Alexis Stanley is a beauty entrepreneur who developed a one-of-a-kind hair care brand after doing the big chop and experimenting with various concoctions on her natural hair. After testing countless recipes in her kitchen, Stanley’s patience paid off as her hair regained its luster.
Stanley founded UniQurl in 2018 to support the natural hair community and provide easy-to-use products. With natural ingredients ranging from avocado extract to almond oil, UniQurl simplifies the hair care regimen for those with kinky-curly tresses.
We spoke with Stanley about her business philosophy and what makes UniQurl unlike any other product on the market.
How did you get your start in the beauty industry?
It started in 2005 when I was a curious 19-year-old with relaxed hair and in college. My hair had never grown past a certain length and I wanted to know why. I was a biology major at the University of Illinois in Chicago so I took a scientific approach to everything. What was the science behind our hair structure? How can all Black women, regardless of texture, have long, healthy hair? From there I started online research. This is how I found a community of Black women exchanging information about hair. They were called the “hair forums.” I was able to learn so much from these women and was able to grow my neck-length hair past my bra strap in four years.
What sets UniQurl apart?
My philosophy is that we deserve simplified hair care routines just as much as any other ethnicity, and we deserve to save money while we’re at it. Our most popular and most innovative product is our 4-in-1 Styler. It’s four products in one jar. Leave-in Conditioner, Moisturizer, Curl Cream and Detangler. You’re essentially skipping the layers, removing the guesswork, saving time, and saving money. It’s also the only multi-use styling product on the market of its kind.
What advice do you have for aspiring beauty entrepreneurs?
Pick a lane, master it and dominate. What I mean is find a niche in an underserved market, understand it, solve the problem, and sell the solution.
Find customers outside of your immediate circle. I see a lot of new business owners mainly selling to their friends and family on social media. While that may work for a time, this isn’t a lasting nor scalable solution. You will need a marketing strategy that attracts the right customer to your business.
Your passions must align with your business goals. What I mean by that is don’t go into the business for the wrong reasons. If beauty (or any industry for that matter) is not your passion, but you’re doing it for money, clout, or a quick come up, abort the mission.