Healthy Hairdresser

Takisha Sturdivant-Drew: A Celeb Hairdresser Likes Feeling Light

Rosanne Ullman | December 13, 2015 | 6:59 PM

With a busy schedule that revolves around not only a full clientele and traveling to do hair on movie sets but also a husband and 4-year-old twins, Takisha Sturdivant-Drew depends heavily on exercise for fitness and focus.


“Working out is the only thing that keeps me sane,” says Sturdivant-Drew, a celebrity hairdresser based in New York City. “I wake up at 5 a.m. and run for an hour on my basement treadmill. I do pushups, and sometimes I take a spin class. I’m always working out!”


To prevent back pain, Sturdivant-Drew stands on a mat when she works, and she relied on acupuncture to get her through carpal tunnel pain during her pregnancy. She also drinks a lot of water, which she says benefits her skin, and she eats small meals with big salads. She cut out red meat when she was 17, but she eats chicken and fish.


“I liked how my body changed when I cut out red meat, so I’ve never gone back to it,” Sturdivant-Drew explains. “I don’t miss it at all. I’ve never been a big sweets person, but if I have a taste for a chocolate chip cookie or a brownie I’ll take one and then I’m over it. I don’t need to indulge in more. I like to feel comfortable, not stuffed. That full feeling stays with me for a long time and interferes with my sleep. I just like feeling light.”


It was her commitment to healthy hair that got Takisha Sturdivant-Drew noticed by actress Kerry Washington 13 years ago. Sturdivant-Drew was working in a salon and helping another busy stylist meet his photo shoot commitments when she began getting requests on her own to do the hair for photo shoots. She loved the variety of her career path, and then one day she received a request that expanded it in even more exciting directions.


“I got a call to do Kerry Washington’s hair,” Sturdivant-Drew remembers. Long before Washington starred in her popular TV show, “Scandal,” the actress was working on a movie set and needed a stylist.


“She loved the fact that I promoted healthy hair,” Sturdivant-Drew says. “So she started requesting me when she did other movies, TV and live appearances.” Sturdivant-Drew does not do Washington’s hair for “Scandal,” because it shoots in L.A., but she is styling her for the upcoming HBO movie “Confirmation,” in which Washington plays Anita Hill. Sturdivant-Drew’s other celeb clients include Sanaa Lathan, Jill Marie Jones and Amber Riley.


Her devotion to healthy hair is now defining the next phase of Sturdivant-Drew’s career: teaching. The Foundation for Healthy Hair is the anchor class in her new series of cutting, coloring and styling workshops, Healthy Hair by Takisha, that she’ll be leading throughout the country in 2016. She emphasizes the importance of preventing damage as she teaches techniques such as weaves, relaxing, natural hair looks and blowouts.


Along with the workshop series, Sturdivant-Drew is launching a line of hair extensions and a flat iron under her own TSDHair label. The products will be available in January 2016, and Sturdivant-Drew will use them in her workshops. 



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