Master stylist and curl expert Nubia Suarez is an irrefutable authority on all things beauty. As a top-notch educator and curl specialist, she is passionate about imparting her curly hair knowledge to her clients and exhibiting the beauty in all hair types– so much so that she opened Utopia Salon & Day Spa in Westfield, New Jersey. During this interview she revealed some styling tips for curly and coily hair, her current favorite curly girl products, and the tea on her famous Rezo Cut!

Her inspiration

Nubia comes from supportive parents who encouraged her to always pursue her dreams, and because of her enthusiasm for hair and beauty, a salon and spa seemed like a natural step in realizing her dream. When asked about her reason for creating Utopia, she also shared that she was driven by the lack of representation of some hair types.

“I’ve always loved to fight for divides and human rights. It hasn’t always been easy for women with tight curly textures.” Nubia has studied many different hair textures and techniques from around the world. She is particularly fond of the communal aspect of hair care present in many African cultures where “…even men would be involved in the process.”

As a Deva and Ouidad certified educator, she has had the opportunity to travel the world and teach as well as learn about the latest in hairstyling techniques.

What is a Rezo Cut and how is it different from a DevaCut?

The Rezo Cut is Nubia’s own creation taking the curly world by storm– and it’s compatible with every hair texture. The most prominent difference between a DevaCut and a Rezo Cut is that “The DevaCut focuses on framing your face, while the Rezo Cut maintains an even length all the way around your head,” she says. “It liberates the curls from the root area so they can move about freely.”

In other words, if you straighten a DevaCut, your hair may appear to be uneven, while the Rezo Cut will look even in both a curly and straightened state. The Rezo Cut is also perfect for curlies who love their length, as it creates a shape while maintaining both length and volume.

Tips and favorite products?

For curlies who are struggling with moisture, Nubia recommends that you prime the hair before adding styling products to avoid disrupting the moisture and encourage humidity resistance. If priming isn’t something you’re interested in, which is one of her favorite products to use on clients at the moment.

Another favorite is her trusty diffuser. For Type 4 clients, Nubia reveals that the trick for the best results is to wait to diffuse your hair, allowing it to partially air dry (about 25 percent)– then go in with the diffuser.

“I expect women to come in requesting more edgy and daring hairstyles this year. The fear of short styles and of the salon is starting to become a thing of the past!”

Nubia has a hopeful vision for the future, in which women will love and accept themselves for who they are, including their beautiful hair.

“In the past, women could never fully be themselves because they had to change that one thing about them [their hair]. I’m giving women the tools they need to experience their hair at its best. The woman you have to fall in love with is you. The moment you fall in love with you, everyone will notice the beauty in your hair. Instead of looking to other women for inspiration, you have to find that confidence in yourself.”