With the rise of more and more black women breaking away from traditional 9-5s to become their own bosses, the CEO is getting a revamp as the SHEeo. CEOs are forging their own paths, blazing their own trails, and turning their passion into a profit. In the Meet The SHEeo series, we talk to melanated mavens leveling up and glowing up, all while redefining what it means to be a boss.
Mariah Gray's love for healing began while working at a local herb shop, where she learned the power of herbs and explored their medicinal properties. As a woman who suffered from heavy bleeding and severe pain during her menstrual cycle, she found that natural remedies and herbal steam treatments would quickly put her yoni at ease, and soon began creating her own herbal blends for other healing women. Today, Essential Wombman educates and provides natural products for vaginal health and womb care for issues often further exacerbated by toxic products on the market.
In this week's feature, meet Mariah Gray of Essential Wombman.
Courtesy of Mariah Gray
Title: Founder & CEO of Essential Wombman
Location: Atlanta, Georgia
Year Founded: 2017
# of Employee(s): 1
30-Second Pitch: Essential Wombman educates and provides natural products for vaginal health and womb care. For years, women have suffered from vaginal health issues caused by most of the toxic products on the market. Essential Wombman specializes in creating natural products for your most sacred feminine parts. Our mission is to teach the importance of self-love and self-care.
What inspired you to start your brand?
I developed my love for healing others while working for five years at a local herb shop. During that time, I studied herbs and began trusting the healing properties they have. Positive feedback motivated me to create products of my own. As a woman, I understand the issue we go through every day. I created products that worked for me, essentially for every woman to enjoy.
What was your a-ha moment that brought your idea into reality?
While suffering from heavy bleeding and severe pain during my cycle, I began looking up natural ways to treat my issues quickly and was introduced to Yoni Steaming. I developed a Yoni steam blend with specific medicinal herbs and started to steam once a week. Within two months, my flow decreased significantly, my pain was nonexistent and my cycle only lasted two days! My Essential Yoni Steam blend changed my life.
"As a woman, I understand the issue we go through every day. I created products that worked for me, essentially for every woman to enjoy."
Who is your ideal customer?
Essential Wombman is for women who are tired of relying on prescription medicines to treat their issues. At Essential Wombman, we embrace all women, especially those that are ready to heal naturally. Our goal is to get women to discontinue the use of toxic products to maintain good health. I have created a line of holistic products for women that really work.
What makes your business different?
All of our products are created with intention and love. We offer quality organic herbs and ingredients in every product. Offering one-on-one consultations is essential to giving personalized treatment plans and product recommendations. I have a high success rate and appreciate all of the positive feedback I receive from my clients.
What obstacles did you have to overcome while launching and growing your brand?
Trying to encourage women to switch from a product they are used to using was very challenging. Getting women to trust plants and crystals was even more challenging.
How were you able to overcome them?
Through education and testimonies, it helped turn my followers into clients. Getting women to trust me became easier the more transparent I became and the more they got to know Mariah/Essential Wombman.
What was the defining moment in your entrepreneurial journey?
In 2017, I opened Essential Wombman Yoni Steam Spa; it was very successful and within five months, I outgrew the small space. It was the moment I realized I am living in my purpose and women are trusting me and my products to receive the natural healing experience they deserve.
"I realized I am living in my purpose and women are trusting me and my products to receive the natural healing experience they deserve."
Where do you see your company in 5-10 years?
In 5-10 years, Essential Wombman will be every woman's go-to brand for everything self-care. We are currently working on expanding to products for every woman's needs. We are working on opening Holistic Women's Wellness centers around the world where women can come to heal, connect, release and recharge.
Where have you seen the biggest return on investment?
I absolutely love vending. Vending has been very successful for Essential Wombman. I try to participate in at least two events per month. I enjoy getting to personally connect with my clients. I am blessed with the gift of knowing what a woman needs when I interact with her. I am forever grateful for this gift.
Do you have a mentor? If so, who?
I don't currently have an official mentor but I always believe that I am a student. I am always learning from other herbalist, healers and business owners. I will hopefully have an official mentor soon.
Biggest lesson you’ve learned in business?
You can't do everything by yourself, well you can but you will burn yourself out! Forming a team is essential to any business, outsourcing work that you may not be able to do is important. I am learning this lesson right now and currently seeking talent to add to my team.
"Forming a team is essential to any business, outsourcing work that you may not be able to do is important."
Anything else you would like for people to know, or take away from your entrepreneurial story?
Be authentic in everything that you do. Don't be afraid to jump into an oversaturated industry understand that what's for you is for you! Most importantly always Love yourself, Love your Yoni!
For more of Mariah and Essential Wombman, follow her on Instagram @Essential.wombman and Facebook: Essential Wombman.
Featured image by Essential.Wombman/Instagram