Making Waves: The Natural Hair Expert

Britteny Davidson decided to be the change she wanted to see in the hair care community by promoting self care and self love.
Photography by Jes Nijjer

WANTING TO take control of her own hair when she was just 8 years old, Britteny Davidson found her calling as a stylist early in life. “It probably stemmed from being ‘tender-headed,’” she explains. Her experimentation led to her doing others’ hair, and the rest is history. By the time she was 13, she was serving clients in her bedroom and even had a hooded dryer. “I’ve always done hair, whether it be my own or someone else’s. It’s always been a part of who I am,” she shares.

But despite developing her skills at a young age, for many years Davidson was only familiar with styles that restrained her natural hair, like braids and relaxers, and had little understanding of what her hair’s texture was really like. When she decided to buck the popular trends in her 20s, her natural curl pattern came as a surprise. “As my hair grew out, I noticed my roots were curly. It really took a while for me to understand that I had curly hair. I never got to discover that part of myself until I was an adult.”

Today, Davidson runs Kurlykoils (4151 Boulevard Pl.), a Butler-Tarkington salon serving people with naturally curly hair, whether their texture is kinky, fine, or in-between. The shop’s Instagram page showcases gorgeous curls belonging to a range of clients—adults, children, men, women, and people of every race and ethnicity—whose hair she and her team have brought to life.

Davidson chose to focus on curls because after going natural, she couldn’t find many stylists who worked with hair like hers without struggling or trying to straighten it, especially when it came to haircuts. “Most of us were trained to cut hair while it’s wet, but cutting curly hair wet makes for an uneven cut and [leads to] it shrinking up a lot more than anticipated when it dries,” she says. She instead uses techniques that allow her to cut and maintain hair without straightening it.

Kurlykoils prioritizes getting curls to a healthy state and teaching people about their natural hair—what type they have, what products to use, and what routines to follow. They even host workshops for parents who need advice about caring for their children’s locks.

Kurlykoils’ services cater to those who are prepared to fully embrace their natural curls, which for many may mean the “big chop,” or cutting off relaxed or heat-trained hair. But Davidson does not try to talk anyone into it. Clients should be ready to take that step on their own.

To Davidson, boldly rocking one’s natural curls is a lifestyle. “People who have naturally curly hair but wear it straight are constantly fighting themselves. It’s hard to exercise because you can’t get your hair wet. You can’t swim, and everything is planned around the weather. This lifestyle sets you free.”