Cliff Vmir X When Passion Meets Purpose
Cliff Vmir is a celebrity in the hair industry and is now placing his stamp in the world of hip hop. With features in Paper Magazine, XO Necole, and on the hit BET digital series ‘Wig Out’, the hair extraordinaire has been a household name since bursting on the scene in 2015. At the tender age of 25, Cliff has already experienced being a highly successful and sought-after entrepreneur and entertainer, as well as the highs and lows that come along with quick stardom. Using his gift of beautifying the hair of some of the world’s most notable women, Cliff officially entered millionaire status after curating a signature hairstyle for hip hop queen Cardi B. Although he gained fame as an exclusive hairstylist, Vmir is no stranger to performing: he was the first LGBTQ artist to win the “Diamonds in the Rough” performance contest hosted by a local radio station in Philadelphia.
In his early teenage years, Cliff realized his lifestyle would differ from what was expected of a young black man growing up in Delaware. Cliff began to identify as a black, gay man, and worked through the difficulty of coming out to his mother at the age of 17. Cliff’s mother accepted and received his lifestyle with open arms, creating a safe space for Cliff to push even harder to ignite his passion for the beauty industry. and is extremely grateful for his close relationship to his mother due to her being openly receptive to his sexuality. Cliff began styling hair for his friends as a hobby, eventually building a list of paying, exclusive clientele. He grew tired of watching his mom struggle financially, so he gave much of his earnings to his mother to support their household. Cliff’s client roster began to build even higher, causing him to graduate high school with over $70,000 in his bank account.
Cliff became a full-time hairstylist, boasting big-name clientele in hip hop and reality television. He has created stunning looks for rapper Trina, reality star Joseline Hernandez, and influencer Blac Chyna. Cliff would soon become a reality star himself. He was personally tapped by BET network to star in the digital series, Wig Out. Wig Out was an eight-episode series that highlighted Cliff’s daily life and grind to build his hair empire. Cliff began teaching courses for potential cosmetologists, and created unique hair products for his clients. His pivotal moment was referred to Cardi B through said clientele, and it would be Cliff’s creation of Cardi B’s famous blonde cut and rainbow-colored custom hairstyles that he would catapult to being a millionaire. Unfortunately, the quick rise in status was almost too much for the business mogul to handle. He experienced feelings akin to those of depression, he slowly detached from the hair industry.
Cliff strategically used this break from the industry to hone in on his music skills. Amassing a following of 1 million followers on Instagram, Cliff has used the past year to shine a light on his rap skills, and the views do not disappoint: he went viral with his freestyle rap over Cardi B’s song, ‘Up’, which still boasts over 109,000 views, along with a repost and heartfelt message from Cardi B herself, stating how proud she was of him. To date, Cliff’s freestyle rap social media posts continue to have over 100,000 views each.
Currently, Cliff has 14 singles on all music streaming platforms. Additionally, Cliff’s freestyle rap over Cardi B’s hit single ‘Up’, boasts over 1 million views on Tik Tok, with commentary verifying his immaculate lyrical skills. Cliff continues to position himself as a respected hip hop artist, and is preparing to return to his original love: cosmetology, in this month.
Cliff sits down with Hustle and Soul’s Chief Editor, Stephanie Davis.
H&S: So you know I want all the beauty secrets (laughs)! Tell me about your line of beauty products and what inspired you to get into hair.
CV: I’ve always had an interest in hair. I was about three years old when I kind of started getting the itch for it. My mom used to have little things with fringes hanging from her closet. I started going in the closet and playing with them. The older I got the stronger my urge was for hair. I remember being nine and 10 years old, and my father was my football coach. I played football, basketball, soccer, baseball, track. My heart was not into any of that.
I founded my company Vmir For Hymhair, I creating my own line of beauty products that I formulated with a chemist over the course of several months. I became wealthy by selling hair extensions and products.
H&S: How receptive has the culture been to your lifestyle preference in the music industry?
CV: If you have a lot of people behind you, rooting for you, it’s like, OK bitch, I’m just gonna keep going, shit. You know, there was times when I was like, Maybe this —the hair, the makeup, the clothes — is a little too much. But then, it’s what makes you. This is what people live for. If I was to go back to wearing a mohawk and just being a regular boy? You think people would live for that? No.
Even with me rapping… we have Frank Ocean, but right now, he’s real mellow. We don’t have that gay breakout mainstream rapper just yet. So any way that I can kick a barrier down, I will. I feel like a lot of guys have been inspired off of me just stepping out and not being afraid to be myself — not being afraid to wear a wig. It takes a lot for a grown ass man to wear a wig.
H&S: When did you realize you wanted to do music?
CV: When I was about nine years old I used to rap things, and I can’t sing anymore. I think puberty happened. I used to be able to hit a note and hold it, but I can’t do that no more, I don’t know what the hell happened. I feel like I’m an entertainer — I’m very entertaining. When people meet me or see me online, it’s hypnotizing to them. I noticed that in myself when I started teaching classes, making them laugh, getting them mesmerized. So I was like, “Shit, I need to do something.” Acting is not for me, I’m going to tell you. I can’t lie and act, you know. Rapping is for me because I know music. I know music very well.
H&S: You took some time to focus on you. I see you lost weight and look even more fabulous. How has being in the industry affected you mentally?
CV: For a moment it was overwhelming and I took some time to self care. I feel great! Now I’ve gained a new perspective from feeling the pressure to make some needed changes in my life. The things that are coming soon that I can’t fully disclose yet (laughs) will show more brand evolution. I’m focusing back on my first love (hair) and even more on music.