Creative Mykel “MeekFro” Trent is a force to be reckoned with. Known by her authentic and artistic style, Mykel is popular for her hairstyles, wigs, and faux locs leading her to being invited by YouTube to become a YouTube Partner. Mykel has worked with and collaborated with over 40 brands. Brands like Voice of Hair, Boho Locs, Janet Collection, SuperLine Collection, Zury Sis, etc. She has even launched her own faux locs line in partnership with Poshmark. I had the pleasure to catch up with Mykel on her personal brand success and her journey so far as an influencer.
What did you want to be as a child?
MT: “Ha! Plenty of things. Mostly, I swore I’d be an astronaut, scientist, or ice skater. I remember being asked in church by my Sunday school teacher as a kid “What do you want to be, Mykel?” I said an ice skater and I got the funniest look. I cried after church because my response didn’t get an applause like the rest of the children’s responses did. The thought of being an ice princess and dressed up in the glittery dresses gave me joy. I’ve always been into the theatrical and beauty sides of things. “
What are your favorite and least things about being a creator and influencer?
MT: “My favorite would have to be creating in general. With each collaboration I have the honor of indulging in, it challenges me to push harder as a video editor, a visualizer and creator. I also love that I inspire and help so many people. It lets me know that I’m serving a purpose far bigger than myself. I least like the negative aspect of being a creator and influencer. Hateful comments from viewers, technical difficulties (equipment crashes, files corrupt, flaws in videos: seeing a booger in your nose AFTER you’ve recorded all segments of a video, etc), creator’s block and sometimes just feeling uninspired. I also hate to be categorized. When some find out I’m an influencer, they automatically associate me with being unauthentic or some airhead that drinks Starbucks everyday and wake up looking pretty but my channel def shows different. I’m as genuine as they come. 100% my thoughts and opinions within my videos. “
What’s the best advice you received when you were first starting out in your brand?
MT: “The best advice was remain yourself and to not become too commercialized. It can be hard to separate being you from being what other brands want you to be when advertising or reviewing their products via video.”
What does success mean to you? Has a mistake ever led you to success?
MT: “Success goes deep. It’s not just money or fame. Success to me is finding your niche, gifts, purpose etc. Once you identify these, it will change your life dramatically…in every area of your life. Yes most of my mistakes have led me to success. Failed relationships have led me to successful ones, failed business partnerships have led me to successful ones, failed business plans have showed me successful ideas etc.”
What’s your personal motto?
MT: “This too shall pass. That motto helps me during hard times, but it also helps me to live in the moment. All good and bad things come to an end eventually. Gotta savor every moment.”
Who are some women who you look up to and admire?
MT: “My mom. One of the strongest women I know. I also look up to who I used to be. Another reason it’s good to be able to look back on my past creations. I can see how fresh my creations were and to use that as a guideline to make sure I never lose sight of how brilliant my creations can actually be. “
In moments of adversity, how do you build yourself back up?
MT: “Love on myself…hard. I’ve discovered who I am and what I love early in life so it’s never hard to treat myself because I know what I like and love. If I ever feel down and out, I treat myself by being in the presence of hobbies, other creators, etc. I love on myself…hard. “
As an influencer with over 100k followers, what is the key to connecting and finding the audience who fits your brand?
MT: “I try not to think so hard about these kinds of things. There’s never really a straightforward answer to questions like that. Every piece of advice doesn’t really always work the same for the next person. That’s why it’s always emphasized that everyone’s path will not be the same. If I absolutely had to give the key to connecting and finding your audience…I would say be you. If you don’t be you, who will? It’s only one you! It will draw in who it’s meant to draw in. “
Which of your traits are you most proud of?
MT: “Elasticity, beauty-seeker, adventurous, hopeful romantic, spiritual, smart .”
What’s the best advice you have for someone who has a personal brand or is interested in creating one?
MT: Don’t be afraid to start that brand. It doesn’t matter how many of those same types of companies exist. Start it. What’s different about it is it’s YOU. It’s only one you. Start with what you’ve got now. “
What are the most important things to remember when you’re collaborating with other companies and brands?
MT: “Don’t settle. Know your worth. Do your research on the brand’s worth and base your fee off that. Companies will try to “low ball” you by offering you just a free product to review, but once you know your worth, you should be getting a nice pay and free product. Also, get every agreement in writing! Read contracts through thoroughly if there is a contract involved.”
About Mykel Trent