share and empower each other to learn more about our hair.

It also brings me great joy to have a hair care product that is all natural and safe to use for the entire family.

I believe what sets me apart is that my business is first and foremost knowledge based and not just product based. My main goal is to educate women about healthy hair care practices, and I decided to start offering my products, because they have worked so well for me. Additionally, I couldn’t find any other products that were 100% natural and produced the results for my hair that I was looking for.

Looking back on your childhood, what experiences do you feel played an important role in shaping the person you grew up to be?
The catalyst that played an important role was my beloved fathers passing from colorectal cancer. When he passed, I had a pressing urge to help underserved communities who were dying of cancer due to their socioeconomic status. I didn’t want another person to go through what I went through, which was to have a family member suffer from an illness that could have been prevented. This led me to the field of public health research, specifically disease prevention and public health education. My goal is to help educate as many women of color as possible about the dangers of most store-bought hair care products.

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Image Credit:
Image with laptop & blue shirt dress: Le Tresse Grissom
Image with yellow background: Elizabeth Trujillo

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