Dwight Eubanks: Atlanta’s Black Dandy Speaks Out

Life aint been no crystal stair for Real Housewives of Atlanta’s Dwight Eubanks. But like all true champions, Eubanks always bounces back with grace, charm and a reservoir of internal strength and wisdom. Unlike other breakout celebs from the Bravo megahit, who’ve acquired their own spinoffs—Kim Zolciak and Candi Burruss both have new reality shows, while perennial favorite NeNe Leakes’ pilot The New Normal has been picked up for the fall lineup—Eubanks has yet to acquire entertainment gold. Still, Dwight is holding steady with several new projects in the works, as well his popular hair salons that cater to Atlanta’s elite.

New ventures and businesses aside, Dwight Eubanks is not shy about revealing his truth. And though some might say his sass and spice is peppered with too much sardonic wit, in reality Eubanks verbosities are always tempered with charm and southern grace. Dwight Eubanks, if nothing else, is a southern gentleman who loves fashion and style and his keen intelligence comes from his many years of working in the beauty industry.

Fashion Reverie had the opportunity to speak with Dwight Eubanks while he was in NYC working on several projects.

Fashion Reverie: Do you have your own lingerie line?

Dwight Eubanks: Yes, I do. I’ve helped so many people develop their own fashion line that I decided to develop a men’s lingerie line. (Remember, I was involved with S**t by Sheree. Well, that’s what I call it.) Women have everything when it comes to lingerie and usually men only have a small segment of the store for undergarments and lounge items. I’ve traveled to Europe many times and I have been impressed with the quality of men’s undergarments there, as well as the variety. I launched the Two Box capsule collection about three years ago with just a few items. This was a luxury, high end undergarment brand, and unfortunately do to some manufacturing issues and the downturn in the economy, the brand do not do as well as we had hoped. We are now in the process of revitalizing the brand, and we hope to relaunch Two Box in the fall.

FR: How would you describe your own personal style?

Dwight Eubanks: I dress very conservatively, though others have described my style as flamboyant. Basically, style is very individual and I wear what I like. My style is dictated by the day and my mood.

FR: Who are some of your favorite designers?

Dwight Eubanks: I love Alexander McQueen, Christian Lacroix, Valentino, Givenchy, Ralph Lauren, Jean-Paul Gaultier. I love Thierry Mugler and Armani for suits. I tend to favor European designers because they think a little bit out of the box. But, I also like emerging designers like Barbara Bates.

FR: Could you talk about fashion in Atlanta beyond what we see on reality television?

Dwight Eubanks: Well, I don’t watch a lot of reality television, but I am aware that showing women in very tight dresses with too much jewelry increases ratings.  We have very fashionable people in Atlanta who have a great sense of style and are sophisticated, but that way of dressing is not ratings friendly.

Atlanta would like to establish itself as a major fashion hub, but I am not sure that will ever happen because Atlanta does not have the necessary ancillary businesses for it to become a fashion capital.  We have some great stores and a fashion week, but Atlanta does not yet have enough of a fashion infrastructure to play with the big boys.

FR: How are you maintaining your salons in spite of this continued economic malaise?

Dwight Eubanks:  We maintain a level of professionalism and excellence in spite of hard economic times. We do not use sub-par products, nor do we allow ‘get rich schemes’ to become a part of our business model. Where others in Atlanta do very inexpensive weaves and extensions using non-human hair, my salons continue to use quality product. We do cater to a certain clientele, and they expect and demand quality.

FR: How did you become a recurring character on The Real Housewives of Atlanta?

Dwight Eubanks: Carla Mouse, who was a recurring character on the first season on The Real Housewives of AtlantaI, was friends with one of the producers of the show and one episode of the first season showed Carla getting her hair styled in my salon. And the rest is history.

FR: What is your current affiliation with The Real Housewives of Atlanta?

Dwight Eubanks: I was recently on Andy Cohen Live while they were airing the reunion. I am now more involved behind the scenes and my friendship with Phaedra Banks continues. She is my attorney and I have known her for many years.

FR: And your relationship with NeNe Leakes.

Dwight Eubanks: I am cordial with NeNe. We have made up. We don’t agree on many things but we have moved on and our relationship is solid.

FR: Has being on the show advanced your career?

Dwight Eubanks: Being on the show has not advanced my career in the beauty industry. I have been a part of the beauty industry for over 30 years and have done make-up and hair for films and television shows filmed in Atlanta. But, Atlanta Housewives has given me celebrity. I can’t even walk down the street without someone wanting to chat or get my autograph. I have had great fun being on the show.

FR: What’s next for you?

Dwight Eubanks: My calendar is packed with public appearances and I continue to support charities and causes I believe in. I am also pushing forward with my men’s lingerie line. I believe I am in a state of grace, and I am loving my life and spreading the love.

—William S. Gooch

 

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