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Mrs Latifa Adekanla: Face behind Lola’s Locs and Natural Hair Studio

Mrs Latifa Adekanla: Face behind Lola’s Locs and Natural Hair Studio

Mrs Latifa Adekanla: Face behind Lola’s Locs and Natural Hair Studio

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Dreadlocks, often referred to as “locs,” alongside natural hair, have surged in popularity among women as favoured hairstyles. For many, these styles offer convenience and ease in hair maintenance.

Yet, unlike managing permed hair, caring for locs and natural hair demands expertise, usually from hairstylists specially trained in these techniques.

In Accra, Lola’s Locs and Natural Hair Studio stands out as a renowned brand known for its mastery of these hairstyles. Situated in West Legon, Accra, the studio has earned a reputation for its mastery in handling locs and natural hair.

Mrs Adekanla receiving an award for the Hairstylist of the Year at the Women’s Choice Awards Africa held recently
Mrs Adekanla receiving an award for the Hairstylist of the Year at the Women’s Choice Awards Africa held recently

The salon is one of the businesses under Hair and Beauty by Lola, a beauty brand that offers different beauty services, products and training.

Although the salon is popular among members of the natural hair and locs community and braid enthusiasts, the brain behind the business, until recently, was barely known.

The business has run for nine years with more than 100,000 followers across its social media platforms. It is also one of the popular pages for hair style inspiration.

Last Monday when The Mirror interviewed  the owner, Mrs Latifa Adekanla, and asked why she had stayed behind the scenes all this while, she said her focus was to build the business into a trusted brand rather than promote herself.

Mr and Mrs Adekanla are blessed with four children
Mr and Mrs Adekanla are blessed with four children

“My focus has always been on the business, investing in and building a solid team to get the work done and giving our customers value for their money. Thankfully, we have been able to do that and that gives me a sense of fulfilment,” she explained.

The entrepreneur recounted the transitions the business had gone through to stay relevant in the beauty space. She said she started the business as a regular salon specialising in permed hair but realised many women who patronised the salon loved braids so she added braiding to the services they provided as well.

A few years later, when locs and natural hair started gaining popularity, she knew it was another opportunity to expand  services. Mrs Adekanla  is not a hairstylist, but one of her strengths in keeping the business running is her ability to scout for hairstylists who are ready to learn current trends.

“Locticians (experts in locs) and natural hair stylists are not common in Ghana so once our business is expanding, we have to train more people to take care of clients.

 I am not a professional hairstylist but I follow trends online and lead the team to learn the trends. Some hairstyles are fads — they are trendy for a short while so if you want to stay relevant, you must constantly update your skills.

The salon is popular among members of the natural hair and locs community and braid enthusiasts
The salon is popular among members of the natural hair and locs community and braid enthusiasts

Usually when there is a new hairstyle, I watch the tutorials online and lead the team to learn that,” she said. The beauty industry is very competitive and to stay relevant, she said she  had to adopt some values which she explained had been the rock of the business.

“I believe we reap from the seeds we sow and so in dealing with people, I don’t look down or frustrate them. I know loyalty begets loyalty and so in my dealing with people, I remain loyal.

I have workers who can decide to forfeit their salaries or allowances when they realise I am putting a lot of capital into the business. They know that beyond the work, I am also interested in their growth and they are willing to give their best even in difficult times,” she explained.

Recognitions

At the just ended Women’s Choice Awards Africa, Hair and Beauty by Lola was named the Hairstylist of the Year and the Celebrity Hairstylist of the Year at the recent National Corporate Business Connect and Honors.

As at the time of going to press, the business had also been nominated as a recipient of an award by the West African Talents and Entrepreneurs Awards 2023.

She told The Mirror that although the business did not need awards to validate its existence, these recognitions showed that people were watching them and so they had to give of their best.

Support

Mrs Adekanla appreciated her family, particularly her husband, Mr Ben Taiwo Adekanla (Esq) for being a pillar behind the success of her business.

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Some graduants from Lola's Locs Training and Cosmetology, the training wing under Hair and Beauty by Lola
Some graduants from Lola's Locs Training and Cosmetology, the training wing under Hair and Beauty by Lola

Aside the hair and beauty services, the mother of four runs other businesses and she says it only takes the help of a supportive partner  to succeed at all times while taking care of the home.

She is a staunch believer in God and  attributes the success of her businesses to Him and so to all young people who want to venture into entrepreneurship, her advice was to first commit the idea to God.

“Long before I started this business, there was a prophecy in church and the man of God said he saw me in a salon with many workers.

Then, I had completed  the Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA)  and was confused and furious because I wondered if the prophecy meant going back as an apprentice to learn how to style hair.

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I had my own business ideas in mind and never thought of owning a salon.” “I even forgot that prophecy till the day we were opening the salon. Usually we have our own plans but it is God alone who can direct our path,” she said.

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