Kadiatou Diallo is an IU senior majoring in Informatics with a minor in East Asian languages and a cognate in media production. Diallo is hard working and never misses a beat. School and her newly founded hair care business are the most important aspects of her life right now.
“My family really, really valued education,” Diallo said. “That was instilled in me at a young age. I had to work a lot harder than my peers around me.”
When she isn’t dedicating her time to school, Diallo is involved in the Rotaract Club at IU. The Rotaract Club is affiliated with Rotary International, an organization that immerses young professionals in community service, leadership and networking. Diallo was previously involved in the Break Dance Club, an organization that seeks to promote the positive culture of hip-hop.
Last week, Diallo launched a natural hair care business, Crowned Helix. She said she started this business to encourage women of color to travel comfortably with a product that has quality, convenience and eco-friendliness.
“This is a company where we can create products for them to take with them and it will last a long time, but also be convenient and eco-friendly,” Diallo said.
Her hair is another important aspects of her life — it started as an insecurity but is now one of her greatest strengths. Diallo said she has always had a lot of very thick hair. The transition from home to college inspired her journey to healthy hair, which then led to the creation of Crowned Helix. She equates her hair with her identity — it will be with her forever.
“This hair is no joke,” Diallo said. “It’s like a plant, you’ve got to figure out a way to nurture it and make it grow.”
One of her first products from Crowned Helix is the aloe vera shampoo bar. She likes this bar because it helps nurture your scalp, cleaning gently while not stripping away the important natural oils. This bar includes mango, shea and cocoa butter, as well as other natural ingredients.
One of the greatest pieces of advice Diallo received during her journey in gaining self-confidence was from a family friend: “Never stop being who you are, because who you are is amazing.” This advice gave Diallo the courage to be everything she is today.