Cipriana Quann And TK Wonder are part of Oxygen’s digital series In Progress 52. In 2016, Oxygen's Very Real digital hub is featuring 52 of these outstanding women: that's one woman a week, for 52 weeks. Check out the series here!
Cipriana Quann And TK Wonder were made for Instagram envy. Identical twins, they're otherwordly; statuesque, stunning and immaculately put together. It's hard not to spend hours scrolling through their photos— each worthy of being on the cover of a magazine. They're the definitive cool girls we want to be.
They've been recognized as the queens of natural hair by the who's who of style. But the 28-year-olds are more than just pretty faces. The Maryland natives are multi-hyphenate entrepreneurs with their natural hair blog Urban Bush Babes and creative pursuits that include modeling, writing and music. Whatever they do, it's with fearless confidence, beauty and of course, killer hair.
Cipriana co-founded Urban Bush Babes with friend Nikisha Brunson in 2011. Since then, the blog celebrating natural hair has evolved to include lifestyle, beauty, photography and the arts. "We wanted to create a platform specifically for women of color, a space where we could highlight diversity and put it in the mainstream eye," says Cipriana.
She serves as the editor-in-chief. TK joined as executive contributor in 2013."We wanted to showcase a different side of women of color that you weren't seeing in mainstream media," TK said. "The reason we started it was deep-rooted issues we were dealing with, well beyond the website. It wasn't something we were trying to turn into a career. It just happened that way."
It was a gradual labor of love. Cipriana had a background in design from the prestigious Parsons School of Design but she was waitressing while getting Urban Bush Babes off the ground. TK attended the University of Maryland and was interested in the arts. "I always had the mindset of writing as a career, even as a very young girl. I wanted to be a journalist. I liked writing about empowerment for women," says TK. "I [also] became involved in music and that took off on the independent circuit."
Urban Bush Babes hit a long-neglected nerve for women with natural hair, and its popularity catapulted the twins beyond internet fame. Cipriana realized that she had arrived when she was featured in a Vogue documentary about power women in New York City. "For me, that was a very a-ha moment," she laughs. "During New York Fashion Week, my sister and I attended our first fashion show and it was just a different feeling. We received a lot of love. A lot of people expressed they liked what we were doing in the fashion industry, creating a diversity."
For TK, being featured in an issue of American Vogue was special to her. "It's enjoyable for us because we never had any intention of concentrating on fashion. We always had a love for it but never thought about making it into a career. All of it happened very naturally."
Since then, the two have notched looks from major publications and brands. Together they have made the pages of Elle, Harper’s Bazaar, Marie Claire, WWD, New York Times best-dressed list and been dubbed “It Girls," "Style Stars,” "Beauty Superstars" and “Hair Icons." They have collaborated with the Gap and Rebecca Minkoff and even been invited by Vice President Joe Biden to his home to celebrate black history month.
Their love for their work-and each other-shows in everything they do. "I love what I do," says Cipriana. "I'd be doing it if it was for money or no money."
"It's a great partnership," says TK. "I really really love working with my sister. I find it very easy."