3 Reasons Why I Created Products for Natural Hair
by Arcman Durosier
Not many men aspire to have a career creating hair products for women. In fact, never would I have imagined that this is what I’d be doing let alone actually enjoying it. Be that as it may, I am smack dab in the middle of my purpose and I want to share a few reasons that contributed to me now having a beauty brand with several products for natural hair.
1. My Little Sister
I am three years older than my sister, so looking out for her has been one of my duties since we were kids. We lived with our mother after our parents split up and from a very early age my mother made sure that I was always mindful of my little sister. Even when we would get into minor fights, I was always corrected and reminded that I’m her big brother, she's my little sister that I am to protect, guide, and share things with. I didn’t really like to share, but I got better over time.
Fast forward to 2011 my sister was not so little anymore. She was all grown up, in college, and finding her own way through life. During her time in college she decided to transition from using chemical relaxers in her hair and wanted to incorporate natural products into her regimen. Unfortunately, the products on the market at that time either failed to deliver good results, weren’t truly natural, or were too expensive for her college budget. It troubled me not seeing my little sister satisfied,so I instinctively stepped in to help her. After a lot of listening to her needs & her wants I began to research ingredients then commence several experiments until I created a product that finally satisfied her. Big brother to the rescue….just like old times!
The very first time I visited Washington, DC was in 2009. I came to visit my best friend in the nation’s capital to have a fun filled week. That week she and I toured the monuments, ate at great restaurants, partied on U Street, and even attended some of Howard University’s Homecoming events. Needless to say, we didn’t get much sleep (#TeamNoSleep). Somehow during our daily escapades & gallivanting, we got a chance to go see a new movie. This movie would plant a seed that would eventually produce great fruit.
Watching Chris Rock’s documentary, Good Hair, enlightened me in a way that I wasn’t even expecting. The movie was nothing like his previous works, yet he still kept me entertained while educating me (#StayWoke). This expose` shared the truths about harmful chemical relaxers, budget breaking extensions, exploitation of urban communities by Asian-owned beauty suppliers, and the manipulative European derived standards of beauty. I walked away from that movie sympathetic yet marveling at what women like my mother & sister go through to have “good hair”.
By 2011 there was a change in the culture that was shifting the hair care industry and rearranging the beauty standards for black women. Just two years after seeing that movie I began my journey to creating products for natural hair for my sister. I can’t help but give some credit to the enlightenment I received the 2 years prior that played a major key in the last 5 years I’ve been in business. Not to mention that I have now been living in Washington, DC for the last 3 years. Timing is everything…
Like many other millennials, I wasn’t told the full truth about what life after college looks & feels like. I was ready to save the world with my healthcare degree and believed that I would make lots of money without working too hard. “The test determined that was a lie!”(in my Maury Povich voice). Although I learned a lot about the world and myself while working in the healthcare industry, I had a feeling that this wasn’t the arena I would be using my talents to make a living.
I didn’t set out to be an entrepreneur. In fact, I pursued a healthcare degree because of the stability it promised. Not to mention that my parents demanded a degree that would produce a tangible profitable outcome (#CaribbeanParentsBeLike). I did what was expected of me and began living the normal post graduate life of 40-hour work weeks and 48-hour weekends (#Adulting). There was no real test of faith, sacrifice, creativity, and most importantly no fulfillment. I wasn’t thriving in life, just merely existing.
Beginning the journey to creating natural hair products awakened me from this daze of 9 to 5 life. It wasn’t easy adjusting to uncertainty, but I became more confident seeing my ideas manifest into products that actually produced results. To have people outside of family validate my ideas by investing their money and steadily growing a customer base encouraged me to take the road less traveled. On any given day I am taking risks, accepting new challenges, trusting my gut, learning from mistakes, celebrating small victories and using my gifts to help others. I accepted the calling and pressed on into becoming a full-time entrepreneur. I can’t think of any place in life I’d rather be than smack dab in the middle of my purpose.