Sue Jayanth of silk hair accessories brand Damn Gina on reading a young adult novel in the grounds of a South Australian vineyard
At Summer Stories, we've asked our favourite changemakers for their best summer story. We got in touch with Melbourne-based Sue Jayanth of silk hair accessories line Damn Gina.
Sue, tell us about your favourite summer story.
"For the girls with messy hair and thirsty hearts" The book starts with that dedication and I instantly fell in love with Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson. It's a book for young adults but how I wish I had read it when I was a young adult. It talks about the complexities of teenage emotions, first love and spells out this romance between a fearless, brave girl and an all-charm, bad boy who puts up a strong façade but refuses to grow up.
We are a collection of our experiences and growing up every heartbreak, every rejection and every mock felt like things were wrong with me – and I have learned through friends it was the same for most girls. Finally at 30 when I read this book, it suddenly dawned on me that I was strong and brave all along – and the failed romances, heart breaks and lost friends were not my fault and there is nothing I could to do keep people in my life.
And that realisation meant freedom – a deep breath – a new outlook. It's a must read for every teenage girl to own herself, believe in herself and love herself.
I read it when I turned 30 and was road tripping in South Australia lying on the grass outside my guesthouse room on a vineyard. I was going through a massive personal transformation when I read this book.
I had just moved to a new country, a new job, new friends and was on this journey of self awareness. I had begun to love my body with all its rolls and marks, my frizzy, curly but lush dark hair that couldn’t be tamed.
That's actually a great cue to tell us about your business Damn Gina.
I started Damn Gina when I started noticing women embracing their natural hair and shying away from everyday use of heating tools and wanting to look the best version of themselves. I was one of those women – but with all the different methods and products catering for our textured hair, there was still an issue of maintaining them or using minimal time to refresh on the second day. The idea of a fun, colourful sassy brand created by a hair diva called Gina was then born.
A 24-hour flight to Milan earlier this year and forgetting my prized pillowcase in an Airbnb in Verona gave the light bulb idea of a silk bonnet – but make it fashion. A stylish accessory that can be worn on long-haul flights, to bed, road trips and by the poolside that helps in maintaining the look and health of the hair.
My favourite product is our turbans. They're super versatile - wear it to bed, outdoors, on a bad hair day or just to look stylish as F!
Thanks Sue. PS You always look stylish.