The Ubiquitous Women’s Expo is set to celebrate its fifth anniversary next month and its founder Germaine Leftridge couldn’t be more excited! The two-day expo brings together industry experts and personalities who will lead workshops, demos and dish on trending hair, beauty and wellness topics. The event also features direct access to more than 100 brands dedicated to women of color.
But, it’s more than an expo, explains Germaine. “The Ubiquitous Women’s Expo is a great girlfriends’ weekend trip. There is so much to experience,” she said. We caught up with the beauty boss — who is also the founder and president of GBL Sales, Inc, one of the leading manufacturers’ representative firms in the country — to find out the inspiration and get more deets on the upcoming celebration.
Hype Hair: What inspired you to launch Ubiquitous?
Germaine Leftridge: I have come to understand that God gives us all ideas…but it takes unwavering faith to take action and nurture the seed. About seven years ago, God gave me the idea to create a platform that would take the concept of beauty to another level. Too often, we get caught up in the aesthetics of things; but as we mature, we are forced to realize that the word beauty takes on a different meaning.
HH: What is your ultimate goal?
GL: The objectives of The Ubiquitous Women’s Expo are to bring value to our guests and increased exposure to our sponsors and vendors’ brands. In particular, we want our attendees to know, without a doubt, that they are beautiful and they matter…this is an event that is all about you!
HH: Why do you think the event has become so impactful?
GL: The Ubiquitous Women’s Expo was created to bring women of color together in a space that would encourage us to embrace and support one another like never before. Women of color have a power that, if unified, could change the world. We are influencers and decision makers; our disposable income continues to rise. We are a force…but we must strive to develop a more collective voice. I am committed to utilizing the Ubiquitous platform to make a difference in the lives of women.
HH: How did you come up with the name?
GL: Ubiquitous means ever-present…existing everywhere at the same time. This is a very appropriate name for the expo. We believe that it is the responsibility of The Ubiquitous Women’s Expo to create an atmosphere that will encourage collaboration, entrepreneurship and understand- ing of the importance of the “give-back.” When we sow in someone else’s life, the residual benefits are endless. We become Ubiquitous when paying it forward exists without looking for anything in return. The return on the investment of time or finances should always be the success of the recipient.
HH: What can we expect from this year’s event?
GL: During this two-day event, you can expect to take part in workshops and very thought-provoking panel discussions—and you will be able to shop until you drop. In terms of hair, whether you are natural or sport a protective style, there are products and education that focus on you. Manufacturers—those who develop and market their products especially for you—will be on hand to service your needs. Regarding the internal you, your health, Ubiquitous offers guests physical, spiritual and emotional interests that are supported by panel discussions, health screenings and expert guest speakers.
HH: And this year’s entertainment?
GL: The entertainers—including Grammy-nominated gospel singer/songwriter Anita Wilson, rapper and record producer Dougie Fresh, and R&B singers Davon Fleming and Joe Maye, from The Voice, will have us all on our feet, dancing and worshipping along with the irresistible energy.
Our celebrity guests include Nicole Ari Parker, actress, model, businesswoman and caregiver; Boris Kodjoe, actor and businessman; Cynthia Bailey, model, reality television star, actress and businesswoman; and Gizelle Bryant, creator of EveryHue Beauty and reality television star; and the list continues to grow. Our special guest speakers include Brandi Harvey, CEO of Beyond Her and the daughter of Steve Harvey; Claire Sulmers, creator of The Fashion Bomb; Dr. Ivan Hernandez, physical therapist; Syleena Johnson, R&B/ soul singer-songwriter, actress and yoga enthusiast; and Dr. Valerie Callender, internationally recognized board certified dermatologist.
HH: Anything else you’d like to share?
GL: I once read that everyone’s story should end with a thank you! I am so grateful that I have a very supportive team…family and friends, coworkers, clients, vendors and great sponsors. The Ubiquitous Women’s Expo happens because of our great sponsors…CVS Pharmacy, WMATA/ Metro, Pink by Luster Products, Mielle Organics, ORS, Creme of Nature, Hype Hair, She’s Happy Hair, WHUR Radio, Jamaican Mango & Lime, SheaMoisture and EveryHue Beauty.