What beauty tools do you use the most?
This will help us personalize your experience.

Trailblazing in Beauty: Hairstylist Desireé Irving's Impact on Natural Hair


Meet Desireé Irving, an emerging star in hairstyling. Hailing from Spencer, Oklahoma, Irving’s love affair with hair blossomed during her formative years in middle school. Fueled by a burning passion, she seized the opportunity to study cosmetology at a vocational school while simultaneously completing her high school education, quickly earning her license upon graduation.

As Irving set foot on the grounds of Langston University, her continuous love for hairstyling continued to grow. Initially working as a hairstylist for pageants, she soon craved a more creative outlet. Post-college graduation, Irving continued to hone her skills while working full-time in a hair salon.

Her devotion to studying and caring for natural hair propelled her to take the leap of faith and relocate to Hollywood, driven by a desire to fill a void in the industry for textured hair. "In Hollywood, we've all heard the complaints of inadequate support on sets or a lack of resources specifically catered to textured hair. I realized I could bridge that gap," Irving explained.

Ahead, we had the pleasure of chatting with Irving about her remarkable journey as a natural hair extraordinaire and content creator. Additionally, she shares her invaluable insights and expert tips for cultivating and maintaining lustrous, healthy hair.

Her Journey to Hollywood

With more than a decade of professional styling experience under her belt, Irving has established herself as a true master of her trade, particularly when it comes to textured hair. "I'm the textured person that they are now starting to call on different sets," Irving proudly shares. "And that's exciting because that's a major shift from salon suite life." Her expertise and versatility have garnered attention, expanding her horizons beyond the confines of a traditional salon.

Irving’s artistry has graced the stages of the LA Opera, where her exquisite hairstyling perfectly complemented the grandeur and elegance of the productions. Beyond the opera, her talents have appeared in film projects, commercial work, and high-profile print campaigns. "I do a lot of indie films out here in LA and a lot of private photo shoot work for signed dancers," she explains. "It's just a variety of work and a lot of fun." Her ability to translate her artistic vision into unique and captivating hairstyles has made her a trusted collaborator in various creative spaces. Whether it's capturing the essence of a character in a film or enhancing the expressiveness of dancers through their hairstyles, Irving brings her unique twist to every project she takes on.

Reflecting on the early days of her time in LA, Irving reminisces about a particularly memorable experience working with a high-profile sports brand. "One that comes to mind right in the beginning of me being out in LA was working with Nike," she recalls. "That was a two-day shoot, and it was just magical because we were going on location. You just got to witness what it looked like for a commercial shoot to run." Working on location added an extra layer of excitement and creativity to her styling process, inherently showcasing her out-of-the-box approach to creating visually stunning looks.

Moving in Front of the Camera: Her Transition to Content Creation

While Irving’s love for her craft and growing success as a stylist continues to reach new heights, she's tapped into other forums to push her creative boundaries further. Stepping out from behind the scenes, Irving has embraced the digital stage as a content creator, amplifying her passion and expertise to a wider audience. With each post on her Instagram and TikTok pages, she shares her expert tips and techniques, empowering viewers to embrace their unique hair journeys and celebrate their natural beauty.

Reflecting on her evolution as a content creator, Irving emphasizes, "I feel like everybody at this point has to be a content creator. We started using social media before content creation was a topic of discussion for advertising. And now content creation brings in a whole different business aspect," says Irving. Indeed, in today's digital landscape, the ability to create engaging content has become a fundamental skill for professionals across various industries.

For Irving, content creation is a means of connecting with her followers and a tremendous creative outlet. Through each post, Irving invites her viewers into her world by sharing her expert tips and personal insights in an authentic and relatable manner.

Unlocking the Secrets to Healthy Hair

Irving’s commitment to optimal hair health matches her prowess in creating stunningly artistic hairstyles. With a trove of knowledge, the hair extraordinaire lets us in on her top tips for achieving and maintaining a gorgeous, healthy mane.

"Steaming your hair is a game-changer," says Irving. "I've advocated for it from the beginning, and I still carry that belief to this day. Steaming serves as the cherry on top for any conditioner." The expert raves about the many benefits, like how it nourishes the strands, enhances moisture retention, and promotes overall hair health and shine.

Irving’s next tip is as timeless as it is essential: regular trims. She emphasizes the importance of finding a skilled professional who understands the intricacies of your hair. "It may be challenging to find the right stylist, but don't lose hope," she advises. "Take the time to read reviews, seek recommendations, and invest in someone who can provide expert trims. Regular trimming keeps split ends at bay, prevents breakage, and promotes healthy growth. It's a vital step in maintaining the beauty and vitality of your hair.”

However, Irving believes that true hair care extends beyond products alone. "To achieve optimal hair health, be more intentional about the small things," she says. "Pay attention to how you sleep, the material of your pillowcase, and even what you put on your head." These seemingly insignificant habits can profoundly impact your hair's well-being. Resting on a silk pillowcase, for example, reduces friction and prevents unnecessary tugging and breakage. "By consistently prioritizing these small habits, you'll witness remarkable transformations that add to significant victories for your hair."

An Inspiration for Aspiring Creatives

Irving’s journey within the beauty industry has only just begun, but her potential knows no bounds. While she couldn't divulge all the exciting projects she currently has in the works, it's clear that she is a force. Not content with being a talented hairstylist and content creator, Irving is set to embark on a new chapter as an instructor, sharing her knowledge and passion with aspiring hairstylists. "I am pivoting and going more into the educational realm. I'm still going to continue what I'm doing in LA within the industry, like working campaign shoots and things like that, but I'm also incorporating teaching," explains Irving.

Irving continues to take her craft to new levels through hard work and unwavering faith in herself. She reminds us all that success is not limited to a chosen few; it resides within each of us. She encourages aspiring creatives from all walks of life to persevere, embrace change, and never be afraid to pivot. "The key lies in listening to our inner voice and following the guidance it provides," says Irving. Irving is forever on a journey of evolution, and her ability to highlight the natural beauty of every hair type continues to inspire, leaving an indelible mark on the beauty industry.

Inspired by Irving’s story and want to learn about more talented trailblazers? Discover more Beauty Through The Black Lens stories here.

Ready to get more beauty personalized just for you? Take our Beauty Quiz now to get started with your own IPSY subscription. Already a member? Refer your friends to earn points, which you can use toward products. Either way, don’t forget to check us out on Instagram and TikTok @IPSY.

Like this article? Share it with your friends by clicking the icons below!

About the author
Chelsea Hall
Chelsea Hall
Chelsea is an NYC-based fashion and beauty writer with over 7 years experience. She has held roles at publications such as Harper's Bazaar, WWD, InStyle, and Marie Claire. Her writing has also appeared on ELLE.com and POPSUGAR.com.
Share Article
Article Last Updated July 24, 2023 12:00 AM