How This Beauty Mogul Helped to Make the Industry More Inclusive from her Kitchen Counter (FORBES)

Lisa Price - The Founders Series

Lisa Price, founder of Carol’s Daughter, has a story so representative of the entrepreneurial dream that it’s almost unbelievable. It goes like this: Founder with a dream starts a side hustle from her kitchen table and poofa $27 million company is born. As Price has put in the sweat equity to build the mini beauty empire at the end of the tale, she's made a bigger impact on the industry, helping to make it more inclusive of women of color.

Building A Beauty Empire

Carol’s Daughter—which sells a range of hair, body and skincare products found at stores like Target and Ulta—started in Price’s Brooklyn kitchen. “I started playing around with fragrances and essential oils in the late 1980s. Then, I began to experiment with making body care products. It was really something I did as a hobby—it wasn't something I intended to be a business,” Price says.

After a successful string of gifts for family and friends, Price’s mom—Carol—suggested she sell her homemade creations. “I ended up spending the summer of 1993 selling products on the streets of Brooklyn at different events and building a little bit of a customer base,” says Price. Through word of mouth and the strategic use of flyers, interest grew. It wasn’t long before an expanding fan club was placing direct orders.

That small but powerful cult following picked up steam, eventually growing into a full-fledged beauty business backed by celebrity investors including Jay Z and Jada Pinkett Smith. Then in 2014, Price’s company was acquired by cosmetics giant L’Oreal, solidifying Carol’s Daughter as a mainstream beauty fixture and solidifying Price’s status as an industry mogul.

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