Profile: Benton Jordan Weinstock

Direct Selling Goes Southern

Direct sales in cosmetics is dominated by Avon and Mary Kay, two companies synonymous with in-home cosmetics shopping. It would seem to be a hard market to crack. Yet, for the creator of Henry Beautiful, it is the market to which she is drawn.

“Women from where I am from have limited accessibility to high-end products,” said Benton Jordan Weinstock, founder of Henry Beautiful Products. Born and raised in Helena, Arkansas, Weinstock was taught by her grandmother that true beauty emanates from within, while her mother taught her that a good moisturizer and lipstick don’t hurt. While living in Helena, Weinstock went to Memphis, Tennessee, for her skin care fix, and thought it would be great if someone brought high-quality skin care directly to her door. Weinstock decided to transition this idea into reality. The development stage for her products took three years of hard work that produced the line and direct selling business plan.

Henry Beautiful products use natural ingredients—including “The Henry Brew” consisting of silybum extract, milk thistle extract, EGCG, matrixyl 3000 and coenzyme Q-10. “While there are obviously other beneficial ingredients in these products, this is the main combination of active components that really has an antiaging effect,” said Weinstock. “While the components do not necessarily lighten or brighten, they improve overall skin tone and create the glowing effect of a great complexion.”

Henry Beautiful products, according to the company, contain quality ingredients with proven results. But for Weinstock, the proof is in the retention of the company’s stylists. “If you build trust with them, the retention rate is better,” she said.

According to Weinstock, the direct selling cosmetic market has a 10% retention rate. However, Henry Beautiful has a retention rate of 60%. “If they really believe in the product, they will stay and grow with you.” Stylists are trained in how to use the skin care line and makeup products to create customized routines for women of every age and ethnicity.

“We are giving stylists a chance to be part of the company, get with our brand and create a full-time, at-home job opportunity,” said Weinstock. Following the direct selling model, stylists create their own business within the business.

“We are thinking smaller at first and growing at a slower rate,” said Weinstock. Recent steps include bringing in a CEO and launching a new Web site that allows consumers to use their stylists’ code for their purchases, thus crediting the stylist with the sale. Future plans include launching a bath line. While distribution currently is limited to the Southern U.S. and through online sales, “the goal is to go all the way,” said Weinstock.

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