100 Women We Love: Class of 2017

Every June, GO compiles a select list of talented tastemakers, influencers and all-around inspirational women who are making their mark on the LGBT community and on the world at large.

Deirdre Novella

Photo courtesy Deirdre Novella

After coming out in the ’90s, Deirdre Novella started bartending in NYC lesbian clubs Meow Mix and WOW Bar, cutting hair on the side. “I always wanted to open a salon,” she said, and in 2012, she did just that. Now the owner of Brooklyn-based Badlands, she has a mission of “providing a safe space for fellow LGBTQs.” Novella refers to herself as “an artist, healer and alchemist,” as she’s recently delved into developing Bandlands Organics, an organic skin and haircare line, as well as energy healing and homeotherapy. “I’m learning to diagnose and treat chronic illness that allopathic doctors have had minimal success with,” she says, “like Parkinson’s and Lyme Disease. … I’ve treated a lot of my staff, clients at the salon, and referrals from friends.” Novella credits much of her thriving to “good survival skills and creative tenacity,” but also being a part of something bigger than herself. “I feel so lucky to be a part of a strong community where helping others is a priority, especially in this climate of greed and lack of integrity,” she says. “If we don’t help each other, we’re all going down.” —TB