When my daughter’s hair became increasingly tangled, I knew it was time for a regular bedtime bonnet. However, I wanted to make sure that the bonnets were made of the highest quality – from materials that would really protect and nurture her strands overnight. She didn’t understand why she needed to sleep with a bonnet. So first, we read books that helped her to appreciate both her natural hair and the nuanced routine of nighttime protective coverings. Next, I searched for a bedtime bonnet.
I came across a mom-and-daughter duo who clearly understood our plight. Beautiful Curly Me, the kid-owned business that specializes in dolls and hair care accessories, is just what I needed for our family. Not only does this brand sell high-quality bedtime bonnets, their highly popular “sleepcap sets” supports everyone’s nighttime kinky-curly hair routine. The sleepcap set comes with a bonnet for mom, daughter, and even one for my daughter’s precious baby doll.
We connected with Atlanta-based kidpreneur Zoe Oli and her mom, Evana Oli, to understand their motivation for launching Beautiful Curly Me and what we can expect to see from the brand in the future.
Real Beautiful: Not many kids are thinking about starting businesses at such a young age. What led you to starting your own line of dolls?
Beautiful Curly Me: When I was younger, I didn’t like my hair and wished it was straight like my classmates. Getting a Black doll and lots of encouragement helped me to love my hair. However, I noticed that my Black doll didn’t have hair like mine, so I told my Mom that we should create dolls with curls and braids, so that myself and other girls could have dolls we can relate to and know that we are beautiful just the way we are.
RB: How has Beautiful Curly Me shaped your own hair journey?
BCM: By inspiring other girls to love their natural curls, it has inspired us to love and celebrate ours even more. For me, as Zoe’s mom, I started wearing my natural hair to encourage Zoe to see the beauty in her own hair. The journey has allowed me to truly feel confident in my own skin. I am her first teacher, so it’s important for me to embrace my hair so that she loves hers. Zoe also appreciates wearing her hair in different styles – afros, twists, puff, and cornrows! She loves and feels very comfortable with her hair.
RB: The mission of your company is to inspire other young girls and women to be #curlyandconfident. What do you think is the most important part of instilling self confidence?
BCM: Self-awareness. To be able to really look at yourself and decide to love it all. It’s about choosing to show up every day knowing that you are enough and beautiful just the way you are. Positive (and intentional) daily affirmations are a great way to practice this. Say it with me, “I am beautiful. I am unique. I love every part of myself.”
RB: A lot of the organizations you give back to reinforce the idea of empowering and raising confidence. How do you choose what organizations to give back to? Any that you hope to include in the future?
BCM: We seek out smaller organizations that are making an impact in local communities. We hope to do a lot more in our city of Atlanta and are always open to new partnerships.
RB: It’s very refreshing seeing a young business owner faithfully using their own product. What would you say is your favorite product from your catalogue?
BCM: I love playing with my dolls, but I have to say I also really love the Mommy, Mini & Me sleepcap sets – I get to match with my Mom and my doll at bedtime while we take care of our hair. It’s always fun to choose which fun print to wear each night.
RB: What’s been your favorite quarantine style during these past few months?
BCM: Definitely twists. After washing and moisturizing, Mom puts my hair in twists which are easy and lasts for an entire week.
RB: In what ways do you hope to expand Beautiful Curly Me over the foreseeable future? Are you hoping to introduce any new products?
BCM: We are planning to expand our doll line as well as include new hair care solutions for babies.
Support Beautiful Curly Me by purchasing from a wide array of dolls and sleep caps from their online store.