Candice Gordon – Shevielle

True Stories Shevielle

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Candice Gordon

As a child I always liked the idea of being financially independent. In sixth grade, I started a business of making and selling Mother’s Day and Father’s Day cards. When I went to High School, selling on school grounds was prohibited, and I almost got caught selling Bath and Body products. Fortunately, I was able to join a club called the Wolmer’s Financial Services Committee which is essentially an entrepreneurship club. We were shown how to create our own small business, how to price our products and even had to pay a small fee to the school to be able to operate our small businesses.

At the time I was making and selling accessories for Champs such as headbands and armbands, but I had to find something else to do when I left Womer’s. I did not want to stop the momentum that I picked up in high school, so I had to think fast and come up with another form of revenue.

When I was in sixth form, the natural hair movement was at its peak and everyone was going natural. I saw it as an opportunity because people were figuring out their hair and needed affordable products to experiment with. My sister would always be experimenting with oils and other ingredients for hair, so we decided to start a business with our combined knowledge. The name “Shevielle” is actually the combination of both our middle names.

One day I went to a doctor’s appointment and while I was waiting, I struck up a conversation with a lady in the waiting room. I told her that I sold natural hair and skin products and she ended up being my first customer. What really started Shevielle was the JBDC business clinic. That summer I travelled to Kingston to attend this clinic and it was that same lady that told me where to source all the necessary items for my business from bottles to containers and even labels. At that time I started with just $3000 JMD.

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I have had to learn to strike a balance with my entrepreneurial endeavours with my main priorities like my school work and now my job. When I was at UWI, I knew that the goal was to get a degree, but it was also an opportunity to network. I knew that I would be sitting in a classroom with future leaders, so I made the effort to forge meaningful connections. Between networking and building my business while maintaining my grades, I had to find a balance. I still have not quite found the perfect balance with my personal life and Shevielle but it has been a work in progress. I believe that when you know your purpose in life, finding a balance will always be a struggle.

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Word for 2022: BALANCE

During this journey, I have come to realise that many Jamaicans are not aware of the connection between their lifestyle choices and lifestyle diseases. A lot of skin and hair issues are really as a result of internal issues that are being manifested externally. In order to resolve these issues there needs to be a combination of internal and external changes. My own natural journey led me to delve deeper into these issues and take some courses in naturopathy. From my own experience and knowledge I can confidently say that internal wellness must accompany the use of quality natural products to yield the best results. When people come to me with their own issues, I can have a consultation with them to help them with their lifestyle changes and provide them with our products as well. Nutrition, exercise, water and even sunshine are all vital to restoring the health of your hair and skin.

Though fulfilling, this journey has definitely not been easy. I love the administration and marketing involved with the business, but I also love being involved in the making of the products. Many entrepreneurs make the mistake of feeling like they have to do it all on their own, which can become frustrating. Despite the challenges, the satisfaction of hearing people acknowledge that the products work is incomparable. When people recognize my hard work and efforts, it makes me feel like this is all worth it. True Story

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