Camille Blue, a junior dance major, started Twisted by Camille when she was 10 years old by experimenting with her sister’s hair. At 14, she braided her sisters leftover hair extensions into her own hair for eighth grade graduation, and continued practicing. Today, Blue is using her self-taught skill to pay the way to a bachelor’s degree.
“I just like it because, when I was younger, we didn’t have money for me to just get my hair done,” Blue said. “I like giving people that nice feeling; getting pampered in a way without having to worry about it. This also saves the client’s time in the morning for the next month or two.”
Twisted by Camille provides students with access to affordable hairstyles. Blue wants to give students the opportunity to try something special without breaking the bank.
“I’m trying to provide affordable hairstyling for students because we don’t have money to be giving to salons,” Blue said.
The majority of Blue’s customers are fellow students that choose from a variety of braids and twists listed on the Twisted Instagram page. Twisted by Camille hairstyles are not only 50% cheaper than one would pay at for a salon hairdresser, but more comfortable. Customers get to relax and hang out in Blue’s living room while the braiding is done.
Reminiscent of a slumber party where the girls are trying out new hairstyles on friends, Blue’s braids are something to show off for days and weeks to come. Blue gets to bond with her clients and they often end up so engaged, they just stay and talk after their hair is done.
Karsen Griffin, a sophomore exercise science major, has formed a relationship with Blue and appreciates the time she takes to connect with her clients.
“I went to Camille because she was someone I knew I could trust, and her work really spoke for itself,” Griffin said. “Each time I have gotten twisted I have never regretted it and would recommend her to any and everyone.”
Blue keeps her customers entertained since the braiding and twisting process can last a few hours, so they often play a movie or television show in the background such as “Catfish,” where Blue provides commentary on the internet trolls.
“I”m gonna make my kids watch this,” Blue said. “Watch ‘Catfish’, trust no one.”
Blue is a perfectionist, and warns that she will work on a single side part for half an hour if she must. Even when she tries out new styles on friends, she makes sure they’re perfected.
“I just like doing hair, it’s not even about money,” Blue said. “I just think it’s fun and I like to see the end product. I like to see how people feel like when they leave.”
Blue has been getting to see many more excited clients as her business grows. This past May, Blue got very serious about Twisted by Camille.
She designed her own logo to put on the updated Instagram page. This summer after working 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Staples, Blue would come home and do hair until midnight, five days a week.
“It’s not like I just do hair on the side, this business is my baby,” Blue said.
This summer she plans on resigning from Staples to do hair full time and build her business. Blue is very humble about her braiding talent, despite starting her own business at the age of 15.
“This could really become a business that takes me a lot of places,” Blue said. “So I’d be happy doing this or dancing, it really doesn’t matter to me.”
Although Blue loves doing elaborate hairstyles, and suggests that the woman on “Catfish” needed to get twisted, her own hair is not in braids. After this summer, Blue chose to go natural.
“Your hair doesn’t always have to be maintained and I was trying to show my parents that because they’re from an age where you have to go outside looking a certain way all the time,” Blue said. “I want to show them that you don’t.”
So while Blue demonstrates that her natural hair is beautiful, she helps other students make their own statement with different styles, all while twisting her hobby and hustle together.