Cleveland Hts. native launches beauty app aimed towards Black women

CLEVELAND HEIGHTS, Ohio — When it involves beauty and haircare, discovering what works for you means plenty of trial and error.And for Black women and women of colour, discovering merchandise that work may be particularly difficult.A brand new app created by a Cleveland Heights native goals to make the method a lot simpler and it is also serving to native women entrepreneurs thrive.It’s known as FELOH, which stands for For Everyone’s Love of Hair + Beauty.Camille Genise Heard began the enterprise together with her pal and faculty roommate Jacqueline Baron in 2016, two years after she started her pure hair journey. The firm additionally later added Zarin Hamid in a social administrative position.

“I used to be noticing there’s plenty of content material on the market about completely different merchandise and completely different hair textures and completely different design and magnificence concepts, nevertheless it was fairly troublesome to navigate,” stated Heard. “But the extra I began learning the business, the extra I noticed it wasn’t actually only a hair drawback, it was extra of a content material overload and navigating the entire completely different, actually cool stuff that is on the market.”She additionally noticed that the beauty business was persevering with to develop.“[We] began noticing, in all probability in 2016, the rise of independently owned beauty manufacturers that have been creating the merchandise and promoting them and people people wanted a brand new avenue to get on the market and so round 2016, that is after we actually began to seek out our focus,” stated Heard.That’s when FELOH was born. The firm launched a beta model of the app to check the idea earlier than totally launching simply final week.“You can consider us as an progressive Instagram hybrid that has, , the social facet and a market,” stated Heard. “But, the tremendous cool half about us is that when our customers put up their content material in our social neighborhood, we give them rewards known as ‘curl cash’ to buy in our market. And {the marketplace} is the place all of those unbelievable independently-owned manufacturers can promote their merchandise.”FELOH options 1,045 merchandise offered by 60 folks from independently-owned companies.It’s precisely the form of neighborhood Heard couldn’t discover when she went pure.“So, if you’re searching for suggestions, if you’re searching for simply completely different hair inspiration or concepts or no matter it might be, you’ll be able to mechanically additionally see the place these merchandise are and purchase them!” stated Heard.But it is not nearly fulfilling the client’s wants. FELOH additionally offers a neighborhood for its sellers—70% of that are Black and 80% of that are women.“I create handcrafted artisan soaps and physique care merchandise,” stated Helena Rosa, the proprietor of Urban Rootz Artisan Soap Company, which is predicated in Cleveland.Rosa is Latina and began her enterprise on the finish of 2020.“I’ve at all times been enthusiastic about handcrafting merchandise. I grew up in Cleveland, Ohio. The sights and the sounds of my neighborhood simply actually influenced me,” stated Rosa. “I spotted there wasn’t plenty of illustration so far as variety in pure skincare merchandise. So that actually simply moved me to begin creating my very own. And so I began truly 5 years in the past for household and pals, after which it simply form of moved into this entire different, , creature of its personal.”

Rosa’s following on social media was very small when she began, so when Heard supplied to incorporate her on FELOH, Rosa jumped on the alternative.“The influencers will overview your merchandise, and it actually boosts your viewers. It boosts your viewers in the way in which that your merchandise will attain people that you could be not have in any other case reached,” stated Rosa.She joined not simply to construct her model, however to additionally join with different enterprise house owners like her.“It’s the fellowship in it. You know, simply actually connecting with different like minded people, after which additionally the cultural elements. And then simply actually having that sisterhood, I wish to say is simply actually useful,” stated Rosa.Charron Leeper, the proprietor of Cleveland-based Perfect Pineapple Wraps, additionally appreciates the sisterhood facet the FELOH app brings.“I believe it is also fostering sisterhood and it is fostering synergy amongst women of colour. And I believe that it is creating an surroundings in a neighborhood that may doubtlessly breed extra of its sort, extra concepts, extra collaboration,” stated Leeper, whose merchandise are featured on the app.

Perfect Pineapple Wraps is a head wrap and hair accent model that focuses on equipment for textured hair and specialty hair wants. She began the enterprise in 2017 and was impressed by her grandmother, who was recognized with most cancers.“So I had a shawl that she gave me and it was tied in a sure method. And I might wrap my hair with this small scarf that was tied and I may do all these completely different kinds. Then, it dawned on me that not solely may I shield my curls at evening, however I may truly put on it out to work. I may put on it in all places, and my hair was protected. So I simply began making them in her basement,” stated Leeper.Interest in Leeper’s head wraps grew, so she created a enterprise. Her grandmother was capable of see the progress she was making earlier than she sadly handed away.“She requested me to make her a promise that I might actually maintain this going and begin a household enterprise. And so she’s my inspiration for the model. So that is why it is not just for folks with textured hair, but in addition for folks if they’ve hair loss, in the event that they’re searching for another sort of headwear for hair loss,” stated Leeper.Leeper joined the FELOH app after assembly Heard at a JumpStart occasion. She appreciates the publicity and the neighborhood of entrepreneurs she’s met by way of the app.“As a enterprise proprietor and a Black girl, I believe that it is encouraging as a result of plenty of occasions entrepreneurship is lonely and also you’re unsure who is true subsequent to you that is in your identical journey. So by being linked in the identical business with like minded folks from the identical demographic doing an identical factor, I believe it is simply an general increase in morale. And it is simply inspiring.”Heard is aware of the challenges each Rosa and Leeper have confronted as entrepreneurs firsthand.“Being an entrepreneur, on the intersection of being a girl and being Black, the chance to get funding for your small business — there’s an enormous disparity,” stated Heard.Earlier this 12 months, Heard and Baron obtained $11,390 within the Black Girl Ventures pitch competitors.“That’s the primary outdoors funding that we have ever obtained that is not a mortgage,” stated Heard. “What we have been capable of do was one: Hire two interns, which I’m simply very pleased that we have been capable of do, and provides different folks expertise but in addition actually assist us onboard all of those new sellers onto the platform and assist out with our social media.”Also, they have been capable of revamp the platform and get rid of boundaries that have been impacting customers’ experiences utilizing the app.Plans for the longer term embody extra fundraising to safe sufficient funding to rent extra employees members to construct and function the FELOH platform. They additionally plan to do extra person analysis to seek out out what clients and sellers like and dislike in regards to the app.And although beauty is the principle focus of the FELOH app, Heard is proud it may possibly assist bridge the hole for women of colour in additional methods than one.“One actually cool factor that I believe significantly with FELOH is plenty of our model companions, they’re women of colour enterprise house owners, and regardless that we’re a tech firm and so they’re a product firm, they undergo the identical actual issues,” stated Heard. “We construct a relationship of accountability, , uplifting one another and simply persevering with to inspire one another which is—such as you can not put a value on that.”More details about FELOH may be discovered right here.Jade Jarvis is a reporter at News 5 Cleveland. Follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.Download the News 5 Cleveland app now for extra tales from us, plus alerts on main information, the newest climate forecast, visitors data and rather more. Download now in your Apple gadget right here, and your Android gadget right here.You may also catch News 5 Cleveland on Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, YouTube TV, DIRECTV NOW, Hulu Live and extra. We’re additionally on Amazon Alexa gadgets. Learn extra about our streaming choices right here.

Recommended For You

About the Author: Jessica