The Brains Behind a Brand – It’s a 10 Founder Reveals How to Make It in Business
Carolyn Aronson, founder of It’s a 10 Haircare, shares her experience of being a businesswoman and building her own brand.
What was your route into hair?
After I finished beauty school, I went behind the chair in a salon. I knew I wanted to be a salon owner, so I went to business school in the evenings. This gave me a good understanding of how to run a business when I transitioned into owning one.
What are your tips for building a name in the industry?
Building a loyal clientele is the foundation for everything: Try going up to a stranger and giving them a coupon and focus on your social media strategy. You have to be willing to put yourself out there – after all you are your best advertisement.
What is your experience of being a woman in business?
There are some instances where men assume women don’t understand certain matters. For example, I might not know as much about the financial side of the business as my accountants, but I understand my books and the current state of the business. When you really stick to your convictions and your passion, it ends up shining through no matter what someone thinks. Women can be so much more than what people imagine us to be.
How do you feel about professional-only brands being sold direct to consumers?
I’m not going to look down on another business for what they choose to do. I believe our industry needs more indie-owned and hairdresser-owned brands because it takes the creativity to a different level. It’s not that I don’t want to reach the masses but I want to do it in a different way.
What’s your advice for someone wishing to launch a product brand?
As a hairdresser and a consumer, I was always thinking of ways products could be improved. Identify a gap in the market and bring it to life because if you can envision it – you can achieve it.
What challenges have you faced in your career so far?
It’s a 10 has been around for almost 15 years and it’s been quite a journey. I bought my partner out two years ago at a point when I could have sold, but I was ready to take control and solidify the company’s professionalism. No one knew I existed – I was coming out from behind the curtain.
What is your proudest moment?
We did a Super Bowl commercial in 2017. We were the first independently-owned professional hair care brand ever to advertise during the Super Bowl. I was at the game when it aired so I didn’t see it live but my social media blew up. We received a lot of recognition for the commercial and the creativity behind it.
Who are your favourite people to follow on Instagram?
I mostly follow European and UK hairdressers. I love to follow those in the beauty, fashion and make-up industries too. I follow @huda because she’s so genuine and she’s fully behind her beauty brand.
What’s next for you in your career?
We’ve just launched in the UK [distributed through Aston and Fincher] we’ve sold over 35,000 bottles so far. We’re launching in Germany, Norway and Sweden next with the aim of being in 14 countries by the end of this year.