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From Hair Extensions to Harvard Meet Riqua Hailes

Hard work is an understatement, meet Riqua Hailes a recently accepted Harvard Business Analytics student who secured a double scholarship in quest to give the consumer insight into successful measures at being the entrepreneur we all want to be, especially when it comes to choosing the best hair extensions.

 Riqua Hailes owner of Just Extensions applies life experience and business expertise to diversifying and growing profitable brands. With over 15-years of proven business experience, Riqua speaks to the power of perseverance, the importance of authenticity and the immeasurable value of betting on yourself. Beginning her entrepreneurial career in retail, Riqua understands the power in diversification. In 2005, Riqua opened her first brick and mortar in Georgetown, Washington, D.C. Her company Hailes Holdings, LLC has grown into a fruitful business portfolio that’s includes: “Shoe Addict”, “The Weave Express” and “Just Extensions”.

Just Extensions Salon was founded in 2012 by Riqua Hailes in Los Angeles.  Just Extensions offers extension lovers an alternative to the long application hours and overpriced services typically associated with getting extensions. “With over 50,000 clients served, it was mandatory to expand the hair collection”, say Hailes. The hair salon experience is very segregated and JE has successfully bridge the gap of diversifying the hair extensions beauty experience. “No other brand services the diversity of clients we have daily over the last 7 years.” Unlike most hair extensions companies, Just Extensions independently sources 100% Indian Temple Hair that is processed at the Just Extensions factory in Northern Indian. Additionally, Just Extensions sources hair in, China, Russia and Brazil. Just Extensions makes choosing the right extensions for your hair texture and natural length simple by providing each new client with a consultation and maintenance tips. The salon offers six signature packages that includes; micro-links, braided sew-in, beaded weft, fusion, tape and clips-in hair extensions applications that range from $100 - $300 dollars.

We sat down with Riqua in order to shed some light and inspiration to our fellow On Mogul readers, here is what she had to say:

What should college students know about Just Extensions?

"Anyone whowears hair extensions should know that Just Extensions Hair offers 100% Indiantemple hair at competitive prices, that make it easy for collage students topurchase our hair with confidence that Just Extensions hair will last them during an entire school year. "

What should college students know about you?

"Going away to college was the best decision I made. My entire collage experience made animpact on my life. It exposed me to a variety of nationalities, diversity and travel."

What work opportunities would be offered to young new students by your brand- if any?

"Young students bring a fresh perspective into every aspect of my business, from branding and marketing to business analytics and human resources. I am always on the hunt for talented, hardworking; creative people and students alwaysbring new energy that contributes to the growth of Just Extensions Hair."

You once opened up a salon for your employees- tell us about this and why you did it?

"I opened two sister salons, Just Weaves, with the plan to; partner with employees, build andgrow the brand and allow employees to transition from workers to ownership.Unfortunately, after 2 years that partnership didn’t go as planned and Iclosed. In business sometimes you wins and you have learning lessons, thelosses. But it remains important for me to directly give back to mycommunity and do my part."

What are the essential key characteristics for a boss entrepreneur such as your self? What are theses keys factors?

The key characteristics, I think are essential for me: 

·      Vision – if I can see it I canachieve it.

·      Hustle- never stop working anddon’t make excuses.  

·      Integrity- do every thing right.

What are you most proud of?

"I am proud of the consistency and growth I have been able to maintain throughout my career. It makes me proud to see the history of my accomplishments." 

What was your biggest accomplishment?

"I am not sure if I have a single accomplishment that’s the biggest.  I am grateful for every project I have been able to complete successfully."

We recently heard you have been accepted to Harvard?  Can you let me know why you are going back, and how was that application process?

"I am exited about my acceptance and scholarship to Harvard Business Analytics Program. As aserial entrepreneur, it’s mandatory that I grow my business skills on multiple platforms and Harvard is the great place to start. 

The application process was simple, however, it took me a few weeks to draft my letter of intent as I wanted admission to understand my goals and it was that letter that awarded me a scholarship."



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