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And Then She Overcame Herself...

Updated: Sep 30, 2021

With two parts excitement, one part anxiousness, and a sprinkle of OMG, here I am again. Here with yet another business launch. Another brand. Sort of. I think I can consider this a brand "remix".

But I have to say it's right this time.

I first started this journey in 2008, creating DIY hair concoctions, and posting them to Twitter for other naturals to make on their own. For several years, I researched ingredients and created recipes. I loved the smells and feels I curated. I loved shopping for herbs and oils. I especially loved learning how to care for my hair. I had only been natural for 5 years back then, and there wasn't much help online or in stores for naturalistas. It was damn near frowned upon. 17 years natural, and I'm amazed at the progress the industry has made so far. But we do have a ways to go... that's for another blog post :)

In 2014, I launched my first natural hair care line of products called MANEology. I conducted hair consultations, presented live demonstrations of my products, taught workshops, and even sold products internationally. I also created personalized products based on hair care needs. However, I stopped loving my craft. I struggled with balancing the demands of my business with my full time job and personal life. I ceased operations in 2016.

At the end of 2017, I relaunched under the brand "HoneyCombs". Basically it was the same as MANEology, but with an umbrella of three different consultation services and hair care products. Under this brand, I mostly provided business coaching services to woman entrepreneurs, facilitated workshops, and offered small group classes/consultations (known as EntrepreneuHER University). In addition, I designed custom drinks and bartended private events. Can we say, "MUCH". That lasted a little over a year. Once again, burnout and unbalance set it in. Womp.

So here we are in 2020. I took a step back....a lot of steps. I even stopped making products for just myself. I discussed things over off and on with my husband, who always encouraged me to make a come back. I prayed. I journaled. I manifested. I talked to God ALOT. I aligned myself...I just wanted to do it RIGHT. I wanted to have a clear, consistent, and intentional brand. I wanted to do something different, unique, and creative. I wanted quality. I wanted anyone who experienced my products to feel my own energy and voice in what I created. I especially wanted to take my time, and not move before God wanted me to. It was necessary for me to recreate my own lane, and make products that other people weren't making (as far as my research could tell). I needed to be balanced. Everything needed to be done decently and in order. I needed effective and simple business processes. I needed to ensure if I did this again, it made sense.

I would be amiss without expressing a cornerstone of my brand has been inspired by one of my readings, "Sacred Woman" by Queen Afua. Something she spends time discussing is the importance of utilizing herbs, butters, and oils (from Earth) as part of our self-care as women. She also emphasizes returning to a minimalistic beauty routine. Now, these are things I know, but I needed the reminder. Her historical and thought-provoking tutelage on spirituality, black culture, and womanhood impacted me deeply, and I will forever be grateful for her wisdom.

Her reading is one of the reasons why all my products truly are 100% natural. Additionally, I have the most sensitive skin I know. It is prone to eczema, excessiveness dryness, and scalp psoriasis. I even have to use laundry detergent for sensitive skin. Making my own products that contain no man-made ingredients or chemicals is how I show my temple true kindness... and I wanted to share this with other women.

A little about me. I'm a proud black woman. I've been a natural-haired girl for 17 years. I graduated high school in 2003. I earned a Bachelor of Social Work and Certificate in Case Management in 2007; a Master in Business Administration with an International Marketing concentration in 2011; and a certificate in Complimentary and Holistic Alternative Medicine in 2014. In 2018, I returned to the social work field after working in management, business development, operations, marketing, and e-commerce for10 years. I helped make a lot of money (like millions smh) for a lot of big and small companies. Returning to my purpose and passion (helping others) through social services truly feeds my spirit. I am a daughter, a sister, and a sister-in-love. I have the dopest tribe of friends who've been rocking with me a long time.

I learned ME...So now I'm ready to do this "thing" again. The right way. It goes without saying that I delibertly kept much of what I was working on to myself, with the exception of sharing and bouncing ideas off with my husband. I had to protect my creative energy, so I wouldn't feel discouraged from any outside influences... discouragement I manifested at times all on my own was MORE than enough. This was especially important since I chose to expand beyond products just for hair.

Thank you for reading this and being present. Your support is beyond words. Just know I feel so much gratitude.

I hope you feel inspired by my journey...and perhaps a little more me.

Welcome to The {Her}bal Trap by HoneyCombs.

With Love,

Jocellyn C. Combs aka HoneyCombs

"Never be afraid to set awhile and think..." Lorraine Hansberry

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