He might still play a teenager on the screen, but The Chi star Jacob Latimore is no longer the little boy we remember from Black Nativity. With 10 years in the game, the 23-year-old singer-slash-actor is serving up grown man energy, and he’s relishing in it.
“I’m an old man,” he tells Hype Hair via phone. “I drink tea in the morning. I light candles. I’ve got an old soul. My personality is just like that.”
His sophomore album Connection2 gives us an older, more mature look and sound with a ‘90s throwback vibe and sultry visuals for the latest single featuring Empire star Serayah McNeill. Now he’s hitting up the big screen again as funny woman Tiffany Haddish’s love interest in Like A Boss.
We caught up with the rising talent to talk about his new role, coming into his manhood and his relationship with his hair.
HYPE HAIR: Tell us about your role in the film Like A Boss.
JACOB: I play a young guy named Harry, who is actually in college. I’m her young love interest—and we do freaky stuff.
HH: So, you’re just going to pop up and be man candy for the people?
JACOB: That’s basically what it is. [laughs]
HH: What was it like working with Tiffany?
JACOB: Super fun. There’s a lot of energy. She’ll do anything for a laugh, so I had to level up to that bravery and fearlessness that she has on-screen and that fearlessness she brings to the camera.
HH: We’ve literally watched you grow up on-screen. What’s that been like for you?
JACOB: Sometimes, when you come into the game really young, you get to this age and feel old cause you’ve been doing it so long. I’m always trying to find new ways to reinvent myself—whether it’s in film, my music, fashion. Now, I’m literally erasing the younger kid Jacob. That’s not who I am anymore. It’s kind of a bittersweet place to be in, but it’s also refreshing because I’m able to have that same hunger I had when I was young.
HH: We saw some of that maturation in your album, Connection2. How does this speak to your musical journey?
JACOB: Sonically, it connects with my old soul. Growing up, I listened to a lot of Temptations, artists with substance. Usher is still one of my favorite artists. This is actually the type of music and the type of vibe that I like to surround myself with. So, I wanted to touch base on this is who Jacob is. This is who I am versus; this is what a label told me to sing. But at the same time, I’m still connecting with my peers.
HH: We see you’re growing your hair out, too. What’s your relationship like with your hair?
JACOB: Oh, I love my hair. I love it. I’ve even turned down roles because people wanted me to cut off my hair.
HH: Would you ever cut your hair?
JACOB: If my schedule throughout the year is really just focused on acting, then that’s something I would do. But [the particular role] came at a time where I was getting ready to release some music. I hadn’t really put out any projects in a while, and I didn’t want to push it back any further.
HH: What is your daily hair game like?
JACOB: I keep my curl sponge with me every day. I call it the ‘culture brush.’ I try to wash my hair every other day, condition it.
HH: Any special products?
JACOB: I use Luster’s S-Curl gel. As I was growing my hair out, I was trying to figure out certain products that work well on my hair, and that was a product that stayed consistent. And, I was like, this is it! Put that in, wet it a little bit, and then sponge it out. Brush the sides down and go to the barbershop, get a little lineup, taper on the sides, line the beard it up, put the little slash up top, and I’m ready to go!
HH: Okay, so you’ve got a whole system! Anything else? Are you into oils?
JACOB: Yeah, I like my beard oils. I try to be careful with them in the summer because I have really oily skin, but in the winter, I’m slapping all that oil on me!
HH: What about skincare?
JACOB: Because I’m on set a lot [with] onset makeup, I try to do masks more often than I would usually do. I recently tried turmeric and vitamin C masks. I use different facial cleansers like Dermalogica and Kiehl’s. My girl Serayah, she really helped me out with a lot of that stuff. She’s really into skin and all different types of products.
HH: You recently released visuals with her for “Caught Up.” And now you’re filming season 3 The Chi. How do you find the balance between your music and acting?
JACOB: When you do what you love, you just do it on a daily basis and figure out ways to include it in your 24 hours.
HH: As you continue to reinvent yourself, what do you want to get into next?
JACOB: I want to just start getting into the other parts of my career as far as producing films, creating projects for other actors and watching [them] work on my projects. Signing artists, signing producers and, really, just kind of creating more of a 360 of what I’m already doing.
HH: What does success look like for you?
JACOB: Success is just getting up every day and trying again.
Like A Boss hits theaters January 10. The Chi is slated to return this spring on Showtime. Check local listings for showtimes.