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ICYMI: Jen Atkin Shared the Secret to Ouai’s Success in an Epic Instagram Story

"I was really sick of the conversation being led by men who had money and power."

Here at FASHION, we love us some Ouai Haircare. And we really love hairstylist Jen Atkin. (Why? Watch our Facebook Live interview with her here and you’ll understand.)

So yesterday, when the celeb hairstylist jumped on Instagram to share the secrets to Ouai’s—and her—success, we were all ears. In case you missed it, we’ve transcribed Jen’s entire Instagram Live below. Prepare to be inspired.

“I was up until 2am last night. I don’t normally do that but I was having such an inspiring conversation with Virgil from Off-White and we were talking about how grateful we are for both of our brands. We used to talk years ago about the ideas we had and what we felt was missing. And now we look back [a few years later] and just think about how much success we’ve had and the amazing connections we’ve been able to have with the people we’re creating products for. Both Virgil and I have had such support from friends who are celebrities, so obviously that’s helped us achieve the platform we both have.

But what’s so funny is how everyone who has been in the industry and selling products for a long time, is shocked by how quickly our brands came on the scene and rose to a good place. I get asked all the time “What’s the secret sauce?” and “How did you do it?” and all both of us did was create a human connection again, to fashion and to hair care. And for me personally, I was really sick of the conversation being led by men who had money and power, deciding what we wanted and not asking what we wanted. All I wanted to do with Ouai was create something where I wasn’t telling people what they needed or what they wanted. I was asking our customers. It’s not that hard. My goal for 2018 is not only to create products, but what Virgil and I were talking about last night, what’s missing is good will. I think that a lot of times I bring, I hate the word charity, but I like to think of ways we can help each other and do things that are good for the world and spread good messages and include everyone in the conversation. It hasn’t happened for a really long time.

So what’s exciting about Off-White and Ouai and even Glossier, Anastasia Beverly Hills, Huda Beauty, is that we’re just having conversations and asking people what they want and bringing humans back to these industries. That’s it. If anybody from a corporation is watching, write that down. That’s the secret sauce. Just have conversations and not worry so much about your stock prices and keep that connection because that is key. You have Snapchat and Instagram and Facebook and amazing ways to have that connection. So get on it.”

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