Nina Aprile went from celebrity hairstylist to entrepreneur thanks to being known as “That Girl That Did Your Hair. Aprile made Manhattan her salon throughout her twenties as the majority of her career was spent as a freelance hair stylist specializing in celebrity clientele, working magazines, NYFW, television and film. Although Nina’s name was clearly stated on call sheets, people weren’t referring to her as such. “At the point in my career when I was freelancing heavily in the media industry, while spending days on set, instead of being referred to as my actual name ‘Nina’, I would hear ‘where is that girl that did your that”, or “I’m with that girl that did my hair”. Several of those moments made something click for me, I took the name the industry gave me and ignited it with wit and humor,” she shared.
Aprile took the undervaluing of losing her name and turned it into her alter ego, a character who embodied nothing but confidence and a fierce attitude. One of the many anecdotes she shares include how hard it was for her to get to a place of name recognition (even if it wasn’t her actual name), “For instance, I bought a gym membership at a Retro Fitness gym just to use the bathroom during the day and when I wasn‘t working I was chasing clients to pay me. I quickly learned the downside of freelancing is your jobs are temporary and so are your paychecks. I took note of every struggle and experience I had throughout this time, and it used it as inspiration for every idea in my book and products I would later come up with.”
The start of turning “that girl that did your hair” into a brand was more of a creative outlet for Aprile in between working on sets for big TV networks like ESPN. “I worked with several big TV networks and during the workday I was really only working in between commercial breaks. I took advantage of the downtime and let my brain work the overtime to create. I took these concepts and added my own twist, connecting my merch back to chapters I had created in my book,” she explained. “Each series I create is born with my vision of Manhattan.Everything I create has a story, details, and meaning behind it. I wasn’t really active on social media at this point because I didn’t want to be known for the people I styled or the jobs I worked for. I wanted to be known as an artist, and not be defined by other peoples names. I wanted my Instagram to become a mysterious mood, and make followers question, who is ‘that girl that did your hair’?”New York City became the muse for every product idea I created. The real gritty, everyday, NY streets and attitude that makes the city what it is.