Walker’s Legacy Profiles recognize unique women of color in business that embody the legacy of Madam C.J. Walker, the first female self-made millionaire.
In this installment, meet Symmadar Schand, Founder of Sparkle and Spice Skin Care!
Sparkle and spice and everything nice, that’s what this luxury beauty bar line is made of. A twist to the age-old nursery rhyme, founder Symmadar Schand says she wanted a name that was “cute and catchy”, but was told that “Sugar & Spice” sounded like a little girl’s brand.
“I knew I wanted ‘Spice’ because I wanted to call out the natural herbs and spices I would be using in my bars. My favorite color is gold and gold sparkles so I decided on Sparkle & Spice Bars,” Schand explains. With ingredients ranging from lavender and aloe vera, to honey and red wine (yes you read that right, WINE), the line of cleansing bars, facial masks, and bath bombs are a true treat for the skin. When asked what prompted the start of her line of specialty cleansing bars Symmadar points to a place that many of us draw inspiration from–personal experience.
“My struggle with acne was the initial reason I thought to create Sparkle & Spice Bars. I had been breaking out for years and tried everything on the shelves. No shocker, nothing worked. A really good friend of mine took me to Lush one day and I tried their herbalism. It was heaven sent! I saw my acne clearing up but after my 2nd pot, it seemed like it stopped working.” The fact that she had come so close to a breakthrough for her breakouts caused Schand to dig a little deeper into “learning about all the healing and conditioning benefits of herbs and spices.”
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, nearly 50 million Americans suffer from acne annually. Schand says she was one of those people.
“So, I started by making my own version of ‘herbalism’, and it worked! That was the first time I had the idea to start my own line of facial cleansers.”
A graduate of Howard University’s School of Communication, Schand says that her college career did not prepare her for entrepreneurship in the ways that one might think. As an Advertising major, entrepreneurship was not within her scope of plans.
“I thought I was going to be a creative director at some ad agency. I would, however, say the people I met in college helped to give me the courage to go for it. As more people I was connected to got started in their own business ventures, the thought of becoming an entrepreneur myself wasn’t so foreign.”
Like many of us, work-life balance is a critical component for Schand and the success of Sparkle & Spice Bars. In addition to being the sole proprietor of the skin care line, Schand also works full-time and is adjusting to her new role of being a wife. So how does she handle it all? “At times it feels like I’m juggling, so, unfortunately Sparkle & Spice Bars has to take a hit when I feel like I’m lacking in the other two departments. Time management, planners, and the notifications feature on my iPhone have all been lifesavers,” says Schand.
As it is with most things in life, every challenge has its own set of rewards. Sparkle & Spice Bars is no exception to this rule. Symmadar explains: “The first night I launched my email, it was around midnight. I sent the email and went to sleep. I woke up to so many notifications on my phone about money coming in from sales. I had literally made money in my sleep! Knowing that the money I’m making is because my product is out there working, changing lives, giving people their confidence back, making them feel sexy–that feels damn good! I never thought I would start a business and it would be so successful that it would help pay for my wedding. That’s the kind of big change I was afraid of. It’s motivation for me to keep going.”
Schand’s mission for Sparkle & Spice Bars sets a tone for women’s empowerment with not only her bravery exemplified through entrepreneurship, but by sending a message to women that it is ok to love they’re in.
“I want to encourage true self-confidence. I want women to begin feeling comfortable and confident in the skin they’re in again.
“I noticed my insecurities grew as I became more familiar with makeup. The better I got at beating my face, the less comfortable I became wearing the skin God blessed me with. I couldn’t be held prisoner by my makeup bag so I did the work and created a product that set me free. My goal, my mission, my purpose is to free everyone else who may be struggling with their own insecurities. So now I can beat my face and feel beautiful, or ditch the makeup and feel like the goddess I am. Get you a girl who can do both!”
In final words of wisdom to other women seeking to step into the world of entrepreneurship, Schand offers sage advice: “I would say ‘go for it’! Do your research, pray, and put a plan together before getting started. If the numbers make sense, soar on baby girl! I would also seek out people who are already doing what you want to be doing and doing it well. Offer to shadow them, be an assistant, anything to get your foot in the door. You’ll learn a lot when you make strong connections, things they don’t teach you in books or classes.”
“I feel so blessed to have come this far with Sparkle & Spice Bars that I just take it day by day and pray that I continue to be blessed. I would love for Sparkle & Spice Bars to grow wings and fly into retail locations.” If things continue as they have been, it won’t be long before Sparkle & Spice Bars are in stores near you.
For now, check out www.sparkleandpicebars.com to add some shine to your daily skincare routine.