We all know the power of a good hair day. Getting that perfect shine or tousled bed head can make you feel seriously unstoppable. Chances are, yours started by getting your hair did with products from AG Hair. They’ve been dominating the biz for years and can be found in thousands of salons all over the world. We love the fact that they formulate everything without things that are bad for our strands, like salt and parabens, and make it all on the west coast of Canada. We caught up with Lotte Davis, who founded the company with her husband John, for AG’s 25th anniversary and got her to spill a few secrets.
AG WAS FOUNDED 25 YEARS AGO. HOW DID IT START?
It was a Mom and Pop beginning. My husband John and I began literally in the basement of our house. We bought a generic shampoo and conditioner in bulk and at night we filled it into stock bottles with a pump. I designed labels for these and we stuck them on by hand as we couldn’t afford the screen-printing charge. During the day John would sell the products to salons and I worked as a freelance graphic designer from home to pay the mounting bills, and to take care of our two babies. One day we realized that the product we were buying was pretty mediocre, so we decided to learn how to formulate and produce our own product. That’s when the business really began to take off.
IS THERE A SECRET TO STAYING IN BUSINESS FOR AS LONG AS YOU HAVE?
No secret, but a combination of a few things. It started with having a great partnership with my husband, sharing an entrepreneurial mindset and compatible skills. Next, it’s all about the people we work with. We’re fortunate to have a great team that drives AG forward every day. And lastly, I guess you have to be really motivated by something. For me, giving up was never an option. You just keep looking for different ways to make it work when things go off the rails.
WHAT’S BEEN YOUR MOST MEMORABLE ACHIEVEMENT?
Hands down, it has to be raising our two daughters and seeing them grow up to be everything they’re capable of being. You always wonder or worry when you’re trying to balance so much between work and home if you’re doing a good enough job as a parent, but they’re doing just fine. I’m really happy I got to do both.
WERE THERE ANY CHALLENGES YOU FACED?
Finding enough time to do everything I want to is always my biggest challenge. And technology – I love the convenience it has brought to every aspect of my life, but there never seems to be any down time anymore. You’re connected every waking hour to your job, your friends and the world. It’s brilliant, but it’s also invasive and over-stimulating.
THERE HAVE BEEN SO MANY DIFFERENT HAIRSTYLE TRENDS SINCE YOU’VE STARTED. WHAT’S BEEN YOUR FAVOURITE?
Wow, I’ve run the gamut on hairstyles, from the page boy and beehive, to Vidal Sassoon’s geometric cut, the Shag, and rocker punk. My favourite is now. I love today’s relaxed, unfussy styles that focus on hair that is more healthy than it is dressed.
TELL US A SECRET TO KEEPING YOUR HAIR HEALTHY.
Well, you know I’m going to tell you it’s all about the hair products I use. We make our shampoos without salt, which dries out your hair – that’s a secret I can tell you about. Most shampoos are thickened with common table salt as it’s faster to produce and inexpensive, but it’s brutal on your hair and scalp.
FAVORITE HAIR COLOR: Chestnut brown with caramel and golden tones.
MULLET OR MOHAWK? Neither has much appeal for me.
FAVORITE AG PRODUCT: Right now I love BB Cream. It makes my hair feel and look so healthy.
LOOK THAT NEVER GOES OUT OF STYLE: Chignon and french roll. They’re both timeless, kind of like Audrey Hepburn.
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