Day 23 of my “30 Days of MN Agriculture” is Paulette Legred from Bricelyn in south central Minnesota. Paulette has a very unique story. I must admit, this is probably one of my most unique “30 Days of MN Ag” stories. She creates professional hair products from her farm such as corn and soybeans. Her business is very new — having launched it in September, 2016. I love her phrase, “Farm to Fashion!” I know I will be trying some of her products. Enjoy!
Social Media Sites:
Tell me a little about your farm and/or business?
Lis’n is a professional hair care product line sold through salons and to consumers, envisioned, developed and shipped directly from our farm. With a nod to the American farmer, Lis’n’s premium, active Farm to Fashion™ ingredients are safe and naturally farm-derived. Crafted with respect to our world each product utilizes farm products such as protein from sheep’s wool; corn, soy, and macadamia seed for moisture;and ruby red grapefruit for scents. Lis’n is formulated with straight-forward honest hardworking systems, just like farmers and hairdressers.
How long have you farmed or been in business?
I launched Lis’n premium hair care in September 2016. Long before I started selling shampoo, I grew up on a farm and did just about every farm job imaginable. That’s where I learned a handshake is a deal, your word is all you really have in life, and a great work ethic will take you far. Fast forward a few years and I opened a tiny salon on my farm planned for 2 stylists and grew to a staff of 6, and booked solid until the day it was sold. After owning my salon I worked for beauty industry manufactures and traveled the USA and Canada as an educator, gust artist and sales director. Along the way, I developed wonderful relationships, that inspired me to begin my own product line.
Tell me a little about what you grown/raise/produce or service provided.
Besides being formulated with Farm to Fashion™ ingredients, Lis’n celebrates the relationships between the stylist and guest by telling the stories of triumphs and tears both behind and IN the chair. Stories such as:
Supermom stylist returned home to be greeted by little ones demanding attention. Overly preoccupied with the daily “to do” list her son implored, “Mommy, listen to me with your eyes.” A stillness enveloped her and the day’s stresses evaporated. The only task at hand was to listen.
Where do you sell or provide services to? Who is your end consumer?
Lis’n is sold to professional salons and all professionals. I like a definition I heard of the word, “professional”. “A professional isn’t a specific job, such as a doctor, lawyer, etc, but rather how one functions within a given profession.” I sell to professional hairdressers, farmers, teachers, anyone who is progressive and passionate about life.
What makes your farm/business unique or special? What are you proud of?
Our “Farm to Fashion™ naturally farm derived ingredients truly provide our point of difference. What we do and how the products are formulated matters! We are sulfate-free, which protects our water. Lis’n is gluten-free in order to avoid allergies, and paraben free for safety. And of course, we don’t test our products on animals, we’re from a farm!
What do you love most about farming/business?
I love the similarity of farmers and hairdressers. That may sound odd, but they both are hard-working, independent, and extremely passionate about what they do. I love building relationships with the professionals I work with and sell to. I love providing a safe product for people to use. I love providing a means for increasing income for hairdressers.
What is one thing you wish consumers knew about what you do or your farm/business?
Professional products are very different from big box store products!
- Think of it this way…. All wine is made of grapes, Wine making processes are all similar, yet some wines are $4 and others are hundreds of dollars. The difference is the quality of the grapes and the purity of the wine making process. The same is true of hair care products. Professional manufactures are at the top of their game finding innovative ingredients, such as “Farm to Fashion™” ingredients that are safer, for you and your environment and take care of your hair, the same way a farmer cares for the land.
- Follow the money! When one buys hair care products from a local salon, they make a profit. The profit is reinvested in your community. When one buys hair care product from a “big box store”, you pay for advertising and celebrity endorsement.
What is one thing no one knows about your farm/business/product that you would like to share?
During this process, I was told by two industry “mixologists” that my formulations with Farm to Fashion™ ingredients was too expensive and I needed to go home and reformulate using cheaper ingredients. I refused! I knew my formulations were spot on because my chemist was raised on a farm, is a hairdresser and a Minnesotan! I KNEW farm ingredients were the answer to great hair care. I found a Minnesota company who respects our “Farm to Fashion™ ingredients and works beautifully with me. I am proud to work with these professionals.
Who are your customers? Or what would you like to tell your customers?
I developed Lis’n because I was frustrated about a lot of professional brands in the industry. Many are sold in big box stores, actually competing with the stylists. I created a brand they can trust. I also developed Lis’n to honor farmers and to raise awareness of how many different uses there are for farm products.
What makes Minnesota the place to farm/grow/raise/produce/service?
Lis’n is entirely made in Minnesota. Why that’s important is because Minnesota is home to industry greats such as Aveda, Scruples and LeMar. What that means for you is in Minnesota there exists a pool of great chemists and mixologists, fillers and many key personnel who deliver a safe product in a culture of high standards. As a Minnesotan, I have easy access for follow up for every step of the Farm to Fashion process.
What is one thing about Minnesota that people from other areas do not know about or are missing because they don’t live here?
Minnesotans embrace support teams. They are there to lean on and learn from. I couldn’t have done this without my chemist and creative designer. Their advice, industry connections and expertise are unequaled. They picked me up when I felt defeated multiple times. Close friends and stylists gave me words of inspiration and respect and asked, “How can I help?” My family is a key part of my support team. They never doubted I could be successful and immediately offered ideas and pitched in with the unglamorous jobs. In Minnesota we help each other out.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
Lis’n was named, “Lis’n” because we as hairdressers listen to our guests. Guests listen to their hairdressers. I love this quote, “Listen to understand, not just to reply.” We all need to listen.