Let me just tell you that I am beyond excited to share my most recent interview with you all! I was able to speak with TV personality, model and photographer Nikki Gomez, of TLC‘s Big Sexy. I was drawn to Nikki’s gorgeous hair the moment she was brought to my attention by her publicist and just had to have her share her hair secrets. So, without further ado please welcome Nikki Gomez!
Hello Nikki! It is such a pleasure to speak with you, could you please introduce yourself and tell us a little about your background and what you do.
Hi Kiianah, it’s a pleasure meeting you. I am a plus size model and photographer born and raised here in New York. I am also starring in the new TLC reality show “Big Sexy” which began airing August 30th on TLC.
You have a gorgeous head of hair, your curls were the first thing that stood out when I first saw your picture. How do you maintain your hair?
Well, I like to wear it curly as much as possible. I wash it every two days usually with Tresseme shampoo and conditioner or L’oreal Vive Hydra Gloss shampoo and conditioner. I love those products because the conditioners really leave my hair soft and manageable. I brush my hair when it’s still damp out of the shower but first I put in some leave in conditioner. I love to use “Mixed Chicks” leave in conditioner to start. Then I add a curl defining mousse like Marc Anthony volumizing styling foam mousse. Often times that’s all I need so I just scrunch it up with my hands and diffuse it so I get the right amount of volume and go
(…) As a model, do you find that wearing your hair straight is more in demand?
I actually find it’s 50/50. Early in my modeling career I was always asked to wear it straight but, I think that was also because most of the images in my portfolio were of me with straight hair. I think clients like to see diversity so they can decide what works best for them. Once I added more photos with my curly hair they started to request curly.
So, tell us your hair story? Have you encountered any frustrations with your curly hair or was there ever a period where you disliked your hair?
I had so many issues with my hair as a child. While my mom had wavy hair it was a softer texture than mine so she struggled with my hair. I remember her cutting it very short so it would be easier for her to style. I hated my hair short because I am a very girlie girl so long hair was always my preference. When I was about 8 she let it grow but then took me to a friend of hers to hot comb my hair straight. I remember thinking that was torture. I vowed to never do that again. As I got older I started to experiment with relaxers. I would do my own relaxer at home (it didn’t occur to me how dangerous that was) and I would get so upset that it would curl up after a shower. I had no idea I was supposed to blow dry it first and leave it dry. That was a hard lesson to learn. I always wanted the kind of hair that blew in the wind or that you could run your fingers through. Since I am mixed and grew up with just the Latin side of my family no one in my family could relate or help me with my hair identity.
You have a lot of versatility with your hair, which styles do you enjoy most?
Thank you. Now that I understand my hair I love wearing it naturally curly and big. The right haircut also makes all the difference when it comes to my curls. I love layers so I don’t get that weird triangle shape to my hair. It’s important to me to have a cut that also looks good when my hair is straight. When it comes to curly styles, the bigger the better and if people don’t like it… too bad. LOL. But, I also love it straight. Now, I know I don’t have to torture it to get it straight. Just wash and blow dry and leave it straight for about 4-5 days and it cooperates. I really enjoy changing up my look just by changing my hair.
Name five products or styling tools that you cannot live without.
2) Marc Anthony volumizing styling foam mousse
3) A great wide tooth comb to work out the knots
4) My Amika flat iron for straight hair days
5) A good blow-dryer with a diffuser
What’s the best thing about being a curly girl?
Off topic from hair for a moment, how did you get into the modeling industry?
I was told by several people growing up that I should look into plus size modeling. I even entered several model searches but was never chosen. When I got a little older I did some online research and found a website that specialized in plus modeling. There were a lot of influential people on that site so I figured it would be a good place to get some feedback about my potential. I posted several snapshots of myself on the site. The feedback was very positive and one of the models on that site recommended I go to a new agency in NY that specialized in plus size models. I went and was signed on the spot! As they say… the rest is history.
You have an awesome project coming up with TLC. Can you tell us a little about that and what we have to look forward to? I am so excited to have been part of “Big Sexy”. It really is the first of it’s kind. We aren’t sitting around crying about our bodies and hating ourselves. We are 5 women who are confident in ourselves and are working very hard to achieve our goals despite what the stereotypes of “bigger” girls are. The show captures our day to day lives and experiences in NY and the fashion industry, dating and our families.
Is there anything else you would like to share with us? Upcoming projects, where we can find you on the web?
I have several projects in the works that I can’t wait to share with people. I can’t talk about them now since they are in the development stages but, people can keep up with my life and career on my twitter and my Facebook fanpage.