Beautiful in more ways than one. Caring and exuding a warmth likened to the rays of the sun. What a pleasure and blessing it's been to have made your acquaintance. Therefore I'll aspire to be your heart's Mr. Fix-it when it requires maintenance. Words can hardly describe the sheer lure of that enchanting smile. Oh, yes those pearly whites do nothing but compliment your classy style. Stay sweet as can be because that seems to be just who you are. Day by day, more and more your light shines brightly like a star.
Eric Bendross: Annette, I want you to tell us about your brand.
Annette Jones: We are an exclusive online lace wig and weaving hair company. We sell custom lace wigs, cranial hair prosthesis, clip ins and a variety of hair extensions. We offer products for bonding and removing lace wigs along with other hair care products to maintain healthy hair cut from donors. We import all of our hair from select regions around the world. Our hair is cuticle hair and 100% human, no synthetic fibers or fillers. We're known to sell the best Malaysian hair on the market.
Eric Bendross: Now, I’ve been doing some reading on you and am quite impressed, so would you please share with our readers: what makes your brand stand out and what makes you different from the rest? Tell us a bit more about your background in hair care.
Annette Jones: What makes us stand out from the rest is because our team is involved in the entire process from the sourcing of the hair to the delivery of the finished product. We take careful steps to ensure each hair strand is of superior quality. Our hair is handpicked, we always start with raw 100% Remy hair that either remains in its natural virgin state or goes through a gentle process for texture. This is very tedious and time consuming but we are very particular about only providing the best to our customers.
I am no beautician but I DO know quality hair. I have worn weaving hair and hair extensions for over 25 years and have an in-depth understanding of the intricate details required in selecting and maintaining healthy donor hair. The upkeep and care is quite different than when the hair is growing from the head.
Eric Bendross: How can this help women grow their own natural hair?
Annette Jones: Lace wigs and weaves can definitely be a safe way to grow out your natural hair. However, it’s very important to maintain your natural hair underneath the protective style. You need to wash your hair on a regular basis and keep it moisturized in order for this to work. Often, women get their wigs and weaves installed and forget about their natural hair underneath and when that happens your hair suffers and remains damaged or fails to grow. This can be a curse or a blessing depending on how you manage it.
Eric Bendross: Could you please tell us some of your short-term and long-term goals for California Lace Wigs & Weaves?
Annette Jones: Our short-term goals are just to continue to provide quality products as well as superior customer service. We ship same day and offer a huge inventory of in-stock products for our customers. We also offer custom orders where our customers can create and design the wig of their desires. We spend countless hours creating new and innovative ways to serve our customers, if it wasn't for them it would be no CLWW so we make sure we listen to all their compliments, concerns and suggestions. We are working on more hair options for our online retail store. There's an audience and customer base we have not tapped into and that’s a goal for us because we want to serve all ethnic backgrounds.
I cannot end this interview without blabbing about our new online wholesale store. We are soooo excited to offer our premium products to purchase for resale. We have sat down with some industry professionals, salon owners and stylists to create some awesome wholesale packages. Our wholesale store allows stylists and salon owners to do what they do best and let us provide the rest. We launched our online wholesale store earlier this year and it's growing by leaps and bounds. This by far is one of the most exciting ventures I've ever been involved with. The website for our wholesale store is www.californiahairwholesale.comStylists and persons in the hair industry can now partner with us by offering top quality premium products to their customers. It’s a win-win! We have packages that will suit stylists on every level.
Eric Bendross: Great! So, you all have a stand-alone store? An actual structure? …this is not just online?
Annette Jones: Both of our stores are exclusively online.
Eric Bendross: Okay. Can you please tell us some of the celebrities that have enjoyed the California Lace Wigs & Weaves experience?
Annette Jones: WOW, there are so many, let me see..... Faith Evans, (R&B singer); Draya, she’s a celebrity on the Los Angeles Basketball Wives; Elise Neal, actress in Hustle & Flow and Jumping the Broom; Natalie Nunn, we all know her from Bad Girls Club. There are many more.... ohhh, celebrity stylist: Ebony Stylez loves and wears our kinky straight hair; she’s a Hollywood stylist. Shirea L. Carroll, Editor of Juicy Magazine. Ohhh and we are getting ready to launch a new hairline, so stay tuned for that!
Eric Bendross: Richard Glass has worked with your hair as well; celebrity hairstylist: Richard Glass.
Annette Jones: Yes, Richard Glass…and Andrea (Jackson); she does hair styling on the set and film. We work with quite a few celebrity stylists; we are not far from Hollywood, where all the action is.
"LORD, deposit YOUR plans and purpose for my life in me so they will become my desires."- Emelda Wallace via Facebook
Amid all of the controversy, a young, ambitious mother emerges victorious. That’s right! Draya will not allow her detractors to get the best of her. As a matter of fact she considers them a non-factor. Aiming to usher in a renewal of her public persona; the Reality TV star shares some of her hopes for a prosperous future which certainly will include her son, another exciting season of Basketball Wives: LA, a new bikini line and more!
Intro to Draya Michele:
“Basically, I’m out here in Hollywood, doing my thing…I did Basketball Wives (LA) so that’s pretty much what everyone knows me for but before that I was just trying to find my way in the urban modeling world, doing music videos, commercials; things like that and you know, I have a lot of things going on…so that’s basically me in a nutshell; I wear many hats.”
Draya on her upcoming projects:
“Well, as of right now I’m working on my own swimsuit line and that’s called Mint Swim …that has been taking up the majority of my time. It’s a bikini line for the daring and the very sexy. And then we’re going to begin our taping of Season 2 of Basketball Wives (LA).”
Who are your favorite wives and why?
“On this Season it’s just going to be Tami and Kesha… I like Kesha; you know, the way she remains calm and I like her accent. She just reminds me of a Southern Bell and she just seems like a nice, sweet girl. And then I like Tami; she’s the opposite of that, you know, she’s very wild and says what’s on her mind. I just like that; she seems like a very strong woman and she’s very influential as far as black women go”
What do you have to say to your opponents in the media? The haters?
“I mean, basically, it’s just: nobody’s perfect and you know, the less that we judge the more comfortable we are in life. You know, I think people are very judgmental…they’re very uncomfortable with their own lives. You know, I don’t even have the time to focus on what other people are doing to even give negative feedback towards them because I’m just so busy, so… I mean I just hope people find things to do with their time other than research other people’s lives and then pass judgment on it.”
After editing of the show, what do you hope the portrayal of yourself will be on this Season?
“…the editing is a mystery, it’s always a mystery. You want one thing and then they show another thing, so... I mean, basically, just… I want them to show me working, that I’m a real businesswoman and that I take everything that I do for money very seriously. And, you know, that I’m just a different type of person…I’m not married and I don’t receive child-support so all the income that I make is all mine so it’s important to me to have a job and to stay busy. And I just want them to show… everything that I do for money and in my career is for my family because I take care of a lot of people”
How are your son and the family?
“My son and my Mom are very well. My son comes out here every other month to California. And he’ll be spending the entire summer out here, actually. So, right now we’re just waiting for his school to end and then he’ll be out here in L.A. with me.”
What has kept you going throughout all of the hardships, glitz and glamour?
“Well, definitely my Mom; she’s my main motivation and she just pushes me to be…to do better and she just pushes me to keep going, you know, not to settle with where I’m at in life that there’s always…you know, that I can go up! Always… there’s always an escalator leading to somewhere and my Mom is the one who’s behind me, encouraging me to do those things.”
After it’s all said and done what do you want to be remembered for?
“I just want to be remembered as, you know, all bad girls are not bad girls and you know, I’m not known for the many good things that I do. I was more known for the bad things that people think that I do. And I’m just trying to turn that around, just to let them know that I could start off bad but I’m working day by day to clean up this image and to let the world know that I’m a good person inside and out.”
The following questions were asked on behalf of some of the readers that follow my work:
If you had it to do all over again, would you still do Basketball Wives (LA)?
“Yes, definitely I would do it over again. I haven’t got this much exposure ever in my life and I don’t know what I would have done instead. I mean I had a plan but I don’t know what I would have done instead of Basketball Wives (LA) in order to make it where I am today.”
Is there anything you would have changed? Your approach, your introduction to the other ladies on the show?
“No, I wouldn’t change anything, simply because I was 100% myself, you know? … a lot people would have wanted me to be a little bit more mean, a little bit more aggressive but I mean in all reality that’s not my personality. And, you know, I just…I gave the audience exactly what they wanted: reality and that was really me, so… no, I wouldn’t change anything.”
How would a clothing designer or makeup artist go about getting in touch with you?
“I’m signed to an agency that’s pretty much exclusively me so if they wanted to send me something or work with me, they’d basically just have to hit up my agency and we have a simple website: www.tsdagency.com ”
How tall are you?
Eric Bendross: I’m Eric Bendross and I’m here today with exceptional talent, Beautiful Model, Actress and Recording Artist: Dominique Reighard.
Dominique Reighard: Heeeeyy! (smiles and laughs) Thank you for having me.
Eric Bendross: Absolutely…Dominique, first I want to thank you so much because I know, literally, you just got off the plane from L.A. Thank you so much for giving us this interview. The first question I want to ask is: how did you get started in the business?
Dominique Reighard: You know what; I’ve always had a dream of modeling, acting-singer, just kind of being your ultimate entertainer and I just woke up one day and I said I’m going to do it! I’m going to follow the dreams that I had growing up as a little girl. And, you know, I think the most important thing in anything you want to do in life (is) do your research, study! …know everything you need to know about what it means to be in front of the camera as well as behind the camera, behind the scenes… And I studied, I started reaching out to people, I kept trying out for America’s Next Top Model. I think I tried out like six times and I kept… they kept telling me “no” and it got to the point where I would walk into the casting and I would know everybody and be like: “Hey, girl!...What you doing?!” “Yeah, I’m back again!” (laughing) So, keep trying…you know, as long as you keep moving forward and making steps, moving forward something will always pull through so consistency is the most important thing and doing your research. So, that’s where I started.
Eric Bendross: Now, you’re obviously a go-getter. I mean you just mentioned about how you tried out and tried out for America’s Next Top Model. What has been your motivation?
Dominique Reighard: I don’t want to have any regrets in life, everything I do in my life I begin with the end in mind. At the end of the day I want to say that I’ve lived this life to the fullest and did everything that I’ve ever dreamed of doing and more importantly I want to set that same example for other young girls out there as well as for my daughters. So, I know if I don’t follow my dreams and set the standard like up here (pointing upward) then I can’t expect them to do it (laughs) I’m all about producing results and doing the things that feel good and living my life with passion.
Eric Bendross: Absolutely…now, please share with us some of the experiences, the highlights of being on America’s Next Top Model?
Dominique Reighard: Well, I must say it’s a crash course of kind of what this industry is like in some regards…because yeah, you get criticized but you get criticized even worse in this industry. You know, I’ve gone to shoots and you think the judging panel on Top Model is bad you have no idea (laughs) it’s just…it’s life, you know, everybody is going to have an opinion… me, per se, you know, I’ve just been like a sponge, soaking it all in… you know, all the feedback; I’ve made it work for me and not against me …Tyra has really shown me how to just kind of step outside of the box as far as shooting and learning everything I need to know behind the camera as well as being in front of the camera. It’s a crash course of what this industry is like. It’s tough!… it just is what it is and it kind of got my feet wet with things. So, I would say Cycle 10; got my feet wet…modelville; okay, doing my thang! And then you know; All-Star Cycle: okay, that’s fine; I know what I can do! Tyra…if only she knew what she was creating over here (laughing).
Eric Bendross: Nice!... (laughing) So, tell us about the new single: “Main Chick”…?
Dominique Reighard: Yes! Main Chick is featuring one of my girl’s named Diamond from Crime Mob and it’s a fun, kind of like… I would say it’s Pop and it has that guitar and this little Rock-feel to it but you know, it’s saying I want to be your main chick! It’s a female speaking to her significant other as well as letting that other female know: “Hold up, Honey! I don’t know what you’re thinking but…” (laughs) So, it’s a fun song, I know a lot of females out there…we’ve all been in that situation before so I wanted something that the ladies could feel and that they would… you know, something for the ladies…like a lady’s anthem… like something that, you know, that I feel.. that “I’ve been in that situation” and “I understand”. And I think gentlemen can relate to that, too, as well but it’s a fun track. You know, I had fun working with Diamond and Derek Blanks shot the music video.
Eric Bendross: Nice, nice…it’s definitely about keeping it real…
Dominique Reighard: Most definitely! (exhales in a bit of laughter) I want my music to be stuff that people can relate to. It’s constantly evolving. You know, I have another single coming out called I Feel Like Someone Tonight and we’re working on that project right now and it’s…after listening to On Top of The World then Main Chick when you hear I Feel Like Someone Tonight; you’re going to be like “What happened?! Is that really her? Aww…hold up!” (both laugh) So, you know, I will say this: I’ve been very consistent at keeping that shock factor in everything I do… Because, you know, it’s unexpected…you just like: what is she going to do next? so…
Eric Bendross: Speaking of which; I mean you have these projects…any other projects? Films? Or…? Any more modeling? What’s down the road?
Dominique Reighard: Right now, I’m getting ready to tour and working on my album…be hitting up all of the Gay Pride Festivals and performing, you know, my two singles: On Top of the World as well as I Feel Like Someone Tonight which will be out soon. So I’m excited about that and I’m getting ready for that and… yeah, when I step out…!! (laughs) so, that’s what’s on my plate right now and there’s a lot of other projects in the works but that’s something I can speak on right now at that the moment.
Eric Bendross: Any particular photographers that you really enjoy working with?
Dominique Reighard: I work with Derek Blanks a lot in Atlanta. And I also work with Manny Roman, he’s in New York and he actually use to be from Miami (laughs), a Miami-based photographer and he’s in New York now. We have a great friendship and working relationship and I’ve worked with him over the past…oh, my gosh, I don’t even know how long… it’s been a long time! (laughs) but I’m open to working with new people and I work with new people all the time, I love shooting…every time I shoot I learn something more about myself. And it’s just something you can just keep pushing and I love being creative and becoming characters and just having fun, it’s fun for me it’s a great way to express however I’m feeling and artistically express it through shooting, you know, as well as I love writing and singing and that’s another form of expression for me so to combine the two; it’s fun!
Eric Bendross: How do you feel about being a role model for youth that have the same aspirations as yourself?
Dominique Reighard: It’s an overwhelming feeling. It’s a… You know, when I think about that before I go to sleep at night, it gives me that much more motivation to get up at 4 o’clock in the morning. (laughing joyfully) You know?!! And I love having that responsibility. I’ve always told a lot of my personal friends and family: you know, maybe one day I might be a motivational speaker. I have no idea. I’m just thankful that I have this platform and that Tyra’s given me this opportunity to have this platform for me to have a huge international fan base. And, you know, it’s an overwhelming feeling to know that people look up to me and there’s a lot of other young girls and young guys out there that look up to me. It’s a great feeling and it keeps me pushing to work harder and to do more and to be more not just for myself but for everybody else, you know? …just passing the inspiration on, it’s a domino effect or at least that’s what I’m trying to create.
Eric Bendross: And you mentioned your children…how’s the new addition doing?
Dominique Reighard: She’s doing very, very good. And she’s in Atlanta right now (laughs with delight).
Eric Bendross: Alright…and last question: how do you effectively balance family and career?
Dominique Reighard: You just gotta do it! You just…I just do it. I just go. My schedule gets hectic. Things get too crazy but I think... you know, I work really, really hard and I invite the challenge…it is a challenge but like anything in life; it’s also rewarding and you know, it’s so funny I’m working off an hour of sleep right now! (laughs) I said I only had an hour of sleep, I’m like: good LORD! (laughs) but no, you gotta just keep going! I mean that’s what life is about, you can sleep when you die and when you’re living your life with passion and more importantly on top of the world…I mean sleep doesn’t…where’s that in the equation? It’s not anywhere in the equation so, I just… I work really hard. I just keep going. And I’m blessed to have a family, I’m very blessed and... it gives me even that much more push to keep wanting to do more and to be more! And I invite the challenge (laughing) and I’m doing it!
Eric Bendross: Thank you so much, Dominique …truly appreciate it.
Dominique Reighard: Thank you!…appreciate it.
Need that spiritual pick-me-up during the week? Many of us could use some uplifting