Master natural hair stylist Isis Brantley has been a vibrant spokeswoman for black ancestral culture for over thirty years. As an iconic adorner and educator in the beauty industry, Isis has maintained a presence in her community. She has also been actively involved in the fight for preserving cultural identity for African Americans in her decade long battle with the State of Texas regarding anti-braiding regulations. In 1997 Isis was arrested for braiding hair without a license. Although at the time, no laws in the state of Texas required br
Master natural hair stylist Isis Brantley has been a vibrant spokeswoman for black ancestral culture for over thirty years. As an iconic adorner and educator in the beauty industry, Isis has maintained a presence in her community. She has also been actively involved in the fight for preserving cultural identity for African Americans in her decade long battle with the State of Texas regarding anti-braiding regulations. In 1997 Isis was arrested for braiding hair without a license. Although at the time, no laws in the state of Texas required braiders to be licensed, many in the community saw the arrest as an attempt by the state to intimidate underground braiders and subject them to the same requirements as cosmetologists.
Isis, who was targeted by the State because of her widespread reputation as one of the best braiders in the state, was not intimidated. A firm believer of constitutional justice, Isis fought for what she believed was a violation of her civil rights by the state of Texas. Not one to back down from a adversity, Isis challenged the state and charged that the art of hair braiding had nothing to do with cosmetology and could not be taught in any existing schools of cosmetology at the time. Consequently, after countless meetings and conversations with state officials, Isis was ‘grandfathered’ in 2007 by the State of Texas and received the prestigious noted honor of being the first natural hair care expert in Texas.
In an effort to establish the movement of healthy hair for black women, Isis has kept her focus on the nexus of cultural beauty, by teaching scores of young black women how to resurrect themselves from poverty by following her lead in the natural hair care business. Educating about more than just natural hair care, Isis is also dedicated to opening the minds of her students and clientele to changing their lifestyles and health habits. Her teachings are founded on the principles that strong, great looking hair begins on the inside with a proper diet, and through eliminating stress through spiritual balance and seeking constant growth in all aspects of one’s life.
While building her business over the years, this Dallas native and mother of five has been wholeheartedly dedicated to continuing the proper education of natural hair care. Through her passion and ambition, she is single handedly known nationwide as Naturally Isis, the guru of Natural Hair Care. Stylist to many clients across the country including celebrity neo soul artist Erykah Badu, Isis is deeply involved in building and expanding her business, with the promotion of her hair care products appropriately donned, Sisters of Isis, and the upcoming release of three books: Hair Once Sacred, Now Desecrated, Braid Raid, and Olayinka’s Magic Beaded Comb.
It is through her ambition, belief in self and gifted hands that Isis has been able to lay a solid foundation of ethics and morality not only for her business, but for her children as well--to demonstrate to them what hard work can accomplish fruitful success. Through it all, Isis has unyieldingly maintained her commitment to community and family and she has nurtured both her community and family with her faith in African heritage and the will to always stand for what is right. As her divine calling, she continues to extend this obstinate love and passion to communities abroad and to those yearning for natural hair care knowledge across the globe.
I invited Isis to speak at the Heritage Foundation and we were thrilled with her talk. Isis is a dynamic and engaging speaker who powerfully communicates her story. She is an effective voice for those U.S. political discourse often ignores.James Sherk, Research Fellow, Labor Economics
In 2015 I watched Isis Brantley at the Texas Legislature advocate for the economic liberty of braiders across Texas. While speaking to lawmakers during a Senate Business & Commerce Committee hearing, Ms. Brantley’s clarity, poise, and message captured the room’s attention―she is a compelling speaker with great presence.Arif Panju, Attorney
Links for Press Release Only 2015
Institute for Justice Video
Huffington Post Interview