“Spiraled Halo” Makes Up a New Look

Amanda Navarro, Staff Writer

If you have ever seen Sara Gregory ’14 around at school, you know she has the blondest, curliest hair on earth. While browsing for hair videos on YouTube recently, Sara says she “got sick of seeing either girls with long straight hair or chemically relaxed hair being idolized…”.

In fact, Sara has a point. Hair product companies have come up with more and more ways women can achieve pin-straight hair, ranging from the “Brazilian Blowout,” the latest celebrity craze, to Kerotin treatments. While debates rage about how to maximize one’s hair beauty,¬† how does anyone survive the madness?

Sara came up with a solution. Rather than succumbing to the social norms and seeking ways to straighten her hair, Sara decided to make YouTube videos under her YouTube name, Spiraled Halo, to encourage “women, especially teenagers, to be comfortable with how they look regardless of societal ideals.”

Sara comes up with the topics for her videos by “outlining either a makeup or hair look that I’d like to share, wearing it a few times, getting feedback, and perfecting it. For hair, I am interested in basic care and styling methods for naturally curly hair. So, all the hair styles I show are specifically chosen to work with courser textures of hair.”

In addition, Sara states she is “very anti-chemical treatments and heat for daily management.” Some videos she has made on this topic include “My Hair Story and 5 Simple Tips to Go Natural”, “Clean Your Hair Without Harsh Chemicals/Shampoo,” and “Animal Testing in the Cosmetics Industry-My Resolution to go Cruelty Free.”

“I’ve been a vegetarian since I was twelve, and plan to go vegan in college. I began researching animal testing and the disgusting and pointless “research” and was appalled. I made a resolution to never use any cosmetics that test on animals, and decided to share my views on this controversial topic in a video. Most people accept animal testing as a part of life, without fully realizing the brutal and inhumane suffering involved. Any “animal lover” should educate themselves about the deceptiveness of the beauty industry and make a decision from there. Most of my hair products were cruelty free or vegan to begin with, so I didn’t have to change much,” elaborates Sara.

For Sara “make-up was a different story” for going Cruelty Free. She “researched different companies, crossed checked references, and read reviews. Many companies such as Revlon, Cover Girl, or Neutrogena use third party companies to test for them, and thus escape the stigma of animal testing. I found a really comprehensive list of “safe” companies on PETA and the Leaping Bunny’s websites. Products that are vegan and don’t subject animals to senseless agony, are much better quality and more flattering. I’ve switched to Too Faced products and my skin is softer and much healthier. I implore everyone to research animal testing and make an informed decision about what they are supporting with their purchases.”

Sara puts just as much as time and effort creating her videos as she does researching hair and make-up products. She is dedicated to her videos and her subscribers (130 and counting!). Sara devotes her time filming up to “two to three hours,” not including editing.¬† “The most I’ve ever spent editing and uploading a video was probably five hours,” she says, “and I do a video about once a week, so it’s pretty time consuming.”

However, the results are rewarding. Sara has gotten incredible feedback from her videos. On her “Shower and Product for Curly Hair” video, which got her an astounding 1,165 views, video fan, Joanna Colon, comments, “I have the exact same curly hair as you do, length, volume, and curl pattern…I just have naturally red hair! So glad there’s someone who I can get some inspiration from to do my hair. Your curls are beautiful. Can’t wait to see more!” In “My Hair Story and 5 Simple Tips to Go Natural,” Fireopal94 says, “You are an intelligent, and beautiful young lady. Love your curls, your vids and your personality! Keep em coming! :-)” For Sara’s make-up videos, another fan, Veronica Smithson, posted “I loved this look when I tried it out, I wear it ALL the time! Could you do another make up tutorial?”

These are only a couple of example of the numerous kind comments Sara has received for her videos. Sara modestly states “It’s really special… and I value every comment. I read and reply to all of them. The feedback is my favorite part about making videos.”

Sara continues that she enjoys knowing “that what I’ve said can help someone with not just makeup and hair (that’s not the important part) but how they feel and present themselves.” Sara states her relationship with her subscribers “actually feels pretty intimate. I’m “in” my subscribers’ homes every week.”

Sara continues¬† “A fellow vlogger actually made a video about my channel and encouraged me to keep going. I received a lot of love from that particular vlogger as well as her followers, and that means a lot. Especially when she said she couldn’t believe a white girl had such curly hair. I thought that was pretty hilarious. Overall, I try to keep in contact with my subscribers and viewers, seeing how I can help, entertain, and encourage them.”

Out of all of her videos, Sara states her “favorite is probably my New Year’s video or either of the album of the month video. I love talking about music!” In her New Year’s video, Sara shares an easy-to-do makeup look and hairstyle for virtually any occasion.”

Sara’s future plans for her videos include “collecting money for the advertisements playing before a video when I turn 18.” With the money, Sara says she “can purchase new products and do giveaways for my subscribers.”

Sara also says she “would love to get into the hundred thousand view range within two years. That’s a big goal of mine.”

Sara’s final words on the topic of her videos is “I’ve embraced my crazy hair, and urge all to do the same. So put that flat iron down, and join me in the search for beautiful and spiraling tresses!”

Want a good starting place for this emerging vlogger? Watch Sara’s video “Olive Oil and Honey Deep Conditioner-Plus Passenger Album of the Month” and learn how to make a moisturizing, deep conditioner of your own.

We’ll see you on Katie Couric’s show soon, Sara! Way to go.