Just 30 days before her grueling divorce was final, Gwen Jimmere from Detroit, Michigan, found herself being laid off from her job. As the breadwinner in the marriage, she was forced to pay the bulk of the attorney fees, which left her with nothing more than $32 in the bank. She was also now a single mother of their 2-year old son, Caiden.
But Gwen saw this as a new beginning, and transformed the "set-back" into a "set-up" for what is now Naturalicious - an international natural hair care brand that ships over 3,000 orders a month.
Started out in the basement
In the beginning, she mixed, bottled, packaged and shipped every order herself out of her basement. Making just enough to pay her bills, she next approached a then-not-yet-open-for-business Whole Foods store and convinced the buyers to take a chance on her small operation.
"I knew that if I could get Whole Foods to say yes, that would validate my brand in the eyes of the consumer," she said.
4 years later, her products can be found in several Whole Foods stores around the country, as well as over 2,500 other retail stores across the world.
Her most popular product does the work of 12 products in only 3 simple steps, taking her customers from wash to style in a fraction of the time - a huge innovation in the natural hair care industry for women of all walks of life.
Becoming the first Black woman to hold such a patent
Gwen is truly a gifted visionary on an unrelenting mission to shatter the rules of the beauty game and change them for good.
When she masterminded The Hello Gorgeous Hair Care System, she cemented her place in history as the first African American woman ever to hold a patent for a natural hair care product.
She comments, "My products are the only sulfate, paraben, mineral oil, petroleum, gluten, and cruelty-free line of products that actually smash your hair care routine into smithereens!"
Inspiring other women
Before starting Naturalicious, Gwen served as the Global Digital Marketing Director at Ford Motor Company. So, her extensive knowledge of business and marketing is what has helped propel her brand to soaring heights in record time. And she is more than willing to share what she has learned with other women entrepreneurs.
In fact, her irresistible charm and relatable personality make her an explosive and highly sought after speaker. She lights up stages across the country, giving keynotes and talks on what it takes to win in business, entrepreneurship, and in life.
Her impressive journey in business is a testament to the magic that results from hard work and unfettered determination.
Now a respected authority in the hair care industry, she was named one of the 100 Most Influential African Americans in the U.S. as a 2016 The Root 100 Award honoree, she is the winner of the Black Enterprise Elevator Pitch Competition, and has been featured on Fox News, TV One, and in Entrepreneur, Essence, Fast Company, and The Washington Post.
For more details about Gwen Jimmere, visit www.GwenJimmere.com
For more details about her company, Naturalicious, visit www.Naturalicious.net