Entrepreneur, WE NYC Mentor for the City of NY, Former Wall Street Executive, Co-Founder & President of Lux Beauty Club Botanicals and Panel Guest Speaker on Fundraising While Female.
Victoria Flores, a former executive at Morgan Stanley Prime Brokerage is the founder and President of Lux Beauty Club Botanicals, a beauty & wellness brand that can be found on shelves across the country in spas, boutiques, retailers and independent stores as well as on-line. Victoria began her professional career at Themis Capital, an asset-based lending bank in Dallas before moving to New York City to open the East Coast branch. She was recruited by Morgan Stanley Prime Brokerage and after a long career at MS went to work with a small broker-dealer facilitating trade and execution for the top hedge funds across the street. Always wanting to start her own business plus researching that the global wellness economy was valued at over 4 trillion dollars, she knew this was the perfect sector to create products for women by women.
Victoria has been featured in Forbes, Huffington Post, People en Espanol, The Doctors, Beauty Independent and has also appeared on HSN and Project Runway: Fashion Startup. She is also an alumni of Stanford Business School’s Latino Scaling Program a collaboration with Stanford’s GSB.
Where did the idea for your career come from?
My journey has taken many turns. Our original company was selling hair extensions to women and although successful the supply chain overseas was horrible. Quality control was awful and the time difference caused my hair to fall out and my business partner and I were beyond stressed. We started experimenting with CBD to help us and that came our light bulb moment. We pivoted into wellness, we already had a 10k customer base of women. Our sales soared but then flattened due to the restrictions around advertising CBD, which doesn’t make sense. We had so many websites and shows that wanted to feature but couldn’t because of the CBD. So, of course, because I never stop and break walls, we added non CBD supplements and then we experienced explosive growth. I hate taking pills and always forget so I knew there were women out there like me that our gummies would resonate with. Plus, most supplement lines are founded and owned by men! My partners are registered nurses and we formulate all our own products.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
Wake up at 6 AM, get my daughter dressed and off to school. Her Dad takes her by 7 AM so then I start my day, coffee, read the papers (the DailyMail, lol) and start answering emails. Check sales, new shipments coming in and text my entire team for any info I need to know. I blow through the day on calls and zooms then around 5 PM I jump on my bike and do around 5 miles.
My daughter and husband get home around 5:30, then we eat, put her to bed and I jump back on-line. I know, I know, I am crazy!
How do you bring ideas to life?
Tons of research! What’s trending and what is speaking to people. How can we do things better or a product we like, how can this be better and great? Will our customer love it and buy it often?
What’s one trend that excites you?
Women’s health market is expected to reach 47b by 2027. It isn’t going anywhere. We need to find new and innovative ways for women to get their vitamins, especially as we get older. I love the powders right now you can mix with drinks but the only problem is, they TASTE awful! I want to add elixirs that taste great to our product range soon.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
I never stop! I am a sick multitasker and I have an uncanny memory when it comes to SKUS and product descriptions. Yes, super nerdy stuff.
What advice would you give your younger self?
I wish I had started earlier! That’s the one thing I teach my daughter and instill in her. My mom was a kid herself when she had me so she did the best she could. Every generation does better than the next, as an immigrant you want to make your community proud. I would tell my younger self have more fun! Don’t be so serious! lol.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
Ha. Well, I say I am the easiest going person there is. Of course, they say I am super type-A and a perfectionist, which I guess could be true!
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Don’t take a hard No as a never. Keep trying to change it to a YES! Don’t give up. Check in with them always. They appreciate the tenacity.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
Create great products that people can’t live without and build a team that has the same vision as you. Be authentic.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
Being overly trusting with suppliers overseas. Always trust your little voice inside and your gut. I overcame it by moving my production to the US and keeping jobs here.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
That’s a great question. I like anything that democratizes anything. Oh, something in tech, tech has the luxury if scaling fast!
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
Personally, I made a donation to a local refugee shelter. Felt great! Professionally, my Adobe subscription lol.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
Adobe Creative Cloud, Shopify, Google docs and google sheets. I know this isn’t software but my graphic designer in Sri Lanka, I cannot live without him. I heart you Rath!
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
The Celestine Prophecy. Just read it.
What is your favorite quote?
“You want work/life balance? Don’t start a business” – Robert Herjavec
“Get Rich or Die Tryin'” – 50 Cent
- Don’t give up
- Listen to your inner voice
- Hustle, hustle, hustle
Carlyn runs the day-to-day publishing operation here at ideamensch and interacts with our awesome customers and entrepreneurs. She is likely editing this with a cat on her lap.