- Innersense Organic Beauty was born out of so many passions- not just hair but health, beauty, and the planet! Tell us more about this intersection.
GS: It is exciting to see our dreams, combined with our personal passions, in Innersense Organic Beauty today. While growing up in the beauty industry from an early age, I was inspired by beauty and fashion. As a salon stylist, I always knew I wanted to do more. After departing from behind the chair, I found my passion in formulating products. These combined experiences and passions led me to organic chemistry and, ultimately, to create Innersense Organic Beauty.
Giving back to meaningful communities and organizations was part of our original intentions when launching Innersense Organic Beauty. We are overjoyed to be able to contribute in the ways we do today. Our annual Season of Giving is one way we give back. In 2022, we chose to give back even more. We implemented a new online feature, Beam, which allows consumers to choose a charity at checkout. With Beam, we donate a percentage of their purchase to the chosen charity. It is a way we can partner with our customers to make a tangible impact for a variety of cause partners.
- You and Joanne run such a big empire. What is your greatest challenge in running such a successful business and what advice can you give to someone starting out?
GS: Growing our business while staying small and personal at the same time are our biggest challenges. I often remind myself and our team how we arrived where we are today. It is critical for us to maintain our sense of purpose and mission. It’s truly our community of salon professionals and loyal consumers who energize us every day.
If an entrepreneur is starting out, my advice is simple: be relentless in pursuit of your vision and know self-doubt is a natural part of the creative process.
- On your website you mention hair ceremonies and uplifting affirmations. How do these go hand in hand with hair care?’
GS: We absolutely believe hair care is self care. Our hair ceremonies and innerflections (affirmations) create personal time of mindful reflection and ritual. Joanne, my wife and co-founder, has been instrumental in developing an innerflection and ritual for each Innersense Organic Beauty product. With busy lifestyles, the innerflections are gentle, focused reminders to slow down and take time for oneself.
- You left quite a lucrative career and made a brave choice in launching Innersense Organic Beauty. We understand that one of your "aha" moments was the birth of your beautiful daughter, Morgan, who is now the Innersense Director of Joy! Tell us more of this story.
As a young mother, it was a turning point in my life when Morgan was diagnosed with Williams Syndrome at 22 months old. I wanted to be the best mom I could, and also provide the best head start for Morgan and Max, my infant son.
Health was the first place I started to look for answers. I turned to the backsides of all the products I was using in the salon. I quickly became an avid label reader and researched ingredients. To my surprise, there were far too many unsafe ingredients in the products I was using. I did not want my children or my clients exposed to them.
Greg and I started a dialogue about what we had learned, which led to discussions about the possibilities of creating a safe, salon performing hair care line. And, Innersense Organic Beauty was born!
At the same time, I also realized that I would be a caregiver for the rest of my life. When I gave this further thought, I discovered I had already been a caregiver behind the chair for many years already. Supporting and caring for all the stylists in the world, who lovingly care for their own beauty guests, were important elements of creating Innersense Organic Beauty. They still are today as we care for the beauty caregivers.
- Mother, entrepreneur, and the "heart and soul of Innersense Organic Beauty" Those are just a few of the many huge hats you wear. How do you stay grounded?
Whether at Innersense Organic Beauty or in my personal life, it is a delicate balance while wearing many hats . To keep me grounded and calm, I have found a variety of effective tools which I tend to rotate over the years. Self care is really at the root of these tools.
It is important for me to get plenty of time to do the things that make my heart sing. Being in nature is a love of mine, so hiking is something I do on a regular basis. At home, I use an infrared sauna a couple times a week.
Sound healing is a key part of my self care practice as I find crystal bowls help ease the body into a state of full and total relaxation. For me, there is nothing better than to calm and ground the nervous system, while allowing the whole body to recalibrate. To help share my love of self care and sound healing, I host a sound bath for our staff once a month at our headquarters in Concord, California.
- One of the amazing things about Innersense Organic Beauty is the sense of real community that you and Greg have created among your stylists, salons, and consumers. This is more than just shampoo! How do you forge this kind of connection and why is it such an important piece of your business?
Connections with our valued community of stylists, salons, and consumers are at the heart of Innersense Organic Beauty. Both Greg and I enjoy building meaningful relationships, which have always been an important aspect of our business. We have more passion for the beauty industry than anyone I know and are always inspired to share this with anyone who will listen.
When we connect with those in our community, with our staff or those outside of our company, we want everyone to feel welcome. It is an environment we create and something people can feel.
Ultimately, a key aspect of Innersense Organic Beauty includes a special invitation for people to love their hair and love themselves.