A FASHION-forward businesswoman has launched a new hair chalk enterprise from her Pontefract home after seeing a colourful gap in the teen market.
Emma Southward, said her new online business Hair Chalk UK – which sells packs of multicoloured chalk – was inspired by the recent outburst of bright and eccentric hairstyles worn by celebrities, including singers Lady Gaga, Katy Perry and Jessie J.
The chalk – which comes in a variety of different colours – is a non permanent colouring which is put onto the hair and washed out the same day.
The 35-year-old – who formerly worked as a store manager for Homebase – said: “There is real craze at the moment to have multicoloured hair and, even though celebrities can afford to change their hair colour everyday, the average teen can’t.
“About eight weeks ago, I was looking at something online and this hair chalk popped up, I hadn’t seen anything like it before and when I realised there were A list celebrities using it, I thought it could be an excellent business opportunity to run from home.”
Emma set up the business after health problems forced her to give up her job at Homebase.
She added: “Doctors diagnosed me with functional disorder in September 2010, which meant they couldn’t find anything wrong with me but I was collapsing up to five times a day.
“I had to stop my job at Homebase and look for a job I could do from my home instead.
“This seemed like a perfect opportunity, I was so excited by it I decided to set up the website with my fiancé David and start making it in our kitchen.
“The chalk is a mixture of oil, talc and cosmetic powder, like eye shadow, and we’ve turned it into safe and bright product that can be used by people with all hair types.”
Since the website launched in July, Hair Chalk UK has more than 2,000 followers on Facebook and takes around 40 to 50 orders a week.
Emma has already shipped chalk all around the world, including Denmark and Mexico.
She added: “We can cope with the demand at the moment but we hope in the future we will expand to meet increasing orders.
“It is still very early days but so far the response has been incredible.
“My friend’s little girl goes to CG Dance Studios in Pontefract all her friends have loved using it in their productions.”
Visit www.hair-chalkuk.com for more information.