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WHO is Roger Gore?
It is a question that has likely occurred to anyone who has used the sweet herbal smelling pomade G’Natural Herbal Products to help grow your hair, fight itchy flaky scalp, good for dandruff, stops hair breakage, restores dry brittle hair, adds hair moisture, soothes rashes, minor burns, scares. Roger Gore a striking young man who is the creator and owner of G’Natural Herbal products. First thing I noticed was his unique name, which is odd; the only letters R O G E are used in his first and last name. The second thing I noticed was how his skin was smooth and vibrant. The third thing I noticed was how nice and healthy his hair appeared. Of course I asked him his secret and his reply was G’Natural Herbal Products. Mr. Gore who has created a line of natural hair and skin care products that have become one of the most sorts after lines to make your hair grow. Was born in Seat Pleasant MD, same town that born NBA star Kevin Durant and boxing legend Sugar Ray Leonard. Mr. Gore oversees the R&D and production of 18 items from pomades to newly created Caribbean Coconut Milk leave in conditioner sprays for natural hair that smell heavenly. Mr. Gore swears he does not advertise G’Natural Herbal Products or seek out publicity. He also says he doesn’t pretend to be a chemist. Mr. Gore does pretend to be able to explain how the herbs work together- miraculously; the product brand has taken off in natural hair circles. Jumping off the shelves in stores like Wegman’s, H.E.B. in Texas, Mom’s Organic Market, CVS and now online at Amazon.com. G’Natural products has become a blogger and vlogger darling combining a rare mix of urban cool and celebrity cachet – Comedian and Actor Mike Epps, R&B Legend Eddie Levert of the O’Jays, Sister 2 Sister magazine owner Jamie Foster Brown, Nike Celebrity Trainer Deanna Jefferson, History Maker & African American Engineer of the year Ernest Levert Sr., Gospel legend singer Yolanda Adams are fans
“Customers want something that the celebrity use,” said Niani Omotesa a V.C. executive that invest in personal care products. “They also want something that works and has a great success story behind it.” G’Natural is out performing other multi million dollar marketing brands at Wegmans and Mom’s Organic Market by more than 15 percent, said Mrs. Tracye Snow national merchandise director at the company. Its due to the change in personal needs for today’s hair trends. African American women are walking away from relaxers in record numbers and seeking products to help enhance their natural texture and G’Natural seems to be the product of choice. The little mom and pop brands are competing pound for pound with the top brands because consumers trust the little brands. Customers are not fooled by big brands that are trying to capitalize on a market trend they instead are following brands like G’Natural, Carol’s Daughter, Shea Moisture and Miss Jessie’s with brand loyalty. They know the owners and their commitment to healthy hair and skin.
The natural hair care market has grown 5 to ten times in the last five years. The need for natural products has also grown. The mom and pop brands like G’Natural Herbal Products feel this void. Said Mrs. Omotesa. These mom and pop brands will become household names like Soft Sheen, Johnson & Johnson in the next ten years. These micro brands are catching the eyes of large private equity firms like Bain Capital that just partnered with Shea Moisture. You will see more private equity firms attaching themselves to these early stage brands before they become the next Colgate’s. The growth numbers of the natural hair care market are already on Wall Street base on the connection to the CVS’s, Wholefoods, Targets and Wal-Mart’s. But G”Natural, which comes in a very attractive packaging remains a decidedly low-key line, and its still has a take away appeal in the stores. (An 8oz jar of hair and scalp conditioner sells for $15 on www.gnatural.net and an 8oz jar of Honey Glaze hair pudding sells for $17 on Amazon.com)
The story of G’Natural Herbal product starts in 1996 in the bedroom of Roger Gore. Mr. Gore explained that he created the first product the hair and scalp conditioner based on his own personal needs. He was experiencing hair lost at an early age and couldn’t find anything to solve his issues. One night around 1 a.m. he recalls awaking to a voice or feeling that revealed to him to create a product that would solve his hair issues and to use healing herbs. Mr. Gore said “It seem spooky at first and then after a week of not reacting to the voice the same thing happen again and this time I shared it with my Mother and she says God speaks to men during these times at night or the morning.” His mother suggested he act on what he experienced.” So coming from a very spiritual family, he trusted his belief in God and moved forward. The next month Mr. Gore assembled a combination of ancient healing herbs and created his first product. After using it on himself he noticed that his hair was starting to grow back and was healthy and with incredible sheen. He credits his creation to God and therefore named his product G’Natural the G standing for God. His mother Lillian Gore advice to him was to always put GOD first in all you do. G’Natural was born. Mr. Gore’s mother helped him finance his first order. She was his first salespersons making everyone try the product and sent him to various friends and family members to purchase. Based on the success of the hair and scalp conditioner Mr. Gore created the next product, which was the hair growth oil, and it took off immediately. The formula used ancient spiritual oils and healing herbs like Olive Oil, Safflower Oil, Jojoba Oil, Lavender Oil, Rosemary, Sage, Comfrey to name a few. It made your hair and skin feel amazing and promoted hair growth. G’Natural continues to grow by just word of mouth advertisement. People want to hear from someone they trust that a particular product works.” Mr. Gore said. We focus on seeing the customer directly using in store demos and we want the people to know we are here and we back our brand 100 percent. “ Added Mr. Gore.
Soon after entering the health food market. Mr. Gore took G’Natural to the GM of the new Wegmans. The GM stated “if this works for me and my family I am willing to send it to corporate for further consideration.” Mr. Gore revealed to the GM his strong spiritual belief in GOD and that my mother always instructed me to put GOD first in all you do. He explain to her that the G’ in G’Natural stood for GOD. The GM loved the name and the smell, touch and feel of the products. A few weeks later Mr. Gore received a call from the GM stating G’Natural was a hit with her entire family and they will be forwarding G’Natural to corporate office for review. G’Natural then was displayed in the Wegmans where it sold out the first couple of weekend’s and became a success story in store overnight.
When ask what’s next? Mr. Gore says to continue to make quality herbal products for families of color. Mr. Gore added his place is in the community working along side his customers to help make a difference in their hair and their life. Mr. Gore stated he just signed a distribution deal with the top wholesaler to take the brand oversees. Mr. Gore says he’s excited about bringing quality product to Africa and Europe and wants to help with the needs of the rural areas in Africa with education and medical needs. Mr. Gore is setting up an entity called G’Natural Gives to use a portion of the revenue generated to help the children buy the things they need to get a quality education and medical treatments. Mr. Gore states, “You have to give 10 percent back!” Mr. Gore is a behind the scenes low key person that does not seek publicity. Many request come in for product donations of G’Natural to celebrity – packed events. Charity events for cancer and noble causes also request samples and the famous G’Natural gift basket. He leaves samples of G’Natural at HBCU college’s campuses and public schools. Mr. Gore conversations are very uplifting and eccentric. He focuses on “I can approach to all things if you put GOD first in all you do. For the interview Mr. Gore rides up on a Harley Davidson motorcycle looking like an urban celebrity combination rock star. He greeted me and I couldn’t help but recognize he has a strong look in his eyes. That looks of peace. When asked about his Harley Davidson, he said, “it’s the closes I can get to feeling GOD’s presence in the wind. I’m a firm believer in one with natural and my Harley helps me feel this when I ride. Enough about me.”
G’Natural received a big boost in 2013 when long time friend singer Eddie Levert and his brother Reggie said they introduced the brand to comedian Mike Epps and he instantly feel in love with the ‘Honey Glaze Hair Pudding’. This quickly became a hot selling item on the www.gnatural.net web page and www.Amazon.com . It’s the little unknown brand that people are seeking out and is selling totally by word of mouth,’ said Tracye Snow national merchandise director for the company. I’ll be doing a in-store demonstration and while I’m talking to a new customer here comes four or five customers walking up raving about the brand and then you see carts being filled with G’Natural Herbal Products, Its amazing. It’s the most amazing feeling to see the product talked about in such a positive manner. The results and claims of G’Natural have yet to be scientifically proven. But it’s clear that it’s a hit and the customers say it can be used in so many different ways. They rave on all the hair growth, hair moisture and sheen that the products produce. They speak of Mr. Gore like he’s a living legend in the hair care industry. They love his dedication to his brand and the community.
Mr. Gore a History Maker was recently featured in a Washington Post article about African American leaders going into High Schools to speak to students about finding their passion and then making it a business. Its great to see this micro brand becoming the next!
Story by Tanya
Black leaders visit schools in D.C. and elsewhere to inspire students
One of them was Roger Gore, a beauty-products entrepreneur and D.C. native who turned down a college scholarship to pursue his interest in barbering, much to his mother’s dismay. Now his company’s hair-care products are sold in CVS and Wegmans stores, he said, and they soon will be available at big-box stores including Target.
Speaking to sophomores Friday at Phelps Architecture, Construction and Engineering High School in the District, Gore offered a message that has guided his life. Figure out what you love, he said. Follow that, and if it doesn’t lead you to college — that’s okay.
“Whatever you choose to do, it has nothing to do with anyone else,” Gore said. “It’s got to be what you’re passionate about.”
When Gore concluded his remarks, a student in the back row raised his hand. “Can you bring a barbering trade to the school?” he asked.
Bringing successful black men and women into schools is a project of the HistoryMakers, a Chicago-based nonprofit group that has conducted thousands of oral-history interviews with black leaders and compiled them in a digital archive.
Its founder, Julieanna Richardson, said she believes that such personal stories have the power to change young people’s perceptions of what they can achieve in their lives.
“I really grew up not knowing that black people had accomplished anything,” Richardson said. “Everybody needs role models.”
HistoryMakers attempts to provide a spark of possibility, especially for students who have grown up in poverty and who don’t have a wide variety of examples of what they can become, Richardson said.
Four hundred African Americans visited classrooms in 200 schools and 67 cities this fall, the sixth time that HistoryMakers has organized the back-to-school event.
Outgoing U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan helped launch this year’s visits on Sept. 25 in his home town of Chicago. With him at Paul Robeson High School on the city’s South Side was Thomas Burrell, founder of the nation’s largest African American-owned marketing firm and a 1957 graduate of the school.
Burrell said in an interview that it’s stunning to see what has happened to the school, as anyone with the wherewithal to leave has left. After decades of enrollment decline, there are just 200 students remaining. Almost all are from poor families, and many are homeless.
“I’ve come from where they are, and it just seems like it was just yesterday,” Burrell said, explaining why he wanted to speak to them. “Those children are me. Those children are my children. I love them and I feel for them and some of them are doing quite well considering the circumstances that they’re going through.”
Burrell said he told the Robeson students his story, in which a teacher sent him on a path toward success by suggesting that he might be a good advertising copywriter. “I said, ‘What’s that?’” Burrell said in an interview. His teacher explained it, and it sounded pretty cool. He went and told his friends that he was going to become an advertising copywriter.
“I tell kids now, if you’re going to do something, go out and tell people you’re going to do it,” Burrell said. “Because if you have any pride, you’re going to live up to what you said you’re going to do.”
Does he believe the students heard his message? “I felt a couple of lights go on,” he said.
At Phelps, in the District, students watched attentively as Gore spoke during what would have usually been their world history class. Next door, seniors in a U.S. government class soaked up college advice from Joan Langdon, a mathematics and computer science professor at Maryland’s Bowie State University.
“Sometimes we think of history as being really old, as being such a long time ago,” said Phelps government teacher Shayla Adams, explaining why she likes HistoryMakers. “What they bring to the classroom is the fact that history is here, it is now.”
Langdon touched only briefly on her own story of growing up on a farm and being one of seven children whose parents had not graduated from high school. “I’m a scholarship person,” she said, explaining that scholarships had funded her education through her doctorate.
But the theme of education as a path to a better life was embedded in everything she told the students. “Fun is important. You should have some fun in college. But not too much fun,” she said.
She drew connections between their willingness to work hard and their earning potential. They might be poor for four years during college, she said, but then they could expect to support themselves. And wherever they started, they could keep going, working for promotions.
“You want to go higher than $75,000,” she said. “You want to earn $100,000. You want to earn $120,000,” she said.
One student smirked, as if that salary were unbelievable. “What?” Langdon responded, telling them they had a right to dream big. “You have so many opportunities.”