Photo: Kat Rodenhiser
Well, friends…here begins another new chapter. The exciting news is: I started a retail business. Here's the story...
A few years back I made the decision to go to business school, with the sole motivation of starting a healthy skincare business “one day.” I wanted to fill the market need for a retail store that sold healthy beauty products ONLY. As followers know, I promptly quit my job in NYC, embarked on a lavender farming adventure in France, and then did some skin care manufacturing research in Maine. I continued researching the space and meeting with brand founders, aestheticians, dermatologists—everyone—along the way. At b-school, the goal was to secure a marketing job, and do that for 5 or 6 years after graduation before starting my business.
Plans changed this spring.
I had written a business plan for an entrepreneurship class at school, and, on a whim, submitted the plan to a national competition. My concept WON. Soon after, mentors, friends, family, and others came out of the wood work to support me in taking the real plunge. So…the time is NOW!
This summer, I will pilot FOLLAIN (Gaelic for ‘healthy, wholesome, and sound’) in a brick & mortar storefront in Boston’s South End. While I have some big long-term goals, immediately I hope to convince Bostonians of everything YOU already know—the impact of skincare products on beauty, health, and the environment!
Here's the general gist of FOLLAIN:
- A curated mix of the healthiest, most effective, and—when possible, local—products from 25+ skin care, hair care, and cosmetic brands
- A refill system for the fastest-moving products (starting with liquid body soap)
- Education stations to learn about ingredient benefits, brand stories, and product offerings
- A sample sink to test all products in store
- And more...
I invite you to follow Follain’s progress here on the blog, via other social media outlets like Facebook and Twitter, and, of course, in person, at 53 Dartmouth Street in Boston. I’ve so appreciated your commitment and support up until now! Please spread the word!!!
And of course, please also check back here for pictures and updates on our progress…including, but not limited to: before & after construction pics; real estate woes; POS (that is, point of sale) pains; and the many other fun and not-so-fun sides of starting a retail business.