Layah Jarman is Ms. Colorado All World Beauties & Owner of Versatile Quality Hair LLC. VQH is a thriving company that has dedicated its time to helping women of all races with 100% risk-free alternatives to hair loss.
Layah offers not only a high-quality product but a service that follows a woman throughout her hair journey. They are not like the average hair company. They care about YOU as well as your need for quality hair, and support you in learning what works best for you! With them, it’s surely more than just the purchase.
What were your initial years of growing up like? Tell us about your life before starting your corporate journey/venture/initiative.
Growing up was very tough for me. I was a beautiful young lady that wasn’t properly taken care of, and I experienced abuse as a child. I was also teased due to my appearance, and this made everything worse for me because I couldn’t focus on my education and develop my mind from a young age. This caused me to have low self-esteem and take responsibility for protecting my siblings from things like being bullied or feeling alone in our situation of homelessness.
Things weren’t always so bad but when they were good, I was disciplined rather aggressively by my stepfather and my mother didn’t do much about it and just watched. I learned that staying out of any trouble was in my best interest as a child and then I got it for my siblings acting out. So, I took responsibility and influenced their choices to eliminate a physically negative outcome.
This went on until my mother and father divorced. From that point on, things got to be tough when it came to having basic needs and this affects me to this day. I was a child of poverty and became very defensive and closed off to almost everyone in the world and mentally struggled to be happy, day in and day out. This led me to cut myself and do things that could have taken my life.
I found peace in music and art; this allowed me to release my frustration through singing which I still love to this day! My mother was very unstable and we moved from shelter to shelter. It sucked but I was able to encounter very kind genuine women who showed me a side of someone who cares, that I rarely saw from my parents. I was mad as hell as a child and it was these women who helped me to realize that I was more than just an angry teen. This along with a suicide attempt helped me to grow up and snap out of the mindset I was in that was keeping me low.
On my way to the hospital, I was rudely transported to the ER by an ambulance EMT and he told me that I didn’t need to give him attitude because I did this to myself and he isn’t the reason I’m there in the first place, I was in shock because I did this for attention but not that kind. I was young but old enough to know that I didn’t want to meet another him in my life again and I never tried to harm myself again after that. I resorted to dating men that were way older than me and it’s because I felt I was mentally more mature for my age than others, which was true but not enough to allow me to date older men, but my mother was my friend and let me. This spiraled into me getting into some trouble dating and over the years of being what they would call “fast”.
I learned that I wanted more from a guy – even though I was dating older men, I was still not in a committed relationship. Dating older men had me convince my mother to move to Houston and Louisiana, and back to Colorado again!
This experience caused me to develop a bad relationship with my mother because I was tired of her being my friend and I needed her to be my mother and she showed me she couldn’t do this so I moved in with my stepfather. I eventually gained my father’s trust and was also able to convince him to move to Houston, not for a guy but for the experience I had encountered with my mom before. This was a mistake and led me to lead a life I never would want for my babies, to provide for my sibling because my father shut down.
I have always been the protector for my siblings, so I got a job and saved to get us out of Texas with some help from our mother. Not the best place to be but definitely it was better than being with my father. My siblings and I had a tough time moving and going through so much due to our parents’ divorce and our incapability to keep a steady roof over our heads.
I was over it and found that working to provide was quite easy to do and started working young at Whataburger but that was just a taste of what real work for me would be like. So, I set out to get my skills set up by working absolutely any job that gave me the experience to be able to have a steady income. I didn’t graduate due to dropping out of school to medically take care of my sister when my parents were unable to. I was only 17 at the time and this, unfortunately, was short-lived due to my young age and my dating choice.
I dated a guy who was abusive to me and allowed us to live in my car due to his lack of being able to provide for me. I am a person who can see the good in people and gave him chance after chance to try and get it together but that just resulted in my beautiful daughter and a realization that I had to do better for her! I again got back on my grind to build my skill set and make myself more desirable in the work industry and I did just that but not having my GED held me back from better pay substantially. So, I did what I had to, to obtain my GED and get the jobs my experience was ready for.
I then worked in high-end corporate jobs and call centers that I thrived in for some reason, I say this because I hate selling worthless products. I developed extremely sought-after skills that helped me get every job I applied for. My issue was I was always the oddball in the company and intimidated my leadership with my determination to climb to the top. I went through many jobs because of this and eventually was inspired to open my own business and become financially stable that way. Why not, it was the way to achieve unlimited financial stability and that is what I wanted and needed for me and my children.
I wrote a 28-page business plan and got a loan to invest in my dream to become one of the best hair companies in CO. I have steadily been climbing that mountain to the top and every day gets better and better because I grow in a way that allows my business to reach heights I never imagined.
Tell us something about your initiative/business. What is it about and how is it helpful for people?
My business is more than just an excellent place to buy high-quality hair extensions. My company has led me to give back to women in a way that they have never experienced.
Once I got to a place of success, I established a way to give back to the community as well through hosting paint and sips monthly, donating a makeover to a D.V Victim once a month as well as gathering must-have items for the houseless community. This has been very near and dear to me and has allowed me to give back to those who are where I once was and refuse to revisit.
While the global pandemic of COVID-19 is associated primarily with adversities, it has also brought about a true boom in startups, with successful entrepreneurship in many countries. The pandemic has impacted all of us in one way or another. Would you like to share your experience on a personal and professional level?
The global pandemic hit me personally and professionally – hard like a train and because covid affected our income, all my cosmetic customers were not as interested in investing in hair extensions as they were before. This was the bread maker at the time and my medical client wasn’t purchasing as much as I wanted due to me still developing knowledge on how to cater to the medical crowd of women who wear wigs. This is just a taste of how I was affected professionally when it came to my work.
I had to quit my job and go through finding another job that allowed me to work from home. It came in due time but I had a job working for a lawyer that really helped me financially but I had to change my field to protect myself from a situation I would rather not revisit. I eventually landed a good job in the medical field and stayed put until I got pregnant with my son.
Personally, I had a good job but once I became pregnant, I was harassed and then had complications that led me to take more time off than anticipated. I was in the hospital more than I liked and this all put a strain on my personal ability to financially provide because I lost my job.
But my business has always provided in a way a job just couldn’t, so I never have lost my desire to keep Versatile Quality Hair going until it takes off and becomes what I have always wanted for my business – extreme success that was built off genuine care and value. Not getting over on people.
What has been the response of the users/consumers towards your venture?
The response to my venture has been amazing!
The reason I say this is because I have taken a new approach to bring awareness to my passion to help women one strand at a time by joining the All World Beauties Man Of Distinction Pageant and this has allowed me to meet people I admire and adore so much. I have done things I’ve always talked about but never had a team behind me in doing it so this has been one achievement I am very proud of.
As a child, I didn’t win much so to win the title of Ms. Colorado All-World Beauties was a milestone I didn’t even plan for but wouldn’t regret in any way, shape, or form.
How has your life changed because of your initiative/venture?
My life has changed in many ways, one of which is how I see things. My perspective on certain situations has changed drastically. I think thoroughly before I speak, or act and I never act when my emotions are high because my intelligence lowers.
I learned that from a very good friend of mine to whom I see myself as a big sister, and I thank her so much for helping me to find the words I needed to balance my emotions as I work my way through life and business. This has had the most impact on my growth as a woman and as a business owner.
Do you have anyone who is the biggest support system in your life? Please let us know.
Currently, my biggest support system is a very good friend I met helping an old friend of mine out with her business. Her name is Genesis and I have learned so much from her.
She has helped me experience some really amazing opportunities that I would have never encountered if I hadn’t changed my mindset. She has shown me different ways to see things I only saw one way and I have to thank her for being my friend, mentor and so much more! Another person who has made sure I and my babies were on is my boyfriend Robert Williams. He has helped to be there for me, made sure in my time of depression I was supported and safe and able to enjoy our son and my daughter, and raise them in a way that keeps them safe and sound.
Would you like to share with our young budding women entrepreneurs the change you would like to see in the world if given an opportunity? OR Share a motivational message for the audience/women who are reading this.
The change I would like to see if given the opportunity is the value of one’s self, coming back and shining brighter than fitting in with what is advertised as the new trend.
I want young men & women to love themselves and learn how to be great from a young age and grow into success early so that enjoying life isn’t something they either never get to experience or wait most of their life to experience.
I want to teach self-care and value to those who lack that and show them that they are here for a purpose and help the youth find out what that purpose is.
Our children are our future and deserve the best, and it’s up to us to provide that for them, and so much more.