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Spyn x Ashley A: Know Your Worth as an Influencer

I had the pleasure of chatting with, beauty and hair influencer, Ash A. We discussed everything from balancing life to embracing femininity. My girl exudes softness and gives advice to aspiring influencer girlies about standing firm in their worth.

Ashley shares the dynamics of her marriage that demonstrate how feminity can be heightened with the right masculinity in a partner.

And you knooooow We had fun with my This or That game (at the end): influencer edition.


I jumped right in and asked Mrs. A. how she balances motherhood, being a great wife, working as a nurse, and content creation.

Her answer...

ASHLEY: Balance is the number one factor in keeping yourself sane. The great thing about it is, I have a husband, a traditional partner, who is also very modern.

So, when it comes to roles and responsibilities, he is very hands-on. There are certain things around the house that he will help and do, he will help cook, help clean, help take Gabby to school, pick her up, and help with homework. It's not something that all falls on me, so I don't feel overwhelmed by all of the things I have to do in my day to day. I have his support and him as a backup.

SPYN: I love that. I love how that works for you guys because some people do feel like they're a single parent in their marriage.

Speaking of motherhood, what is it like to incorporate your daughter into all things fashion? Is she in the bathroom with you while you're melting your lace? Is she around when you're doing photo shoots? What is Gabby's perspective of her mom being an influencer/guru?

ASHLEY: I wouldn't call myself a guru. But thank you so much for the compliment. I appreciate that. But, before I started blogging and content, she would always be with me when I put outfits together. I gave her the autonomy from when she was a toddler, you know, to pick out what she wants to wear. When it comes to doing her hair, I involve her in all aspects of that. She's been watching me, in the bathroom, all the time.

Gabby would ask, 'Mommy, can you do my do my makeup like this? Can you do my hair like that?'

And as she got older, I would do those things with her. I actually have a picture of when she was three years old, I put lipstick on her and she was feeling herself. So, I know she loves it and she's very much into it.

Every time she sees me in an outfit or new hair, she's always complimenting me, 'Mom, you look so beautiful. You're so pretty.' I wouldn't be surprised if, as she gets older, she gets into fashion, hair, and beauty. Already, she's telling me she wants to have her own makeup kit, she wants to wear her hair in certain ways. And, within being appropriate for her age, I have no problem doing those things.

SPYN: Awww! Sometimes I want a little girl, too, because I do a lot of running after my son. You know, Sevyn is flipping, racing cars, kid Karting, he doesn't want his hair brushed, but he doesn't want it cut, he does him, and he's rough. But I see him trying to impress girls a bit, now.

He just got his first cologne, and it's YSL. He said, "Mommy, I want something so the girls can say I smell so good." haha I'm like, 'Whaaat? He's a very sheltered kid so I'm like, 'How does he know about that?'

We did a play date to the movie theater with a girl his age to go see Mario, this summer. Afterward, he asked if that was his girlfriend. I told him, 'No, that's not your girlfriend.' He's like, 'Well, why did she say she likes me?' I asked him what he would do with a girlfriend. He said, "I'll just show her how to play Hot Wheels." LOL

I told him I guess he can have a girlfriend if he's only gonna show her how to play Hot Wheels. Boys and girls are like night and day, that's why that question was in my head. You know, if I had a little girl around here, how into me and my lifestyle would she be? I love that Gabby is inspired by you.

So, what about your love for beauty helped morph your desire to influence?

ASHLEY: Um, it started from hair. I've always done my hair. My mom was a big influence on my hair journey. She was the main person who took care of my hair growing up. When I turned ten or eleven years old, I finally learned how to braid on my own. I used to do plats all the time, for school. I found YouTube around 2008, I think I was entering high school. I was subscribed to a girl named Tia, she would do All things hair, beauty, and makeup. I really got inspired from watching how she would take care of her hair and style it. It inspired me to experiment with my own hair. Now, did it always turn out perfect?

No, I had times where I suffered damage, and cut off my hair. I had a relaxer, but then I cut that off. I had a TWA. I was natural. I was tex-laxed, I was relaxed. I went through all different all of those different phases and one day, I was just like, 'Let me share this journey on Instagram. Let me take it seriously.'

Around the pandemic, I started with fitness. I was like, 'I'm gonna do fitness, at home, because people always ask me what my workout routine is. But even though I love working out, I didn't have a passion to show other people how I work out. It's not that I didn't want to, it just wasn't something I was passionate about.

During the pandemic, I got into skincare and self-care. I reintroduced myself to doing my hair and fell in love with different protective styles. I cut my hair back in 2020, into a pixie cut. It wasn't long enough to braid. The only thing I could do at the time were wigs. I looked at Arrogant Tae and was very inspired by his work. I wanted to get just as good, if not better than him. That was the triggering factor. And hopefully, there are girls out there who can learn from my journey, or who would love for me to do their hair one day.

Once I got serious with it, that's when things began to take off for me.

SPYN: I love that you found an inspiration and kept going. Where do you see yourself going next?

ASHLEY: Um, you know, that's a really good question. I try not to focus too much on it. I'm very goal oriented and I think way too much into the future sometimes. My husband sat me down one day and told me, 'Just enjoy the moment. Don't think you have to do "this" by the time you're 30 or you have to do "that" by the time you're 35. Don't put so much pressure on yourself. It's okay to live in the moment, take it day by day, and let things flow naturally.'

So, to answer that question, where do I see myself going in the future? I still see myself inspiring other women, educating other women, entertaining other women, just entertaining people, period. I don't have like a set goal or a set number of how many followers, how much I want to grow, or how many people I want to reach. All I know is that this is something that I am passionate about. It's fun for me. I enjoy it.

I find it very entertaining for myself when I sit back and look at my videos, from where I started in the beginning to where I am now, and I just want to keep growing. That's my main thing.

SPYN: Well, I can't wait to see the growth, I'm enjoying where you are now. And I totally agree with your husband on just waiting to see what happens- enjoying this, so you can enjoy that. What's one of the biggest lessons you've learned from partnerships?

ASHLEY: Ooooou, okay! To know your worth. It's okay when you're first starting and you don't know this realm of content creating and influencing, but brands can actually take advantage of you if you don't know what you're doing. When they ask to give you a free product for a review, It's okay to let that brand know, 'I would like compensation because my time and effort that'll be put into this review, on my page, is worth something.' The time that I'm taking out to record, the time that I'm taking to plan, to write a script, to do a voiceover, this is time I cannot get back. And if they say no, it's okay to also say no because there's gonna be another brand who is willing to give you that compensation.

I recently let a lot of brands know, 'As much as I would love to work with you, this is my compensation. I can't just work for gifted items, or for free. I put a lot of time, effort, blood, sweat, and tears into my content. It's something that I'm still learning. But trust me, the same ones you say no to are going to come back around in the future, ready to compensate you now. That would just be my biggest learning lesson.

SPYN: Do you have a favorite brand that you've worked with?

ASHLEY: Um, yes, a favorite brand that I have worked with so far is Wig Dealer. That is a hair brand. They sell hair units, bundles, kids hairspray, headbands, lace glue, lace remover, basically anything hair... they sell. Wig Dealer works with a lot of big names like Tae, and Jayda Wayda, and a lot of other top celebrities are associated and affiliated with them. Working with them has been the most pleasurable experience. They are always open to chat. They are very personable, the communication line is always great. I love being able to communicate with a brand or brand manager who's good at what she does. So it's been an enjoyable experience from start to finish. I haven't had any complaints yet, knock on wood. I have to say that has been my favorite brand to work with thus far.

Oh, and Amazon! Shoutout to Amazon affiliates. Even though it's an affiliate program and not somebody who's paying you a steady pay for posting, you can always reach out to somebody and ask, 'Hey, my commission didn't turn out the way I want. How do I look at my analytics? How do I share my link to make sure I'm getting compensated for whatever I'm promoting?' Somebody gets back to you in less than 24 hours because they want to see you thrive. Wig Dealer and Amazon are hands down the best two experiences I've had.

SPYN: Nice to know. Last Question. If you lived in your own world, could you paint a picture of a day in Ashley's world?

ASHLEY: Um, ooooh.. paint a day? Oh, gosh!

SPYN: Yep. Like, for me, I wouldn't have cars in my world because I don't like driving. So, there would be a cute tea shop on the corners. It would all be scooters, horses, and carriages, there would be no cars in my world. Haha.

ASHLEY: Gosh, that's a really good question. Um, hmm. In my own world, I would love for every experience that I have to be meaningful. I just want to be around people who are always genuine, who have my best interests at heart and I have their best interests at heart. I don't have to worry about whether they're being fake or real, whether they like me, or they're pretending to like me. That's it. That would be my perfect world.

SPYN: I love that. So, you would keep everything the same, just change the people?

ASHLEY: I'd keep everything the same and just change the people around me.

SPYN: I love that. Okay, and to wrap up this interview. I always play a game called This or That. It's a 45-second game. I ask you questions and you just choose on the fly.



Early Mornings, Late Nights?

Ooou Late Nights.

Leave out, Lace Front?

Lace front.

By Yourself, With a Group?

Ooh, that's a good one. It depends. Now, are we talking about by myself, on a trip, or, like, by myself on a day to day?

SPYN: Just in general.

In general? Okay, by myself.

Beauty or skincare?

Ooooh, skincare. I feel like that's most important.

Boyfriend Jeans, Skinny Jeans?

Boyfriend Jeans.

Cropped Top, Oversized?

Cropped Top.

Pinterest, YouTube?

Ooh. Ahh, Damn, that's a hard one. Okay, YouTube, YouTube, YouTube, but I love Pinterest. YouTube.

Deep Wave or Bone Straight?

Girl! You have some good ones. 'Cause that bust down with the 30 inches.

SPYN: With the middle part!!!

With the middle part!! Okay, that's sickening, every time! I'm gonna go with Deep Wave, though.

In one or two words, describe femininity.

I would say soft and submissive.

SPYN: I had fun with that one. I know I said I asked the last question, but since this is a femininity blog, I have to ask, How do you use your feminine power?

ASHLEY: Mm-hmm. That is a really, really good question. I would have to ask my husband because maybe I'm not actively conscious that I do this.

I have to go back a little bit because of how I was raised, by a single mother, one. She is from West India, the islands of Jamaica, two. So you already know how Jamaican people are. They call Jamaican women aggressive. Very blunt, they will speak what's on their mind. I grew up around mothers and aunts who were on the aggressive side, they were more on the louder side and very bold, you know what I mean? And when I got with my husband, I had those attributes, but I did not know I was subconsciously doing that. He would be like, 'Yo, chill. You don't have to do all that. Let me be the man. Let me lead. Let me play my role.'

It's really through my husband that I learned that I have to be okay with letting him lead. You know, just taking a step back to step into my femininity to be aloof and calm. I feel like when I speak calmly, I get more of what I want from him than when I'm bold, loud, and aggressive. Being in your feminine power is the way you the way you carry yourself. The way you walk, the way you talk, how you put yourself together, your style of hair.

My mom always taught me to never go outside looking crazy and to always make sure I go outside looking my best. Even if you don't wear heavy makeup, do light touches. I know the no makeup, makeup look is very popular. No matter the hairstyle, you can look and be as feminine as ever and look as beautiful as ever. It's really how you put yourself together and how you and how you walk outside.

SPYN: Exactly. I'm loc'd. I've been locked for eight months now. I'm enjoying the whole process. I'm falling in love with it more. And there are so many ways you can be feminine with your hair. I mean, you can twist it up, untwist it, leave it curly, or put it in a high ponytail with the back hanging down. I mean, it can be what you make it.

I love that you spoke about your marriage, bringing your softer side out, because not a lot of women realize that especially when we see like we're in this we're in this go-getter, independent woman air right now. I love your answer because my guy is very, very masculine. And by that, I mean, the more masculine a man is, the more safe you feel- the more soft and feminine a woman can be. And sometimes it can be hard to tap into that softer side. Like, I'm a single mom, so I don't have a lot of time to sit and be soft when I have to do everything. I am soft, but I mean, in a solid partnership, you kind of have the weight balanced a little bit and I'm glad you shared that perspective from a happily married view.

Thanks so much for sharing this space with me.

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