The Student News Site of Oregon State University

The Daily Barometer

The Student News Site of Oregon State University

The Daily Barometer

The Student News Site of Oregon State University

The Daily Barometer

Soulful Strands answers call for multicultural hair-care needs in Corvallis

Morgan Barnaby
The entrance to Soulful Strands, the first black beauty store in Corvallis on Nov. 14, 2023.

No more are the days of driving to Portland for all your multicultural, kinky and curly hair needs––Soulful Strands Beauty Supplies has opened in Corvallis. 

Nearly filled to the ceiling are packages of lock, twist, braid hair and wigs of all varieties, not to mention the shelves of multicultural hair and skin products filling the racks as you enter the shop. 

Nicole Moss, owner of Soulful Strands Beauty Supply has been cultivating the business and inventory for both men and women for months before opening in November.

“There was just nowhere to buy stuff for our hair; curly, coily, kinky kinda hair,” Moss said about her experience when moving to Oregon from Long Beach, California. 

Moss, who lives in Lebanon, said she had to drive to Portland to find the products she needed, costing more time and money than if she could buy products locally. 

After graduating earlier this year with a business degree, Moss decided to take matters into her own hands and open up a store with the help of her husband. 

“There was a major need for it in the community,” Moss said. 

An Oregon State University fourth-year public policy student, Faisal Osman echoed this need and appreciated Moss’ intention to support students.

Owner of Soulful Strands Nicole Moss (she/her) discussing what it means to her to have opened the first black beauty store in Corvallis on Nov. 14, 2023. (Morgan Barnaby)

“I enjoy being able to see a Black entrepreneur have success in launching a beauty supply store in Corvallis, something that is a huge need for Black students on campus,” Osman said. “It’s already difficult to take care and maintain Black hair because of the lack of hair products in stores.” 

Moss said that she has already connected with students through the Black Student Union on campus and shared that if there is something people don’t see in her shop and want to see, to let her know. 

“I want people to know that I’m here for the (Black) community (and) I’m here for everyone else too,” Moss said. “I’m going to have other stuff like wigs (so) we can focus on people with alopecia (too).”

Moss hopes to eventually get a bigger space where her inventory and options for customers can expand, but for now her stock is centered around coily, curly and kinky hair. 

Moss found a home for the business in downtown Corvallis on 425 Madison Ave. – the indoor multi-business shopping hub where the downtown Starbucks is located – as the most affordable option that ultimately informed her decision to open in Corvallis rather than in Albany. 

Incidentally, Moss said, a braiding salon is just across the walkway from Soulful Strands, making the location an easy one-stop-shop for those looking to get their hair braided, creating partnership between the two local businesses. 

Moss has already seen support, in addition to students, from nearby local businesses and the Corvallis Chamber of Commerce. 

“We are truly looking forward to working with them and seeing how we can help support their business,” said Christy Wood, CEO of the Corvallis Chamber of Commerce, who also provided materials for the grand opening ribbon cutting on Nov. 11. 

For those looking to stay up to date on Soulful Strands or to reach Moss about inventory questions, she says Instagram, @soulful_strands_beauty, is the best way to reach her. 

“I want (students and the community) to know I’m here, and I’m here to stay,” Moss said.

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  • T

    Taevion WilkersonNov 27, 2023 at 2:00 am

    A great community for black students! Moss, I hope you will grow the store and help the beauty needs of black students throughout the Corvallis area. scratch games

    • N

      Nichole MossFeb 7, 2024 at 10:36 am

      I’ll do the best I can! Thanks!