For Women’s History Month, we here on Myrtle Avenue are celebrating local women who make positive impacts in our community. Click here to reach the profiles of all the local women who have been featured in our annual Women’s History Month campaign.
Keisha Farrell, owner of Soketah and Shic on Soketah on Myrtle Avenue in Clinton Hill. Photos by Aundre Larrow.
Everybody loves a good transformation. And that’s what stylist and Myrtle Avenue entrepreneur Keisha Farrell lives for. Being able to help someone transform themselves into a more confident, healthier person is what first led Keisha into cosmetology and into opening not just one but two(!) beauty-focused businesses on Myrtle: Soketah Unisex and Shic by Soketah.
GOING INTO BUSINESS
After finishing up cosmetology school, Keisha found herself working in a salon and was starting to see firsthand how she could be both a stylist and entrepreneur by opening up her own shop. In 2001, she decided to branch out and go into business for herself, becoming an owner of the salon where she worked. This brings us to her first business: Soketah Hair Divas. Soketah first opened on Myrtle Avenue in 2001, near Vanderbilt Avenue, where Chase Bank is today. After then moving to a second location a block down at 378 Myrtle, they then made their way to their current spot on Myrtle Avenue near Classon, at 563 Myrtle.
After getting Soketah up and running, and seeing it grow into a unisex salon with barber services added, Keisha decided to expand her services on Myrtle. Along with partners Sonia and Jamilla, the team of women opened Shic by Soketah’s hair, nail and beauty bar in 2011.
MAKING IT ON MYRTLE
For 18 years now, Keisha has owned, operated, and grown her businesses on Myrtle Avenue. And that’s not by accident. Being a born-and-raised Brooklyn girl, Keisha wanted to establish her businesses here because she, “always felt safe and comfortable on Myrtle Avenue. It feels warm, to me. And that’s how we wanted the salon to feel.” And about Clinton Hill, Keisha added that “it’s diverse, multi-cultural, and a neighborhood of working-class residents. That’s the community we wanted to serve.”