"Kelly, can you handle this?"
That may as well have been the question that Beyoncé's mother, Tina Knowles, asked Kelly Rowland in the early days of Destiny's Child when she suggested that the singer go for a shorter hairstyle. Rowland recently revealed exclusively to AOL's Gibson Johns that the 'do, which would go on to become her signature look throughout Destiny's Child's heyday, was all Tina's idea.
"Tina was like, ‘Kelly I think you should do a short cut. A short cut would be amazing on you!'" she recalled with a smile. "So, she actually helped us really grow into that and find our look. [Our individuality] was embraced by our stylists. Bey was obsessed with her highlights. I remember, because her mom Tina worked at a salon, and there was this one woman in there with great highlights, so Bey wanted those."
She credits Tina, who owned a salon in their hometown of Houston and created many Destiny's Child's iconic costumes by hand, with helping to craft the group's cohesive look, while also allowing for personal expression and celebrating what they all individually brought to the table.
"Everything kind of fell into place," Rowland recalled of that time. "I feel like Tina really empowered me, and I was so proud to [play around with my look] after that. After that I was like, 'Can I try red hair? Can I try purple hair? Can I try blue hair?' It was just giving me the green light to express myself however I saw fit. It was amazing."
See photos of Kelly Rowland:
15 years after releasing their last album, "Destiny Fulfilled," and 5 years after reuniting during Beyoncé's Super Bowl halftime show performance, Destiny's Child once again came back together this past spring at Coachella. During two consecutive weekends, Rowland, Beyoncé and Michelle Williams took the stage in Indio in front of over 100,000 people and, when AOL asked what Rowland remembers about those shows, she just started to laugh.
"Can I be honest?" she asked. "I don't remember what happened. I'm serious. I was so prepared and so excited and so in the moment, and I couldn't hear anything because my ear monitors were in. But, people loved it and I saw the look on everybody's faces."
There is one moment, however, that Rowland does actually remember that happened at their performance during the second weekend of Coachella, and it hit her with the realization of how special her decades-long journey with Beyoncé and Michelle has been.
"The best part -- I’ll never forget it -- was when we were walking back up to the big stage and, I don’t know how this was, but me and Bey had this choreography moment where we were like right, left, right, wave! [My son] Titan and [her daughter] Blue were at the bottom, and it was the sweetest thing. The only person that was missing was Michelle’s little one. That, to me, is what Destiny’s Child is. It was just so incredible that we were able to grow up together, get married and have kids and have families together. That’s the greatest gift that Destiny’s Child has ever given me."
It's also not lost on Rowland that they were able to come up without the burden of social media. She credits her experiences both in Destiny's Child and as a solo artist with giving her the necessary tools to succeed at this stage in her career and, in partnership with TJ Maxx's Maxx You Project, to share those tools with other women.
"I didn't grow up with social media, which brings a consistent comparing [of oneself] to others," Rowland explained. "We need to let other women know that it's okay to express yourself and be loud and celebrate their individuality. That's why Maxx You says 'embrace your individuality -- together,' because when you do, you're able to recognize your light while also seeing it in someone else. When you don't quite see your own light, you don't know how to see someone else's."
See photos from Beyoncé's Coachella performance: