#EscentualMeets: Lucy Palmer, Founder of Hair Gain

#EscentualMeets: Lucy Palmer, Founder of Hair Gain

Are you career-focused, driven and looking to be inspired? #EscentualMeets is your source of motivation. Every month, we reveal the grit, success and stories of a selection of the world’s leading beauty founders…

For the first time, more women than men are suffering from hair loss. And 85% of women will suffer from hair loss in their lifetime. That’s why I’m especially excited about this month’s EscentualMeets guest Lucy Palmer. Lucy is the founder of Hair Gain, an edible hair care range powered by pea shoots with amazing hair growth capabilities. Here’s Lucy’s story…


1. Early Career

Lucy may be the founder and CEO of Hair Gain today, but she had a successful career before launching her own business. “A major chunk of my career history was in a hardcore media sales background,” said Lucy. “I worked at Dennis Publishing… I headed up the press and the digital side for the whole health and fitness portfolio… I guess that’s where my initial love for nutrition started”. Not afraid to take risks, Lucy made a big career change in the years leading up to Hair Gain. “One of my advertisers at the time turned to me and said stop messing about with media sales and come work for me. I went on to become a director of the company. I learned so much about nutrition. My role was creating food supplements for people like Boots and Holland & Barrett. I would go in and pitch the concept, design the packaging, and manufacture the goods. That was kind of my step into this world.”

2. Launching Hair Gain

Like many entrepreneurs, Lucy wanted to solve a problem. That problem was hair loss. “I suffered from hideous hair loss; I was like, I need something, and nothing out there is working for me. So it was just a classic, make what you want to be in the market. And that’s when my love affair with Hair Gain started.” Lucy’s problems with hair loss started during pregnancy, “I remember being on maternity leave and thinking, why isn’t there anything on the market that speaks to me? Nothing talks to me as a 30-plus woman who’s had a baby.” That niggling idea didn’t leave Lucy, and so she decided she wanted to create her own product. “I spoke to my Managing Director about the idea. I was like; we need to create this product; stop messing around; there is a gap in the market. The more I suffered from hair loss, and the more I spoke to women, the more I realised how many women were suffering from it but didn’t speak about it. Lucy and her Managing Director went on to launch Hair Gain before Lucy bought out the company.

Launching a brand is no easy feat, but Lucy acknowledges she was very fortunate, “I was allowed to work full time and have a side hustle at the same time. Hair Gain was my Friday; I ran the manufacturing side from Monday to Thursday. So I think I was incredibly lucky because I could keep my salary whilst building a brand at the same time. I don’t think many people are probably that lucky.” Soon enough, Hair Gain took off, and it was time for Lucy to take a chance on her passion project, “My MD said this is flying now. Do you want to buy me out? He knew that I was so passionate about it. And if I didn’t do it alone, it would never go to the next level.”


3. Business Highs & The Future

Fast forward to 2022, and Hair Gain is one of the UK’s top hair loss supplements and the only one to use the clinically proven hair growth-boosting ingredient AnaGainTM. Lucy recalls her favourite career memories so far, “I distinctly remember we had a piece of editorial that went live on the Daily Mail. It was an editorial from six women showcasing their before and afters from Hair Gain, and it went live between Christmas and New Year, and we sold out completely. We were on the homepage of the Daily Mail for six days, and then it went live on The Sun, then it went live on The Independent and just spiralled.” Lucy never doubted the business’ future and threw herself into every opportunity to build brand awareness, “I went live on TV shopping in the UK in lockdown. I was one of the guest presenters, and I felt absolutely sick. I mean, doing live TV presenting is really scary. I was the most nervous I’ve ever been; I was so close to throwing up before I went on air. We sold out of all stock. The whole allocation after just 45 minutes.”

As for the future, Hair Gain has one main ambition, “I want us to be renowned for helping women with hair loss, I want to be the go-to brand, I want people to have full confidence in what we produce.” The brand will spend 2023 expanding its range and territories. ” We want to extend the range in the right ways, looking at new innovation, but also looking at new territories. We’re about to launch in Germany, Italy, and France is looking very likely. Then we’re also looking at the whole of the Middle East.”


4. Entrepreneur Advice

We asked Lucy what advice she’d give someone wishing to follow in her entrepreneurial footsteps. “Don’t be scared about trying new things because everybody at the start doesn’t know what they’re doing, right? Talk to somebody that knows more than you. Don’t be ashamed to say you don’t know what you’re doing. Because there will be people out there who are better at you at certain things, lean on them, lean on friends, lean on family, lean on somebody on LinkedIn; don’t be embarrassed to say you don’t understand something.” We also asked Lucy what every budding beauty entrepreneur needed to make it, “Make sure the product idea has a gap in the market, and make sure it’s a passion area. Are you going to be passionate about this product when everything’s going wrong? Because things have gone wrong so many times, and because I love the product and my customers, I go again. If I wasn’t passionate about this product, I’d have probably quit years ago.”

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