Schatzi’s Design Gallery & Day Spa, LLC

by Terry Watson | May 13th, 2016
Schatzi McCarthy (Photos by Soul2Soul Photography)

Schatzi McCarthy (Photos by Soul2Soul Photography)

When asked how she would describe herself, Schatzi McCarthy response is very simple, “I am a child of God, a tool of the Divine who is prayerfully working in service to humanity through my labor and through my heart”. One platform of service on which she stands is Schatzi’s Design Gallery & Day Spa, LLC, Raleigh’s first natural hair salon. She has been a natural hair enthusiast for 30 years and a natural hair salon owner and manager since 2006.

Schatzi’s was conceptualized to address the gap in hair and beauty care services for people seeking more natural alternatives to harsh chemical treatments, which McCarthy says often damage the mind, body and soul. Self-acceptance and self-healing is the fundamental message of the Schatzi’s Design Gallery & Day Spa motto – “Embrace the Beauty of You”. Through the platform of her salon, she has conducted lectures on natural hair care at Shaw University, NC State University, local high schools, community groups and local churches. In January 2014, she published the first edition of her free online natural hair care book “A Natural Attitude” which is a compilation of natural hair care articles and essays arising from the monthly publication of her salon newsletter, Au Naturel.

Although she opened the doors to her business in 2006, McCarthy says her career began in the summer of 1981. At that time, she was about 13 years of age. Her mother didn’t know what to do with her hair for the summer, so she decided to take her to the Cornrow Gallery, a salon located in Hampton, Virginia. Before stepping through the threshold to negotiate an appointment, her mother saw a model on the front door wearing natural two-strand twists. “She was spell-bound after looking at the picture. She decided that she could do my hair instead and I’ve been wearing twists ever since,” she says. In 1991, McCarthy left the United States to live with her husband in Jamaica. There, her love and passion for natural hair was deeply solidified. She saw beautiful styles with natural hair and with locks, and came to value and cherish her hair even more. “I loved the sense of freedom that I experienced in being my natural self with the masses of people who didn’t notice my hair unless they commented on how nice it looked,” she says.

When she returned to the US, she continued to wear her natural hair and gradually observed a wave of people being converted to natural hair as a direct result of their association with her. “They saw that my hair was healthy, pretty low maintenance and long; so, they asked for advice. I gave it and they converted before my eyes,” says McCarthy. In 2005 while working at a Research Triangle Park based non-profit, a young woman asked her where did she gets her hair done. She said that it always looks so good and McCarthy told her that she did it herself. The young woman was surprised. McCarthy says she never saw the woman again but, the seed was planted. She went back to her office and was consumed by the idea of establishing a salon solely focused on meeting the needs of women wearing natural hair. Because her professional training dealt with planning and management, she knew she had the skills to make it work. “I just needed the plan. Voila! And so, a dream was born into reality,” she says.

What McCarthy loves most about her business is working to help her community to see, appreciate and know the beauty of a natural attitude. For instance, she says a child is born perfect. At no time in life, does that perfection alter or dissipate. Perfection is coded at birth and it endures. It is only the wider social “programming” which seeks to label the perfect child and create an imperfect being. This is true in the physical, intellectual, social, economic and spiritual arenas. A natural attitude is grounded in a strong appreciation for God’s gifts, a profound love of self, an ever-inquisitive knowledge of history, an admiration for diversity and an unequivocal willingness to speak truth. It is likewise a belief system grounded in great empathy for the intolerance of others but which seeks to cull and destroy the weakness and intolerance within the self. In short, a “natural attitude” seeks soul perfection, a state of being which better aligns with the corresponding image of natural beauty.

McCarthy says she is not really trying to sell her clients anything. “Most salons are so pressured to pay the rent that they will sell you whatever they need to just to keep the lights on. I’m more interested in turning the light on in my clients’ heads,” she says. She has ten years of community speaking experience and has published articles that she wrote with the intentions of bringing people closer to the realization and appreciation of God’s wonderful gift, the human spirit. The hair is merely a journey to the soul. Her best and favorite articles she says are compiled into her book, “A Natural Attitude” which is in its 3rd edition. It is available for free by downloading the (PDF file) from her website at

“I am not on a mission to prove that natural hair is beautiful. I simply tell the truth and this truth is found in the psyche, not the roots of the hair,” says McCarthy. When her clients enter Schatzi’s, she allows them to choose for themselves because she says this journey is one that requires an individual to be ready — both mentally and spiritually. “Why should I try to prove to the world that the sun is hot or that the sea is vast or that a baby is precious? I believe those things with my heart and soul and really do not wish to argue these points with anyone. If you don’t believe, then maybe you’re not ready for Schatzi’s. Still, you are welcome to come and look and learn,” she says.

You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Leave a Reply