Celebrity Stylist: Rochelle Mosley

By Stacy Gardner

When it comes to doing your hair, you can’t have just anybody taking to your lovely tresses. You need a hair stylist you can trust that will leave you feeling beautiful and confident once you leave the chair every time.  Meet celebrity hairstylist, Rochelle Mosley.  A veteran in the business, Rochelle is someone that keeps up with the hair trends, makes her own, and will even teach you a thing or two.

She is best known as the proud owner of Salon 804 in Harlem, New York City. She ventured into entrepreneurship after finishing up a successful modeling career. Her latest endeavor is a book entitled How To Do Your Hair At Home.  Serving as a “how to” guide for everyday hair care, the book provides readers with knowledge that is taught in cosmetology school and answers a variety of questions for African-American women.

A native of Richmond, Virginia, Rochelle originally moved to New York City in 1992 to pursue a career in modeling. Her persistence and hard work paid off as she secured the coveted feature cover model position for Essence Magazine’s 25th Anniversary Calendar. Rochelle’s beautiful image also appeared on ad campaigns for beauty giants, Revlon and Dark & Lovely. After modeling, Rochelle transitioned into acting and appeared in several music videos such as Naughty by Nature’s ‘Feel Me Flow’ and Heavy D’s ‘Black Coffee’.

As a stylist to the stars, Rochelle boasts a client roster that includes the likes of Serena Williams, Maalak Compton-Rock and Roberta Flack.  As a recipient of the Golden Scissors Award, Rochelle was featured on the Oprah Winfrey Show; and in 2005, the NY Daily News featured Salon 804 in an article promoting the film, ‘Beauty Shop’ starring Queen Latifah.

On top of her incredible professional career, Rochelle also has a heart for giving back to her community and sharing her knowledge with those who are ready to listen.  I recently spoke with Rochelle to learn more about her role in the industry and why her clients keep coming back.

1.   What do you enjoy most about being a hair stylist?

I enjoy watching my clients grow from kids, to teenagers and into women.  I had one client who, as girl, had very poor self-esteem.  Now she is a confident 25 year-old woman. She’s beautiful and she knows it!  I love watching transformations like that!

2.   Your salon is called Salon 804.  How did you come up with that name?

The name of my salon was originally Brenda’s Daughter.  My cousin Rob came to help in the salon and he would answer the phone “Brenda’s Daughter.”  Many would ask if he was Brenda’s Daughter, so I decided to change the name to Salon 804, which is the area code of Richmond, VA.

3.   What separates Salon 804 studio from all other hair salons?

My stylists make the difference.  Since I opened my salon I like to teach how to stay in the business long-term.  I have a junior stylist program and offer style tips.  I am also fast and efficient with my clients.  You can plan your day around your appointment instead of spending the day in my salon.

4.   What made you decide to turn your salon into a dining room during the holidays to feed the homeless?

It was my sister-in-law’s idea.  I wanted to give back to the community, so my sister suggested doing a holiday dinner.  The first year we hosted it, my team and I cooked for and fed between 75 to 100 people. Now,  15 years later, we’re able to feed about 500-600 people a year.

5.   How did you build your celebrity clientele?

I’m available, honest, and on-time.  With celebrities your own time is not yours, so you have to be available.  They also don’t need a yes-man, but someone likeable and honest.  If they don’t like you, they won’t call you.  You can be the best curler in the world, but it’s deeper than that for them.

6.   What are some of the hottest hair trends right now?

The mohawk or fauxhawk will be around like blue jeans – I do 3 to 4 a day!  Also the asymmetrical bob is popular.  I also like the “2012 baby hair.” It’s a look that features a soft wave on the side with spray.

7.   What are some of your favorite must-have styling tools and products?

A ceramic flat iron is the one of my favorite tools because it flattens and curls your hair leaving with plenty of luster.  Paul Mitchell’s extra body hair spray is one of my favorite products because it’s not hard on the hair and you can flat iron your hair the next day.

8.   What motivated you to write a book on home hair care?

I actually got a lot of flack from hairstylists about writing this book.  The book is about hair maintenance at home.  Some women don’t want to spend money in the salon all the time, so my book offers tips and techniques they can use at for home.  When they need a professional stylist, they’ll come back.

9.   Valentine’s Day is coming up. What are some romantic hairstyles you can suggest?

The soft updo has always been great, because you can let your hair down at the end of the date as a “hello” moment and set the tone for the evening.  If you have short hair, sweeping your hair out of your face to show your eyes is romantic.

10.   What is on the horizon for hair care?

People want stress free hair.  They want to work out, look good and feel good.  More celebrities are bald.  Health is becoming more important than hair.

11.   What are you most proud of during you career span in hair styling?

I’m most proud of following my life plan, the plan that God sent.  When I moved to NY at the age of 18 I didn’t think I would own a salon and have celebrity clients. I was licensed straight out of high school, and I was glad I followed his plan because I was in Vegas at the time trying to be a showgirl when I got the call to move to NY.

12.   If you weren’t a hairstylist, what would you be doing?

I would be teaching.  I’m working on a book now to teach good work ethic and manage your money at an early age.  The book is titled, “Life After Beauty School: Preparing for Your Exit”.

13.   What advice would you give someone that wants to become a hair stylist?

Have a good work ethic and understand the best way to build a clientele.  Always come early and stay late, and always be available.

14.   What are 3 important hair tips everyone should know?

  1. A trim is the best conditioner.  When it is time for a trim, do it!
  2. Steam conditioners are great for dry hair and scalp.
  3. Always sleep with a satin pillowcase or scarf.  A cotton pillowcase will pull your hair all over the place and dry your hair.


About Stacy Gardner:

Stacy Gardner is a lover of all things fashionable. Making the move from her hometown of Chicago to Los Angeles, this savvy businesswoman has her eyes set on making her mark in the fashion industry.

As the Chief Style Officer of The Style Goddess, Stacy has established an authentic personal brand that showcases her vibrant personality, her original creative process and her passion for enhancing the quality of the lives around her. She enjoys brightening your day with a smile, laughter, singing or with whatever outfit she has on!  With an eye for color and prints, her outfit isn’t complete without a “pop” of one or the other. Stacy also has a background in modeling, event planning, studio production, market research and promo marketing. She is also a writer for Examiner.com.


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