Our latest #BeautyBoss is Vanessa Faddoul, Founder of Ahimsa Haircare—a line of all-natural products for pre and post-workout hair that are formulated with clean and effective plant-based ingredients to protect and nourish strands during physical activities that can cause hair damage and breakage. All of Ahimsa’s ingredients are derived from natural sources and are in line with the brand’s philosophy of doing no harm as much as possible.
Their products are free from harmful ingredients such as sulfates, parabens, phthalates, and silicones, and offer sweat and moisture-absorbing formulas that are also pH-balanced for the hair and scalp without leaving behind any residue or powder. They come in recyclable aluminum bottles that are also reusable, and their products are not tested on animals.
We chatted with Faddoul who shared the inspiration behind the brand, secrets for success, beauty tips, and much more.
When was Ahimsa Haircare founded and what does the name mean?
The idea for Ahimsa started a couple of years ago, but we officially started selling products in April 2022. Ahimsa means to do no harm to people, animals, or the environment. It is the foundation and first of the eight principles of yoga’s eight limb path philosophy.
The eight limbs of yoga (the eightfold path) is called ashtanga (ashta = eight, anga = limb). There are eight steps that act as guidelines on how to live a meaningful and purposeful life. These all provide a moral and ethical foundation for how to live and bring meaningful to life. The eight steps are:
What inspired the creation of the brand?
I practice yoga daily and the sweat and friction from movement was damaging my hair. My hair was becoming dry, frizzy, and I experienced some breakage from constantly putting it in a bun. I wanted to create gentle, non-toxic products that I could use every day pre or post-yoga practice to protect my hair. We created a line designed for this purpose and decided to name it Ahimsa (do no harm) in honor the first of the Yamas (ethical practices) of the eight limbs.
Does Ahimsa Haircare have a hero product?
All of our products are special and unique. Our hero product is our Dry Mist Shampoo. It is different from traditional dry shampoos on the market. The Dry Mist Shampoo is non aerosol and contains no harsh chemicals like benzene or propane. It is not a powder, so it leaves no white residue on darker hair. It is a refreshing mist designed to curb sweat, eliminate odors, and refresh the scalp in between washes.
What are your favorite products from the brand?
I love all of the products. They are all unique and serve a different purpose.However, I use the Leave-In Conditioner the most. It makes a great curl refresher for second and third-day curls. I love to use it before I put my hair in a bun to keep my hair hydrated and prevent frizz so that I do not need to refresh after practice. I also use it after I shampoo to moisturize my locks before styling. It’s lightweight, accentuates my curls, and adds just the right amount of softness and shine.
Where are your products sold?
At the moment, we are mainly sold on our website. However, you may also find us at local yoga studios in the Nashville area such as the Hot Room, Yoga Co. of Nashville, and at the Miami Life Center in Miami.
Future plans for the brand?
Our future is to continue to offer meaningful products to our consumers and build our community. We will be launching a body wash and purifying shampoo in the coming weeks to extend our line. We look forward to continue to elevate our ingredients and minimize our environmental impact with goals of selling refills for our products to minimize our packaging.
Who inspires you?
In my personal life, my family is by far my biggest inspiration. My children inspire me to be the best version I can be every day. Also my husband who is my biggest cheerleader and supporter. I also find inspiration from friends and teachers within the Ashtanga community. In business, I look towards fellow entrepreneurs who have created great products and companies through innovative ideas and have built something that helps people in their daily lives.
Secret to success?
The secret to success is to keep on going no matter the obstacles. Acknowledge the obstacle for what it is and make the necessary adjustments to keep moving forward.
My beauty secrets are simple and really not secrets at all. Have a balanced and healthy diet, get into juicing at home, drink lots of water, a good night’s sleep, and yoga or any activity that is physically and mentally fulfilling. Living a healthy life.
For me, the key to wellness is to find something that brings you joy and peace. Once you decide what that is (painting, reading, exercising, etc.), it is crucial and without exceptions to make time for it every day without feeling guilt. It takes just a few minutes a day.
Do no harm. It is a struggle, but having empathy, compassion, and respect for everyone and everything is a key to your own self-healing.
Favorite way to relax?
I like to spend time with friends and family, telling stories and sharing good food and wine. Cooking and finding new recipes to try out is another passion that reminds me of times I spent with my mother.
[Images courtesy of Ahimsa Haircare]
Kamala Kirk is a University of Southern California graduate and has been an editor/writer for more than a decade. She has written for E! Online, Total Beauty, TravelAge West, Malibu Times Magazine, and many more. She resides in Los Angeles and is a proud pug mom. Follow her on Instagram: @kamalakirk