Candid convo with Kimberly Elise (BWE)
There’s something about Kimberly. Most known for her breakout acting roles in the hit movies Set It Off and Woman Thou Art Loosed, K. Elise shared nuggets on health and wellness at The Black Women’s Expo in Chicago.
"A Candid Conversation" was the title of the afternoon seminar and it was just that. An informal chat that you'd have with some of your close girlfriends.
She walked us through the onset of her career journey when she wrote a letter to the Minnesota Star Tribune. Curious about becoming an actress, she simply submitted a request asking for directives. How do I become an actress? In pursuit of Hollywood, she landed a spot in a national Wendy's commercial campaign which funded half her college tuition to the University of Minnesota.
Writing and directing short films became her passion and she relocated to Los Angeles, California shortly after college. Her film submission was selected as one of the winners from a competition held by The American Film Institute in L.A. Couldn't image what it was like for her uprooting family and moving around the globe until she casually began to share. There she was with her 4 year old daughter, late husband and siamese cat, unaware of the types of obstacles they'd meet during their commute. Almost fell off the Colorado mountain, got mugged in Vegas and although that was enough to throw in the towel, they travailed and crossed over into their new beginning.
LL Cool J's show "In the House" was Kimberly Elise's first gig before her roles in Woman Thou Art Loosed and Set If Off.
Speaking of Set It Off, the premiere was nerve wrecking for Ms. Elise. Arriving at the movie premiere in her Ford Taurus as Jada Pinkett Smith and Queen Latifah hops out their foreign luxury cars with warm welcomes. The nervousness overtook her, but she kept repeating to herself....I am greatness, I am greatness, I am greatness.
She found the courage to step out the car to greet her co-stars with a simple statement.
Hello. I’m Kimberly!
She exudes humility, confidence and shared wisdom on the importance of life balance. Allowing support, offering support and surrounding yourself with people that believe in you. Accepting the gift in the form of a compliment. Compliments are windows to revelations you many not be in touch with.
Her natural hair care line was birthed when falling in love with her natural hair texture mirrored the desire to enhance the African American woman hair care journey. Most of us know how real that journey can get. Finding the right product for your hair type can be costly and down right intimidating. Kimberly shares in the frustration of having type 4c hair (very coily), but she claims her curl pattern is much tighter like a 4z (coily to the extreme). Her best selling Hair Elixir oil is made to properly moisturize all hair types. In talking to a college student of Asian decent, she doesn’t understand why Black women would want to wear someone’s else’s hair because our hair is so special. Pause. The moment when the room gets quiet. Lastly, Kimberly touched on the elephant in the room. Hair discrimination within our communities based on hair texture. The last thing we should be doing is creating a divide based on whether someone chooses to wear their hair in its natural state or straight.
L.I.S.T.E.N. I've had just about EVERY hairstyle there is because I enjoy style versatility. Once I decided to get my haircut, I took it a step further with color because why not, right? Many say that my hair is no longer considered "natural" due to the chemicals from the hair color. Although I have it blow dried and curled, my hair curls up naturally when wet and any sign of humidity shows up in the form of frizz all over my hair. So although it may appear as if I have a perm/relaxer, I'm still a natural hair gal with struggles just like anyone else. The question becomes, is this really worth debate or discrimination?
Issa no for me.
A candid convo with Kimberly Elise was a breath of fresh air and very well moderated by Inspiration 1390 radio personality, Marcella Jones. The Black Women's Expo was well attended with women (and some gentlemen) of all ages celebrating the authenticity of our culture.
Ran into Tatianah Green of Bliss for Singles, one of the Black Bloggers United members (#BBUCHI). Check out her recap here on the #BWe seminar she covered...Bosses in Heels.
Make plans to attend the next The Black Women's Expo! An experience designed just for us as a source of inspiration, community engagement and sisterhood!