Story by Liesel Schmidt | Portrait by Lucia Smith
As the owner of Joi Dreams Salon and the newly-launched Ward Avenue Style Parlor, Joi Dreams has made beauty her business, but uplifting others—especially women—is her ultimate passion. “Being a business owner myself, I mentor and counsel both women and men of all ages with all kinds of business ideas by being available for any questions and connecting them with anyone I know that can be a blessing to them,” she says. “I have a passion to help others see themselves the way God sees them—as His amazing creations—and to help them give their dreams wings [with which] to fly and bless others with their ideas.”
Having launched two successful businesses, Dreams has much to be proud of, but the mother of three does not consider this to be her greatest accomplishment. “Motherhood is the toughest ‘hood’ to live in, but it has grown me, bettered me and helped me to love unconditionally,” she says. “I’m incredibly proud to be a mother, and also of navigating through breast cancer while keeping my hope and faith intact. I don’t speak much publicly about this, but it was the hardest, most rewarding journey I have ever taken because it taught me so much about myself. It helped me to trust people and God unconditionally. I also have a new respect and love for time, as it is the most expensive and valuable gift God has given us. Battling through breast cancer taught me that fear is not as strong as hope and faith. I see people better, which allows me to love them in spite of them.”
“As a Black woman, I know that heart disease runs rampant through my community. My healthy, athletic son was diagnosed with high blood pressure at 19 years old and my eldest son, uncle, mother, brother, best friend and a host of clients, friends and family members all have high blood pressure. It’s so important to adopt healthy eating habits and go to the doctor. Some diagnoses can be reduced by eating habits, but many people with heart disease in their family line find out too late because people do not go to the doctor until they are forced.” -Joi Dreams
Dreams’s vision for the future includes creating a beauty school at Joi Dreams Salon and later a vocational school, as well as giving up-and-coming designers a place to showcase their exclusive designs at Ward Avenue Style Parlor. An avid cook, she also plans to write a cookbook.