If you were lucky enough to get our amazing August Box, then you are familiar with EDEN BodyWorks. We caught up with Creator and CEO, Jasmine Lawrence to learn all about the birth of her company and the lessons she learned as a young entrepreneur. Lawrence’s drive and determination not only kept her focused on building a brand that grew from handmade mixes to natural remedies. Today her creations can be found in retailers across the country. In addition to a running a successful beauty brand, Jasmine also works as a Program Manager at Microsoft. Read all about Jasmine Lawrence and how she balances a career in beauty and tech.
You have been an entrepreneur for a very long time, at what age did you start EDEN BodyWorks?
I founded EDEN BodyWorks when I was 13 years old.
What inspired you to create EDEN BodyWorks?
I was inspired to create EDEN BodyWorks after losing my most of my hair from a bad relaxer. I needed affordable and effective products to help regrow my hair so I began to research ingredients. The damage encouraged me to see my worth beyond my physical image and to create a brand that could empower and encourage women to live healthy lifestyles.
What challenges did you encounter as a child entrepreneur?
My greatest challenge during the early years of my business was gaining respect in my industry. As a young, minority, female entrepreneur, I felt that I didn’t fit people’s expected persona for what a CEO should look like. I felt that I needed to mature and improve my communication skills so that I could convince people that my business would be successful.
What were your days like going to school and running a business?
I had a pretty strict schedule that I stuck to which enabled me to get a lot done. After my classes, I would come home and develop products and fill orders. I also participated in local basketball teams in my town and at church.
How did your peers react to your ambition?
I never really considered myself ambitious. I was driven to accomplish my goals and I tried to surround myself around like-minded people who were also passionate about things in their lives. In middle school, my friends were shocked that I had started a company and that was featured on television. They were impressed about how I used my free time to develop my business even though I was very active at school.
What did you learn in the beginning of your entrepreneurship that you still practice today?
One of my first lessons was to focus on the customer’s needs. That same focus, has allowed EDEN BodyWorks to create products that people want and love. We pride ourselves on being a solution oriented team.
Not only are you the Creator of EDEN BodyWorks, you are also a Program Manager, how do you balance the two very different careers?
My two roles may be in different industries but they both center around being a leader, creative thinker and decision maker in a product development space. These roles bring their own unique challenges that excite me in different ways.
When did your interest shift to engineering and gaming?
I wanted to be an engineer before I ever became an entrepreneur. I always had a love for math and science. At 8 years old, I dreamed of making robots for a living but founded EDEN a few years later. I continued to grow in both my education and experience in tech to accomplish this dream.
Talk to us about gaming, what do you love about this industry?
Gaming is a very fun field to be in. I love the energy and the fast paced nature of the work. Gamers and game makers are so passionate about what they play and what they do, that it makes you not want to disappoint them.
We’ve discussed the challenges that you faced as a child entrepreneur, what challenges have you experienced as a woman in the beauty and tech industries that are both dominated by men?
Tech and beauty are both highly competitive and fast changing fields. Remaining informed, relevant, and innovative is a constant challenge regardless of gender.
What advice can you offer to parents whose children want to start their own business?
My best advice would be to encourage parents to support their children as they develop their ideas and most importantly make a plan to actually create a business.
What advice can you give to women who would like to become an entrepreneur?
I would encourage anyone who wants to start a business to really focus on their motivations for doing so. It’s easy to have ideas and to tell people about them, but it’s tough to stick with them through execution and obstacles. Your motivations will keep you going when times get rough.
What are you most grateful for?
I am the most grateful for my parents. They were my first source of encouragement and my first financial investors. They raised me to value respect and discipline. They also instilled in me that anything was possible through hard work.
What’s next for Jasmine?
I plan to continue to lead the team at EDEN BodyWorks as we deliver new products and support women around the world. I’ll also be moving to the Bay Area to start a new role as a Technical Program Manager in robotics.
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