"I Dream of NeNe: The Wedding", “The Real Housewives of Atlanta” spinoff that follows NeNe Leakes’ pending nuptials, premiered last week on Bravo. NeNe’s celebrity hairstylist, friend and cast member, Pat Sumpter-Davis, gave an exclusive interview to the Hair and Nails Examiner and dished on the wedding day hairstyle, hair extensions and more.
“I Dream of NeNe: The Wedding” follows one of “The Real Housewives of Atlanta” as she plans the wedding of a lifetime. Alongside NeNe Leakes is her bridal party, including her hairstylist, friend, and cast member of the show Pat Sumpter-Davis. Pat is a celebrity hairstylist, image consultant, educator, and philanthropist with more than 20 years of experience in the beauty industry. She is credited for numerous celebrity clients such as Gayle King, Tamron Hall, and Tamar Braxton.
It was a thrill to discuss the beauty business and hair industry with Pat, and hear her insight into NeNe’s wedding day hair, hair extensions and other beauty related questions.
Hair and Nails Examiner: How did you begin your entry into the beauty business?
Pat Sumpter-Davis: My mother was a hair stylist and I've always had an interest in fashion and beauty for as long as I can remember. I would have to say that it's in my DNA. After cosmetology school I started by working in beauty salons under experienced hairstylists. I surrounded myself around professionals who were doing things that I wanted to do. I invested money into additional training in order to perfect my craft. I eventually built a clientele and opened my own salon.
Hair and Nails Examiner: Can you give a hint on what NeNe's hair will look like for the big wedding day?
Pat Sumpter-Davis: Very old Hollywood glam and “Great Gatsby” inspired.
Hair and Nails Examiner: I recently did an interview with Dr. Oz who discussed an upcoming episode that simulates a giant hair weave to show how bad extensions are on the hair and scalp. He feels more women are going towards a healthy, natural hair trend, especially in lieu of the study that stated African American women forgo exercise in order to maintain the weave and/or the weekly hairstyle. What are your thoughts?
Pat Sumpter-Davis: I don't necessarily agree with Dr. Oz, based on my professional experience in the beauty industry and owner of a Hair Extension Company. I think there are misconceptions when it comes to hair extensions. I feel that anything you do to your hair can cause some type of damage if not cared for properly. Some women are braiding all of their hair and wearing hair extensions because it’s actually more convenient to workout. They feel it’s easier for them to maintain extensions than their own hair. It’s not necessarily the hair extensions that cause damage, there are things that people do to cause damage to the hair.
- Braiding the hair too tight.
- Wearing the extensions for an extended period of time.
- Relaxing and coloring the hair while the extensions are installed.
- Using the same pattern when braiding, which causes excessive stress on the hair.
- Using bad hair that requires pulling and tugging to detangle.
Hair Extensions should be done by a licensed, experienced professional who can teach you about how to maintain the health of your hair. Some women are deciding to go natural because they feel it's healthier. Keep in mind that natural hair requires the same amount of maintenance and upkeep to maintain a healthy head of hair.
Hair and Nails Examiner: What are your tips for caring for curly hair and what products do you recommend?
Pat Sumpter-Davis: Curly hair seems to be resistant and dry. I recommend using a product that adds moisture and locks in the curl pattern. Below are some of my favorites and I recommend wetting or misting the hair with water prior to using these products.
New episodes of “I Dream of NeNe: The Wedding” air on Bravo TV Tuesday evenings.
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