The natural-haired community is one that is tight-knit. Though every woman with natural hair may not know one another, they definitely know the women with natural hair who have made themselves public figures. Whether they are celebrities, bloggers, YouTubers, or the masterminds behind haircare products, we know them and consider them to be family.
One of the most popular natural hair product brands is Miss Jessie’s. Miss Jessie’s specializes in catering to the curly-haired women in the world. Whether they be kinks, coils, or waves, Miss Jessie’s has a product for it all. The natural-haired community has grown to love Miss Jessie’s—the product and the faces behind it. Sadly, though, we have learned that one of the co-founders, TiTi Branch has passed away from an apparent suicide due to asphyxia.
Branch passed away a couple of weeks ago on Dec. 4, and every curly-haired girl has been affected by it. Branch was 45 years old and had accomplished a great deal of success with Miss Jessie’s. She and her sister Miko were a dynamic duo. So rather than talk about how she left us, here are ten facts about how great TiTi really was.
- Before co-founding Miss Jessie’s, TiTi used to work as an assistant to the news director at WABC-TV. When she was a kid, she thought that she would grow up to be a reporter.
- In 1996, TiTi opened up an business that would serve as an agency that represented artists. It was called Icon Creative Artists, and she represented photographers.
- Her sister was a freelance hair stylist, and she arranged a photo shoot for her business. TiTi took her sister on as a client and represented her work. Her efforts got them an advertisement with the popular brand Ashley Stewart.
- Titi came up with the term “shingling” in regards to some of the techniques they used on curly hair.
- She is the sole creator of the first product Miss Jessie’s ever had called Miss Jessie’s Curly Pudding.
- Despite her classy mannerisms, TiTi used to be a tomboy when she was growing up.
- She was also known as “the book-smart kid” because of her intelligence and her inquisitiveness.
- TiTi earned a degree in Consumer Economics at the University of Maryland, but she was born and raised in Queens, NY.
- She has worked with celebrities such as Mary J. Blige, Dru Hill, and Garcelle Beauvais.
- She started wearing her hair in its natural state after her sister went natural.
Titi’s death is a big loss for the natural-haired community, but the best way to remember her is how she lived. We may not have known what was affecting her personally, but one of her friend said it best “You can be broke, you can be a billionaire—when depression hits, depression hits.”
We know what kind of legacy she left behind. Let’s honor that.
Rest in peace Titi Branch!