Alyssa Wallace is the haircare and DIY influencer bringing positivity to YouTube

Alyssa Wallace, aka Alyssa Forever, is a big believer in quality over quantity.

Wallace’s YouTube channel, which is focused on beauty, lifestyle and mental health awareness content, is an overall positive corner of the internet. However, Wallace didn’t see herself as a creator when she first joined the platform in 2013.

“I never thought that I was going to be on video. I was super shy,” she told In The Know. “It wasn’t until I started to get really into my own hair and figuring it out, and that’s when the natural hair community welcomed me in, and I started my channel off with the Bantu Knot.”

When people first asked Wallace for step-by-step instructions as to how she did her Bantu Knot, she started writing it out — but then, she realized how technical and lengthy the answer was. So instead, she thought it would be way easier to film a video of her doing it. Within four months she had 20,000 subscribers, and that original video now has almost 10 million views.

“Then my first YouTube check came and I was like, ‘You know what? I’m quitting my job!'” she said.

Wallace’s natural hair videos arrived at a time when natural hair was becoming a more popular option for Black women.

“I feel like our hair is tied to so much,” she explained. “I wanted to show people how to take the power back and not let their hair become something that brings them down and how to use it to empower them.”

Wallace’s channel was synonymous with natural hair advice. Then, she decided to shave it all off.

“It was a decision that came from years of feeling l needed a rebirth,” she said. “There’s a certain expectation that a natural hair girl has — supporters that watch your videos have a certain connection to that hair. So once I shaved my head, it was like, ‘Yeah, that’s not who I am.'”

After Wallace figured out who she was as a creator without her natural hair, she started to focus on mental health. Initially, she felt very alone while dealing with depression and anxiety, but then she decided to open up about it on YouTube.

“Putting everything on the table is the only way to heal and for me to get to know myself,” she said. “I go through it so that I can talk about it and help you get through it too.”

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