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How this Atlanta skincare founder built a community-driven brand

February 22, 2021 | Published by Faire

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Photo courtesy of London Grant Co.

In celebration of Black entrepreneurs in our community, we’re highlighting some of the Black-owned businesses on Faire and their stories. We encourage retailers to increase representation across their assortment and connect authentically with diverse brands.

Meet Tiffany Staten, the founder of London Grant Co. This handcrafted skincare line, based in Atlanta, GA, aims to deliver natural and trustworthy products that elevate our everyday essentials. Our team recently spoke with Tiffany and learned more about her brand’s story.

Finding inspiration

Growing up, Tiffany looked up to her mother, a leader in college administration. “Seeing my mom in that position was hugely influential,” she said. “She was the only female leader I saw. I had an example that I could reference to develop my own voice.” 

Fittingly, Tiffany was inspired to start her business when she became pregnant with her first child. “As a new mom, you start to take inventory of everything in your life.” 

Her journey began with a personal need. “I wanted to prevent stretch marks,” Tiffany said. “I looked at the back of the shea butter [bottle] I was using and only recognized one ingredient: water. I couldn’t find anything that was pure enough for both me and my baby.”

Looking for solutions that were both safe and effective was a challenge. Tiffany learned that women of color are exposed to over 150 chemicals and toxins in their everyday hair and skincare products. She set out to develop a better product for her community.

Developing the product

Tiffany devoted time to researching non-synthetic ingredients and finally created her first batch of body butter. “I was very timid. I’m not a chemist. I didn’t identify with being a cosmetic chemist or an entrepreneur.” 

That’s why she was thrilled when, after giving small batches to friends, everyone loved the formula. “That body butter is still our hero product… A lot of happy accidents happened while creating that first batch!”

Next, Tiffany worked up the courage to give out 100 tiny sample jars at an event—no label, but instead a small note and a link to her pop-up website. She sold out her next three releases.

With a newly found confidence in her product and enough savings in the bank, Tiffany left her corporate consulting job to build her brand. “During that time, I finally was able to pause and ask myself the hard questions,” she said. With the support of her husband and best friend—her “Amen corner”—Tiffany finally felt the validation she needed to pursue her business full time.

Building the London Grant Co. brand

Back when Tiffany was brainstorming baby names, she and her husband both loved the names “London” and “Grant.” London Grant Co. was born, and its brand mark was inspired by a lemon tree that Tiffany’s father gave her son. Even today, Tiffany is filled with hope and courage when she thinks about motherhood and building her brand. 

London Grant Co. first launched with four products. “Every product I create is for all women, but it’s important to be a representation of my community and to formulate for their needs.” Through the process of product development and customer feedback, Tiffany aims to create versatility with her line. “Because we’re living in a very consumer-driven society, there’s a product for everything.”

Tiffany’s favorite product? The Sheer Glow Body Oil. Living in the Atlanta summer heat, she wanted to create a dry body oil that absorbs quickly. She also uses it every day as a facial oil cleanser—after years of acne and irritation, Tiffany’s skin is the clearest it’s ever been.

Tiffany Staten. Photo courtesy of London Grant Co.

Operating during the pandemic

Tiffany began offering her wholesale line on Faire in July 2020. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, ingredients were scarce and back-ordered for many months. Nevertheless, Tiffany saw an outpouring of success and support for her brand. 

I am humbled by every customer that has supported London Grant Co. I treat my customers like family; it’s why we exist. The people who experience London Grant as a product and a brand are a part of this journey with us.”

We asked Tiffany how it feels to be celebrated as a Black-owned business. Poignantly, she said “You’re grateful for the recognition, and you’re hopeful that it lasts.”

Helping retailers diversify

Faire aims to amplify the voices, stories, and businesses of minority-owned brands across our community. On this topic, Tiffany offered a few tips that brands can share with their retailers:

  • Show intention. Ask questions about the brand’s products and story. Show a mutual appreciation for one another’s intention.
  • Send a personal note or set up a call. Let the brand know what’s selling well or how you customers are responding to their line. Brand owners are excited to build lasting relationships with their accounts. 
  • Ask for support. If you need selling or merchandising tips from a new brand, reach out to them!

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