PHOTOGRAPHS BY TIFFANY L. CLARK
Matthew Sam has been doing house calls during the pandemic.
What’s your signature style?
When I first came to the Coachella Valley, I was most known for hair art. I did a lot of crazy, abstract deigns. Lately, I’ve been the beard master. People like to come to me to have their beards shaped, dyed, trimmed — everything.
Where are you from originally?
I was born and raised in Blythe. I was visiting out here and liked the vibe. I started out working in the mall. It was a great experience because I met everyone from the valley. Now, I have my own private studio with weekends off.
Why did you start your own product line?
My sister is in the skincare field. I’m in the hair field. It just made sense to team up and create organic products because they’re so hard to find. The first thing we made was a beard oil, and now we have hair and body butter, body wash, and styling gel.
What does the name Muujiza mean?
Muujiza means “miracle” in Swahili. The products help with everything: dandruff, itching, razor bumps. They really are a miracle!
How have you been faring during the pandemic?
I’ve had to adapt. I’ve been doing lots of house calls. I’ve been going to resorts. I’ll go anywhere you need me. I was cutting a family’s hair overlooking one of the pools at the La Quinta Resort. There were about 100 people who were watching me, which was great because many of them became my new clients.
Have there been any pandemic hair disasters you’ve had to fix?
Oh, yeah. Lots of guys have their wives cutting their hair or are trying to do it themselves. I had one young guy with curly hair who didn’t understand the concept of clipper guards and a cut a hole into the middle of his head. There wasn’t anything I could do but bring his length down really low and give him a nice border around his ears.