Today we’d like to introduce you to Devin Clifton.
Hi Devin, we’re thrilled to have a chance to learn your story today. So, before we get into specifics, maybe you can briefly walk us through how you got to where you are today.
My name is Devin Clifton and I am the Founder/CEO of Scrunch It Curls. I was raised in Woodstock, Illinois (where the movie Groundhogs Day was filmed). When I was 4 years old, I became very interested in creating products that solve a problem. Once, when I was 4, I attempted to create the “cure for the common cold” and was highly insulted that my grandmother wouldn’t partake in my clinical trial. At 14-year-old, I started a new school and can still remember the first thing my soon-to-be best friend would say to me, “your hair isn’t as frizzy today”. I had grown up thinking that my hair was straight and frizzy. It wasn’t until I was 31 years old and moved to Florida when a hair stylist told me that in fact, I have curly/wavy hair. My stylist introduced me to the curly hair lifestyle. Part of curly hair maintenance is that you cannot twist your hair into a twisted towel because it disrupts your curl pattern and causes frizz. The solution was to “plop” your hair with a t-shit. Plopping is when you lay a t-shirt down on your bed, hold your head upside down and fold the shirt so it holds your hair in its natural pattern while absorbing water. Excited with all the new techniques, I went home and tried “plopping”. Now I have two children, and dogs, and don’t sit still, so that shirt would not stay on my head. I knew there has to be something out there that was purposely made to plop curly hair. After hours and hours of searching online, I found nothing. Zilch. So, I reverted back to my 4-year-old self and created something. It immediately worked perfectly. I then researched how to file a provisional patent and filed it myself that evening. The next week I started a Kickstarter campaign and was 300% funded in days. Since that Kickstarter campaign, so much has changed. Scrunch It is now a team of three women with all different hair types. Because each of our hair is so incredibly different, we are able to work together to develop products that will work for loose waves to tight coils.
Scrunch It is so important to me because I didn’t have anything handed to me. In fact, I was once homeless living in Columbus, Ohio. I slept in an abandoned storefront at night while I served pizza on the Ohio State University campus. I would dream of the life my peers were living and the education they were receiving. The opportunity of earning a college education was a dream of mine. I met my husband and worked multiple jobs to allow him to finish college; I had two children and worked throughout my pregnancies; I even worked to provide supplemental income while I was an army wife. We both worked hard but still could not afford college tuition. So, when Scrunch It became an immediate success and profitable, I was able to fulfill my dream of becoming college educated. I am now working towards my degree in biomedical research. I have used my knowledge of biochemistry and work with a Ph.D. in chemistry to create a hair care line that works for all hair types.
My goal is to simplify curly hair maintenance and make products affordable to everyone.
We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
Learning how to run a business with no prior knowledge. I have learned everything from marketing, graphic design, supply chain management, inventory management, and purchasing while on the job. I have used gut instincts for everything.
Great, so let’s talk business. Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
We create science-backed hair products and tools to simplify curly hair maintenance.