Rising Beauty Idol: Melissa Sinclair from Big Hair

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The beauty industry is booming and with more Women of Colour going back to their natural roots, the demand for hair products for curly ladies has never been higher. While established brands such as Anita Grant, Shea Decadence and Sheabutter Cottage remain strong we are starting to see the emergence of hair entrepreneurs such as Melissa Sinclair from Big Hair Beauty Ltd. She took time out to tell us about the ethos behind her brand. What made you decide to set up your own beauty business? It wasn't a conscious decision at all. It was organic, and it just happened - kind of like my calling. My hair was in quite bad condition and I decided to cut it all off and start over. Around the same time I had adopted a healthier lifestyle - I was eating well, exercising, and became very conscious of ingredients in general. I just couldn't get what I wanted on the market, so I started making stuff, and through connecting with other women I realised that there was a need and I started to explore the options.

What is your background? I actually went to university to study construction, so I was a Quantity Surveyor by trade. Everyone looks puzzled when I say that, as it's completely unrelated. However, my family owned a hairdressers and barbers for over eight years which my mum ran, so I spent a lot of time there working and helping out, and that gave me a good grounding

What is the concept behind Big Hair Beauty Ltd? Ultimately, to make natural hair care products that are beneficial to curly, kinky, multi textured hair widely available, whilst keeping our formulations suitable for the wider market. Also, to make natural products to a professional standard, which are affordable and offer value for money.

What is your USP? Truly natural products that focus on the health of the hair - made right here in the UK [to a professional standard that meets the current EU Regulations].

How did you decide on the look and feel of the brand? I really wanted a clean and crisp look and feel that was universal. I didn't want to exclude anyone as there are so many different hair types, even under the afro and mixed race hair spectrum. Packaging is so influential. I wanted to remove the bias and just look like a quality natural product. We're for everyone, and have such a variety of customers already - natural afro hair, curly hair, relaxed hair - black, bi-racial, European and Asian customers.

What are your future plans for Big Hair Beauty Ltd? It's pretty early days for Big Hair Beauty, so I'm just focusing on increasing our awareness and staying connected with our customers so we can develop products that people want.

What are your favourite beauty products? I make most of my own stuff now and have a pretty simple skincare routine as I have allergies and sensitive skin - so I am always a bit hesitant to try new products. I've never really worn make up - however, I've got a thing for lipstick now! Diva by Mac and Mysterious Mauve by Dior are my favourites. And the Dior Addict Lip Maximizer transforms any lipstick (or just your lips) to an amazing lasting gloss. It's always in my handbag.

What advice do you have for anyone who wants to set up their own beauty business? Whatever business you want to set up - do your research. Then research your research. Have a strong plan, but don't let fear or people who can't see your vision influence you! It took me over two years to launch, and I can honestly say that I've learnt more in this past 6 months 'doing it'. Take time off too. You MUST take time off.

For more information about Big Hair Beauty Ltd please visit their website.