AcARRE is a natural beauty brand created by chemist and CEO Tracey Kearse. Kearse has a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from Hampton University. Starting a business was natural for the Severna Park, Maryland, native who hails from a long line of entrepreneurs. Rolling out spoke with Kearse about her brand, which prides itself on being made in small batches with ethically sourced ingredients.
Describe your introduction to the beauty industry.
When I was younger and spending time at my grandmother’s house, she would always watch the soap opera “The Young and the Restless.” On there, I saw a fragrance chemist and thought that’s a really cool job to have, and I wondered how do I get into a career like that. I asked my dad, who is an electrical engineer, and he said I need to look into getting a degree in chemistry to be a fragrance chemist. Because of my love for science and math, I decided to pursue my degree in chemical engineering. When I graduated with my chemical engineering degree from Hampton University, I started my first job at Avon as a cosmetic chemist 17 years ago.
What was the driving force behind creating AcARRE Beauty?
I started AcARRE for additional income, as I have been laid off before and I always wanted to have the means to be able to take care of my family. I received a request from a friend looking for a product to use on her and her daughter’s scalps and one from a family member looking for a product for their face and hands to lock in moisture. I started thinking of product ideas and what ingredients could help them and others. That’s when I started creating AcARRE to help people care for themselves from scalp to toe by utilizing bioactive ingredients based on plant biodiversity of ancestry elements from Africa and the Pacific Islands.
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