Demetria McKinney is a bona fide triple threat. The former reality tv star is an award-winning actress, a talented singer with an incredible voice and a skillful songwriter who expresses emotions in ways that instantly connect with listeners.
While most know her as Janine Payne from Tyler Perry’s House of Payne (now airing on syndication on BET), Demetria just might be one of the busiest actresses in the game. She has appeared on seasons 7 and 8 of the The Real Housewives Of Atlanta, on the Bounce TV breakout hit Saints & Sinners, BET’s The Quad. She also has recurring roles on Lifetime’s Devious Maids and on TV One’s The Rickey Smiley Show. Demetria will also be reviving her role as Janine on the new Tyler Perry show The Paynes, which debuts on OWN in 2018.
Not only does she stay on the grind, she keeps her beauty game tight! We caught up with Demetria to talk about her busy schedule, new album and, of course, all things hair and beauty!
Hype Hair: Can you tell us a little bit about your latest projects?
Demetria McKinney: Where do I start? My new album, Offcially Yours, dropped October 6. have my new series, Superstition with legendary actor/director Mario Van Peebles and I played the legendary Whitney Houston in Bobbi Kristina!
HH: What inspired the music?
DM: My life challenges. This album is really the soundtrack to my life.
HH: How would you describe your sound?
DM: It’s really soulful and true R&B.
HH: Who were some of your musical influences growing up?
DM: Chaka Khan, Celine Dion and, of course, Whitney Houston.
HH: What are some of your favorite ways to experiment with your hair?
DM: My normal style is pretty much carefree, a wash-and-go look. But I do like to show versatility according to the characters I play. For example, May Westbrook [Superstition] has to have a very clean, professional look, but the show does allow me to do that with my natural hair. Tamara Austin [Saints & Sinners] is a bit more artsy. So I like to use my hair as the greatest form of expression for whatever I am doing.
HH: What is your daily hair-care routine?
DM: My hair-care routine actually begins at night. I start with water, seal with an oil, usually castor oil, and wake up in the morning ready to shake and go. I’ve learned to keep it really simple so I don’t over manipulate and cause unnecessary breakage.
HH: What are some of your top favorite hair tips?
DM: Some of my favorite hair tips include listening to your hair. The relationship with your hair is no different from other relationships in your life. You have to get to know when it’s dry; you have to get to know when it’s happy; you have to get to know how to keep it easy. (Ha!) Listening to what it needs will give you everything you need. The other thing that I would say is, concentrate on health versus length. Length comes from healthy hair; shine comes from healthy hair. Everything great that happens on your head comes from health—and that also starts from within. Plenty of water, plenty of rest, plenty of nourishment.
HH: What hair products do you use that our readers may be able to find?
DM: Dark and Lovely’s Au Naturale line; Carol’s Daughter Monoi line is still one of my faves. And oils—whether it be castor oil, avocado oil or jojoba oil, just find the right mix for you. It definitely helps to keep my hair moisturized with the sealant.