Beauty in­sider: Lisa Price

Renowned nat­u­ral hair care brand, Carol’s Daugh­ter, fi­nally made its way to our shores late last year. We chat­ted to its founder Lisa Price


What’s your take on the nat­u­ral hair rev­o­lu­tion?

I love it! As women of African de­scent we are uniquely and ge­net­i­cally blessed with hair that can be many things, pro­vided we take care of it. We can be straight or curly, braided or locked, and we can rocks weaves or wigs. I know many women who wear all these looks in the span of a year!

What in­spired your love for hair?

Ac­tu­ally, Carol’s Daugh­ter be­gan out of my love for fra­grance. I started with body mois­turis­ers. The hair range fol­lowed as a re­sult of women ask­ing me for hair prod­ucts be­cause they were not find­ing them else­where. And through that process of cre­at­ing for oth­ers, I dis­cov­ered what I too was lack­ing in that area. I’m also su­per-pas­sion­ate about women hav­ing op­tions and not be­ing forced to com­pro­mise the health of their hair for a style.

When and how did Carol’s Daugh­ter come about?

Carol’s Daugh­ter be­gan 25 years ago when my love for fra­grance led me to cre­ate scented body but­ters in my kitchen. I then sold these at a church flea mar­ket in Brook­lyn, New York.

What is Carol’s Daugh­ter about?

It’s about prod­ucts made with love, that de­liver on their prom­ise. It’s also a brand that be­lieves in giv­ing women op­tions.

What did ap­pear­ing on the Oprah Win­frey Show do for your busi­ness?

Be­ing on the Oprah Win­frey Show was a dream come true! Hav­ing that hap­pen 16 years ago put me in a won­der­ful place and helped me dream big­ger. That ap­pear­ance is also the gift that just keeps on giv­ing. It doesn’t mat­ter that it hap­pened 16 years ago or that her show has been off air for quite some time now. It is an ac­com­plish­ment that I am al­ways asked about. And as for the num­bers — back then in

2002, traf­fic on my web­site went from 37 to 17000 peo­ple in four min­utes! We shipped nearly 2 000 or­ders in two days and gar­nered much more press as a re­sult of that episode.

What has been your best mo­ment from your jour­ney with Carol’s Daugh­ter?

There have been so many. Tak­ing the brand to a place where it could be ac­quired by a com­pany as pres­ti­gious as L’Oreal is def­i­nitely a high­light. Reach­ing the 25-year mark has also been an amaz­ing ac­com­plish­ment.

What chal­lenges did you face while build­ing Carol’s Daugh­ter?

The big­gest ob­sta­cle was ac­cess­ing ap­pro­pri­ate cap­i­tal. It is very hard to get money when you have sur­passed the an­gel in­vestor stage but haven’t reached $5 mil­lion in sales yet. Sur­viv­ing be­yond that first $1 mil­lion and mak­ing it above the 5-mil­lion thresh­old is truly a chal­lenge.

The most valu­able busi­ness les­son you learnt along the way?

Know­ing my own worth and the power of my story.

Where do you see Carol’s Daugh­ter in the next five years?

I try not to limit where I see the busi­ness as it has al­ways sur­passed my as­pi­ra­tions. I usu­ally say, ‘Still suc­cess­ful. Still known. Still sell­ing. Still in­no­vat­ing.’

Who is your big­gest in­spi­ra­tion?

My chil­dren have al­ways in­spired me to do and be bet­ter.

What made you de­cide to write

Suc­cess Never Smelled So Sweet? I was ap­proached by a num­ber of ed­i­tors to write a book af­ter the Oprah Win­frey Show. How­ever, I had al­ready signed with one six months ear­lier. Some­one en­cour­aged me to tell my story in my own words be­fore oth­ers be­gan telling it on my be­half.

What would you tell your younger self?

Believe in your­self and trust your gut at all times.

5 hair tips for 4c hair?

There is no such thing as too much con­di­tion­ing

Know your curl type and don’t try to make her into some­thing she is not

Be care­ful with heat Do what works for you

Use sul­fate-free cleansers and al­co­hol-free stylers

What should ev­ery black woman know about their hair?

To be pa­tient with it, un­der­stand it and love it.

What was it like to fi­nally ex­pand your foot­print to Africa?

I started out in my kitchen, in Brook­lyn, with just $100. That I am now a global brand avail­able out­side the US is a dream come true and I’m grate­ful to L’Oreal for help­ing me break into in­ter­na­tional mar­kets. See­ing a lot of South Africans wear­ing their hair nat­u­rally filled my heart with joy.

Carol’s Daugh­ter is avail­able at Clicks, Dis-Chem and

Carol’s Daugh­ter Hair Milk Curl-Defin­ing Mois­ture Mask R299

THE ‘OPRAH EF­FECT’ - Carol’s Daugh­ter Black Vanilla Leave-In Con­di­tioner R299

Carol’s Daugh­ter Hair Milk Cleans­ing Con­di­tioner R299

Carol’s Daugh­ter Rhas­soul Clay En­rich­ing Con­di­tioner R320

Carol’s Daugh­ter Black Vanilla Hair Smoothie R299

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