Online Exclusives

Williamstown Wunderkind

March 31, 2009

The CEO of Eden Body Works is looking ahead�and that�s just to her high school graduation.

Williamstown Wunderkind



The CEO of Eden Body Works is looking ahead—and that’s just to her high school graduation.



By Christine Esposito
Associate Editor



Like any chief executive officer of a small personal care company, Jasmine Lawrence is dealing with several things at once—retail contracts, new product development, marketing plans. But she has other pressing matters too, like homework, prom and exams. Plus, did we mention she’s waiting for an acceptance letter from Princeton University to show up in her mailbox?


That’s right; Ms. Lawrence is a senior in high school—and president and CEO of Eden Body Works, a natural personal care company she started in 2005 in her parent’s Williamstown, NJ home.


In the Beginning



Ms. Lawrence’s road from everyday kid to CEO began when a salon relaxer broke off almost all of her hair. The devastated 11 year-old began researching the chemicals in the personal care products she had been using and started looking on the Internet for natural alternatives. She developed a natural hair oil, began using it on herself, and found that it worked.


But it wasn’t until a stint at a National Foundation for Teaching Entrepreneurship summer business camp in New York City that Ms. Lawrence decided to start her own company. At 13, she invested her allowance and a $2000 loan from her parents to create her company, which is named after the Garden of Eden in the Bible.


Although she was young, Ms. Lawrence was never intimidated when it came to dealing with suppliers. “I never told them what my age was. I put on my grown-up voice and said ‘this is Jasmine Lawrence, CEO of Eden Body Works’—or I emailed them,” she said.


Starting as a web-based operation, Eden Body Works has generated sales of more than $1 million since its inception. Today, Ms. Lawrence’s products—natural hair and body care products and aromatherapy candles—can also be found in salons and at retail giant Wal-Mart. Online orders have come from as far away as Australia, India and Europe.


Not bad for a kid whose real love is math and computers. “I love school,” she said. “I know I don’t sound like a typical teenager.”


She’s right.Ms. Lawrence—who has appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show and was named by Business Week as one of America’s Best Young Entrepreneurs—seems to have the acumen of a weathered industry veteran.


“Sometimes you can’t trust your suppliers to make sure you are getting ‘natural,” she told Happi about her quest to find a lab that would test materials to insure their integrity. Ms. Lawrence does not use alcohol, petroleum, beeswax mineral oils or sodium sulfates in any of her products, which include Lavender Oatmeal Bliss soap, Peppermint Tea Tree shampoo and conditioner and Jojoba All Natural Temple balm, which moisturizes and treats the hairline to prevent weak hair from breaking or thinning.


What’s Next?



Aside from maintaining her GPA in the Engineering Academy at Williamstown High, Ms. Lawrence is working on a new product (temporary hair color) and has ideas for future launches (products of men and children). Yet, she admitted, “now may not be the best time to expand,” although she does plan to continue running Eden Body Works after she enters college this fall.


Having her mom as a full-time employee should help keep things running smoothly for this wunderkind, who herself is bit surprised by how fast Eden Body Works has grown.


“I never expected it to get so huge,” she said.


More info: www.edenbodyworks.com



Related End-User Markets:

Related Raw Materials:

blog comments powered by Disqus
  • Who Makes That?

    Who Makes That?

    Tom Branna, Editorial Director||April 1, 2016
    From concept and formulation to testing and filling, today’s contract manufacturers perform a range of services for marketers

  • Multi-Cultural Beauty Update

    Multi-Cultural Beauty Update

    Christine Esposito, Associate Editor||April 1, 2016
    Established brands and start-ups address the needs of multi-cultural beauty consumers.

  • The Scalp Microbiome

    The Scalp Microbiome

    Nava Dayan PhD, Dr. Nava Dayan LLC||April 1, 2016
    A review of recent findings and innovative approaches for treating scalp disorders.

  • Mapping Out Multicultural Beauty

    Mapping Out Multicultural Beauty

    April 25, 2016
    Agnieszka Saintemarie of Kline Group about current trends and challenges in multicultural beauty.

  • At a Loss for Curls?

    April 22, 2016
    Amplixin, a Miami-based maker of hair strengthening products, has a solution for hair loss.

  • Why Look Good, When You Can Look Perfect?

    Why Look Good, When You Can Look Perfect?

    Tom Branna, Editorial Director||April 4, 2016
    A new way to try-before-you buy is capturing the attention of consumers and the beauty industry.

  • From Greenville to Guangzhou

    From Greenville to Guangzhou

    Christine Esposito, Associate Editor||March 14, 2016
    South Carolina start-up BabyBlossom has big plans for its nontoxic baby products line...in China.

  • NYSCC Explores Product Innovation

    NYSCC Explores Product Innovation

    Christine Esposito, Associate Editor||March 14, 2016
    New product development, formulation expertise and proper preservation are topics of discussion at February monthly meeting.

  • Texture on the Runway

    Nancy Jeffries, Contributing Editor||February 22, 2016
    Au Naturale by Dark and Lovely, Cantu, Creme of Nature, Design Essentials and Garnier create head-turning hairstyles.

  • Buy the Sea, Buy the Sea, Buy the Beautiful Sea

    Buy the Sea, Buy the Sea, Buy the Beautiful Sea

    Tom Branna, Editorial Director||February 9, 2016
    Nova Scotia Fisherman makes a boatload of products that contain sea kelp and a raft of natural ingredients.

  • What

    What's on Tap for 2016?

    Nancy Jeffries, Contributing Editor||February 8, 2016
    CEW and NPD present their beauty industry review and preview.

  • From Research to Retail

    Tom Branna, Editorial Director||February 1, 2016
    What began as research on skin disorders led a dermatologist and his father to create their own skin care formulas.

  • 5 Things I Learned

    5 Things I Learned

    January 15, 2016
    The Avon & Women’s Dermatologic Society Mentorship Program. Dr. Sabrina Fabi (left) and Dr. Kimberly Jerdan.

  • Perfect Timing

    Perfect Timing

    Tom Branna, Editorial Director||January 11, 2016
    New ways of collecting data can help cosmetics companies understand what women really want—and when they want it.

  • When a Cosmetic Becomes a Drug

    When a Cosmetic Becomes a Drug

    Jacqueline Sheridan, Dinsmore & Shohl LLP||January 11, 2016
    The unintentional conversion of personal care products through marketing.

  • Africa, Rising

    Africa, Rising

    December 14, 2015
    Savvy marketers should expand their operations on the continent, according to speakers at a WFFC seminar.

  • Color, Your World

    Color, Your World

    December 7, 2015
    A kaleidoscope of concepts was the conversation at a recent NYSCC symposium.

  • Hitting a Wall(mart)

    Hitting a Wall(mart)

    November 9, 2015
    Walmart imposes slotting fees and that hurts a lot of Tier 2 and 3 FMCG companies.

  • That’s Quite an Achievement!

    That’s Quite an Achievement!

    Nancy Jeffries, Contributing Editor||November 2, 2015
    The CEW honors seven beauty industry leaders.

  • What

    What's Not to Love?

    Tom Branna, Editorial Director||October 26, 2015
    The sun care category is rife with issues, but there’s a lot to like about it.

  • A Suite Deal

    A Suite Deal

    October 12, 2015
    Image Studios provides an innovative venue for beauty professionals seeking a new way to do business.

  • What’s All the ‘Fuzz’ About?

    What’s All the ‘Fuzz’ About?

    Jeremy Kerstetter, Assistant Editor||September 28, 2015
    Lawyer presents the power and versatility of essential oils by adding them to her own handmade dryer balls.

  • A New Kind of Hero

    A New Kind of Hero

    Tom Branna, Editorial Director||September 14, 2015
    An upstart household product company puts a new spin on the idea of home cleaning.

  • A Panoramic View

    A Panoramic View

    Jeremy Kerstetter, Assistant Editor||September 7, 2015
    ZSS takes a 360° approach to skin health.

  • It

    It's All in the Delivery

    Jeremy Kerstetter, Associate Editor||August 31, 2015
    AlureVé relies on pharmaceutical technology for its anti-aging skin care line.

  • A Brand of Its Own

    A Brand of Its Own

    Christine Esposito, Associate Editor||August 24, 2015
    Amyris creates its own skin care solution for consumers.

  • Eye on Korea

    Eye on Korea

    August 17, 2015
    At the Personal Care Conference in Shanghai there was distinct emphasis on beauty ideas from Korea.

  • No Coasting Here

    No Coasting Here

    August 12, 2015
    A Q&A with Coast Southwest CEO Joseph Cimo.